The noise pioneers Swans will return this summer with a double-album featuring Karen O of Yeah Yeah Yeahs, members of Low and Akron/Family. The Seer is "the complete synthesis of everything I've done and Swans has done", according to frontman Michael Gira.
Swans' last album was released in 2010, after a 14-year hiatus. Since then, the re-formed band have toured the world, playing festivals such as All Tomorrow's Parties. Now, Gira told Spin magazine, the New York group have almost completed a two-hour epic, which features songs as long as 30 minutes.
"I'm a completely wrung-out washcloth of a human being," Gira said, after spending six months in the studio. "It's a really varied record. There are some pretty intense moments, sonically, but there are also some very pastoral and beautiful moments … This is the best lineup Swans has ever had in terms of getting along and really working for the same goal."
Swans' opus will be released on Gira's Young God Records, which introduced the world to Devendra Banhart and Akron/Family. Meanwhile, Gira will undertake a short solo tour in support of an anthology of home recordings. "Playing solo is the challenge of my life," he said, "to learn how to create some kind of undeniable moment with a piece of wood and strings and my voice".
According to rock legend, Swans gigs in the early 80s were so loud they would cause audience members to vomit. "That's a bunch of shit," Gira told the Boston Phoenix in 2010.
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