Image: Michael Gira by William Lacalmontie
It’s a rare thing for a reformed band to avoid shitting on their own legacy with endless greatest hits tours and second rate new material. It’s even rarer for a band to equal or even surpass their original work – Dinosaur Jr spring to mind, or Wire, and obviously Terminal Cheesecake. But since Michael Gira reformed (or ‘reconvened’) Swans back in 2009, the band have released four genuinely stunning albums and played endless tours that, whilst perhaps not as visceral or challenging as in their Cop/Greed heyday, still achieved an intensity and power than most bands can only dream of.
After this remarkable seven year run, Gira has announced that he’s retiring the current Swans line-up; after the recent release of The Glowing Man and a final tour to support it, Gira has decided to continue working under the Swans name but with a ‘revolving cast of collaborators’. It’s a safe bet that whatever happens next will be interesting, but you still shouldn’t miss the chance to see this version of the band one last time when the tour brings them to Northumbria University on Wednesday 12th October. Ear plugs optional.