Bristolian hard dance act Giant Swan having been tearing roofs off of raves for a fair few years now. The duo of Robin Stewart and Harry Wright make a skull-shaking kind of club music, one that bludgeons you with a raggedy, scuzzed-up take on EBM and industrial techno. After a string of EPs for labels like Whities, Mannequin and FuckPunk, Giant Swan kick-start the Keck Records imprint with their first full-length album.
Fans of Giant Swan will be pleased to hear that they don’t deviate too much from the sound of their earlier releases. Lo-fi body music is the core style of this record, with thudding kick drums and distorted snares very much the order of the day. One of the pair’s signature tricks is chopping up vocals until they resemble arpeggiated modular synthesisers skittering around in the mid-range frequencies - it’s an effect they’ve used previously on tracks like ‘The Rest Of His Voice’ and it crops up time and again here. Combined with rawer yelps, yips, shouts and screams, the final product is a punk techno blend that recalls the likes of Silent Servant and Schwefelgelb.
However, Giant Swan also prove that there’s a lot more to their sound here. As well as the upstart dance tracks, 'Giant Swan' contains forays into more abstract post-industrial terrain. The slow, moaning ‘‘I’ As Proof’ and ‘Peace Fort 9’ could pass for Chris Carter or Fad Gadget. Elsewhere on the record, there is an element of club deconstruction to ‘Not A Crossing’, though the sonics here are far more DIY and abrasive than those you might find in play on an Arca LP.
The wait is over, Giant Swan have delivered the fearsome album that they’ve been threatening for a few years now.