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The Low Anthem — The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea (Feb 23, 2018)

The Low Anthem — The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea (Feb 23, 2018)

 The Low Anthem — The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea The Low Anthem — The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea (Feb 23, 2018)★Ω★     Alternative folk outfit The Low Anthem will release their fourth album in February 2018. The Prividnece based band rose to prominence with their 2008 album Oh My God Charlie Darwin. The new album consists of short compositions that were put together following a car accident that hospitalised the band and cut short the tour to promote their previous album.    
Formed: 2006 in Providence, RI, U.S.
Location: Providence, RI, United States
Album released: Feb 23, 2018
Genre: Folk, Country, Pop/Rock
Style: Alternative/Indie Rock, Americana, Indie Folk, Neo~Traditional Folk, Alt~Country, Alternative Pop/Rock
Record Label: Joyful Noise Recordings
Duration:     42:24
Tracks:
01. Bone of Sailor, Bone of Bird     2:40
02. River Brine     1:53
03. Give My Body Back     2:01
04. Drowsy Dowsing Dolls     3:15
05. The Krill Whistle Their Fight Song     2:11
06. Toowee Toowee     2:46
07. Coral Crescent     2:08
08. Dotwav     2:01
09. Cy Twombly By Campfire     2:51
10. Gondwanaland     2:45
11. To Get Over Only One Side     3:45
12. Final Transmission From The Diving Umbrella     3:02
★Ω★     The concept album was birthed following a tour van crash which wiped out band member Jeff Prystowsky for several weeks and wreaking a bunch of of the band’s gear and instruments.
★Ω★     “One second you’re dozing off in the passenger seat on the way to a gig, and the next, there’s fire and hell flames and black smoke and your face is bleeding and you can’t see, and you can’t process information, and you think it’s all over,” Prystowsky explained.
★Ω★     The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea is in part inspired by John Cage’s biography Where The Heart Beats, by Kay Larsen. Ben Knox Miller from the band became transfixed by the salt doll fable he came across in the book which tells the story of a doll that wants to know itself, and what it’s made of. A teacher tells it, “salt comes from the ocean,” so it goes to the sea. When the doll puts its toe in, it knows something, but loses its toe. Then it puts its foot in, knows even more but loses its foot … and so on, until it’s completely dissolved, never to return to the shore.
★Ω★     “The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea is a concept album with a story arc weaving through the songs like a constellation,” Jeff Prystowsky said. “It’s an underwater circular journey to the bottom of the sea following the salt doll who, attempting to measure the sea (and thus, know its true origins), in the end, becomes part of it. Along the way this non~human, conscious chemical compound, encounters all kinds of fantastical oceanic things.” 
★Ω★     However, the accident also acted as an inadvertent impetus for their latest record whilst Prystowsky was in recovery: a John Cage~influenced concept record. A beautiful, elegiac and largely acoustic — though peppered with subtle yet immersive electronics and humming ambience — album of twelve tracks that barely stretch past the two~minute mark. Recalling the more progressive moments of artists such as Sufjan Stevens and Lambchop, it’s a record of a deep richness, loaded with extreme subtleties and with a space and delicacy counter to the group’s previous dense and complex album.
★Ω★     The album feels like a new palate for the group and comes at the end of a period of profound change and evolution. Not only did the van crash cancel their tour (after just four dates) but, combined with some record company troubles, it led to the album they were due to tour all but disappearing. Eyeland was the group’s deeply experimental 2016 album, one that was their first in several years and one that was also a direct response to a world in which they had found themselves but didn’t really want to be.
★Ω★     Prystowsky formed the band with Ben Knox Miller and after the huge success of their 2007 debut album, What The Crow Brings, the band found themselves signed to Nonesuch and Bella Union for their even more successful follow~up Oh My God, Charlie Darwin. They toured the world and were reluctantly lumped in with the so~called “folk revival”. However, night~after~night of performing their early material was not ultimately where they wanted to land. “The moment was losing its mystery. We were scared of becoming robots,” the band said after six years of reflection.
★Ω★     They returned to their hometown of Providence, Rhode Island back in 2012 and instead poured their energy into their local community by restoring a vaudeville~era theatre and building their own recording studio within. The band were still enamoured with music itself and holed down here for years experimenting and learning to record and produce what would become Eyeland but they were no longer the group that they had once been. “It’s like eating stale bread,” Prystowsky says. “Fresh bread is better. You want to cook with fresh ingredients and eat it while it’s still warm. If you wait too long, the moment is gone. So you reheat it but with each reheating, a little bit is lost…until it can’t be reheated anymore.”
★Ω★     The pair are involved with the running of The Columbus Theatre, they help book and promote shows and are in attendance for every new production, burrowing themselves at a grassroots level into their community. It has become an important place for them in terms of an inspirational creative space. “It’s a magical place with a long history,” Prystowsky says.  “I like to call it a palace of music. You’re walking into a theatre from almost a hundred years ago, still intact, built for the acoustics of music, pre~the invention of the PA. It’s so unlike anything in the 21st century that it ignites your creative muscles to work. You immediately lose your frame of reference, in a good way.”
★Ω★     Five years on since moving back to Providence, building a recording studio then recording a deeply experimental, stylistic u~turn of a record in Eyeland before having to ditch the whole thing after a near miss accident, the band are now finally into a groove of their own, under their own terms. They are settled and have found themselves again both in terms of a sense of place as well as musically.
★Ω★     This feeling of comfort, confidence and newfound identity shines through on The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea, an album that was triggered when Knox Miller was reading John Cage’s biography Where The Heart Beats, by Kay Larsen. He soon became transfixed by the salt doll fable he came across. The salt doll fable basically tells the story of a doll that wants to know itself, and what it’s made of. A teacher tells it, “salt comes from the ocean,” so it goes to the sea.  When the doll puts its toe in, it knows something, but loses its toe. Then it puts its foot in, knows even more but loses its foot…and so on, until it’s completely dissolved, never to return to the shore.
★Ω★     It finds the Low Anthem of 2017 a vastly different band from the one that emerged 10 years ago with their debut.  One that has experienced more ups and downs that many would manage in an entire career but also one that now feels settled in their skin and only interested in venturing toward the horizon instead of re~treading old ground.   ★Ω★     https://glidemagazine.com/
Discography:
♠       2006 The Low Anthem (Basement Project)
♠       2007 What the Crow Brings (Audio & Video Labs, Inc. / The Low Anthem)
♠       2009 Oh My God, Charlie Darwin  (Nonesuch)
♠       2011 Smart Flesh  (Nonesuch)
♠       2016 Eyeland  (Washington Square)
♠       2018 The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea (Feb 2018)
Website: https://www.lowanthem.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thelowanthem
Bandcamp: https://thelowanthem.bandcamp.com/album/the-salt-doll-went-to-measure-the-depth-of-the-sea
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The Low Anthem — The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea (Feb 23, 2018)

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