LOW’s album HEY WHAT has been quite rightly nominated for a 2022 Grammy and it’s in my top 5 albums of this year. I found it beautiful, challenging and exhilarating, and it resonated with me on a cellular level with its fearless way of blowing out sounds and elongating time into a mesmerising whole.
‘HEY’ is the new single with accompanying video. The song is another time-stretched collage of treated sounds that flood the song like a relentless tide and form a pulsing, juddering backdrop for the ethereal joy of Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker’s reverb-drenched vocals.
The seven-and-a-half-minute video is directed by photographer and videographer illy killy who has created a high gloss set of images that look like they could have been edited together directly from someone’s dreams. Everything shimmers which mirrors the quality of LOW’s music which radiates energy. There’s a lot to take in but it feels like an allusion of things changing state, merging or being cleansed with shots of shiny chrome, spinning plants, water, coffee filtering, bubbles, and loving close-up shots of guitars. It ends with a knotted rope pulling the protagonist towards a trunk containing an endless supply of guitars.
Whether it’s a dream or a meditation there is something very Zen about the combination of illy killy’s visuals with LOW’s music and the band seem to have a keen sense of the right person to collaborate with to bring stimulating visuals to such challenging music (I would also advise checking out the video to ‘Disappearing‘). A Grammy is the least LOW deserve for bringing music of such abrasive beauty into the world.
Review by Paul F Cook