Swervedriver Raise/Mezcal Head

Swervedriver Raise/Mezcal Head
Out-of-print for years now, Second Motion and Hi-Speed Soul have now reissued the recently reunited Swervedriver's first two albums on this side of the Atlantic, following a long-overdue effort by Sony in the UK last year. Debut Raise is still the juggernaut ride it was back when it was originally released in 1991 by Creation. Though thrown headfirst into the shoegaze movement, Swervedriver were always far too rock'n'roll to accept the invitation, evidence of which is best heard on the manic blast of "Son Of Mustang Ford" and the guitar assault of "Sandblasted," which had more in common with Dinosaur Jr. than any of the Swervies' label-mates. "Rave Down," however, is the apex, nailing the album's theme of hitting the road with its mid-point acceleration. Produced by Alan Moulder, Mezcal Head followed two years later and transformed the band into something entirely different. Seemingly overnight Swervedriver became a confident band that effortlessly created one of 1993's best albums. Still loud and guitar-driven, the band stepped out from behind their pedals, shining a bright light on Adam Franklin's talents as a songwriter with minor hits "Duel" and "Last Train To Satansville," as well as gorgeously dazed epic "Duress." Both albums come in digi-paks that include four bonus tracks apiece (some of which found their way onto 2005's Juggernaut Rides compilation) that speak for each period, as well as reflective liner notes written by core members Franklin and Jimmy Hartridge. A fitting first step in giving respect to the loudest band of the '90s. (Second Motion/Hi-Speed Soul)