Bristol band Swelt release concluding music video ahead of new EP “Red Mountain”
Words: Leon Riccio, @leonricciojourno
Images: Chris Hicks; Sam Hanks
Bristol’s post-rock pundits Swelt released the concluding entry of their three-part video series DUG IT OUT on Friday, April 1, showcasing the hypnotic power of their dramatic live performances.
The YouTube series, consisting of tastefully over-saturated, lo-fi footage of their performance in The Establishment, Wakefield, documents the four-piece’s emphasis on dynamics in live spaces.
Image: Sam Hanks
Speaking after the final release of the video series, Swelt guitarist Chris Hicks told Freestyle Bristol: “In our live shows we try to convey an intense atmosphere by playing as dynamically and minimally as we can, locking into quiet, churning melodies and rhythms. DUG IT OUT is a snapshot of these songs in their current form.”
The three-part series – shot by George Haydock at the start of February – began on March 17 with the release of Billy, followed by fan favourite Red Mountain on March 24. The final video submission, previously unreleased track Ready the Moon, was released on April 1.
Melancholic and soothing, their meticulously curated soundscapes demand focus and attention to really appreciate – a diminishing request from an industry pushed to create two-minute pop hits for the TikTok Machine.
Chris added: “The title ‘DUG IT OUT’ is a reference to a lyric in our song Billy, which features in the first video of the series. When we wrote the song it was shortly after Ant joined us on bass, and we felt like it established the mood we were trying to go for in our music.
“Since then, Billy has become one of our favourite songs to play live, so it felt right to draw from it for the series title. I guess this three-part series is different to a typical music video mainly because it’s a live performance, captured in one take, so all the quirks and imperfections are there which wouldn’t appear in the studio recordings.
“I think this live feeling is reflected in the visuals, all shot on a mixture of old DV cameras and phones.”
Image: Sam Hanks
The self-proclaimed “slowcore” outfit, composed of Reuben, Chris, Ant, and Alex – members of Talons, Repo Man, and Iceman Furniss Quartet – formed in Bristol in 2020 and have become a staple of the city’s live music scene; the band are known for frequenting The Louisiana, in particular.
Aside from building up to the band’s next release, the series comes ahead of the group’s next big performance, at Outer Town Festival on April 16, where they will play alongside bands such as Courting, Deep Tan, The Pleasure Dome, and more.
To catch all three entries in the DUG IT OUT series, visit Swelt’s YouTube channel.
Keep an eye on Swelt’s Instagram for the latest on upcoming single My Only Reflection as well as all the band’s news, live dates, and releases.
Head to their Bandcamp for music and merch, including the Red Mountain EP on CD and cassette, or listen on Spotify.