July 01, 2005

DVD: Low in Europe

Released on DVD this week, Low in Europe is an enlightening documentary about a band that paved the way for indie music. The film, directed by Sebastian Schrade, follows Low through live dates in Germany and the UK, as they promoted the album Trust in 2002. It highlights their shows in Berlin and Dresden, and culminates at the Union Chapel in London, an unusual but fitting venue, where the band played to a crowd of more than 1,000 people.

Clips of live performances are broken up by the artists' personal diaries, including spiritual beliefs, musical insights, and often profound commentary. Zak Sally provides the introduction to the film by distinguishing Low from the rest. "The music world can be a really disgusting place, and it's predicated on a lot of things that I just have no interest in, you know, the notion of like, being cool or being a really messed up drug addict . . . these sort of facile trappings of the music industry that are sold to people."

Low's marginal position carries over into their music, which could be described as pretty or dark, but which defies description. Sally explains that this technique is deliberate. '"The things that we may be trying to get at are not as distinguishable as "it's very pretty" or "it's very ugly" or "it's very slow." You can point to all those things and say, "oh, this is what this band is," but I think what it actually is lies somewhere in between all those things, or maybe at the point where those things butt up against each other."'

The track list is as follows:

(That's How You Sing) Amazing Grace
John Prine
Laser Beam
Take the Long Way Around the Sea
Last Snowstorm of the Year
Time is the Diamond
Little Argument With Myself
I am the Lamb
Speaking in Tongues

Click here to buy Low in Europe

Related articles:
Low - The Great Destroyer