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Low Double Negative Sub Pop

Your 25th year as a band is a brave, if not strange, time to choose to release perhaps the most challenging album of your career. But Minnesota trio Low have always been an unflinching and uncompromising band.

From the moment it begins, Double Negative sounds like being inside a violent storm, holding up a mirror to the turbulence of the world right now. It’s an abrasive and overwhelming maelstrom of seething static, high-in-the-mix pounding drums and uneasy, dissonant textures. That’s to say: it veers further into the more experimental side of post-rock than Low have ever gone before.

It doesn’t always make for an easy listen of course. Moments of transcendent beauty are rarely glimpsed through the dark clouds – aside from the enchanting Fly, Mimi Parker’s beautiful voice is often swallowed up by the noise, the heaviness of what’s at stake, while The Son, The Sun sounds like scorched earth and Tempest nearly dissolves under the weight of all the intense static. As you come out of the other end you find Disarray, a burbling, beautiful beat. A moment to take stock. The storm is still raging but there’s a glimpse of light on the horizon.