Lower

Seek Warmer Climes

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Copenhagen-based post-punkers Lower are cut from the same cloth as a whole subset of Danish punk bands growing during the early 2010s. Along with Pagan Youth, Hand of Dust, Sexdrome, the critically acclaimed Iceage, and others, Lower tap into the wiry, anxious angst of punk pioneers of the '80s and doomy indie bands of the early '90s. Though the sound throughout their debut full-length, Seek Warmer Climes, is firmly rooted in the influence of groundbreaking hardcore and post-punk, the band stands out somewhat from the crop by twisting in moments of art punk ennui and no wave dissonance. Vocalist Adrian Toubro spits out slithering lyrics about the hollowness and isolation of everyday life on almost every song, calling on the same lurching darkness of Bauhaus and the intimidating bluster of the Swans on tracks like "Expanding Horizons (Dar es Salaam)." The spare percussion intro of "Unkempt and Uncaring" grows into a din of winding, frustrated guitar lines and pervasive drum rolls before ending with Toubro's icy screams of "Appearance is all that counts." The bandmembers tend to summon their intensity in the form of slow-burning midtempo tunes, but they pick up the pace with equally furious results. "Bastard Tactics" is pushed along by a relentless tom-heavy beat, calling to mind early introspective punk acts like Saccharine Trust and Rites of Spring, and leadoff track "Another Life" comes as close to melody as Lower get in its mangled, angular guitar leads and group vocals chanting over propulsive rhythms. Lower stand out for their unique blend of cathartic explosions and restraint, creating something remarkably powerful in their use of dynamics and tense pacing.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
02:30
2
02:19
3
03:26
4
03:06
5
07:00
6
03:14
7
03:11
8
02:27
9
03:50
10
03:20
blue highlight denotes track pick