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swans 11
Show Scenes: Swans at Royale
Photos

Experimental noise rock legends Swans, now 4 years and 3 records into a highly successful reformation, brought a towering 2-hour set to the Royale on Saturday night in support of the recently released “To Be Kind.” Norwegian art-pop singer/songwriter Jenny Hval opened.

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Music
deafheaven
Deafheaven’s ‘Sunbather’ has converted indie snobs to metal
Music

“Sunbather,” the second full-length from black metal upstarts Deafheaven, landed on numerous prominent “Best of 2013” lists, and according to Metacritic, garnered positive reviews more consistently than any other record of last year. But it would be a mistake to reduce its achievement to critical kudos. Those of us residing outside the devoted, sometimes obsessive head-banger community have not been conditioned to take metal seriously. Sure, we’ll enjoy a hearty giggle after a giant alien phallus ejaculates fake blood all over us at a GWAR concert, but on the ride home, we won’t talk about Oderus Urungus’s songcraft and sonic vision. We will talk about the fake blood. When mainstream or indie tourists visit the metal scene, for the most part, the only thing we talk about is fake blood and comparable theatrics. Generally, it doesn’t occur to us to think of metal as an artform — that something defined by coarseness and sublime fury has the potential to be beautiful. More