Kevin Raub | Rocktopolis / Allstar

Ex-Swans frontman Michael Gira, whose dark, moody punk soundscapes have proved cathartic to a slew of post-early '80s punk bands, will perform an exclusive American engagement of his latest project, the Body Lovers, in New York in September.

The Body Lovers are Gira's first project since Swans' farewell performance in London in 1997. Described as a "psycho- ambient soundtrack- without- a- film," the Body Lovers' debut CD, Number One of Three, was released last April. According to Gira, the transition from extreme, shell- shocking punk to instrumental ear candy was a natural progression from Swans.

"The Body Lovers sort of extends what I was trying to do with Swans, especially on the last tour, with long, instrumental sections based on everything from non-musical sounds to samples to live musicians," says Gira. "Some parts are pretty violent and some are pretty, I guess you could say. It's essentially one long piece of music that migrates along the way."

The Body Lovers will perform an hour-long piece of music based loosely on a track from Number One of Three at the Bowery Ballroom on Sept. 25. The performance will call on a wide array of musicians, and, at times, a few unorthodox instruments to create Gira's own little sonic temple. Those performing with him include Iggy Pop's drummer, Larry Mullins, on tympani, vibraphones, cymbals, and automobile horns; ex-Ministry drummer Bill Rieflin on the analog synthesizer and sequence loops; Phil Puleo (Cop Shoot Cop, ex-Swans) on the dulcimer and mouted kick drums; Birgit Staudt on accordion; Bill Bronson (ex-Swans) on bass; and Gira on guitar.

"It will be strange because I'm not singing," says Gira. "Mainly, I just want to make this sonic environment take place. I don't really see myself projecting my insides as much as if I were singing." On a side note, Gira also hasn't picked up an electric guitar since Swans' last tour. After the New York performance, the Body Lovers head to Europe and Scandinavia for a handful of shows, but will not make anymore U.S. appearances.