Swans - To Be Kind willardlovesyou

December 5, 2019
referencing To Be Kind, 2xCD, Album, YG46
I just listened to this. Quite attentively- I never left the room and gave it the entire sitting and quite frankly I feel embarrassed for this band. It's no more than an opus length void. Of nothingness.They flail away endlessly but produce nothing of any merit, be it striking, challenging or memorable.Its the closest I've felt to being in a vacuum for some time whilst listening to an album.Its like a big, dumb coffee table book, handsomely produced, that just sits and stares at you with nothing to say. It's a shame really and ironic that one of the most favorite records in my collection is Circus Mort. Any wit, creativity, gusto, panache or pure aggression that barnstorming record had, in that earlier pre-Swans band has since been lost, in a muddy, overbearing and frankly boring mix of 'also ran' pretension. I love the genre the Swans attempt to fit into and it's many artists but they lack even the slightest hint of delicious subversiveness to do so.

Swans - To Be Kind carscars

August 8, 2019
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
This sounds amazing. A complete rarity for a NA pressing.

Swans - To Be Kind as reviewed by -Verneri-

March 24, 2019
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46

One of the greatest records ever recorded, but seeing them live couple of years ago was beyond anything I had ever heard before. It simply changed my perspective, not only on live music, but life and music in general. No music, live or recorded has moved me like that since? I`m still waiting...

Swans - To Be Kind Jesus_Lizard

February 28, 2019
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
Long hair man with name like godzilla says weird thing in odd voice and make songs that go on for long time. I like bass in songs and other noises they sound good. Bam bam chiiiii, bam bam chiiiii, bam bam chiiiii, dum dum dum, dum dum dum

Swans - To Be Kind as reviewed by AlexSavvers

October 11, 2018
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46

Side D is almost unlistenable because of the pops and clicks that were there from the beginning, the intro of Just a Little Boy has 2 noticeable bumps close to each other, the pressing is a little light, but the sound quality and packaging otherwise are superb.

Swans - To Be Kind HarryPalmer202

April 26, 2018
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46
Locked groove on side B is still a problem. Thankfully Mute refunded me. Although the locked groove isn't a massive problem (I just drop the needle past the groove, it misses the start of the song but 99% of the album is listenable) I would recommend seeking other pressings.

Swans - To Be Kind as reviewed by Musicfreak98

April 22, 2018
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46

Seems like a few people have reported issues but I just wanted to throw it out there that my pressing (which was bought on release day) is damn near flawless. MPO always press good stuff and this is no exception - superb mastering (it sounds really dynamic) and playback is very quiet and clean. Not sure if there's been a subsequent identical repressing with lower quality control but I can definitely vouch for the quality of early copies.

Swans - To Be Kind as reviewed by Chalkers

July 14, 2017
referencing To Be Kind, 2xCD, Album + DVD + Dlx, YG46

Absolutely stunning album! One of the best sounding albums on CD that I own too. It's not an easy listen, but it's one of the band's most accessible - very rhythmic with a heavy emphasis on percussion. The vocals are used like they're an additional instrument; they have a chanting quality where the tone of voice and it's delivery is more important than the lyrics themselves. For me this is one of the best albums of this decade so far; an experimental masterpiece.

Swans - To Be Kind mikeydriven

January 8, 2017
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46
Same issue here - have now returned two copies that are faulty - same locked groove problem on side B - still awaiting replacement one month later - great music - shoddy pressing and poor customer service by Mute.

Swans - To Be Kind Fuerstmyschkin

August 8, 2016
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46
Today I received my second copy which is faulty. The first song on side B stays stuck in the groove. The locked groove is even visible (a small blank line). I tested it on different systems and there are others with same issues (https://www.reddit.com/r/vinyl/comments/4hm6l0/swans_to_be_kind_vinyl_lp_stuck_groove_pressing/). Will send it back.

Swans - To Be Kind Maybelly

April 20, 2016
edited over 2 years ago
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46

This is one of the best albums ever made.
It both tests and rewards your patience...and when the currents configuration disbands, it will be a sad day.

Swans - To Be Kind verian

April 12, 2016
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46
Somebody had the day off, and that somebody may have nipped into town to the record shop, the same somebody may have spent a tiny bit more than they had intended to, can’t say any more than that.

What I can say though, is just how good ‘To Be Kind’ by ‘Swans’ is. It’s their 13th studio album, and the only one I own (as of today) and is a triple vinyl. I have heard it before on spotify and that’s part of the reason I bought it. Here is some stuff blatantly stolen from Wikipedia:

Upon its release, To Be Kind was widely praised by music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from critics, the album received an average score of 88, based on 35 reviews, indicating “universal acclaim”. Mark Deming of Allmusic gave the album a positive review, stating: “Michael Gira is a man unafraid to follow his muse wherever it may take him, and To Be Kind is another example of his singular vision writ large without compromise.” Anna Wilson of Clash praised the album, describing it as “Karlheinz Stockhausen’s jarring classicism, Captain Beefheart‘s twisted blues, and the industrialism ofEinstürzende Neubauten coalescing into a swirling musical miasma.” She also stated that the album is “near perfection.” Benjamin Bland of Drowned in Sound gave the album a 10/10 score and stated: “A two-hour odyssey of similar proportions to The Seer, this is an album that emphasises rather than establishes Swans’ reconfirmed position at the top of the experimental rock tree, but that doesn’t make it any less of a thrill.” He also further commented: “Now that this mission has been completed there is space for To Be Kind, and future Swans records to affirm, rather than prove, that Swans are, and perhaps always have been, the greatest rock group on the face of the planet.” Writing for Rolling Stone, Kory Grow also compared this album to The Seer as well as the 1996 effort Soundtracks for the Blind, noting how Swans’ sound has evolved so that they “don’t just crush—they hypnotize”. The Needle Drop gave the album a 10/10, making To Be Kind the second ever contemporary album to receive a perfect score from the site, after Death Grips‘ The Money Store.

Ross Horton of musicOMH gave the album a 5-star score, commenting: “Gira shows that the Swans resurgence isn’t a fluke.” Stuart Berman of Pitchfork Media praised Gira’s efforts on the album, stating: “He’s responded in the best way possible: by producing a record that, in structure and scale, is every bit The Seer ’​s equal, yet possessed by a peculiar energy and spirit that proves all the more alluring in its dark majesty.” Rory Gibb of The Quietus wrote: “By this point they’ve further coalesced into an inseparable entity: on To Be Kind we experience Swans as totality, all seething ebb and flow, crafting music that seems to breathe of its own volition.” He also stated that the album’s songs “feel more fluid and open-ended than before, expressive and rich in possibility.” Colm McAuliffe of The Skinny also gave the album a positive review, stating: “Despite the two-hour plus running time, Swans appear to be – gasp! – enjoying themselves; they’re still staring into the abyss but the abyss is no longer staring back.” He also noted that the album “displays much more diversity than its immediate predecessors.” Louis Pattison of Uncut wrote: “Yet as the name suggests, To Be Kind does feature a quality hithertorare in Swans: that of tenderness.” He also further stated: “Michael Gira is not only still moving forward, but making some of the albums of his career.”

Nevertheless, Jon Dennis of The Guardian was mixed in his assessment of the album, describing the album as “uncompromising to the point of overindulgence.”[


It was a bit expensive, but worth it. Oddly enough it reminds me of P.I.L at times, and at others pick a post-rock outfit at random, and a bit of Slint. To be honest it doesn’t matter much though, I love it, that IS what matters.

Swans - To Be Kind BoneyKing

January 5, 2016
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
My copy of this is mislabeled on the second LP; the labels on both sides read "Side Three"

Swans - To Be Kind Voight-Kampff

December 9, 2015
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, STUMM364, YG46
Excellent pressing, sounds crystal clear. Worth the price.

Swans - To Be Kind cristianHa

December 5, 2014
edited over 4 years ago
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46

my copy has a poster but not the dvd. The vinyl came with some white marks that seemed like fingerprints ... I was hoping this to be a pure analog recording, but at first listen it didn't sound like one to me. I wrote to the Youndgod website and the answer was: "I believe they were recorded digitally. Brandon".

Swans - To Be Kind DigitalZombie

January 22, 2015
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
I wrote to the YG website and the answer was:"I believe they were recorded digitally…"

Thanks for looking into this. While I've thought it sounds good, something told me it could sound better. I'm just going to have to assume that this is what my ears have been telling me.

Swans - To Be Kind T.J.E

December 26, 2014
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
The recording still sounds fantastic.

Swans - To Be Kind gugusse

August 27, 2014
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
On my side b, it's written "side two yg45" instead of yg46

Swans - To Be Kind as reviewed by guybahir

July 30, 2014
referencing To Be Kind, 2xCD, Album + DVD + Dlx, YG46

To Be Kind, by Swans, is not only the best Swans album I've ever heard, not only the best new album so far of 2014, but one of the best albums I've heard in my life.
This is music to submit to. There is nothing you can do but give in to it, just sit there and take it, try to contain it, let it wash all over you, drown in it, and hope to get out intact on the other side.
This is what gods listen to when they get stoned.

Swans - To Be Kind tamkit

July 28, 2014
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
Wouldn't it make more sense for B2 to be labeled as "Bring the Sun" and C as "Toussaint L'Ouverture" as I'm fairly certain that's their crossover point? The way they're split up on the album.

Swans - To Be Kind T.J.E

November 28, 2014
referencing To Be Kind, 3xLP, Album, YG46
The crossover point is closer to the 17 minute mark of the regular version of the song, that's when the crashing guitars stop and the Toussaint lyrics start.