Review: Swim Deep – 'Where The Heaven Are We?'

And so it arrives,  the new album from Brummie lads Swim Deep is finally here and here’s Jemima Skala’s verdict on it:

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Having built up an impressive fan base largely comprised of dreamy females either in the throes of adolescence or in their 20s  (I by no means except myself from this crowd) Swim Deep come from humble beginnings; lead singer Austin Williams and guitarist Tom Higgins met stacking shelves in Morrisons. Perhaps that’s why their album is so full of wistful riffs and escapism.

For Swim Deep, it’s all about escapism. Their name itself evokes fantastic imagery of beautiful underwater scenes and, to some extent, their music certainly lives up to that. Each and every track contains some hint of wishing for a better life;  in Honey it’s ‘don’t just dream in your sleep, it’s just lazy’, in King City tells you to ‘fuck your romance, I want to pretend that Jenny Lee Lindberg is my girlfriend’ and In Colour Your Ways it’s ‘life ain’t beige so colour your days and see it in the right light’. This is coupled with catchy tunes, the hazy images and the wistful romance needed to make for the perfect summer album.

Many of the old favourites, like King City, are still just as brilliant in their composition. However, Swim Deep seem like guys that are all about having fun. When talking of touring with Spector and Two Door Cinema Club, they say it was ‘just touring with your best friends for 30 days. It was insane’  hence the fantastically dreamy outlook of the album. You do get the feeling though, that if they’d spent a bit more time on a few of the songs then the album wouldn’t just be good, it would be incredible. It’s a little frustrating, as there is huge potential for many songs. Soul Trippin’, for example, has the beginnings of a brilliant ballad, but if they’d only tweaked little bits here and there, it could have become an amazing one. As a listener, there are points in the album where you wait for the songs to take off and they just don’t.

That said, each song has its own merit, whether it’s the wonderful lyrics that urge you to make something of yourself (Colour Your Ways, The Sea and Stray come to mind) or the fantastic bass or guitar riff. I adore Swim Deep, and I am incredibly proud of their debut album. I can only hope that they’ll continue on this upward trajectory with the next ones.

7.5

Recommended tracks:

  • Soul Trippin’
  • Make My Sun Shine
  • Intro
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