Music

CD Shorts: Swans

Comments ()
Wednesday, June 11, 2014

To Be Kind

(Young God)

In the few years since Michael Gira reactivated Swans, the legendary gothic noise band has stunned audiences with ecstatically pulverizing live shows and recorded The Seer, a sprawling collection that stands alongside its best work.

To Be Kind is another double-disc effort that delivers hypnotic and primal slabs of sound, upping the ante on its predecessor by offering more variety, texture and immediacy without sacrificing any rapturous savagery. There’s the sinuous blues belly-crawl of “Just A Little Boy,” which alternately slithers and swaggers, undercutting its bravado with an eerie laugh track. “Some Things We Do” uses sighing strings to underline its incantatory recitation. “Oxygen” expertly mixes coruscating punk riffs and propulsive grooves. St. Vincent’s backing vocals add seductive flair to the luxuriously doom-struck “Kirsten Supine.”

The centerpiece is the hammering onslaught of “Bring the Sun/Toussaint L’Ouverture,” which alternately sounds like a thundering herd of mythic stallions and an unraveling orchestra. Imagine Nick Cave sculpting sound at the scale of Richard Sera and you’re part way there. To Be Kind is a genuinely monumental effort, full of tilts and torque, and hewn to endure.

Find it Here:
keyword:
search type:
search in:

« Previous   |   Next »
Print Email RSS feed

Nightcrawler: Piping Up
Sean Altman honors the Jewish holidays; Foucault pipes up on local environmental issue
CD Shorts: Tony Jillson
Nightcrawler: Picture Perfect
Lord Russ holds court at Sonelab; First Night
Nightcrawler: Harping on an Unlikely Duo
Green Monster Foo Fighter double play; something Shady going on with Living Colour?
CD Shorts: Nar-ke
Nightcrawler: Signature Event
Signature Sounds’ owners and artists reflect on a musical milestone; Electric Blue & The Kozmik Truth reunite
Not Quite Mad
Singer/songwriter Nate Livingston delivers Into the Madness