Slowlands is a young country. It was born in the cracks of a wooden table, under an electric fireplace in a Long Island basement. It grew up under an overpass in the wilds of Brooklyn. And now it invades the neighboring cities, towns and village, putting together a group of dedicated listeners as they release their debut album, “Never Was There a Town.”

How do you describe the sound of an entire nation? Well not with words, but with widescreen pictures, comic book sound effects and xylophone rattles. They find their cultural identity in the films of Terrance Malick, the narratives of Frank Miller and the language of Dylan Thomas. They have tightly woven together their flag, and wave it in the form of “Never Was There a Town.” Recorded over the course of a year, the album was shaped by the hands of Shane Stoneback, a South Dakotan with a gift for bluntness and objectivity, in the halls of the Brill Building, once a mecca for songsmiths in New York’s Tin Pan Alley. Employing extra musicians (cello, keyboards, glockenspiel!) they have attempted to channel the energy of old ghosts of Tin Pan Alley into both widescreen landscapes and tiny, simple songs.

The number of Slowlands inhabitants is a healthy six. Josh Hayden Kolenik (guitar/vocals) spent two years in Boston and Los Angeles bedrooms with a four track and a tambourine, before he ultimately moved back to the Slowlands of New York. There he called his childhood friend, Joe Baptista (bass), and worked on some demos. One night, Kolenik tried to call the orthodontist, dialed a wrong number and happened into conversation with a guitarist, Ryan Heyner, who had played in bands all around NY. Three hours later, he agreed to join the band. After a year of songwriting, recording at an insect repellent warehouse and running through drummers, the band found Nick Brzoza, banging spoons to a Curtis Mayfield song by himself at a booth in an all night diner. Recently, Jeff Curtin & Eric Hirsch have come aboard to help flesh out the sound w/ keyboards, samplers, & percussion. It seems Slowlands has reached its ideal population.

This fall, Slowlands sent ambassadors to the CMJ Music Marathon and Pop Montreal, hoping to establish some new spheres of influence. In the past, they’ve played shows with Rahim, We Are Scientists, & Sound Team, and just played the Gothamist Movable Hype show. With the release of “Never Was There a Town” & the tour to follow, Slowlands will be making new allies in the crooked corners & hidden highways of the land.


EP - 2004 - The Prince

LP - 2006 - "Never Was There a Town"

Set List

8 - 10 songs : 40-50 minutes