Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Prystowsky’

Rhode Island-based folk band The Low Anthem have just released their newest LP, The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea, via Joyful Noise Recordings. Per the band’s announcement earlier this year, the concept album tells a story inspired by one found inside the Kay Larsen-written biography of John Cage, Where the Heart Beats: A salt doll goes into the depths of the sea to find herself but loses her body in the process. The beautiful story comes to a pivotal point during the third song on the LP, “Give My Body Back.” The Low Anthem now share the music video for this song .

The music video is hauntingly beautiful. Created by Dann Dodd and The Low Anthem co-founder Ben Knox Miller, it follows the narrative of a cube-shaped salt doll as she enters the waters of the ocean to discover who she really is. Knox Miller shares what brought about the salt doll’s unique shape:

In its lyrics, “Give My Body Back” describes the underwater landscape in which the salt doll now finds herself. Still unclear about who she is, the salt doll observes herself in relation to her new world and realizes she is dissolving: “Under the wilder cyclones / Tearing at my skin / I see the edges soften / As I shed some part back in.”

The themes of self-discovery found on The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea come at the end of a period of reflection and profound evolution for the band and its respective members, after having survived a car accident that ended their 2016 tour. The band now find purpose at a grass-roots level, giving back to their community by running a vaudeville-era theater in Providence, R.I., managed by band co-founders Knox Miller and Jeff Prystowsky. “I like to call it a palace of music,” says Prystowsky. “You’re walking into a theatre from almost a hundred years ago, still intact, built for the acoustics of music, pre-the invention of the PA. It’s so unlike anything in the 21st century that it ignites your creative muscles to work. You immediately lose your frame of reference, in a good way.”

The Low Anthem  have announced their newest LP, The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea, along with an album trailer for the work. The Rhode Island natives come back in 2018 inspired by a car accident that changed the band.

“One second you’re dozing off in the passenger seat on the way to a gig, and the next, there’s fire and hell flames and black smoke and your face is bleeding and you can’t see, and you can’t process information, and you think it’s all over.” These are the words of Jeff Prystowsky, a founding member of the band, who describes the car accident that resulted in the cancellation of The Low Anthem’s 2016 tour after just four days on the road.

On the way to a show in Washington, D.C, The Low Anthem’s tour van crashed, wrecking a lot of the band’s gear and instruments in the process, and putting Prystowsky out of commission for several weeks as he receoved from minor injuries. The accident was said to be a driving force behind the band’s new album, created while Prystowsky was in recovery.

The album, conceptualized by Low Anthem cofounder Knox Miller, was inspired by John Cage biography Where the Heart Beats, written by Kay Larsen. The book tells the story of a salt doll who goes to the sea in search of herself. Each time, the salt doll puts a piece of her inside the ocean—she gains the wisdom that the ocean brings, but dissolves herself little by little until every part of her is lost in the sea. The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea is a concept album following the narrative of the salt doll in her quest for self-discovery.

Image may contain: 3 people, people smiling, people sitting and guitar

From the album’s sound, we can count on the usual harmonic voices of the band accompanied by guitars and “subtle yet immersive” electronic ambiance. Miller had to record the album using stripped-down instruments, since most of the band’s gear was lost in the accident. What we can expect from this album is a band that’s matured far beyond their conception in 2006. With their collective life experiences and the band members’ personal highs and lows,

The Salt Doll Went To Measure The Depth Of The Sea is set to release February. 23rd


The Low Anthem return from an extraordinary five-year journey with “EYELAND”, a collection of multi-dimensional future folk crafted with uncommon vision and emotional depth. The Providence, RI-based band’s fifth full-length recording, “EYELAND” began as a “vague and rather abstract” short story by co-founder/singer/guitarist Ben Knox Miller, based around the “sonic mythology of a moth’s dreams.”The tall tale became real life as Low Anthem immersed themselves in the creation of their own Eyeland Studios, developing Providence’s once obsolete Columbus Theatre into an innovative and in-demand recording space and live concert venue. EYELAND proves a prism of the album’s inner themes, refracting Miller and co-founding drummer/multi-instrumentalist Jeff Prystowsky’s . Low Anthem’s lofty aspirations and creative capriciousness resonate throughout songs like “The Pepsi Moon” and “Behind The Airport Mirror,” their elegiac arrangements and lyrical frankness marked by shimmering ambience and a hauntingly defiant tension. Psychedelic in the truest sense of that overused word, “EYELAND” is a perspective-shifting musical experience at once elliptical and intangible yet still precise and powerfully personal.

The Low Anthem has always avoided “the predictive approach,” says Prystowsky, “following some textbook idea.” Miller and Prystowsky began making their idiosyncratic bedroom folk in 2007, best friends constructing something altogether new from old musical traditions. Troth was pledged to the spirit of DIY as the duo dumpster dove for cereal boxes which were then converted into art for that same year’s self-made first album, sold out of a suitcase while the nascent band mercilessly toured the Northeast.

The Low Anthem’s artistic range and ardent passion for exploration exploded as they grew into a full-fledged combo, coming to the fore with 2008’s breakthrough third album, OH MY GOD, CHARLIE DARWIN (reissued a year later to worldwide acclaim by the estimable Nonesuch label). SMART FLESH followed in 2011, earning further applause for Low Anthem’s ongoing adventurousness as both artists and producers. The band recorded the album in a derelict pasta sauce factory outside of Providence, setting up shop in a space where the environment was sure to affect the entirety of the project. Low Anthem supported SMART FLESH with nearly non-stop touring, including an epic 26-city support tour that saw them playing 1,000 capacity theatres across Canada.

The Low Anthem