Swallow the Rat Share New Single and Video ‘Chain Mail’ Ahead of SXSW Roster in March

  • Swallow the Rat Share New Single and Video ‘Chain Mail’ Ahead of SXSW Roster in March
Swallow the Rat Share New Single and Video ‘Chain Mail’ Ahead of SXSW Roster in March

Swallow the Rat Share New Single and Video ‘Chain Mail’ Ahead of SXSW Roster in March

2024 is off to a great start for Swallow the Rat.

The band has been confirmed as part of the Aotearoa New Zealand contingent for March’s South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. They’re making the most of their US visit, having also booked a 17-date tour of (how would you describe the area you’re covering?).

Other New Zealand artists selected for SXSW include Ashy, We Were Dangerous, Earth Tongue, CHAII and Georgia Gets By (Georgia Nott of Broods).

Today Swallow the Rat release a corporeal video for their new single ‘Chain Mail’, made by Tauranga-based multimedia artist Kyle Sattler (who also makes music as We Will Ride Fast).

‘Chain Mail’ pokes fun at scripted media announcements from political parties in Aotearoa – or announcements within announcements, as the case may be. Originally titled ‘Evil Party’, the band describe it as having a 1990s Touch and Go Records vibe.

When the song was presented to Sattler, he’d been working on some stop motion animation and said he had an idea for a video involving figurative collage. He was given free reign to create his response to the song, and used elements of the lyrics as inspiration, particularly the theme of evil.

‘Chain Mail’ is the fourth single from Swallow the Rat’s highly-acclaimed second album South Locust, released in September last year via US/UK label Shifting Sounds.

South Locust – it’s an eerie street sign half glimpsed at night somewhere in North Texas, an apocalyptic marker. But it also suggests other images and meanings; what’s a locust down here at the bottom of the world, in Aotearoa?

South Locust has received some great reviews, and featured on a number of 2023 best-of lists…

UTR’s 2023 Favourite Music Moments
Daryl Fincham: South Locust – Swallow the Rat – “This tune (‘Cave’) kept me checking the 95bFM website to find out who it was.”
Harry Lilley: South Locust – Swallow the Rat
“This album really landed for me. There’s a wonderful balance between simple space and driving force. Each element interweaves to deliver moments of low-key cathartic guitar music bliss. It’s hard to pick one representative track when the whole record sits so well.”

Doubtful Sounds Favourite Albums 2023
Another massive year of listening to new albums in this 15th year of Doubtful Sounds. As always, it’s been a pretty amazing 12 months for new albums. A deluge of sorts, from a myriad of genres and a noticeable proclivity for many artists to expand their sound and explore other genres.”
Highly Recommended: Swallow the Rat South Locust

The Big Takeover: Jack Rabid’s Best Of 2023 (400 Nods Again!)
“Top 200 LPs (New Recordings), Top 140 Retrospective/Reissue Releases, And Top 60 Stand Alone Singles & EPs
– Best New Albums: No.114 Swallow the Rat – South Locust (Shifting Sounds)”

“At one point, Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland) trio Swallow The Rat were a post-punk band. But, these days, they are so much more…Lyrical explorations of personal, political, and global issues all featured, and South Locust was another imaginative step up…”Six Noises (named as one of his favourite Aotearoa albums of 2023)

“Swallow the Rat deliver often exciting Nineties post-punk and powered-up pop (‘Gravois Park’), menacingly low-slung material verging on drone-rock (the standout ‘Mind’) and yet can unexpectedly seduce with more quiet-loud material (‘Small Plates’) and something approaching uneasy pop-rock (‘Idea of the South’, the excellent ‘Redactor’s Dilemma’ with Hayley Fisher’s vocals adding a further dimension of disorientation )…At times they hit a midpoint between aural punishment and quiet threat (the shifting dynamics of ‘Chain Mail’).” – Graham Reid, Elsewhere

“One of the things I love about this gig is that I regularly get introduced to new artists, and every now and then, there’s a standout. That’s what happened with Swallow The Rat…they’re here, they’ve got something to say, and they’re angry about it…the whole album is a window shaker and definitely worth your time.” – Brad Miller, Muzic.net.nz

“South Locust captures the collision of driving riffs and hazy atmosphere that defines Swallow The Rat’s sound – which swings from wiry NZ post-punk to raw shoegaze to post-hardcore to Texas psychedelia.”Flying Nun

South Locust is out digitally, and on very limited edition solid white 12″ vinyl, via US/UK label Shifting Sounds. If you grab a copy on vinyl, you’ll also get unlimited streaming via Bandcamp, plus a high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

Live Shows

Twine (Adelaide, SA) with Swallow the Rat and Neither Do I
Wine Cellar, Karangahape Rd, Auckland Tāmaki Makaurau
Thursday 15th Feb
Tickets from Under the Radar

Swallow the Rat US Tour Dates

1st March, Austin, TX, Hotel Vegas
2nd March, Tulsa OK, Whittier Bar w/ Professional Golfer, Worship Team & Western Standards
3rd March, Lawrence KS, Replay Lounge w/ Discotek Mama
4th March, St Louis MO, SinkHole, w/ Sole Loan and Sprite
5th March, Chicago Il, Burlington, w/ Aitis Band & Godstar Megamax
6th March, Pittsburgh PA, Govt Centre, w/ Olympic Village and Rated Eye
7th March, Troy NY, No Fun w/ Clone
8th March, NYC, NY, DIY Venue w/ Clone
9th March, Baltimore MD, Crown w/ Deadleaf Echo
10th March, Asheville, NC, Fleetwoods w/ Deadleaf Echo and Janx Spirit
12th March, Okay Bar, NOLA w/ Deadleaf Echo
13th March to 17th March SXSW Austin TX
Keep up to date here

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