Hazards of Swimming Naked — Take Great Joy
(Bandcamp no#, 2018, CD / LP / DL)
by Jon Davis, Published 2019-12-12
Just to recap, I am not a listener who is fond of pigeon-holing music into genres, which seem to be essentially arbitrary and subjective. The category called post-rock is no different, with the understanding that there are a lot of bands with the label that sound a lot alike, so many that I will grudgingly accept post-rock as a real thing. In the case at hand, I could say that if you like Mono, Mogwai, Sigur Rós, and Godspeed You Black Emperor, you’ll probably like Hazards of Swimming Naked. Virtually every stylistic element found in those bands (and dozens of others besides) is found on Take Great Joy. There are tracks that build up slowly with dramatic melodies played on guitar using tremolo techniques. The tempos stay in the slow to medium range, never too fast. The parts are arranged rather than being improvised, and there are some lovely (if not overly complex) parts for a string quartet. The music is mostly instrumental, with one track, “Sofðu unga ástin mín,” sung in Icelandic by a wistful female guest vocalist. All of this being said, Take Great Joy is very well done — intelligently written, exquisitely played, and nicely recorded — so if you have any interest in this kind of music, you owe it to yourself to head over to their Bandcamp page and check it out.
Related artist(s): Hazards of Swimming Naked
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