Recorded (at least partially) in an abandoned pasta sauce factory in their home state of Rhode Island, this album further proves that the Low Anthem are one of America's best unknown musical treasures. Sure, they have only a mere 3 albums under their belt, but "Smart Flesh" is wise listening for anyone who appreciates rustic and earthy indie pop with country and drone flavorings.
The spectral and heartfelt opening paean, "Ghost Woman" opens it all in a low-key fashion. It's a great little song, with wonderfully literate verbiage. Perfect. "Apothecary Love" is another memorable and catchy old-time country lament. Beautiful. "Boeing 737" is a rousing and moving anthem, and "Wire" is a lovely clarinet interlude by the band's Jocie Adams. "I'll Take Out Your Ashes" is an appropriately sparse banjo-and-radio ballad featuring charismatic front man Ben Knox Miller. But it's all good, here. Every song tells a story with grace and poeticism.
The Low Anthem will easily appeal to fans of stuff like Dylan, Wilco, or even similarly-named Minnesota drone-rockers Low. This album couldn't get higher marks from me. So what are you waiting for? (Nonesuch Records)
The Low Anthem site