Daily Dares review of The End Of The Sky:
The first time I heard about Halloween Swim Team I was intrigued by their name. Come to find out they were given their name by Justin of The Locust. He asked them if they had a band and they said yes but they didn’t have a name so he suggested two names. One of them was Michael J. Fucks. The other was obviously the one that they went with. Catchy name for catchy music.
After going through several changes in instrumentation and lineup, going from three piece to four piece and back again, they finally solidified a sound which suits them. The End of the Sky is the end result of their labors.
Caveat emptor, this is a great album, but, if you’ve never seen HST live, may I recommend listening to the CD first before going to see them live. Like dance records (not that this, by any means, is a dance record) has a difficult time portraying it’s full potential in digital form. Unfortunately, because I’ve seen them live, I can’t be 100% objective. Yet I must measure it’s worth, not upon past experience, but upon the work and the work alone.
The CD opens with Inside/Out TV’s Casio-esque drum machine pitter-patter before kicking into the dancy opening verse. The CD takes you on a wooden roller coaster ride, very bumpy and rickety, scary nonetheless, but that’s all part of the charm. These synth geeks, whose keyboard arsenal range from the familiar to the virtually unknown, give this band the unique sound that has now become a reference point, for me, when describing the sound of a band. You know how that goes, when someone asks what a particular band sounds like, you take one band and mash it against another and, voila, new band sound! Yet, anyone who tries to do what they do will be privy to the band mash-up describing game. Oh yeah, sure, you can try to compare them to other synth bands like Ladytron or Le Tigre, but to no avail. You’re only heaping them together because they use keyboards as the main instrument. HST’s sound is all their own and The End of the Sky is their thesis.