Decades into their pursuit of dramatic hush, Low are still pushing for new ideas.
The core duo of Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker remains one of music’s best marriages, the guitarist and drummer sharing vocal duties and coming out the other end with indie rock’s finest, most breathtaking harmonies. At times effortlessly slow and devastatingly grey, they can also shred, scar and scorn, amping up for climactic rock music about crude things like “Pissing”. They’ve been many things, but they’re rarely anything short of beautiful.
Low started off for only the most daring of listeners: their original trilogy of records - I Could Live In Hope, Long Division, The Curtain Hits the Cast - was frighteningly slow and suffocatingly sparse, the bleakly toned guitars offering little respite from Alan Sparhawk's minimalist lyric funerals. When they released Things We Lost In The Fire, their sound opened up, breathing in arrangements like forests of sound and offering an unforeseen tenderness.
They have since experimented beyond their remit of slowcore with records like Drums And Guns, a record of drum machine plodders which was mixed with a deliberate harshness in its panning. Work with Jeff Tweedy has yielded softer, more content dad rock in the form of The Invisible Way, while their new album Double Negative sounds like it might be their most inaccessible yet. We can't wait.