Yes, Towell lives up in Ontario. You may have seen his work from El Salvador, Palestine, or the Mennonite project. You can find more on the Magnum In Motion site - I know there's an essay about Palestine someplace. There's also a neat 'behind the scenes' where he talks about how he shoots, what gear he uses, etc.
He's a very interesting character as well. Writes poetry and, as you heard, sings.
About the "digital look" - I'm sure it has more to do with the Flash presentation than anything else. I'm not how much he shoots digital these days, if at all. Probably for some assignment work, but I'm pretty sure he still mostly uses film.
One thing; everytime someone mentions images from this disaster they compare it to a members work here. I'm not familiar with most of the work from Katrina, but all of it has a certain sameness - that's to be expected. I try not to compare, however, and try not to create a hierarchy of good, better, best. Everyone has a different take and all are valuable.