Swans: The Great Annihilator 2LP
"The Great Annihilator", originally released in 1995 and described at the time as “…a majestic symphony of haunting melodies and shifting moods” [SF Bay Guardian] sees release on double vinyl – the album’s first release on vinyl for decades. The vinyl (in the form of a download code) features "Drainland", Michael Gira’s debut solo album recorded at the same time as "The Great Annihilator".
"I have long been uneasy with the sound of the mastered version of "The
Great Annihilator" (and it's companion, contemporaneous solo album,
"Drainland", included here in this new release). For whatever reason
things drifted out of hand at the time, and there was never enough time
or money to untangle the sonic knots created by the original
unsatisfactory mastering that took place until now. It was with the
utmost alacrity that I received the news recently from my friend Bill
Rieflin that he had discovered the original (after much digging),
unmastered mixes for both albums in his archives. We were able to
proceed now with lovingly mastering both "The Great Annihilator" and "Drainland"
from these virgin sources, with our right hand mastering man Doug
Henderson in Berlin, Germany. I have to say I'm rather pleased with the
result. It's one of those instances where it's like hearing the thing for the first time again. I hope you enjoy the experience.
"Drainland" is a 1995 obscure solo album by me, co-produced by the lovely Bill Rieflin and myself, with musical contributions from Bill and Jarboe. Mostly featuring spare arrangements, it was recorded in Bill's living room. Some of this is pretty damn good. Some of it isn't! In all modesty, I think the good outweighs the bad. It was recorded immediately after the recording of GA. " - M. Gira 2017
Here's some information on "The Great Annihilator":
This album is actually really good in a lot of ways. Too much reverb here and there, but not as intrusive as some other Swans releases (I used to be infatuated with Phil Spector and naively figured that adding reverb could get the same effect). Anyway, I think this album holds together well. It was a complete nightmare to make (but then, all the Swans albums were!). I lived in a tent in a mosquito infested studio right next to Cabrini Green in Chicago for what (?) something like 3 months, rarely leaving. Band members and Jarboe and Bill Rieflin etc came and went, and somehow we crafted this thing into what it became. I can still listen to most of this sometimes, so that counts for something. There's some reviews below if that's any help to you - Michael Gira/Young God Records 2008
Black vinyl in gatefold sleeve with inserts and digital download code.