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Bands to Watch: Brooklyn’s Indie Rock Band Low Water

lowwaterindiebandBrooklyn band Low Water is an unsigned, indie rock band whose music conveys a sincerity and depth that is increasingly rare in an industry that too often relies on cookie cutter formulas, gimmicks and overly polished productions. Low Water’s music has rightfully won resounding praise among radio stations, music publications and blogs, as well as national media such as PBS and NPR.

Their new, self-released album, Twisting The Neck of The Swan, proves this is no run-of-the-mill Brooklyn indie rock band. Low Water deliver high caliber, soulful, melodic pop rock music that is refreshingly authentic, free flowing and memorable. Their moody, crisp songs are easily accessible to anyone who appreciates well crafted and honest rock and pop.

Low Water’s Twisting The Neck of The Swan is full of poetic lyrics, bright guitar riffs, pop experimentation and awesome vocal ranges that all pull together nicely on song after song. The opening track, “Voodoo Taxi,” is melodic, catchy pop rock tune that people are probably going to play more than a couple of times.

One of the album’s stand out tracks is the dreamy, folk pop of “She Shined Down,” one of the most Wilco-sounding (in a good way) songs in recent memory. Featuring story-telling lyrics, uplifting harmonies and perfectly time melodies and percussion, “She Shined Down” gradually progresses into a full-on band jam that last for about a minute until the song’s triumphant end.

A common MO, if you will, throughout Low Water’s music, is how so often there are changes in tempo and style at different points within the same composition. And yet, every time, at every turn, it is done masterfully and somehow remains cogent and luring.

Sometimes one of the indications of a great band is in their ability to create a long song that is actually engaging and enjoyable all the way through. In the case of the song “Charge,” the band took a shot at an 11 minute experiment of Beatlesque pop rock, and pulled it off with amazing results.

The song brilliantly shifts from cheerful pop melodies and old school guitar jams to dreamy choruses and 70′s AM radio harmonies. There are a few points in the song when, if you’re not watching the player, you might think the song is finished, and like a pleasant surprise, it continues on. There are not many songs this long that are keepers, but in my book, “Charge” is one of them.

Even though the band gives the impression that they’ve been making rock music for a long time, band members, John Leitera (guitar and vocals), Dave Rubin (guitar), Joe Burch (drums) and Turner Stough (bass) only released their debut album five years ago.

Low Water’s 2004 self-released debut, Hard Words In A Speakeasy, was followed up in 2007 by the release of Who Said That Life Is Over?, featuring, among other impressive songs, the infectious pop tune, “House In The City,” and the catchy, garage rocker “Brooklyn.”

Some of Low Water’s biggest musical influences, according to Rubin, are Elvis Costello, The Kinks, George Jones, Spoon, and clearly, Wilco and The Replacements. The amazing thing about that is that you can clearly hear those influences in their music with such compelling, yet original, results.

Rubin also cited Abbey Road (The Beatles), Marquee Moon (Television), #4 (You Am I) and Horsepower (The Phoenix Foundation) among the band’s favorite albums.

All things considered, Low Water is clearly one of the best unsigned bands in Brooklyn at the moment, and easily deserving of a “band to watch” declaration.

“Voodoo Taxi”Low Water from Twisting The Neck of The Swan (2009)

“She Shined Down”Low Water from Twisting The Neck of The Swan (2009)

“Charge”Low Water from Twisting The Neck of The Swan (2009)

“House In The City”Low Water from Who Said That Life Is Over? (2007)

Low Water on MySpace

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