I first ran into Seward in a basically empty super-club on the outskirts of a quiet town, in rural Catalonia. If that doesn’t sound like a hotbed for popular music on paper, it’s not meant to.
Because popular music, Seward ain’t. Like a chorus of Catherine wheels set loose in a musical thrift shop, this Spanish five-some may look like a band of antique dealers, but carry an incredibly ability to veer from tender intimacy to swashbuckling romp within eight bar passages – blending intelligence, theatricality and grandiose eloquence in a package that defines why alternative art can be so thrilling. People write manifestos proclaiming themselves as alternative visionaries, but achieve nothing close to the unpredictable, eccentrically cohesive whole that Seward whip up, which contains as much for the informed insider as it does the engrossed newbie. Quietly free of self-consciousness or modern distribution (we had to beg them just to put a song on Soundcloud), Seward’s sound hints at the kind of bonkers storm that an early days, disaffected Wild Beasts brewed from Kendal.
We’re chuffed to be premiering this first foray into the blogosphere, with “Pichiflork” part of 13 ‘singles’ and ‘video singles’ being released online this week, to coincide with their first EP, Home Was A Chapter Twenty Six, hitting Rough Trade today on limited vinyl with 5 other new tracks. It’s as condensed as you’d ever want a band who switch from furious noise-rock to rustic folk-strum to become, with its satirising refrain referring to the irony in fussing over a “silly pop song” via a frantic, intelligent spin on math-rock. Dance at your polyrhythmic peril.
They’re a band that has to be seen in the live arena to be fully appreciated – with the show having already won them fans ranging from XFM’s John Kennedy to the Primavera festival they regularly play at. Although UK shows are unlikely to be a regular occurrence for the moment, you can bet you’ll see us at the front when they are – waistcoat on.
Want to hear more? Just head here or here for a selection of their other singles released on-line this week, or pick up a copy of their super limited 12″, Home Was A Chapter Twenty Six by heading here. Photograph by Óscar García.