|T O P I C R E V I E W
||Posted - 02/20/2012 : 09:30:36 AM
Hey guys, has anyone seen any press on the tour? I've seen a few bits of 'Swervedriver' will be performing at so and so' but no interviews or press or anything. Just curious. Can't wait for NYC!
|9 L A T E S T R E P L I E S (Newest First)
||Posted - 04/03/2012 : 5:36:11 PM
Guitar-Rock Juggernaut Swervedriver Aren’t Content Living in the Past
By Michael Alan Goldberg Add Comment|Comments: 3 |Posted Mar. 27, 2012
Swervedriver: “We’re doing this because it’s mad fun.”
Everybody reunites. Even bands you never knew existed. But after all the excitement around the big reunion tour wears off, then what? Bands can break up again. Or they can embrace all the gimmicks to keep things rolling along without too much effort: Commemorative tours in which they play old albums in their entirety; getting the diehard fans to generate setlists via online voting; etc.
Or, hey, here’s an idea: Maybe they could write some fresh material, hit the road with some new stuff mixed in with the old, continue to be creative and look toward the future instead of simply surrendering to the past. Y’know, do the things that made them want to be in the band in the first place.
The latter is by far the road less traveled, but thankfully it’s the one Swervedriver is taking. Four years after reuniting—following a decade-long hiatus—the British guitar-rock juggernaut comes back to Philly as a re-invigorated quartet looking to write a few new chapters in a book that’s already got some killer sonic stories.
“You really don’t wanna be put in some nostalgia bracket,” says frontman Adam Franklin. “Well, maybe some do, but we don’t. We don’t want to be predictable, and we certainly aren’t interested in just going through the motions.”
From their start in 1989, Swervedriver never took the easy road—great for their integrity, if not their personal finances. They were lumped in with the early ’90s U.K. shoegaze scene by those who looked at the band’s arsenal of guitar pedals but who didn’t always listen to the punkish, Stooges/Hüsker Dü wallop at the heart of their cinematic, panoramic tunes. The Swervies placed themselves at the fringes of that scene with a dense, quasi-psychedelic attack more muscular, melodic, urgent and purposeful than most of their meandering, floppy haired peers. Then, when Brit-pop killed shoegaze, Swervedriver refused to give up their wall of noise and atmosphere for dumbed-down pub-rock. Creatively, the band never flailed, but pressure both internally and from record labels to score hits and move units helped do them in by 1999.
Franklin needs only to look at live performances from that era, preserved forever on YouTube, to remind him of that miserable mental state. “It’s amazing—you can see the rollercoaster we were on and the toll it took,” he shudders.
In 2012, though, all that careerism pressure is off. “We’re doing this because it’s mad fun,” says Franklin. He’s got his ongoing solo career with backing band Bolts of Melody; the other Swervies have their outside endeavors, too. Trying to get the band to blow up isn’t life-or-death anymore.
But the creative spark still exists, not from desperation but through that newfound calmness and freedom. The quartet’s working on a new batch of songs, including a souped-up version of a tune Franklin wrote for the upcoming indie drama California Solo , starring Robert Carlyle (Trainspotting’s “Begbie”) as a former Brit-pop star-turned-farmer forced to confront his past (Carlyle sings Franklin’s melancholy number in a pivotal scene). Swervedriver plans to issue at least an EP by year’s end, and will likely unveil a new track or two tonight as they launch their U.S. tour at Union Transfer.
“Right now, it almost feels like that very first period when we started the band,” says Franklin. “Where you’re knocking things around and the ideas are coming, the songs are just hanging there and the possibilities are endless and we feel like we can write our own history again and surprise people instead of just being stuck in the past. It’s the best feeling.”
Swervedriver perform Wed., March 28, 9pm. $15-$18. With Heaven. Union Transfer, 1026 Sping Garden St. 215.232.2100. utphilly.com
Read more: http://www.philadelphiaweekly.com/music/144418745.html#ixzz1r1lSSqv3
||Posted - 04/03/2012 : 5:33:58 PM
In case the story gets taken down -
Fame eluded Swervedriver, but fans can’t forget group
Published: Sat, March 31, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.
By John Benson
Selling out was never a consideration for ’90s U.K. act Swervedriver, which never attracted a hint of mainstream attention from the then exploding alternative nation.
Looking back at the entire experience, frontman-guitarist Adam Franklin doesn’t seem bitter for lost opportunities, just confused. Specifically the conversation turns to why the band’s heavily melodic and groove-driven music was never considered by advertisers for commercial use. The one head-scratcher for Franklin is Swervedriver’s tune “Son of Mustang Ford,” which, ahem, at the time seemed perfect for a certain company based in Detroit.
Franklin said it wouldn’t have taken much for the guitar-based band known as a shoegazing bellwether to have agreed. He joked a free stickshift would have done the trick. Whether a calculated comment or a subconscious slip, his use of the stickshift surrounding Swervedriver couldn’t be more apropos in describing the wind-in-hair feeling of the band’s music which seemingly shifts gears, builds up speed and breezes through lush soundscapes with ease.
“Exactly, you can work through the gears, you know,” said Franklin, calling from his Oxford, England, home. “That’s the whole thing. You build it up, arms working hard to get it fired up, while watching the road ahead.”
Franklin’s latter comment about looking up seems directly aimed at the band’s shoegazing tag, which was created in the late ’80s and early ’90s to describe a slew of effects pedal-based guitar bands creating a wall of sound at their feet. Add in the fact the music was a bit emotionally disconnected or aloof, and shoegazing was born.
Forerunners of the scene included The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine and Cocteau Twins, as well as Sonic Youth and even Dinosaur Jr. However, the genre is defined by ’90s acts such as Swervedriver, Ride and Curve. You’ll notice the latter bunch enjoyed only a small pocket of attention stateside.
As for the shoegazing tag, Franklin said its meaning changed over the years.
“Initially it was a derogatory term,” Franklin said. “It kind of sounds a bit ridiculous having a musical genre with the word ‘shoe’ in there. I’d say the main architects would be My Bloody Valentine, but I think we were more rock ’n’ roll sounding. There was kind of more of a grungier element to what we were doing. Today shoegaze has a whole different meaning. People don’t think of it as derogatory. Now it’s like a musical genre of guitar bands playing loud and heavy, almost like a punkish guitar sound but also getting more kind of exploratory as well. Where the guitars don’t sound like guitars.”
That description fits Swervedriver through its four studio albums – 1991’s “Raise,” 1993’s “Mezcal Head,” 1995’s “Ejector Seat Reservation” and 1998’s “99th Dream” – and decade’s worth of concert performances. A record industry casualty, the band called it quits in 1999 only to reform for its diehard fan base in 2008.
That reunion continues today with Swervedriver returning to Northeast Ohio for a Monday show at the Grog Shop. Franklin said originally the reformation was supposed to be a one-off tour but, well, here we are years later. So does that mean fans could be getting new music from the shoegazing act?
“People are always asking if there will be new stuff, and we say we haven’t thought about it, but I think if we’re going to carry on playing shows it’s always fun to play new material,” Franklin said. “I guess we’re looking at doing something but we don’t know what. It wouldn’t necessarily be an album. It could be an EP of instrumentals. Whatever. We’ll see what turns up.”
||Posted - 04/03/2012 : 1:51:22 PM
I think so too. They genuinely seem to have fun and there's no label pressure. They can just go out when they want and where they want.
||Posted - 04/03/2012 : 1:19:54 PM
I am bummed. No Denver date planned. I will catch them on the next go around because I truly believe there will be one.
||Posted - 04/03/2012 : 06:05:28 AM
Some more articles.
||Posted - 03/11/2012 : 7:07:01 PM
It's hardly "press" but I found out about the show in Seattle through an ad in a local publication called 'the stranger'. Thankfully I was looking through it to cut out an ad from a show my industrial band performed at. If it wasn't for that, swerve would have came and went without me being the wiser as they previously did in 2008... so thank you stranger. Finally after all these years I get to see swd live!
||Posted - 03/08/2012 : 09:45:42 AM
Great article, thanks for sharing
||Posted - 03/07/2012 : 6:35:33 PM
Just found this today. Nice article on the boys.
||Posted - 02/21/2012 : 08:34:53 AM
I have not seen anything. I think more pictures will be coming out soon and that may kick off something.
By the way i was wrog about Graham drumming. It is going to be Mikey. This is a Brad-centric error and not a change or problem from band side.