|Swans – My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky
No Words/No Thoughts
Reeling The Liars In
You Fucking People Make Me Sick
When the legendary Swans are said to be regrouping, you can expect considerable interest, especially after fourteen years and an extensive back catalogue that includes albums that are no longer in print. Of course, if you’re fan already this review is pretty much going to be a 250 word superfluous distraction until release day, but for those who are intrigued, read on...
The reputation of Swans is built on a stately Velvet Underground-esque pace, allied to a deep sense of unease that no such drawl should elicit. This has always been the strength of Swans: the sense this is a band that could reach critical mass at any point, albeit at its own languid pace. ‘My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky’ is no different. If a cold turkey-angry Nick Cave and a drunk-vengeful Tom Waits teamed up for one rain-soaked summer night in a shit town, this would be the result.
Whereas previous Swans rumbled with a heavy oppressiveness, this release belies a more stripped down approach: acoustic guitars strum throughout, and the head- warping instrument feedback is kept discrete. ‘Reeling The Liars In’ is, perhaps, a mocking parody of a praise song, while ‘You Fucking People Make Me Sick’ is clearly not a love song, and turns into baroque noise via the medium of orchestral instrumentation. ‘My Birth’ and ‘Inside Madeline’ are classic Swans: brooding, oppressive and hypnotic, a suite that leads into finale ‘Eden Prison’, which brings proceedings to close with a suitably dramatic march. A suitably stunning return.
Reviewed by Steve Jones
‘My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky’ is released 20th September on Young Gods