Previous comparisons of Lowercase to Joy Division were somewhat off the mark, but not altogether misguided. Certainly, there are some atmospheric qualities shared by Lowercase's second album Kill The Lights and Joy Division's Closer: The two albums have a similar tension running through them, as though the two bands were expressing the same nihilistic streak without resorting to intense volume. But Lowercase doesn't come off sounding as morose or self-loathing as Joy Division, and while it never loses restraint, the band isn't afraid to rock, either. Listening to Kill The Lights is like watching a Hitchcock movie: The music keeps an even, vaguely distorted keel, creating a pervasive sense of unease and anticipation. When it swells, as when vocalist Imaad Wasif tries his best Die Kreuzen howl, the unease grows and the anticipation turns to exhilaration. Lowercase is a taut, intense band that isn't afraid to keep the simplest riffs going on nearly forever. And while its members are still in their early 20s, they come off like they're nearly 100, documenting the end of the world with resigned anger.

Advertisement