Low, "Things We Lost In The Fire" [Kranky]
3 1/2 out of 5 stars
Reviewed by David Peisner
Over the course of a half-dozen or so full-lengths, the Minnesota trio Low have staked out their territory as one of the leading lights of the deliberately plodding, exacting hush of sounds known as slo-core. Though operating heavy machinery is not recommended while listening to their latest, Things We Lost in the Fire, at its best, Low's mesmerizing hum can open the doors to some deep, dark closets once firmly latched and bolted in the recesses of your mind. Mimi Parker's haunting voice does just that on the menacingly quiet "Laser Beam." In other places, the band employs layers of fuzzy guitar noise, fragile vocal harmonies, delicate piano riffs, and washes of strings to similar effect. When they miss their mark, the effect is something akin to swallowing a handful of horse tranquilizers, but fortunately, Low's understanding of dynamics and subtlety grows with each release, as they continue proving you don't have to yell loudly just to be heard.
Things We Lost in the Fire on Amazon.com