Swallows | Between The Sea And Sky

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Between The Sea And Sky

by Swallows

Swallows keep true to their roots as a post-punk drum vs. guitar battleground combining the shifty, time signature defiance of their past works with a grounded sense of establishment and instrumental minimalism.
Genre: Rock: Garage Rock
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  Song Share Time Download
1. The Lighthouse
4:19 $0.99
2. The Bay
2:18 $0.99
3. La Sirenita
5:16 $0.99
4. When They Come To Us
1:59 $0.99
5. The Kingdom
3:50 $0.99
6. Thunder // Lightning
2:58 $0.99
7. Aurora
4:04 $0.99
8. These Are the Moments
2:49 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Since 2003, Jon Miller and Em Brownlowe have been carving out a niche and a sound uniquely suited to their Swallows project. Combining sparse instrumentals with Northwest post-punk influence, the duo have graced stages around the nation and supported legends such as Team Dresch. With a consistent output of recordings notable for Miller’s skittery drums and Brownlowe’s mesmerizing rhythmic guitars and strong, resonant voice, Swallows are a tireless act that continues to hone their craft while currently working on their first full-length recording since 2007’s Loud Machines. – Maranda Bish, Portland Mercury

Swallows enter the new decade with a collection of songs entitled, Between The Sea And Sky. Recorded and engineered by Kipp Crawford, the eight-song collection showcases the duo at the height of their dynamic sonic connection.

Notably Swallows’ most lyric-centric album, Between The Sea And Sky graces themes and stories told through an array of rock sub-genres. Opening track, “The Lighthouse” is a fictional account starring a queer sea-bound protagonist searching for his true light. Later on, the emotionally restless come to terms with the inevitable uncertainty and compromise of romance in “La Sirenita” – a monologue coming from the perspective of a mermaid with a landlocked lover. Rebellion and the call for social change is sounded off with “When They Come To Us”, a propulsive tribal anthem demanding people to come together to resist systems of oppression and personal invasion.

Musically, Swallows combine the shifty, time signature defiance of their past works with a grounded sense of establishment and instrumental minimalism. Brownlowe and Miller keep true to their roots as a post-punk drum vs. guitar battleground, and have been compared to early Throwing Muses, Sonic Youth and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Beauty in simplicity is found on “The Bay”, a sparse pop gem reminiscent of You Are Free era Cat Power. Conversely, on the album’s most complex song, “Aurora”, Swallows seem to trip out on a psychedelic, klezmer-punk infusion that channels the lyrical spontaneity of Patti Smith’s Radio Ethiopia era and sure to arouse listeners who embrace technicality and sonic mayhem.

"Between the Sea and Sky is a surprisingly rich-sounding album, with the band's elastic Electrelane-like grooves shifting seamlessly into knottier riffing and prog-rock complexity." - Portland Mercury

"Portland's Swallows—purveyors of jangly, spiraling guitar progressions that remind of Television and Rainer Maria, albeit laced with a distinct riot grrrl edge. The duo's latest effort, Between the Sea and Sky, throws back to the cassette tape era with a playful lo-fi aesthetic that never feels cutesy or forced." - Willamette Week

"On the album's anthem, "When They Come to Us," vocalist Em Brownlowe holds an even tone and sings carefully over a bed of toms, "When they come for us they'll come to our door / And they'll peek inside / And all they'll find is love." Brownlowe, 25, and drummer Jon Miller, 27, who both identify as "queer," explain the song is a reaction to legislation against same-sex marriages. But had they said it was about Tibet or the Spanish Inquisition, that would have been believable, too. The song's simple lyrics and melody make it universal and subtle -- qualities of most good protest songs -- and the fact that it draws its strength from the humble confidence afforded only to those who are right in any struggle makes it beautiful." - Jason Simms, The Oregonian

"Their new work demonstrate a mastery of controlled intensity, with compositions meditating on a modality and building in force and intricacy into bold poetic landscapes." - Crappy Indie Music Blog



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