23 March 2007

Spin Low, sweet cherry art

I came to hear the band Low pretty late -- in 2005, when a friend gave me a copy of "The Great Destroyer." I liked it -- particularly the surging opening cut, in which they creepily promise, "tonight the monkey dies" -- but it was uneven, with ill-fitting, happy pop songs sprinkled throughout.

Still, I was stunned to learn it was their 7th studio record and I'd never heard 'em before.

Their 8th is just out. "Drums And Guns," a set of songs prompted by the American war in Iraq, is almost minimalist. It's short, with its 13 songs clocking in at less than 45 minutes. It's instrumentally sparse, with what sounds like rattled chains and banging pans passing for percussion in parts.

And it's a masterpiece.

The band's Web page offers this intro:

"Here's a few things going on. We send out our best wishes to all and pray for peace in this new year. So much of what we do, say, or sing these days seems overshadowed by the far more desperate issues going on in the world. We appreciate you checking in with us, but make it quick, then go do something more constructive. Maybe we can turn this thing around..."

If you go to their label's site (It's Sub Pop), you can download the track Breaker. Check 'em out. Buy the record. Let it move you.


gspence said...

Low is a great band. Dan told me about em a couple yrs back. Their latest is pretty cool. Have you ever heard "halloween alaska"? (kinda like Low)

Brad Barnes said...

nope. but i like both halloween and alaska. i'll check 'em out.