Search - Swans :: Children of God/World of Skin

Children of God/World of Skin
Children of God/World of Skin
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Metal
  •  Track Listings (14) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (16) - Disc #2

Two crucial breakthrough records from Swans', 1987 & 1989 period back in print. Over 145 minutes of scary and beautiful music. Young God Records. 2003.


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CD Details

All Artists: Swans
Title: Children of God/World of Skin
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Young God Records
Release Date: 5/27/2003
Album Type: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Metal
Styles: Ambient, Hardcore & Punk, Indie & Lo-Fi, American Alternative, New Wave & Post-Punk, Progressive, Progressive Rock
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPC: 658457000229


Album Description
Two crucial breakthrough records from Swans', 1987 & 1989 period back in print. Over 145 minutes of scary and beautiful music. Young God Records. 2003.

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CD Reviews

Children of God
Internal Abbatoir | Albuquerque, NM | 10/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Children of God represented a progression in The Swans' sound. Some of the abrasiveness from their earlier albums is still here, but this album also leans towards the ethereal and abstract. At the time, Gira was obviously tired of The Swans being interpreted as a one dimensional act. Filth and Cop were abrasive and quite unfriendly records, albeit intellectual and beautiful in their own iconoclastic way. However, The Swans were always misunderstood. Filth and Cop made a strong impression on people. Even to this day these two records are infamous and, sadly, sometimes they overshadow the rest of the band's catalog. Gira even stated that clueless metal heads would show up at old Swans gigs to "rock out" and mosh to the music. He hated this kind of behavior and clearly saw The Swans as a more introspective band. The Swans were never intended to be party music, or music that everyone could easily enjoy. In reality, The Swans were a rejection of the corporate driven music industry. When they started attracting these elements, Gira realized that The Swans were becoming too easy to define and categorize. The art and the music was no longer challenging, it was becoming more commonplace and acceptable, even cliché. He realized that he was falling into a category. And in order to remedy this fault, he had to push The Swans to evolve into something higher, something more sophisticated and multidimensional. Children of God was the first step in this direction. And for The Swans, it was also one of their finest, most definite moments.

Children of God is the very first Swans album to incorporate acoustic guitar. Most of the songs are atmospheric. They are usually made up of a single riff that is stretched out for the entire duration of a song. It is simple, yet amazingly effective and hypnotic. Jarboe also plays a larger role in The Swans' music for the very first time. Her voice works well and adds to the hypnotic element of the music.

Other than that, Children of God is an interesting album. Gira was influenced by the charisma of televangelists. Throughout this album he is shouting in the same way as televangelists do during sermons, and it is interesting to hear some of the same things that these people say set to apocalyptic music. It is not overtly blasphemous, just an interesting experiment of comparing rock musicians to televangelists, who often times wild up crowds in the same fashion as rock musicians do. I like the fact that this album is not overtly blasphemous and that it looks at Christianity from a different perspective - more of a social conditioning perspective than a dogmatic one.

This is essential for anyone interested in The Swans."
MKO | Seattle | 02/17/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"i bought these for Children of God. i was surprised at how good World of Skin is. Great buy."
An Incredible Album
Jonathan Dedward | Nowheresville, Slothwestern North America | 03/07/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"After reading about Swans and watching some live video on Youtube, I decided to purchase their first album, Filth. The heavy, near industrial beats and enraged, repetitive vocals seemed cool to me, even though for the most part the songs themselves were of limited appeal. The stomping, atonal and often awkward rhythms and shouting was powerful, macho and rather interesting but I have to admit I could only take so much. Yet, I remained fascinated with the band's philosophy and I purchased another Swans collection, this one.

Not surprisingly, Children of God is much more evolved and fascinating than that early material. Micheal Gira, while not shouting so much, conveys darkness nearly as much as on Filth and Jarboe's poignant singing really does add a whole new level of emotion to the music. Swans music lumbers along turgidly as always while the atmosphere swings between gorgeous arrangements and soul crushing harshness. I might describe this as intellectual-metal, or say that Gira and Jarboe elevate Gothic bleakness and angst to the status of highbrow art. I might be completely off in that assessment, because Swans existed in their own sphere of music and like all classic artists were above simple genre classifications.

The World of Skin cd is nearly as good, but less coherent, being a compilation of different "Skin" works (a Gira and Jarboe Side project that ran concurrently with Swans). I don't care much for their cover of the Iggy Pop song "Now I wanna be your dog" but I enjoy the cd overall.

The value of these Swans reissues (at least two albums in one? !Madre de Dios!) definitely make them worth purchase, even for those just curious about the band. For fans who don't already own this, I can't imagine a release more essential. Easy five stars for Children of God/World of Skin."