Week in Pop: Body Song, Scarves, Tom Brosseau

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Swamp Meat

Seattle's own swamp things—Swamp Meat; press photo courtesy of the group.
Seattle’s own swamp things—Swamp Meat; photographed by Lila Burns.

Available February 10 from Halfshell Records as a benefit for Seattle’s DESC shelter (Downtown Emergency Service Center); we are proud to present a first premiere listen to Swamp Meat’s new album Higher Art Vol. 1 streaming in full. Featuring members from Killer Ghost and Great Spiders, Swamp Meat shows some support for their Seattle community’s largest multiservice center for homeless & disabled folks in the Pacific Northwest sharing 100% of proceeds to the DESC from their new release that is the largest & loudest set of sounds heard from the band yet.
Higher Art Vol. 1 initiates its trip with the brilliant “Bats & Rainbows II” that rips like a natural force that materializes from the convection patterns seen in the sky. Rumbling & crumbling virtually anything in Swamp Meat’s path, the action arrives to “Not That” that measures distances & people that surmises situations with reiterations of “she’s not that far away…” The journey traverses along a psychotropic path with the road weary cycle of “Snake Eat Self” that imagines mirages & strange visions that bend & bow like the violin strings that comprise the song’s dusty & hazy trail. Matters turn even wilder & weirder with “Death Heads 666” where hundreds of visages of the deceased are imagine materializing as if out of thin air. Swamp Meat then proceeds to cover Thee Oh Sees’ “So Nice”, “Minotaur” & “Invitation” in live renditions where John Dwyer’s & crew’s skronk-laden cult-pop masterpieces are re-tricked to sound like something that could have been birthed during the self-titled/White Light/White Heat era of The Velvet Underground’s 60s career. Swamp Meat returns the album to their original compositions with “East Ghost” that entertains a paranormal instrumental that builds up toward a towering dissonance that hits you when you least expect it to. “Airport Headache” updates Music for Airports with the musical equivalent of emulating a migraine while waiting to board your plane at the terminal gates, right before the live version of “Stork On The Rocks” rips, rocks & rolls like an interstellar overdrive turbine firing out of mind & out of time. All the action builds up toward the penultimate live track of “Harlem Nocturn Freakout” where Swamp Meat casts the shadow of a sun-setting evening overture where the Seattle group ends their album with an ode to the freaks of infinite night.

The wonderful world of Swamp Meat; photographed by Lila Burns.
The wonderful world of Swamp Meat; photographed by Lila Burns.

Swamp Thing’s Daniel Onufer wrote us the following brief manifesto on their new album, Higher Art Vol. 1:

The Higher Art series was dreamed up to bring positive change to the world through art & magic. With Vol.1 we focused on Seattle’s ongoing homelessness crisis by compiling a benefit album whose ongoing proceeds go to the DESC shelter forever and for always.

Through the kaleidoscope with Swamp Meat; photographed by Lila Burns.
Through the kaleidoscope with Swamp Meat; photographed by Lila Burns.

Seattle’s Downtown Emergency Service Center is a non-profit/non-secular homeless shelter, which serves disabled and vulnerable homeless adults, and is one of the largest multi service centers for homeless adults in the Pacific Northwest.

Swamp Meat’s Higher Art Vol. 1 will be available February 10 from Halfshell Records.