Richard Swift | Even Your Drums Will Die: Live at Pendarvis Farm 2011

Richard Swift | Even Your Drums Will Die: Live at Pendarvis Farm 2011


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Recorded in 2011 in a dusty, beloved barn, ‘Even Your Drums Will Die’ is a time machine, a real one, to a moment packed thick with Richard Swift’s singular, crackling liveliness. Where Swift’s studio recordings are marked by texture, tone and mood, ‘Even Your Drums Will Die’ puts a spotlight on Swift’s voice, his lyrics and his songwriting.

Running through all of Swift’s tunes is a certain agitation – a fidgetiness, a restlessness. It’s clearer than ever now, over two years after Swift’s passing, that he used his music to let a little pressure out of his tire. ‘A Song for Milton Feher’ nods to all this, its namesake coming from the professional dancer and director who taught his students to release their “habits of tension.” The song feels like a skeleton key to Swift’s oeuvre, a clear look into the wild wheels spinning inside his big old artist noggin.

On the flipside is ‘Lady Luck’. The classic. The revived ghost of a lost 45 that never existed, or maybe always did, but that only Richard Swift could make real.

If you know these songs, you will find them set alight here. If you don’t, ‘Even Your Drums Will Die’ is an incomparable snapshot of both art and artist. It is a genie, a real one, let loose from the lamp with Richard Swift’s explosive energy, imagination and mischief.

Recorded Live at Pickathon, 2011.

Swift was a celebrated recording artist, collaborator (The Black Keys, The Shins, the Arcs) and producer (Nathaniel Rateliff, Kevin Morby, Guster, Pretenders).

01. The Ballad of You Know Who
02. The Novelist
03. Looking Back, I Should Have Been Home
04. The Million Dollar Baby
05. The Songs of National Freedom
06. The Original Thought
07. The Ballad of Old What’s His Name
08. The First Time
09. A Song for Milton Feher
10. Lady Luck