Speakers Push Air

December 28, 2010, 1:11 pm
Filed under: 2010 Top 25

download Forest Swords – Hoylake Misst

Last of the quartet of “spooky hipster albums” in the rundown and the best by a scary, shadowy country mile.  More Lancastrian oddness, this time from one man (Matt Barnes), Forest Swords rub stylistic shoulders with Demdike Stare in some ways, but in place of the techno leanings things are more fractured and vague. There are beats – often vaguely dubstep, I guess, but sometimes almost martial / tribal – but there’s also Ennio Morricone guitar, broken vocals, decaying sounds and half-heard samples. I’ll invoke Coil again, maybe even PiL too (the bass is pure Wobble at times).  What Barnes is doing is one sense of its time – there’s hauntology and dubstep and witch / drag house and all the rest here – but what he does with these tropes is utterly unique and exciting and makes me want to lie down, jam my headphones on my stupid, cold-ridden head and lose myself.

buy it

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