Lower Dens: Escape From Evil

Baltimore avant-folkies hitch a ride to synth-pop heaven

Credit: Frank Hamilton

"Oh heartbreaker, did you think I was a fool?" Lower Dens' steely frontwoman Jana Hunter seeks renewal on "To Die in L.A." — and she doesn't suffer fools. The multi-chromatic pop song sees the band crossing over from krautrock to synth-pop. Elsewhere on this danceable set, Hunter asks for deliverance from wasted time ("Your Heart Still Beating") and lost illusions ("Sucker's Shangri-La"). Her voice is elegant but never frail as she tries on roles from a distressed dinner guest on the Proustian rocker "Company" (her madeleine moment comes on a tray of pigs in blankets) to a smooth stud on "Non Grata," a disco getaway that would make Eddie Money blush. "Baby, let's float up to heaven," she sings. How soon is now?