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Lower Dens Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: £11.26 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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Frequently Bought Together

Nootropic + Twin Hand Movement + Give You The Ghost
Price For All Three: £26.01

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Product details

  • Audio CD (30 April 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Ribbon Music
  • ASIN: B0073WXSQG
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 111,542 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Alphabet Song 5:28£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Brains 5:07£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Stem 2:06£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Propagation 4:57£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Lamb 3:41£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Candy 3:20£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Lion in Winter Pt. 1 4:16£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Lion In Winter Pt. 2 3:35£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Nova Anthem 5:27£0.69  Buy MP3 
Listen10. In The End Is The Beginning12:18£0.69  Buy MP3 

Product Description

BBC Review

Lower Dens’ first album, 2010’s Twin-Hand Movement, was such a spectral introduction to the band that it bothered fewer ears over here than a warm breeze in July. But the Baltimore band’s minimal, wraith-like mix of wintry indie-rock, dream-away sounds, gently propulsive rhythms and wispy, androgynous vocals compelled anyone who did feel its subtle charms to do two things: listen repeatedly and obsessively.

At the helm is Jana Hunter, who stalked acid-folk territory alone before ghosting into less mossy terrain, and her distant murmuring and spooked atmospherics, while hypnotic, are too ghostly and odd to reveal much beyond the cosmic heart at Lower Dens’ centre. It was Twin-Hand Movement’s indecipherable mystery and the flickering phosphorescent glow emanating from deep that made it so alluring. This follow-up is no different.

That Hunter writes with grand themes in mind that you’ll just have to take her word for. The debut was, we’re told, about community and belonging. Nootropics, meanwhile, is named after a mind-enhancing drug – like the one Bradley Cooper takes in Limitless – and explores the terrible bargains humanity is making for an easier life.

How Hunter reconciles this with licensing a song to Exxon isn’t clear lyrically. Her voice is too far away in the mix – a mood-maker rather than a point-maker. Maybe, though, it encouraged the self-flagellation that bruises much of Nootropics. Lower Dens have a sound that places them in the same dreamy but bleak hinterland inhabited by ghoul-chasers Deerhunter and Timber Timbre – only Hunter swaps Badalamenti’s twang and dreadheart blues for an icy, near-derelict soundscape of skeletal indie-rock and, this time out, the Autobahn chug of Krautrock.

The hallucinatory effect prevails. The instrumental Lion in Winter, Pt. 1 is a disquieting passage of frosty drones; the groovesome Lion in Winter Pt. 2 is a lo-fi Kraftwerk wreathed in star-bright guitars and minor keys; In the End is the Beginning isn’t so much a curtain-closer as a grimly foreboding fade-out. Adding electronics to an already complex equation might suggest angular songs but these are sleek soothing balms sombrely and meticulously crafted to usher the listener in.

And this come-hither intimacy perhaps tells us that the band’s painful line-up changes inspired the record more than grand ideas of transhumanism. The everyday is just fine when it sounds this strange.

--Chris Parkin

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Product Description


Customer Reviews

3 star
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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars in with the old and in with the new 17 Dec 2012
Format:Audio CD
Take a dose of Krautrock ( primary reference point Kraftwerk) and throw in a dash of Cocteau Twins, add a pinch of neu folk, simmer overnight on regulo psychedelic and you will then be able to serve up a luscious portion of 'Nootropics'.

Too many refernce points? Ok, but all music (with the very odd exception) harks back to that which has already been done and well and truly dusted, but where the shelves are deeply embedded in the dust of yore that still thrills where is the harm in a great young band re-arranging it a little bit- none at all I say.

It starts and it ends with gorgeous atmospheric synths, it is interspersed with oh so subtle nuanced guitars, providing a backdrop to Hunters, at times, whispy vocals. A musical pot pourri that delights my lugs muchly.

But for all its reference points this album manges to possess an air of originality, which to me is incredibly welcome. Its so damn easy to become jaundiced when you have been listening to music for over 40+ years and take the "oh its all been done, heard it all before"; its textured and layered with what feels like effortlessness, bit shoegaze, bit otherwoldly, biy trippy, and even occasionally drifting towards a bit poppy but all beautifully composed.

You may have guessed I quite like this album...guilty
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great 24 Mar 2014
Format:Vinyl|Verified Purchase
Double 45 vinyl of a great album. Nice listening and good price! Look forward to the next Lower Dens album
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 18 Jun 2013
By c2
Format:Vinyl|Verified Purchase
My favourite album of 2012. Very atmospheric and although shares similarities in sound to Joy Division/ Interpol, it has enough originality to stand out. Its an improvement on their last album, so can't wait for their next!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars nootropic 11 Mar 2013
By Nadi
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is an intriguing album with lots of different nuances. Very good. Fun to listen to. This is indie/alternative music.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great leap forward, another gray world 8 Jun 2012
By Snort - Published on
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Jana Hunter and her band have created another green world, or maybe it's more gray than anything. I was hooked on their 1st album, "Twin Hand Movement," but find myself addicted to this new platter. The "Brains" EP, released a few months ago, heralded the new work but didn't fully reveal it's dimensions. The song "Brains" is now extended into the following track, "Stem", which completes it. "Nootropics" immaculately gathers together errant strands of 70s ambient and krautrock; the references in the music are obvious that I need not mention them here. Even so, the ownership of this music is Hunter's and her band, a logical extension from their 1st outing. Significantly, the addition of drummer Nate Nelson and keyboardist Carter Tanton, are the well-chosen key ingredients that give Hunter's band this great leap foward -- motorik beats and menacing shadows providing space loose enough to drive a lorry through. Listen to this in the dark.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Destined to be the under-rated album of the year 1 Jun 2012
By cagey - Published on
Format:Audio CD
I had heard Lower Dens' "Brains" a few months ago on the web and found it intriguing, with it's catchy, hypnotic bass and drums and Jana Hunter's smooth, wistful vocals. So I decided to purchase the whole album and discovered it's one of those albums you can listen to again and again without really loving it right away, but getting rewarded with each listen with some new sonic nugget. There are a lot of influences on this album and to my ears I hear a little Radiohead, a dash of Deerhunter, Liars and even some Pale Saints (90's shoegazers).

One stand out track for me is "Propagation" with it's relaxed, narcotic pace, snaky guitars and dark lyrics. I love the way the vocals are recorded on this entire album but especially on this song. "Lamb" is also a strong track carried on a wave of Hunter's soaring vocals which are accompanied by shards of guitar and silky keyboards.

Lower Dens hail from Baltimore, home of indie standouts Beach House, as well as Wye Oak and Future Islands. There seems to be a "scene" developing there, though the bands could not be less concerned about that. But I hope _Nootropics_ helps Lower Dens gain a larger audience. They certainly sound like they deserve it.

*** 1/2 stars
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Progressive rock/pop for the indie set! 23 May 2012
By August - Published on
Format:Audio CD
This album is worlds away from Lower Dens' catchy, poppy debut album 'Twin Hand Movement' and it seems they've been listening to King Crimson or Brian Eno. When I first listened to this album I thought'what the hell have I just listened to?' As Gertrude Stein so eloquently wrote 'There's no there there.' On second listen, more intently mind you, I was quite disappointed but being a huge fan I kept listening. It took a few more listens before the genius truly sunk in & then I became obsessed. At first listen the album seems to be filled with repetitveness & droning noise as with much progressive music.

But this isn't traditional progressive rock/pop. at. all. It's an indie version. And it's better for that association. If you listen carefully, there's much beauty to be found in it's brash experimentalism. One of my favorite songs is 'Propagation' with it's soaring vocals by Jana Hunter. It's a very claustrophobic song yet quite gorgeous in it's insularity & simplicity. There's definitely some '80s influence throughout too. There's also some Joy Division present in many of the songs too but especially on the track Lion In Winter Pt. 2. Lamb is another mid-tempo song w/transcendent vocals. Candy could've easily fit comfortably on their debut since it sounds like their stereotypical sound from that album and quite excellent.

If you give this album a chance with repeated listenings, it will grow on you with it's progressive rock/pop roots firmly planted in indieliciousness. And you will be rewarded for your patience. A classic, experimental album worth taking the time to get to know. And we are better because of it. . . .
4.0 out of 5 stars If real life had background music this would be it 22 Aug 2013
By Justarasta - Published on
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I bought this CD since I liked one cut in particular and it seemed to get good reviews. There are three songs that I like alot. The rest of the CD is underwhelming but pleasant enough. Actually three good songs is pretty good these days but I would have been better off buying the individual songs.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Value 16 Oct 2012
By James - Published on
Format:Audio CD
Great Music at a Great Value. You can't go wrong with a purchase of this collection. Delightful music at a bargain price.
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