Probably curse you out and unplug her phone…

Here’s something that keeps reappearing on my iPod…

Forest Swords

Forest Swords are actually one person, Mike Barnes from Cheshire making slow, atmospheric and always sad music that reminds me of the James Blake record I was writing about last month.

He’s just released Dagger Paths, (that’s a PP “just”, you understand, I think it’s been around for a couple of months on Emusic, at least) on Old English Spelling Bee (the same label that brought us that Julian Lynch record, another fine release in similar vein).

It’s a remarkable EP full of slow tempo rhythms, lots of reverb and stock in trade dub effects (always a winner…). Over this backdrop, harsher elements, such as jarring drum phrases and harsh guitar motifs, are grafted on with a disregard for context that is disconcerting. There are elements of spaghetti western and even surf guitar sounds drifting over the ether.

Over the top of all that, there are vocal samples that are distorted and twisted until they’re hard to recognise. I’m hardly an expert on US street sounds but I’m told that Aaliyah makes a few appearances. Certainly the strongest track on the record is a cover of the late RnB artist’s “If Your Girl Only Knew”, which transforms the easy sleazy appeal of the original into an entirely cheerless affair.

The whole record is full of such transformations and brims with exotic gloom. It’s compelling stuff…

There are a few downloads you can pick up from Pitchfork, amongst others, and OSB have a page on Vimeo that is worth visiting too…

Here’s one of their videos, for the first track from Dagger paths, “Miarches”:

A chill wind…

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Seven Great New Records of 2010 « Partly Porpoise

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