Low - review of Bombscare
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Low & Spring Heel Jack, Bombscare EP (Tugboat) - 10/12

The last few years, Low have been involved with a lot of interesting projects. They collaborated with Piano Magic and Transient Waves to write and record a 7" together, sang over 50s style doo-wop music played and produced by Shudder to Think's Craig Wedren for the First Love, Last Rites movie soundtrack, released a Christmas EP full of Christmas covers and originals, released an EP of an instrumental fictional film score on the Travels In Constants EP Series on Temporary Residence, and now they have collaborated with Spring Heel Jack on recording this EP.

I wasn't exactly sure what to think when I first heard about the collaboration with Spring Heel Jack. Would it be a really interesting mix of drum & bass and Low's unique vocals? I didn't know, and, to be honest, I was a little worried that it wouldn't be that good. Don't get me wrong, though I am not a huge fan of stuff with beats and the like, I did enjoy the one Spring Heel Jack album I heard. I enjoyed it quite a bit. However, I didn't know how it would sound with Low singing along.

Well, as it turns out, the collaboration works great. There aren't any obvious beats at all on the EP, in fact, the music on the Bombscare EP is mostly slow paced songs with repetitive bass guitar, piano, and keyboard parts that leave almost as much empty space as music. The rhythm is emphasized by the use of a bass drum (similar to the one Mimi uses on Secret Name), and the empty space on the EP is filled out with wonderfully dense ambent soundscapes that fade in, building intensity in the songs in unison with Alan and Mimi's vocals.

Spring Heel Jack contributes all of the beautiful music for three out of the four songs, and Low provide the vocals. On the forth track, "Way Behind," Zak and Mimi add bass guitar and drums to his music as well as their vocal parts. However, even though Zak and Mimi play on track four, "Bombscare," the first track actually sounds the most like a traditional Low song (it could have easily fit on The Curtain Hits the Cast). "Bombscare" is also, in my opinion, the best track on the EP, and worth the price of the CD alone.

daron gardner
2000 jul 14


Bombscare on Amazon.com