eMusic Review 0
We've been waiting years for Richard Swift to break out. Even though his recordings have largely left me cold, his persistence, ambition and talent, clear even through my cynical lens, lead me to believe that he could not fail. And well, he hasn't failed exactly, but Swift hasn't exactly caught on either. In another life, Swift made pretty much only Christian music (he spent time with the Promise Keepers, Starflyer 59 and recording as Dicky Ochoa), but the recordings under his own name have been mainstream indie singer-songwriter, not all that far from Sufjan and the like, with a prepared audience that hasn't managed to uncover him. Yet.
Ground Trouble Jaw is different. Very different. Out of nowhere, Swift is now Bobby Darin doing a Freak Out-era Frank Zappa impression (or vice versa), an odd and earnest midpoint between straight girl-group balladry and '70s blue-eyed soul. Thing of it is, Swift is so skilled as a songwriter and listener that none of it sounds like camp: "Would You?" and "Lady Luck," the first two songs here, are knock-you-off-your-feet good. Tender and beautiful, they're the kind of love songs that have always existed somewhere, in someone's heart. It took… read more »