Swell

Swell

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Looking back on this material, it's interesting to see how the trippy stoner shuffle of tracks like "Get High" and "Wooden Hippie Nice" stood out from the Bay Area's other eclectic outfits of the time, like Red House Painters and American Music Club. Steered by guitarist/vocalist David Freel, Swell -- essentially a duo that also included drummer Sean Kirkpatrick at the time of this recording -- showed tremendous promise on infectious, muscular tracks like "Come Tommorrow" and "Stop." If the former's shoegazing guitar sound and the latter's innovative, echoed dynamics weren't enough, the group's reliance on atmospherics on the groove-steeped "Love You All" and the apprehensive, pulsing "A Town" hint at the direction Swell's next disc, 1992's ...Well?, would take. Simply put, this is a superb debut album and a great starting point for music fans looking to discover the roots of 1990s independent and alternative music.

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