Ten Houses & the Falling Leaves
Lowell was an indie rock band that existed from 1998-2001. The band was formed at The University of Maryland-Baltimore County (UMBC) in 1998 by Michael Nestor (vocals/guitars), Gregory Rago (guitars), and Chris Shelley (drums). Matt Crum was the original bass player and was replaced after Lowell's first self-titled EP by Mike Chicocki. Michael Nestor and Gregory Rago first worked together in the band Dan Rather where Greg played bass. Dan Rather built a substantial cult following at UMBC. Based on the success of Dan Rather and Michael's work in Pupa's Window, Michael and Greg formed Lowell in the Fine Arts building at UMBC in spring, 1998. Michael and Greg recruited Chris Shelley-Michael worked with Chris in the band Man Of The Atom which disbanded in 1997. Lowell was known in the Baltimore/Washington area for the intensity of their live shows and their mature mix of post-indie rock and psychedelic rock. They were also known for their application of academia to indie rock, as seen in the constant references in their music and interviews to authors or academic theories. An example of this is the name of the band itself-Lowell-which refers to the birthplace of the Beat author Jack Kerouac. After building a following and releasing a few small EP CDs, Lowell generated some hype about their first full-length-The Ten Houses and The Falling Leaves. After recording the CD in 2001 and during preparations to tour, personal turmoil and infighting in the band lead to their subsequent breakup in 2002 to the disappointment of fans and critics alike. Michael Nestor eventually joined the band The Seldon Plan and formed The Beechfields Record Label in the spring of 2002. Gregory Rago formed the Baltimore rock-instrumental band Yeveto in 2004 and also plays solo under the name Gregory Rago. Christopher Shelley currently is working on a new record as The 14 Quadrants.