Low showed up in my life when I was most needing it. Already getting tired of listening to Radiohead after several months of deep research and at the same time I started learning to play an instrument (around fourteen yo) they were suggested to me on the basis of Radiohead. There are not many similarities apart from what one would call “sadness” coherently exposed in every song.
Their first release goes back to 1994 and it is one of my favourite albums ever. “I Could Live in Hope” was in 1994 a farewell to Punk and to Grunge with Kurt Cobain passing away that same year three months after the release. A strong statement on what music would turn to picking up the depressed rage exposed in Grunge into melancholic Pop as the “SlowDive” did as well around the same time. More than that we have to have in consideration the intimacy of each and every song since the two founding members of the band, Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker are now married and have two children. The third element was always somewhat volatile and now belongs to the really talented Steve Garrington, their bass player for now almost ten years.
From this first Album I have to resemble “Lulllaby” which is the landmark song of this first work and that for sure had a revolutionary impact at the time (1994) for its simplicity coming from the Guitar of Alan allied to its power arising from Parker’s vocals. As well “Words” is a fan favourite being these two still one of the top played on Spotify despite their age.
After that first one they already released eleven other albums, being the last five under Subpop, which now labelled them as Indie Rock, something that was quite true since they signed with them. The “Great Destroyer” in 2005 is noticeable from being a great inspiration for Robert Plant which in his solo Album “Band Of Joy” he played with Low as support band and gave his unique tone to “Monkey” and “Silver Rider”. An Album that never reached what it deserved due to rough critics from publications ie: Pitchfork gave it 5.5/10.
Their most recent album of originals dates back to 2015 when they edited “Ones and Sixes” which has some of their most beautiful lyrics and definitely a different type of music than what they did in the beginning. However, brilliantly enough the quality is still there. The trip just got way more intense and they adapted their way of expressing their sadness to new instruments and effects that make this my second favourite album after the first. I love great comebacks. Lacks however the intimacy of their first workers but then again, after so many years is the marriage the same?
Last Year they released an absolute Gem available for everyone in Spotify called “A Lifetime of Temporary Relief: 10 years of B sides and Demos” where they compiled 55 songs of probably everything you might want to hear from them, some even in “Demo” version. Never to late to get to know Artists with such a big portfolio filled with Gems.