Lowlands trade in expansive, grey-tinged indie rock that serves as a fitting musical accompaniment to their adopted hometown of Seattle; lush, perhaps a bit rugged, and with just enough blue sky peeking through to buoy hopes. Songwriter and vocalist Tom Rorem founded Lowlands in 2010 after relocating from Chicago with his original bandmate and co-conspirator. Halfway through recording their debut EP the rest of the band quit. Despite this setback Rorem finished the record on his own and it was released in February of 2012.
Still reeling, Rorem fell in love, got married, and set music on the back-burner. It didn’t take long until the pull of the creative took hold, and by August 2012 he was ready to get back to it. This time, however, he was careful in choosing his compatriots. Talent was a requisite of course, but so was commitment. Soon enough he had his men in Ben Jahn (bass), William Mapp (drums), Alex Huth (keyboards), and Steve Miller (lead guitar). They got to work, and in 2015 released their debut The Whale. Since that record’s release they’ve worked tirelessly, opening for bands like Carbon Leaf, Motopony, and The Autumn Defense, building a small but devoted fan base.
Their new record, The Valley Below is an examination of self-doubt. It wrestles with the undying questions of worth, meaning, nostalgia, betrayal, love, and crisis of identity. Stylistically, the band has been working with purpose to create music that feels both immediately familiar and unique; carefully crafted to support the story-driven lyrical journey of The Valley Below. Rorem provides the skeleton core of each song. From here, the band works synergistically to give flesh to the musical vision. This process, slow by design, gives space for the songs to grow naturally over time.
With The Valley Below Lowlands builds on their already strong foundation, turning out a record that is at once both lyrically vulnerable and sonically broad. A cohesive artistic statement - and an immensely enjoyable collection of Northwest Indie Rock - The Valley Below stands as a bold declaration of the band’s dedication to their craft.