Release Date: Feb 23, 2018
Record label: Joyful Noise
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Folk
So far, so traditional. Yet, there are some very novel touches on this mainly acoustic work, such as speckles of electronica that bring some engagingly irregular highlights to the soundscape and, as in the best examples in the folk tale tradition, have an eerily unsettling effect. Songs are thematically-linked, rather than representing a clear chronology.
There is a folk tale, or fable: a doll made of salt reaches the seashore after making a long journey. She sees the expanse of water and wants to know what it is. The sea beckons her to step into it; that way she will discover what the sea is. The salt doll steps into the sea and begins to dissolve in the water.
Having transitioned from tradition-steeped Americana to prog-rock-inspired fare with the release of Eyeland in mid-2016, the Low Anthem were on their way to a show later that year when their instruments and gear were destroyed in a tour-van crash. The accident also injured some band- and crewmembers, though one of the group's founders, Ben Knox Miller, escaped without serious injury. In the 16 days that followed, Miller used instruments from his bedroom -- including a piano, an acoustic guitar, and an 8-track tape machine from the '90s -- to demo a first version of what would become the Low Anthem's fifth studio album, The Salt Doll Went to Measure the Depth of the Sea.