A lot of superlative adjectives get used when describing what it’s like to listen to Low or attend one of the band’s performances. Hypnotic, engrossing, transcendent, explosive — you get it. Except you don’t, unless you’ve experienced it for yourself.
The band’s career began with a three-album run for Virgin’s Vernon Yard imprint that included 1994 debut album I Could Live in Hope. At this time, core members Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker began receiving acclaim for the group’s keen ear for dynamics and use of minimalism and harmonies to build an all-consuming sound on its own, subdued terms. (The press would call it “slowcore,” though the band itself is no fan of the term.) Gently strummed guitars and a minimal drum kit were all the band needed to underscore Sparhawk and Parker’s sublime vocals.
Evolutions in sound came gradually, somewhat coinciding with label jumps. The turn of the Millennium was spent at Kranky, where more ambient textures began to creep in, before the band found its (so-far) permanent home at Sub Pop in 2005. It was here that classic albums The Great Destroyer and Drums and Guns were made, works that showed the band could successfully update its sound with lush instrumentation, driving rock elements and electronic experiments.
Most recently, Low has received some of its best reviews to date for the bombed-out electronic dissonance on 2018’s Double Negative and 2021’s HEY WHAT — the latter of which was nominated for a 2021 Grammy. It’s on the victory lap for these transformative works that Low makes its second Sled Island appearance this year, at perhaps the most exciting time to see the band in its history.
THE MUSIC LINEUP: BY NAMEVIEW ALL >
- Actor Director Ahya Simone Aladean Kheroufi Alex Cameron Alicia Clara AllCityJimmy Also Also Also Amy Nelson AN Apollo Ghosts Astral Swans
- Backxwash Bad Bodies Be Afraid Bennett Mitchell betaboys Big Rig BITTER//WASHED Black Thunder Blue Odeur BODY LENS Body Void Bog Bodies Bonnie Trash Bozo Brain Bent BRIDGELAND Bud Frazier and the Electric Razors Buddie Built to Spill
- Cardiograms Carissa Gem Cassia Hardy Cat 500 Caylem Simeon Chad VanGaalen Chairman Chron Goblin Circuit des Yeux Clea Anaïs Cold Water Control Top Counterfeit Jeans Crystal Eyes
- DA'AT Dead Fibres Dead Friends Debate Club Denimachine DJ Hannah Doohickey Cubicle Doreen Dot Cardigan Double Rider Dragon Fli Empire DRI HIEV Dump Babes
- Earthball Eine Kleine China Elizabeth Colour Wheel Ellen Froese Eve Parker Finley Everythingyoueverloved Exits Eye of Newt
- Fitness Flore Laurentienne Florida BC Frankie and the Witch Fingers Fulfilment
- Ghost Woman Ghostkeeper Ginger Beef Gone Cosmic Gorgeous Grimelda Grouper Guests - To Be Announced
- Hair Control Hairnet Handsome Tiger HARSH Heaven For Real Hélène Barbier Hermitess Holy Void HomeSick housepanther HYMMMelodies
- ILL Human Nation Isolato
- JAMES NOBLE Janette King Jarhead Fertilizer JED ARBOUR Jody Glenham Joyce Manor Julie Doiron Julius Sumner Miller
- k.burwash Kamikaze Nurse Kellarissa Kerkland Jerks Khillah Khills Kid Cali KindaColt KMVP knitting Krill Williams KT Laine KTheChosen Kue Varo & the Only Hopes
- L.A. Witch l.n. baba L.T.Leif La Luz Laura Hickli Lavender Country Leather Jacuzzi Little Destroyer Little Snake Living Hour Local Singles Lokey Love Language Low Low Hums Lowkita Lushings Lydia Lunch RETROVIRUS
- Mahogany Frog Maky Lavender Mares of Thrace Maria DeHart Marlaena Moore Matt MacNeil Matthew Cardinal Megamall Melodna Midnight News Mighloe MOREWINE Mortiferum Mother Tongues Motherhood Motorists MYNXY
- Natural Selection DJs Necking Neighbourly Nice Apple Nick Schofield No Frills NUM
- OKGB Ombiigizi Orchidae Osmanthus
- Pantayo Parisian Orgy Peace For Bombs PEARS Poltergeist Pony Girl Pope Joan POSTNAMERS Primitive Man Princess Nokia puppet wipes
- Queens D. Light
- R.A.P. Ferreira ra / sol The Radiation Flowers Raeburn Rempel & The Rousers The Rifle County Players Rip Room Rob Knaggs Ryan Bourne
- Samantha Savage Smith SASAMI Selci SEULEMENT Shearing Pinx Shirley & The Pyramids Silvering Sinzere Sister Suzie Skinny Dyck Slow Down Molasses Slut Prophet Snake River Sonido Nuevo SPRLUA State n Division Status/Non-Status Still Depths Stripmall Stucco Stuttr Sudan Archives Sufyvn Sunalta Sunforger Sunglaciers Surf Dads Suzi Analogue Sweeping Promises
- Takleef Ensemble tarotfuntime Tea Fannie Teebs Teen Daze (DJ Set) Temps Teon Gibbs Thomas Thomas Thus Owls Trash Magic Trench
- Uncanny Valley Uranium Club Uyemi
- Vagina Witchcraft
- wanderingaria Wet Cigarette Wihtikow Wilt Window Lamp Wine Lips Winona Forever Witch Victim WKO Wolf Willow Woodhawk Worse WUT
- Yankee Cowboy Yawn Yoo Doo Right
- ZENON+ Zoon