Lower Dens @ Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen, London, 16th August 2012
The year of 2012 has been a very good one so far for the experimental Baltimore based band Lower Dens.
Jana Hunter and her male cohorts have made great strides since the release of their sophomore album, the atmospheric, krautrock influenced beauty they called Nootropics.
Earning rave reviews from taste-maker sites such as Pitchfork has certainly raised their profile worldwide, as has the band’s excellent live performances and continuous touring.
That continuous touring brought Lower Dens back to London again, despite only played as recently as May, for a gig at the surprisingly impressive venue of Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen.
But this special performance would fully justify the decision to return to England’s capital so soon, as the band performed a deeply hypnotic set of songs from both their début LP Twin Hand Movement and the current record, which has been gaining considerable traction of late.
Lower Dens have grown even more confident and assured in playing these new songs live, and the Hoxton crowd reaped the benefits of this increasing proficiency.
Firstly, Copenhagen, Denmark’s Indians entertained the slowly filling box of a venue. The Danish duo were an interesting warm up act, their songs impressive enough to have caught the attention of the influential UK indie label 4AD.
After the obligatory guitar noodling and sound testing from the resident technicians, Lower Dens were ready to perform.
Nootropics’ irresistible lead-single ‘Brains’ earned perhaps the biggest cheer of the night, but the enchanting version of ‘Propagation’ and a joyous ‘Tea Lights’ from their first record were equally impressive.
Particularly affecting on the night though was the album’s longest track, the 12-minute epic ‘In The End Is The Beginning’. The synth and bass heavy number was alluringly sung by the talented Hunter.
The sizeable crowd shuffled out of the tight venue and into the warm August night visibly -and audibly- satisfied by what they had witnessed. Lower Dens are more than welcome to make regular jaunts to London.
Featured image courtesty of Man Alive!