Swim Deep - Where The Heaven Are We

Es dauerte seine Zeit bis Swim Deep ihre aktuelle Besetzung - Austin Williams (Gesang), Tom Higgins (Gitarre), Zachary Robinson (Schlagzeug) und Cavan McCarthy (Bass) - zusammen hatten. So wurden mehrere Schlagzeuger ausprobiert, bis der passende bei der Band Cajole Cojole gefunden und abgeworben wurde, und ihren Bassisten fanden sie hinterm Merchandise-Stand der Band Peace. Ob Cavan McCarthy diesen Job bei Swim Deep nun gleich mit übernommen hat?

Das Quartett aus Birmingham hat mittlerweile vier Singles veröffentlicht, die zu den Highlights ihres Debütalbums zählen - allen voran "King City" und "She Changes The Weather". Das in Brüssel aufgenommene Album verfügt jedoch auch über einige seichte Füller ("Make My Sun Shine", "Soul Trippin", "Stray") und knüpft dort an, wo Bands wie Northside, The Farm, The Soup Dragons oder Blur (mit "Leisure) bereits Anfang der 90er Jahre standen. Das als Frage verstandene "Where The Heaven Are We" könnte also mit "anscheinend auf der Tanzfläche der Hacienda in Madchester" beantwortet werden. 

Swim Deep's debut LP is characterised by the blissed-out delivery of its romantic lyrics.

These words, delivered by frontman Austin Williams, come backed by gleeful instrumentation, encompassing bright synth sounds, chorus- and reverb-layered guitars, and subtle but tasteful drum beats.

With many tipping these Birmingham indie sorts for success, a debut album as accomplished and hit-laden as this makes it hard to see the band faltering.

Single ‘King City’ is an instant classic, and each track here is brimming with the love these musicians crave, feel, and so earnestly want to share.
(Clash Music)

‘King City’ buzzes with an adolescent certainty of belief in a Brummie-centric universe, and is probably the best track to emerge from the scene so far. It should also go without saying that for as long as he lives, Williams will probably never write a better lyric than the kiss-off of, “Fuck your romance, I wanna pretend/That Jenny Lee Lindberg is my girlfriend”. Still, a surfeit of big, primary-coloured choruses that make the listener feel like a disembodied head floating through a Soup Dragons video ensure the likes of ‘Francisco’ and ‘Soul Trippin’’ at least run those superlative singles close. More so than any of their B-Town contemporaries, pop songwriting seems to come naturally to Swim Deep.

No, the bigger problem is an overall lack of dynamism. The ramshackle energy and unpredictability of their live show has been sanded down into something more clinical and precise, and at points – the limp and languid ‘Red Lips I Know’ springs to mind – they sound less like the green shoots of Britain’s most exciting new scene, and more like gladioli wilting under the weight of their own not-botheredness. The worst offender, the happy-clappy, wishy-washy ‘Make My Sunshine’, resembles the sort of thing grunge was required to scour from the musical cistern with elbow grease and self-hatred.

These all feel like classic first-album issues – Blur, remember, had to get ‘Leisure’ out of the way before they could make the improved ‘Modern Life Is Rubbish’ – and despite Swim Deep’s relative youth and apparent inexperience, there’s enough here to suggest they’ll eventually overcome them. Certainly, you couldn’t wish for a better album closer than ‘She Changes The Weather’, a roiling, unrestrained cloudburst of a song that seems to survey the world through a pair of acid-tinted teashades and, tantalisingly, hints at a much more expansive, ambitious sound to come. Until then, if Swim Deep truly want to become a fixed point of reference for future generations, they’ll need to work harder to transcend their own inspirations. 


Olly Golightly hat gesagt…

Wie Dirk schon sagte: Hervorragende Singles, auf Albumlänge manchmal ein wenig zu seicht: 6,5 Punnkte

Dirk hat gesagt…

Von mir bekommen Swim Deep letztendlich:

6 Punkte

Volker hat gesagt…

Ich mache gerade meine Jahresliste der 7"s und dachte beim Hören von "The Sea": Warum koppeln die nicht eins der richtig tollen Lieder aus, statt so ein okayes. Sehe das also wieder mal anders ;-)


Ingo hat gesagt…

Ich nicht. 6 Punkte