First re-release of the fifth full-length studio album by the legendary British Melodic Death Metal/Death 'n' Roll band.
It is the only Carcass album to feature guitarist Carlo Regadas. This album was intended to be their major label debut, having been signed by Columbia Records following the success of "Heartwork", but disputes with that record company caused them to return to Earache Records. It was the band's last studio release for over 17 years, until "Surgical Steel" was released in 2013.
Although 1994's excellent "Heartwork" opus had already served notice of Carcass' increasingly commercial new direction, much of the band's loyal contingent of fans still viewed 1995's "Swansong" album not as a natural progression but as a huge betrayal. One of the leading lights of the British Grindcore movement, Carcass had made a name for themselves with their unrelenting sonic fury and unbelievably disgusting lyrics. But on "Swansong", much of that fury was reigned in to accommodate more conventional song structures topped with articulate, at times even humorous lyrics (see "Keep on Rotting in the Free World") from vocalist Jeff Walker.
With axe men Bill Steer and Carlo Regadas trading scorching leads to pave the way, the band's technical mastery and newfound melodic sensibility come through like never before, resulting in a style reminiscent of latter-day Coroner, or even Megadeth's work in the early '90s. Memorable numbers like "Tomorrow Belongs to Nobody" and "Child's Play" highlight the quartet's keen sense of dynamics, and their desire to experiment with new sounds leads to such unexpected moves as employing acoustic guitars on "Firm Hand".
Simply put, "Swansong" represents such a remarkable evolution (or de-evolution, depending, again, on your viewpoint) for Carcass that comparing it to their prior achievements leads to an interesting quandary. While it is easily the most accessible chapter of the band's career, the album hardly offers a fair introduction to the bulk of their brutal legacy. Therefore, while fans of unadulterated Grindcore should approach with caution, listeners seeking out an excellent example of Technical Thrashing will love what "Swansong" has to offer!
This CD contains bonus video “Keep On Rotting In The Free World” in its raw archive form.
Earache Records Ltd., 1996/2004 (MOSH 160CD). Made in UK.
1. Keep On Rotting In The Free World 3:42
2. Tomorrow Belongs To Nobody 4:17
3. Black Star 3:29
4. Cross My Heart 3:33
5. Child's Play 5:43
6. Room 101 4:35
7. Polarized 4:02
8. Generation Hexed 3:48
9. Firm Hand 5:22
10. R**k The Vote 3:53
11. Don't Believe A Word 3:57
12. Go To Hell 3:24
Total playing time: 49:45 min.