Welcome to an introduction of a higher plane. We have many things in this world that are considered mysterious and obscure, but most importantly, we have music. It Djents is proud to present to you the mystic astral stoner rock group Lowen. Of course, we aren’t the ones making first contact – no, this group is from England, but their tunes sound like they come straight from a desert planet floating through space.
Lowen is a very young band whose first album, A Crypt In The Stars, will come out on the sixth of July. The band consists of singer Nina, guitarist Shem and drummer Louis. Shem went to see Akercoke in Camdon and when he saw what he described as ‘this lustrous mass of long curly dark hair unlike anything I’d ever seen’, he in fact just saw the future singer of Lowen. They talked for a while and Nina mentioned that she wanted to start a band. At first, Shem dismissed it but one fateful night he demoed a song, sent it to her and thanks to voice messages and microphones, he was set on making her the singer of this project. It took some persuasion as Nina had never professionally sung before, but in the end she agreed. They later met Louis who instantly caught onto the project and was excited to lend his drumming to the songs that were taking shape.
This enthusiastic formation led to the production of stoner rock that blends modern experimentation with classic tropes of the genre. When listening to Lowen, one could easily forget that the band only has one guitarist. This is due to the fact that they’re exceptionally good at building soundscapes through huge, droning, distorted low-register riffs while adding reverb and delay to the vocals. Speaking of which, one of my most cherished moments on A Crypt In The Stars are the incredible vocals in Farsi that, combined with the delay on Nina’s voice, give the track an exotic, even outer-worldly feel. Another ingredient the band likes to use in order to spice up their mix is regular shifts in tempo and rhythm. The band moves from grinding speeds to the slowness of snowfall, while playing with extreme, almost avant-garde droning on tracks like “In Perpetual Bloom”. You can hear a warm shoegaze influences in “Fortress Of Blood”. This diversity is always a stunning experience in soundscaping.
I was especially impressed when vocalist Nina told me:
‘Most of “A Crypt in the Stars” was jammed out in the rehearsal room so the majority of the lyrics and vocal melodies I had to make up on the spot, though I would go back and adjust especially awful ones. At that point we were still trying to work out who we were and what to sound like so it was a very organic process.’
But there is an explanation for this impressive skill to improvise. All the members of the group were exposed to music at a very young age and have all been playing their respective instruments for years. From Khanate over Black Sabbath to Nirvana and Depeche Mode, many artists have guided them throughout the years and a little bit of all of them are audible in their style.
For my part, I sure am excited to revisit their album once it’s released. Until then, I wish the band all the best.
Fun Fact: The name Lowen was chosen as a modification of the German word for lion as it’s represented both in Western and Persian culture, to signify their cultural backgrounds.