Band Members
Lauren Norton, David Sachs, Sam Shirley, Kelsey Brewer and Olin Hannum
Acoustic / folk / lowcore

The Souterrain was a four-piece folk outfit from Davis, all members once students at UC Davis. From the band's website:  "We make some strange music, but we do our best to make it pretty. Folk cures, lullabies, and revenge fantasies all have their home in our soundscape." The name comes from the French word for "underground."


photo by Caroline Baudinet The band formed in November 2010, completing its line-up when Sachs transferred to Davis from Orange County. Norton and Shirley met in a production of Macbeth in 2009 and, after several chance encounters, decided to play a few tunes together. The results of their first meeting were "Mr. Bones" and "What Ails You"—two songs which demonstrate the range and sensibility of The Souterrain: intimate lyricism, spare melodic accompaniment, goblins and insomnia. They called it "lowcore" for its understated intensity, a term coined by Norton in 2010.

In the summer of 2011 the band went on a three-week tour of Ireland, performing at the country's largest music and arts festival, the Electric Picnic. They printed 200 pre-release copies of their self-titled album, some of which may be found in the States. The album was recorded at The Hanger (an old almond factory-turned-studio) and engineered by Scott McChane. The album was released in the States and online in 2012.

The Souterrain's debut album was also featured in the film Friends of the Bride--a romantic comedy about love and lunacy.

The band welcomed drummer Kelsey Brewer (2011) and bugler Olin Hannum (2012) into the fold. Brewer and Hannum added energy and drive to the Souterrain's live show.



  • School Song Part 2
  • Lot's Wife


  • Paddleboat
  • Jenny's Song
  • Jack Be Nimble
  • Ill Seen Ill Said
  • Let It Fall
  • Soft Truth
  • Tattoo Freak
  • Pink Flamingo
  • Prophecy
  • Marlow
  • Occupy


  • Mr. Bones
  • What Ails You
  • The Island
  • Sous Sol
  • Corner Shop
  • School Song
  • Don't Tell Me


You must be logged in to comment on this page. Please log in.

2011-04-15 23:52:45   Haunting, beautiful, funny, acerbic...I love this trio. I downloaded most of their songs listed above from Facebook/Reverbnation. I'm looking forward to getting the rest of them. —MHougham

2011-04-27 23:24:03   Great band, fantastic live performances. Love the vocals and the arrangements. Hope to see a lot more of them. —JohnHammerhead