Tuesday, June 17, 2008

DVD Review - Low: You May Need A Murderer

Low – You May Need A Murderer
[Stemra; 03/06/2008]

Over 15 years of recording albums and touring on the back of them, Low have finally been paid homage, with a documentary filmed by Dutch filmmaker, David Kleijwegt.

You May Need A Murderer is a 72 minute documentary based around the natural habitat of Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Parker; two thirds of the seismic force that is Low. Filmed over 30 days throughout America, this documentary touches on the pair's family life in Duluth, Minnesota, which encompasses their dealings as parents, musicians, whilst also emphasising on the duo's religious involvement within the Mormon community.

Alan Sparhawk is the focal point of the film. With the epi-centre of the documentary touching on the precarious economic situation his country currently possesses, Sparhawk merely points out that America is nothing more than a third world country; a notion many people are finally starting to catch on to.

Kleijwegt, unafraid to ask the tough questions, refers to the situation of Sparhawk's illness three years ago, which Sparhawk himself and Mimi Parker go at some lengths to explain, embarking on yet another tangent that forms intrigue for the viewer.

The use of of songs from the band in the live arena is integrated perfectly within certain scenes throughout this documentary. None better than 'When I Go Deaf' that washes in the background while Sparhawk embarks on a run, sporting shorts and a t-shirt.

You May Need A Murderer is a story about two entities growing up together and forming a relationship that comprises of giving their life to religion, parenthood, and against the odds, being in a band. It's refreshing to see a documentary about an artist that doesn't exactly make music the focal point, while the nature of which Kleijwegt captures Sparhawk and Parker pinpoints towards a humanly organic texture.

By Simon K

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