11.13.2014 — “Held” by Lowtide


If you only listen to one song today, make it “Held” by Lowtide (2014, from the album Lowtide).

Lowtide is a dream pop/shoegaze quartet from Melbourne. Their particular brand of shoegaze leans more towards the melodic wave of a band like Ride than to the wall of noise of a band like My Bloody Valentine. Especially with their vocal harmonies. The band got its start back in 2010 when multi-instrumentalist Gabriel Lewis branched out from his solo project called Three Month Sunset. He recruited Lucy Buckeridge (vocals/bass), Anton Jakovljevic (drums) and Giles Simon (bass/vocals) to form this band. What? Two basses? Like Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, but much different.

They self-released a four song EP called You Are My Good Light in 2010, followed by a 7″ record for “Underneath Tonight” in 2011. They’ve recently been added to the roster over at the little Australian label Lost and Lonesome. While they have a lot of homegrown Aussie stuff there, they also handle (on a very limited basis) Australian distribution for bands who are otherwise signed to other labels worldwide. Bands like The Wedding Present, and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. Lost and Lonesome is handling the distribution of Lowtide’s self-titled debut, which was released back in July of this year.

I’m not sure exactly how I learned about Lowtide, but I’ve been meaning to write about them for at least a week now. Like a lot of bands I’ve written about lately, it was actually a different song that initially caught my ear, but I really love this one.

This is that song:
“Held” by Lowtide

I can’t help but point out that the opening 21 seconds of the song sounds like something that would be covered in the fingerprints of the magnificent Miss Frankie Rose. If you blindfolded me and told me you were going to play 20 seconds of something from my iPod at random, I totally would have guessed that this is something from the Beverly record. Once the vocals come in, the music goes in a bit of a different direction and it’s more reminiscent of something like Ride or Adorable or something like that.

What I really love about this is the alternating coed vocals on the verses, and the coed harmonies in the chorus.

Lewis’ guitar bit is washed in so many effects it’s kind of swimming around in the ether. Simon’s bass is played very high while Buckeridge plays hers “normal”. I guess a lot of bands that use two bass guitars also do this. Then again, off the top of my head I can only name two bands that used two bass players. Ned’s Atomic Dustbin definitely used the high bass/low bass thing. Cop Shoot Cop had two bassists, but I don’t know any of their music so I can’t say. Suffice to say that Lowtide doesn’t sound anything at all like either of those two bands.

The more I listen to this, the more I like it. The rest of the record is really good, too. You should get your own physical or digital copy via bandcamp here, or from any other legal downloading place. I recommend eMusic.

For extra credit on this, check out the 1990s-style straight forward performance-style video

About dlee

North Carolina born and bred. I'm a restaurant guy who spends free time listening to music, watching hockey and playing Scrabble. I have a bachelor's degree in political science and I will most likely never put it to use. View all posts by dlee

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