Swans ‎– Filth

Neutral Records (3) ‎– N11
Vinyl, LP, Album


A1 Stay Here
A2 Big Strong Boss
A3 Blackout
A4 Power For Power
B1 Freak
B2 Right Wrong
B3 Thank You
B4 Weakling
B5 Gang

Companies, etc.



Recorded at Vangard Studios N.Y.C. April 1983.
© 1983 LGW Music (ASCAP)
℗ 1983 Neutral
Jacket made in Canada

Also released in an edition of 500 copies in white sleeve, hand-painted by M. Gira.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Matrix / Runout (Runout Side A, Etched): N-11A
  • Matrix / Runout (Runout Side B, Etched): N-11B
  • Matrix / Runout (Runout both sides, Stamped): (EDP)

Other Versions (5 of 15) View All

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
NII Swans Filth(LP, Album, RE, Unofficial) Neutral Records (4) NII 2012 Sell This Version
YG48 Swans Filth(CD, Album, RE, RM + 2xCD, Comp, RE, RM + Dlx) Young God Records YG48 US 2015 Sell This Version
YG 001-1 Swans Filth L.P. # 1 1983(LP, Album, RE, TP) Young God Records YG 001-1 US 1990 Sell This Version
YG 001-1 Swans Filth L.P. # 1 1983(LP, Album, Ltd, RE, Tra) Young God Records YG 001-1 US 1990 Sell This Version
YGLP 1 Swans Filth L.P. # 1 1983(LP, Album, Ltd, RE, Pin) Young God Records YGLP 1 UK 1990 Sell This Version


Reviews Show All 9 Reviews

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November 21, 2020
I was expecting a better album after listening to Soundtracks for the Blind and To Be Kind, but this was a fucking disappointment. This just feels like the most average avant garde rock but everyone came into the studio incredibly hungover. This would be fine, albeit still bad, if done by any other band, but this was by Swans. I love Swans. I was expecting another pounding record like To Be Kind, but I just got a sloppy mess that puts me to sleep.


November 3, 2020

Sloppy, grinding, dragging, heavy, desperate, existential, free, chaotic, satirical; this album does more than most. Listen to it a few times. It is good. It is The Swans.


May 31, 2020
Swans are my favourite band in the entire universe (outside of grindcore). They have a long and meandering career spanning 4 decades, numerous genres, 13 studio albums and an obscene amount of other releases. The most savage of the bunch has to be Filth, the band's debut album from 1983; a clanking, grinding beast dominated by the unusual presence of not only two bassists but two drummers. The guitar is an afterthought. Some people argue that the Cop album is heavier, and whilst that is true in the fact that Cop is more akin to 'metal' than anything that appears on Filth, I firmly believe that the scraping, mechanical abortion of Filth far surpasses any form of heaviness that any metal music could possibly hope to convey. Being 32 years old this year, Filth was incredibly ahead of its time, and far more influential than we could possibly ever hope to measure.

Opening with the lurching "Stay Here", what Filth is all about becomes apparent very quickly. It is like some horrible machine has come to life. "Power For Power" is one of my favourite songs in the entire universe; the drums are absolutely devastating. This song says a lot to me, not only on an inter-personal level with the games people play with each other, but about Western culture and capitalist/consumerist culture in general. "Thank You" is almost dance-able, before "Weakling" laid the template for every Godflesh song recorded before 1990. It sounds like the world slowly dying....

I own an original pressing of this record, although it has just been lovingly remastered (I'd love to hear the mule kick on that fucker). I could fanboy about this shit for hours so don't take my word for it, just listen. If you've heard it before there's no reason not to do it again. Crank it ALL the way up for this one.


December 8, 2016

i'd imagine having Michael Gira over for dinner would involve excruciating awkward tension culminating with him slamming his cutlery and deriding me for serving shitty food, having awful grammar, and speaking with too many run on sentences.
I would then ask when he could come again, and if he could bring Norman with him next time.


April 18, 2015
The 2014 reissue sounds so good! I've never heard an original version but I assume that this has either better sound or equal quality sound because it sounds amazing! Love this album so much!


November 2, 2014
No mention here of the additional reissue circa 1990/91 from Young God with hand drawn artwork by Michael Gira. 1000 copies (I think), all slightly different.