NEWS

NEWSLETTER FROM MICHAEL GIRA / SWANS / YOUNG GOD RECORDS MAY 2017

Hi There! 

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Here’s what’s going on in the world of Swans:

  • The Live2XCD Deliquescence is finally finished and out and is available now at younggodrecords.com and at live shows. This album documents (rather expertly, if I may say so) the final Swans tour for this configuration of the band. It includes a few new pieces that have not, and never will be, recorded elsewhere. They were written especially for this tour. It was recorded and mixed during the current tour and serves as an excellent archival document of this enterprise, now 7 years running (and soon to cease). It is, I believe, quite fetchingly packaged, and each copy is signed by me. You can read more about it here. (https://younggodrecords.com/products/deliquescence)
  •  The 1995 Swans album The Great Annihilator has been lovingly re-mastered and is now available on vinyl for the first time in decades. It is also available as a 2XCD and digitally. It includes my 1995 solo album, Drainland (also re-mastered, and much improved). I have long been less than sanguine about the sound of GA, and was recently delighted to discover that my esteemed and dear friend Bill Rieflin had the original mixes in his possession. After much digging, he found them buried in a trunk somewhere. We were thus able to master this release from the original, unadulterated mixes, rather than attempt to unwind the sonic knots embedded in the initial commercial release. In my view, the improvement in the overall audio experience is quite significant. I’m personally relieved to be able to listen to the thing without a creeping sense of disappointment and frustration. Again, each copy that goes out is signed by me. If you’re interested, you can read more about it here. (https://younggodrecords.com/products/great-annihilator-2017)
  • The final Swans tour (for this exuberant and heroic iteration of the band) is in its final stages. The remaining dates are listed below. Of particular interest to me personally are the FINAL 3 SHOWS (AT WARSAW, IN BROOKLYN), since they take place in NYC, the womb wherein Swans was initially gestated. There will be no other East Coast shows surrounding this last stand, and this is it. Finished. I’m pleased here to announce the august and daunting artists that will accompany us on each of these three nights.  They are:

CARLA BOZULICH, ON NOVEMBER 2ND:
Carla is a wrenching and emotionally devastating singer and performer. She’s a survivor, is fierce and fearsome and alluring, and she is a Phoenix.  Some time ago we were privileged to tour with Carla and it was great seeing her work it out each night - an absolute dynamo. She’s had a restless and courageous career, having done everything from a beautiful rendition of Willie Nelson’s Red Headed Stranger album to many exquisitely tortured expressionist noise-scapes, and beyond. She is a Class A singer. If you don’t know her work, avail yourself to its mysteries now.
(Tickets on sale here Friday 5/19 at 10am EST:  http://bit.ly/2qOQvcZ)

ANNA VON HAUSSWOLFF ON NOVEMBER 3RD:
Anna is a Swedish singer and organist of immense talent and she is a true artist. What a voice. She’s unapologetic and uncompromising, and at quite a young age (from my vantage point, anyway!), she is already forging her own distinct path. With the natural gift of her voice she could easily venture into more commercial terrain, but instead she’s stubbornly constructing a distinct and individual sonic world, fearlessly following the dictates of her imagination, and I applaud her for that. We toured Europe with Anna quite recently and I left the experience wanting more. I look forward to seeing her perform again. Total respect here for her integrity and talent.
(Tickets on sale here Friday 5/19 at 10am EST: http://bit.ly/2qP9WSK)

ADULT. ON NOVEMBER 4TH:
ADULT. are a problem. A real problem, and I hope they are your problem soon, too. Nicola and Adam are a longstanding Detroit duo wielding considerable caustic wit and skewed and often furious beat onslaughts, all with the laudable goal of putting an eggbeater to your brain. I met them randomly on tour a lifetime ago and soon thereafter devoured their deep catalog of fun. They are also visual artists of considerable perspicuity and I suggest you check out that aspect of them too.  I was recently proud to collaborate with them on a few songs for their new album, “Detroit House Guests.” I have no idea what the show here in question will bring. It could be they will perform to the accompaniment of vacuum cleaners (as they’ve recently done), or perhaps something more “musical” will ensue. Either way, Fun, Fun, Fun!…
(Tickets on sale here Friday 5/19 at 10am EST: http://bit.ly/2rokHZihttp://bit.ly/2rokHZi

…IT IS MY UNDERSTANDING THAT A FEW DISCOUNTED 3-DAY PASSES WILL ALSO BE AVAILABLE FOR THESE WARSAW SHOWS. I WILL BE DESIGNING A SPECIAL, (VERY) LIMITED EDITION ARCHIVAL POSTER FOR THE SHOWS THAT POSSESSORS OF THE 3-DAY PASS WILL ALSO RECEIVE. 
(3 day passes on sale here Thursday 5/17 at 11am EST : http://bit.ly/2rog7Kw)

HERE ARE THE REMAINING SWANS SHOWS. THERE ARE NO MORE SHOWS FOR THIS LINEUP AFTER THIS :

5/16/2017 Istanbul TR Zorlu Performing Arts Center
5/18/2017 Glasgow UK Oran Mor
5/19/2017 Aberdeen UK The Lemon Tree
5/20/2017 Leeds UK Stylus - Leeds University Union
5/21/2017 Sheffield UK The Plug
5/24/2017 Birmingham UK The Asylum
5/25/2017 Zottegem BE Dunk!Festival
5/26/2017 Bristol UK Trinity Community Arts
5/27/2017 London UK Roundhouse (w Thurston Moore Band)
5/28/2017 Manchester UK Victoria Warehouse
5/30/2017 Dublin, IRE Button Factory 
6/2/2017 Barcelona ES Primavera Sound Festival
6/3/2017 Moers DE Moers Festival
6/5/2017 Biarritz FR Atabal
6/6/2017 Angouleme FR La Nef
6/7/2017 Rouen FR 106 Club
6/9/2017 Porto PT NOS Primavera Sound Festival
(all above dates feature Little Annie, with the exception of Istanbul)

8/2/2017 Milan IT Magnolia Club Outside  Concert
8/6/2017 Katowice PL Off! Festival
8/10/2017 Jaromer CZ Brutal Assault Festival
8/20/2017  Las Vegas NV Psycho Las Vegas Festival
8/22/2017  San Francisco CA Independent
8/25/2017  Seattle WA The Neptune
8/26/2017  Vancouver BC Venue
8/27/2017  Portland OR Revolution Hall
(above shows feature Okkyung Lee)

10/4/2017  Lorient FR Le Manège
10/5/2017  Bordeaux FR Rock School Barbey
10/19/2017 Winterthur CH Salzhaus
10/21/2017      Fribourg CH Fri-SON
10/22/2017 Heidelberg DE Halle 02
10/24/2017 Dresden DE Beatpol
10/25/2017 Leipzig DE Conne Island
10/26/2017 Berlin DE Berghain
10/28/2017 Bremen DE Lagerhouse
(above shows feature Baby Dee)

11/2/2017   Brooklyn NY Warsaw (w Carla Bozulich)
11/3/2017   Brooklyn NY Warsaw (w Anna von Hausswolff)
11/4/2017   Brooklyn NY Warsaw (w Adult.)

• FINAL THOUGHTS FOR THIS LENGTHY NEWSLETTER:
The past 7 years of my life have been the most productive and fulfilling of my career. It’s not my place to draw qualitative distinctions between the previous and current periods, and I wouldn’t presume any expertise in doing so, but from a personal perspective, this time period has been the most consistently engaging and even enthralling in my recollection. I thank here Norman Westberg, Christoph Hahn, Thor Harris, Phil Puleo, Christopher Pravdica and our most recent convert, Paul Wallfisch, for their commitment to ecstasy and their sheer stamina in this marathon adventure.  Much love to these intrepid explorers of sonic truth! May God snatch us all by his teeth and fling us out over his shoulder into the great black beyond, where we will spin slowly and infinitely through space with an ever-nascent smile emerging on our face.

… and what’s next? Musically, I have no clear idea, and don’t really want one at this juncture. I seem to have the sound of a sustained chord in my mind – not the striking of the chord, but what hangs in the air after as it dissipates, and what surrounds it, and I look forward to filling that out, traveling there. Certainly, there will be some singing involved, though not necessarily all by me, and words, words, I’m always looking for words, irreducible and implacable – an impossible goal. We’ll see how that goes…I will continue to use the name Swans, but will revert to a cast of revolving contributors, drawing on a pool of men and women I’ve worked with along the way (and new ones too), including of course, with their permission, the gentlemen listed above. But the idea of having a fixed band and the responsibilities it entails is exhausting and impossible to even contemplate, and I suspect those listed above would concur. So, things will be different, much different, out of necessity and hope. I used to say I’m always happiest when I’m leaving, but that’s no longer the case. Stasis is not attractive to me, however, and is probably unhealthy, so I’ll look for new ways to… dissolve. Some of those ways will be in public, I presume, in the form of occasional short tours and one-off special shows…

…In addition to new music, I’ll be working on making sure the Swans catalog is all reissued properly and stays in print in the best possible form and packaging (which is just as important to me as the music itself), and there’s talk of a Swans oversized art book, containing all the art to date and its related aspects and offshoots… I’m working slowly on building a new collection of short fiction too. God knows when that will come to fruition, if ever… There’s an oral history of Swans book in the works… The Swans documentary by Marco Porsia, “Where Does a Body End?” is ever-burgeoning and progressing, from what I hear. I’m very thankful to Marco that he’s taken such an interest and has dedicated such a large portion of his time and energy to this and is persisting. Here’s a link to that if you don’t know about it: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1000942931/where-does-a-body-end-a-documentary-on-the-band-sw

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I can think of nothing else that needs saying at the moment. I love you. Bye! – Michael Gira / Swans / May 2017

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