The Low Anthem

ACL Live Shots

The Low Anthem

Oct. 2, Zilker Park

The Low Anthem is basking in contradiction, torn between the alternating pulls of howled, unsettling grit and delicately resolute Americana ballads. The Rhode Island trio revels equally in anachronism, most apparent when frontman Ben Knox Miller reached behind an antique organ for a pair of cell phones, vibrating their static frequencies into the microphone during the aching "This God Damn House." The Austin Ventures stage was a veritable carnival of instruments, from a rusted French horn and Jocie Adams' clarinet and xylophone-styled rack of cymbals to Jeff Prystowsky's upright bass, which launched the set in a mad, insurgently thumped breakdown for the gospel-flared "Don't Let Nobody Turn You 'Round." Miller growled with a scarred abandon that never approached the ethereal falsetto tinting sophomore album Oh My God, Charlie Darwin yet rankled Southern dirt on "Home I'll Never Be." Even as songs like the hushed "Ticket Taker" and haunted "The Ballad of the Broken Bones" acknowledged the incongruity of quieter sounds for a festival stage, the Low Anthem's closing take on country classic "Cigarettes and Whiskey and Wild, Wild Women," with Adams' wailing fervent harmony, proved otherwise.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More The Low Anthem
Phases & Stages
The Low Anthem
Oh My God, Charlie Darwin (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, July 3, 2009

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Matthew Logan Vasquez
Light'n Up (Record Review)

Elise Barbin, June 14, 2019

The Infinites
The Infinites
The Infinites (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, May 10, 2019

More by Doug Freeman
Looking Back on 15 Years of the Townes Van Zandt Documentary
Looking Back on 15 Years of the Townes Van Zandt Documentary
Producer/Director Margaret Brown revisits her movie

June 14, 2019

Texas Platters
Walker Lukens
Adult (Record Review)

June 14, 2019


The Low Anthem

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle