Westward the Tide
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Westward the Tide

Provo, Utah, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF

Provo, Utah, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Pop Rock


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"High Tide"

Westward the Tide’s energy makes them an unstoppable force.
By Kolbie Stonehocker

Instead of bothering with any preamble when they took the stage at the first of two City Weekly Music Awards band showcases at The Complex, opening band Westward the Tide began their performance with a bang—literally.

Cam Brannelly strode onstage and started hitting his drums so hard that everyone’s eyes and ears were hooked as effectively as if a cannon had been fired. Then, violist Jordan Towner joined in by banging on a large floor tom as the rest of the band came out, picked up their instruments and launched into a set that was full of sincere enthusiasm, kinetic energy and sparklingly beautiful moments of flawless vocal harmonies.

The Provo band’s spectacular stage presence, undeniable chemistry and the infectious joy with which they play their music made a stunningly strong impression in the showcase, and the judges and the large crowd that came out for the show agreed that they were more than worthy of the Band of the Year title.

“We work really hard on our performance and our show and drilling in our sound, and it was just cool that people noticed it and liked it and they chose us over all of the other amazing bands,” says Megan Larsen (who contributes backing vocals, keyboards and one wild tambourine). “We’ve really been working hard to get where we’re at, so it’s really awesome to see that that was recognized by people and we stood out from the crowd. It meant a lot to us.”

Winning the band portion of the CWMAs is an especially huge milestone for Westward the Tide, considering the fact that the six musicians have been creating music together for barely more than a year. But just as Westward the Tide suddenly announced their arrival on the stage that night, they appeared in the local music scene and immediately struck out in one direction: up.

Westward the Tide was founded by Larsen and Kaitie Forbes—who played music together in high school—as well as Larsen’s husband, Jackson (co-lead vocalist/guitarist and main songwriter). The rest of the lineup—Towner, Brannelly and bassist Cole Herrmann—came together almost effortlessly.

“It was meant to happen,” Forbes says. “I think we were all in places in our lives where we just needed something more.” In November 2012, Westward the Tide—their namesake is a novel by influential Western author Louis L’Amour—officially became a band.

They quickly began attracting a dedicated fanbase as early as their first show—a showcase for new bands at Velour in Provo—which, to Westward the Tide’s disbelief, ending up selling out. “Velour was like, ‘What the heck?’ and we were like, ‘What the heck?’ ” Jackson says. “We didn’t even play that good of a set, but we just rallied a bunch of people to get there.”

Building off that initial momentum, Westward the Tide released a five-track EP, titled Everything Is—recorded at June Audio in Provo—in April 2013. Just a few months after that, the band began working on their first full-length record, Sorry Soul, which will be released locally at a show at Velour on March 15.

For help creating what they consider to be their true debut, Westward the Tide worked for the first time with a producer, well-known local singer-songwriter and producer Joshua James. Sorry Soul was recorded over two weeks at James’ homestead in American Fork, nicknamed Willamette Mountain.

Forbes, Megan and Jackson all speak fondly about working with James, praising his ability to inventively add to their music instead of trying to change it. “We love the music that we made with Joshua, it’s been a blast,” Jackson says. “And we learned so much from him. We’re just excited to release this new stuff.”

Compared to their recording of Everything Is—which was put together relatively quickly, in response to fans clamoring for recorded music—Westward the Tide was able to take their time on Sorry Soul. “It was really cool to just be with Joshua and just tinker and really play with the sounds,” Jackson says.

The finished album displays the band’s maturing sense of songwriting and exploration of deeper subject matter. Everything Is “was very lighthearted and very happy and very surface,” Megan says. “And we like it, but this album definitely goes to show the musical abilities and it really delves into that more.”

Forbes adds, “It’s a lot more personal.”

That progression can be heard on the two singles from the album, “Stardust” and “Young Bodies,” that Westward the Tide have released. The band isn’t afraid to get into thorny territory about addiction in the minimally wrought “Stardust,” and “Young Bodies” has an absolute jewel of a chorus that swells the heart: “You and I, we’ve got young bodies, old souls.”

Now, Westward the Tide are ready to strike out into their unknown future as a band with the same amount of energy that ignited the stage of the CWMA showcase. Sorry Soul is more than Westward the Tide’s debut album: It’s a declaration.

The new album is “more in your face and just going to show, ‘Yeah this is us, and we’re going to do this,’” Megan says. “And we’re serious about it.” - Salt Lake City Weekly

"7 Must-see Utah Bands"

(Similar to The Lumineers, Of Monsters & Men, and Mumford & Sons)
Winners and supreme champions of City Weekly's Music Awards Band of the Year Showcase, Westward The Tide will be opening up for *The Head & The Heart at the Twilight Concert Series. Their sound is something very similar to the folk-rock that's been trending lately by the likes Of Monsters & Men, Twin Forks, Lumineers, Mumford & Sons, etc. However, you'll appreciate less banjo and more melodic vocals from Westward the Tide. You can catch their latest album “Sorry Soul” with this calming piece, *“Young Bodies". - X96 Radio

"Westward the Tide - On the Run"

walked out of Velour on a late June evening and strolled down the sidewalk still wearing the grin Westward The Tide put on my face minutes earlier. As I waited at a crosswalk I overheard the people in front of me exclaim “They all look like like GAP models, it’s insane.” I smiled and silently agreed with the strangers, the light changed and we went our own ways. I still feel like that’s the best way to describe all facets of Westward The Tide: Beautiful.

The group recently released a video for the song “On The Run” from the Joshua James produced album; “Sorry Soul.” The video features live footage of the band generally having a blast on stage in front of a gigantic crowd of adoring fans and then returning to the stage for an encore performance of “Young Bodies.”

The song has incredible percussion sections live, make sure to catch a show such as the Twilight Concert series, where they open for The Head & The Heart August 28th at Pioneer park. - Salt Roads


Still working on that hot first release.



Jackson Larsen has always had his creative outlets, but a singer/songwriter? It was a push from musical duo Megan Larsen and her best friend Kaitie Forbes that convinced him to shift his focus from graphic design to music. After picking up Cole Herrmann on bass guitar and Cameron Brannelly on drums, Westward the Tide started making noise in January 2013. Infectious melodies, three-part harmonies, and high-energy anthems have quickly generated a wide-spread local following in Utah, further accelerated by being named Salt Lake City Weekly's “2014 Band of the Year.” Influenced by an eclectic range of artists—David  Bowie, Fleetwood Mac, Coldplay, and Arcade Fire, to name a few—Westward the Tide has created a unique pop-rock sound and an energetic live performance that has earned the band invites at some of Utah's biggest music festivals. Next up…a new EP, created at June Audio which promises to up the ante by delivering the band’s trademark group vocals and explosive drum riffs held together by lucid guitar/synth melodies.

Band Members