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Yellow Swans

Drift

(Acuarela; US: 16 May 2006; UK: 16 May 2006)

Bay Area noise duo Yellow Swans’ latest is, as ever, released under a new band name in their ongoing attempt to confound record store attempts at categorisation and alphabetacisation. This time around, though, the prefix Drift seems entirely apt. This three-track, 38-minute EP of psychedelic-ambient dronescapes wafts by like an intangible fog of sound, forever drifting just beyond the point of concrete definition. Using guitar, electronics, vocals and drum machine, the Swans concoct a huge, nebulous cloud that envelopes without offering any readily grasped points of reference. The result is a retinal projection that gives each listener the opportunity to construct their own meaning and narrative. This listener was able to identify the following: seagulls and coastal fog, thrumming with tidal, submarine distortion; cavernous echoes of rituals, rites conducted under a metallic buzz-saw drone; children’s voices, either playing or screaming, under the glare of baleful mechanisms; smothered screams and rattles; a heat haze shimmer raising clouds of static and insects; rain on temples, dampening old ceremonies; irradiated seas lapping at tropical hydrogen shores; the death throes of machinery in the grip of destruction; the screaming skull of the future; total extinction. Quite a trip.

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Tagged as: drift | yellow swans
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16 Dec 2010
It's not that more experimental-type music was made in 2010. It's just that more of it was getting heard.
11 Apr 2010
Yellow Swans, always progressive in their approach to the noise/melody duality, do an especially good job here of making pretty and even tuneful songs that still have that tear-your-face-off quality.
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