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Variations On Swing - Meet Me In St Louis Meet Me In St LouisVariations On Swing

Big Scary Monsters

Meet Me In St. Louis have been at the forefront of the country's underground scene for some time now. It's a testimony to the goodwill that the Guilford-based five-piece have generated throughout countless tours the length and breadth of the country that Variations On Swing, their long-awaited debut full-length, was largely funded by fans' generous donations. It's a pleasure to report then, that not one person will be remotely tempted to ask for their money back, once they've heard the mesmerizing ten tracks on offer here.

Lurching wildly out of the blocks with the awkward, stop-start riffs of 'The Torso Has Been Severed In Mid Thorax', upon first listen Variations On Swing is a daunting proposition, awash with seemingly chaotic oft-kilter melodies and enough peculiar time signatures to make your head spin. However, once the listener has had time to lie down and eventually pluck up the courage to give the album the repeat listens it so deserves, the highly cerebral opus eventually reveals its countless multi-layered delights. Produced by Alex Newport (At The Drive-In, The Locust), there are subtle nods to At The Drive-In and the inventive fretwork of Minus The Bear littered throughout, the excellent 'All We Need Is A Little Energon And A Lot Of Luck' being an obvious example of the latter thanks to its sparkling Dave Knudson-esque tapping, while the string-laden 'I Beat Up The Bathroom, I'm Sorry' provides a surprise acoustic curveball midway through proceedings.

Thanks to Variations On Swing, Meet Me In St. Louis have not only delivered on all the glowing promise that they've hinted at throughout the past few years, but they've also crafted a quite brilliant debut that proudly stands head and shoulders above the vast majority of their British peers. Quite where they go from here is anybody's guess.

Rating: 4/5 by Dan Jones


  1. The Torso Has Been Severed In Mid Thorax
  2. Well You Damn Well Should!
  3. Right This Way, You Maverick Renegade
  4. I Am Champagne And You Are Shit
  5. I Beat Up The Bathroom, I'm Sorry
  6. Eins Zwei Drei Hasselhoff!
  7. All We Need Is A Little Energon And A Lot Of Luck
  8. Come To New York, There Were Fewer Murders Last Year
  9. I've Got Knives In My Eyes, I'm Going Home Sick
  10. You're Doomed

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