If you can believe it, New York actually had an underrated band over the last several years. Parker and Lily didn’t quite fit the vibe of what had been receiving the most attention in the New York music scene — new-wavy dance punk, Strokes-y guitar rock. But the band’s brand of Luna-ish, ’60s throwback dream pop had received enough praise to convince the band members to carry on. Vocalist Parker Noon and his pianist wife Lily Wolfe moved to Athens, Georgia and renamed their band the Low Lows (also the title of the final Parker and Lily album, released last year by Warm). And the result, Fire on the Bright Sky, is a somewhat sleepy, hazy country-influenced album that is noticeably “darker” than the members’ previous work.
What makes the Low Lows different is that its members are not afraid to meld distortion-tinged guitars, adding a psych feel to the sound. Noon’s voice still has a hushed, washed-over tone on most tracks that makes him indiscernible at times and plain creepy at others. Background music this ain’t. On some of the less-accessible slower tracks (“Slow Neil,” “Poor Georgia”), Parker comes off as the most distressed. It may take a bit of anxiousness, neurosis, and patience to really enjoy the debut from the Low Lows, but it’s well worth the energy.
Band (streaming audio): http://www.thelowlows.net/Audio: http://www.myspace.com/thelowlows