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Swans, El Rey Theatre, Los Angeles, March 2, 2011 – In the 1980’s and 90’s, Swans as a live experience was nothing less than a baptism by sound – cleansing, cathartic, obliterative – a relentless and perpetual immolation by pure noise and power. It was quite satisfying for those of us who sought to both transcend and fully inhabit this material world and corporeal self through a violent surrender to a literally deafening present. It sounds over the top and that was exactly the point. The music was lyrically and sonically potent, but its power was harnessed and channeled by M. Gira, whose very name suggested  a severing of identity and its iconic reformation. I don’t know if I took myself as seriously as Michael Gira … [Read more...]