Asheville’s Natural Born Leaders releases its second album, Abominable Creatures, on October 24, ahead of their album release show on Saturday, November 2, at 9 p.m. at The Mothlight. The band came together in 2016 with the intent of “just playing around Asheville,” and, two years later, was featured on NPR’s Weekend Edition with Scott Simon. Band members are Mike Martinez (lead vocals/rhythm guitar), James Eddington (bass/vocals), Ben Survant (saxophone), Kevin Murtha (drums) and Rex Shaffer (lead guitar).
“Our music is hard to describe because we generally tend to blend genres together,” says Martinez. “It is, to some extent, influenced by where we are situated in the world, considering the often political nature of the content and the political climate of Asheville and its surrounding cities.”
Band members bring eclectic tastes to the stage, Martinez says, and the songs on the album reflect that, with no two alike in sound or representative of the band as a whole. “A large part of our relationship revolves around listening to what’s new, old, popular and unpopular,” Martinez says.
And just as the band—often described as hip-hop, neo-soul, indie or alt rock—eludes a stereotype, so do its fans. “We like to believe our listeners are free thinkers, intellectuals, party animals, good friends and good people,” Martinez says.