“The most fiercely
independent band in New Jersey’s music scene...”
independent band in New Jersey’s music scene...”
— Bob Makin
++ summer 2017
NEW JERSEY’S LOWLIGHT ANNOUNCES EAST COAST RUN
SUPPORTING ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAMERS
PREPS NEW EP ‘BORN TO RUN’ FOR SPRING RELEASE
(JAN. 23 2018) Lowlight, the New Jersey-based, female-fronted synth-pop collective described as the state’s “hardest working and most fiercely loyal” outfit, has announced an exclusive, East Coast tour in support of Rock and Roll Hall Of Famers The Pretenders – just as the five-piece, self-described “roadhouse chic” band preps Born To Run, its second major release since 2016.
Lowlight’s Pretenders tour run kicks off in Miami on March 25, traveling up the East coast through South Carolina, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, including a hometown gig March 30th at Red Bank, NJ’s Count Basie Theatre. The band also has a number of solo gigs in the mix, with stops in Baltimore, MD, New Hope, PA and elsewhere.
A full list of dates and ticketing links can be found at www.lowlightnj.com.
Although Renee Maskin (vocals) and Derril Sellers (guitar) were acquaintances and college classmates, their musical paths didn’t cross until years later when a mutual friend (rock photographer Mike Petzinger) brought Renee to Derril’s studio to record a solo album. Those sessions, which included Colin Ryan on percussion and Dana Sellers (Derril’s wife) on keyboards, formed the basis of the musical collaboration that became Lowlight.
After the departure of original guitarist Tony Aichele, Derril took over string duties, and with the addition of Rey Rivera on bass, Lowlight’s stability was born. It’s also what’s borne the band’s distinctively modern, yet uniquely Americana aesthetic.
BORN TO RUN
In 2016, the Newark Star Ledger noted Lowlight’s “meticulous attention to detail,” pointing out the layers of sound that made up the band’s collective hum. Upon the release of Where Do We Go From Here, Lowlight’s freshman effort, the band told Groundsounds.com, “Most of us were in or had just gotten out of much more aggressive sounding bands. We were seeking something more simple and heartfelt, something where feeling trumps power.”
That sentiment shines brightly on Born To Run. Though an obvious, titular nod to New Jersey’s favorite son, the record contains just traces of Bruce Springsteen’s trademark sound - but all of that musician’s drive for passionate songwriting, and just enough influence to suggest - but not take over - what is Lowlight’s true and unique sound. It’s equal parts synth pop and alt.country - but brighter and airier than either genre suggests. The EP’s epic, 10-minute instrumental “Birdman’s Last Ride” carries a “My Hometown”-esque organ line into a gentle clash of synthesizers and pattering percussion. The airy jangle of opening track “Sleep Wounds” carries Lowlight’s (cont’d) sound to “Nights And Weekends,” arguably the band’s best song to date. Driven again by the band’s trademark buzz, it’s Americana meets Main Street, peppered with little melodies and lyrics about the cadence of everyday life.
Born To Run is a leap forward in maturity and depth for Lowlight. The obvious country overtones present on their debut are quite diminished, but not gone. In their place, synth pads and thumping, rhythmic bass lines dominate. Born To Run consists of three approachable, though somewhat dark songs, and ends with the epic “Birdman,” winding and bending as it progresses.
“Anyone who has seen our live show knows we put a lot of sweat and soul in everything we do,” the band says. “We feel it’s also apparent in this EP and we’re proud and grateful to be touring behind it this spring.”
“We’ve been thrilled to be a part of the re-energized music scene in New Jersey, specifically in our home base of Asbury Park. We hope that this EP is a testament to the hard work and artistry we aspire to, and we can’t wait to take it on the road with us this spring.”
March 25: Miami, FL
(The Fillmore; fillmoremb.com)
March 27: North Charleston, SC
(North Charleston PAC; northcharlestoncoliseumpac.com)
March 28: Greenville, SC
(Peace Center; peacecenter.org)
March 30: Red Bank, NJ
(Count Basie Theatre; thebasie.org)
March 31: Upper Darby, PA
(Tower Theater; thetowerphilly.com)
April 1: Boston, MA
(The Orpheum; crossroadspresents.com/venues/orpheum-theatre)
February 17: Asbury Park, NJ
(Stone Pony; stoneponyonline.com)
March 17: New Hope, PA
(John & Peters; johnandpeters.com)
April 7: Baltimore, MD
(Metro Gallery; themetrogallery.net)
April 8: New Brunswick, NJ
++ video release
© Lowlight 2017
Some thoughts from Dana, keyboardist of Lowlight and director of the “Motel Chronicles” music video:
As I was writing the concept for the video, I had some very particular people in mind to play each role. Thankfully, all those people ended up saying "yes" to
being a part of it. Everyone brought ideas, making it a true collaboration.
The original concept was to actually shoot at one very specific retro motel location, having the characters occupy the room over different periods of time. It
turns out that shooting in a motel at our scale and budget reads "porn". The woman at our first check in asked us if anything "funny" would be happening, and
if there would be "more men coming". We tried to pass it off as a student film project, but were ultimately turned down at that location and had to pack up our
shit and leave (right as Colin came from around the back of the building shouting "I found the Carcosa!"). So we had to re-direct a bit, but ultimately ended up with what I feel was a more compelling video—a tale of a man obsessed, in pursuit of a mysterious masked character. I wanted to impart something that I think is so intriguing about motel rooms: that living in an environment that is both private and temporary can incite some really strange behavior.
Director: Dana Sellers
Director of Photography: Derril Sellers
CAST: Birdman: Joe Galuppo, Private Eye: Mike Petzinger, Pink Lady: Avery Mandeville, Colin Ryan as Himself, Cultists: Colin Ryan and Derril Sellers, Bird Queen: Renee Maskin
++ buy merch
ALBUM, T-SHIRTS, PINS + MORE NOW ON BANDCAMP
We have merch! The eaiest way to purchase, besides catching us at a show, is to visit our: Bandcamp
Where Do We Go From Here - $10
Enamel Matchbook Pins - $5