As the Free Nationals expand their musical catalog, they’ve also stretched the range of genres that make up their melodic melange with the help of a diverse cast of guest stars that has so far included Daniel Caesar, Kali Uchis and Mac Miller, and Kadjha Boney, JID, and Miknna. Now, the soulful funk band tries their hand at blending smooth reggae into their musical mix with spectacular results. Jamaican reggae singer Chronixx provides the good vibrations on their latest effort, “Eternal Light.”
The band, which has backed up Anderson .Paak on tour since his breakout with Malibu, is made up of members Callum Connor (drums), Kelsey Gonzalez (bass), José Rios (guitar), and Ron “Tnava” Avant (keyboard). They released their first record as a separate entity, “Beauty And Essex” with Daniel Caesar and Unknown Mortal Orchestra, a little over a year ago, hinting at the time that they were preparing their debut album, which would also feature Kali Uchis, Mac Miller, and Syd (of The Internet).
Clearly, they’ve been taking a “slower-is-better” approach to completing the album, releasing a steady trickle of singles throughout the year while letting the main course simmer its way to perfection. It does appear, however, that the releases themselves are becoming more frequent; the Kali and Mac-featuring “Time” launched in August, while Kadhja Boney, JID, and Miknna contributed to “On Sight,” which dropped in September. With the production schedule speeding up, don’t be surprised to see an album release date announced before the end of the year.