Astral Swans KA: Matthew Swann has shared the second single, “Spiral”, featuring the vocals of Julie Doiron. The track is off their self-titled release, available October 8, 2021.
Album opener, “Spiral”, was “the first song I wrote after Covid quarantine, in March 2020,” says Swann. “It’s about seeking out joy, and trying to escape pain in ways that backfire, within reference to the hamster wheel of late stage capitalism; consumerism, addiction, neoliberalism, the reduction of identity to social media posturing, etc ad infinitum. It’s about trying to escape something that seemingly has no escape, in spite of its glaring foolishness and lack, and the desperation which it brings to a person’s humanity. In the studio we went for a 1970’s wrecking crew polished country vibe speckled with synth exploration a la Stereolab and Broadcast. Once again Julie’s vocals are the cherry on top. When I sent the final album to Jim Bryson (who’s one heck of a producer in his own right), He simply replied ‘you have Julie Doiron on it, you’ve already won the war’.”
Astral Swans was produced and engineered by Paul Chirka (Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra), and Brock Geiger (Reuben and the Dark), with Swann functioning as a third producer. Sonically it is rich and spacious, and features a diverse array of sounds ranging from delicate string arrangements, to atmospheric synth freak outs, and deconstructive guitar solos. All the while, seated atop all the instrumental beauty and chaos floats Swann’s uniquely haunting voice which effortlessly warbles and swoons through its natural range and into Swann’s trademark falsetto. Astral Swans ST brings with it an arts commune worth of fantastic collaborators. Guest performers include: Julie Doiron (Eric’s Trip, Mt. eerie) Cassia Hardy (Wares), LT Leif, Scott Munro (Preoccupations, Chad VanGaalen), Shalom Toy (SilverRing), Laura Hickli (36?), Minami Taga (Mako Puri), Swann’s childhood friend Carolyn Sweet, Jim Bryson (Kathleen Edwards, Weakerthans), and more. Each guest adds their own unique addition to the sound, bringing their own bit of the world into Swann’s solipsistic compositions.
03 Blackhole Town
04 End Of The World (Missing You)
05 Sympathy For The Stupid
06 Bird Songs
07 Wind In A Mindless Universe
08 Cross Bones Style
09 March 29, 20
10 Beautiful Things Happen
11 More Nothing Than Something
12 I Was Awake For A While
Pre-order Astral Swans by Astral Swans HERE