2010 has been a year of growth for The Low Anthem. Coming off their breakout sophomore record Oh My God, Charlie Darwin, the Rhode Island natives have embarked on their first-ever U.S. headlining tour. In addition, the Low Anthem has expanded from their the original setup as a trio to add two additional multi-instrumentalists. But while there have been changes in these regards, their brand of stunningly charming and authentic Americana has remained the same.
The Low Anthem returned to Atlanta this past Sunday night to perform at Smith’s Olde Bar, bringing their tranquil set of folk-rock to a crowd that intently looked upward from their seats on the ground. The band opened their performance with the serenely beautiful tracks “Ticket Taker” and “Cage the Songbird.” Despite the primarily calm show combining both their classics and several new songs, the Low Anthem awoke the crowd on occasion with their dirty, crawling Jack Kerouac cover “Home I’ll Never Be” as well as the rambunctious “Horizon is a Beltway.”
Between their edgy rock and their minimal folk, their performance was consistently marked by their signature multitude of acoustic vintage instruments. The group even went beyond the norm of traditional musical instruments on “This God Damn House,” as lead guitarist/singer Ben Knox Miller invited the crowd to join him in using their cell phone to create static, providing an eerily peaceful drone that supported the band through the song.
During the encore, the crowd sang Happy Birthday to Miller, before indulging in two of the bands finest songs—the reflective serenade of “To Ohio” and the spine-tingling harmonic display of “Charlie Darwin.” As the Low Anthem finished with these two masterpieces, the crowd was sent into the night with a excellent reminder of how powerful minimal folk can truly be.