Low's new, Jeff Tweedy-produced album seems rather slimmer, sound-wise, than previous releases, with the instrumental palette pared back on most tracks to little more than sparse acoustic guitar and piano parts sketched over funereally slow, subterranean bass drum pulses.
This throws most of one's attention on the vocals, always the most engagingly evanescent aspect of their sound – especially when, as here, Mimi Parker is featured on both lead and harmonies. She's quietly devastating on the desperate cri de coeur “Just Make It Stop” and on “Holy Ghost”, a rumination on transcendent experience.
Alan Sparhawk is best employed on the opener “Plastic Cup”, a resigned reflection on how future archaeologists might regard our trash as some king's goblet.
Download: Plastic Cup; Holy Ghost; Just Make It Stop