Swan Lake, ‘Enemy Mine’ (Jagjaguwar)
This Canadian indie supergroup presumably came together over its members’ common traits of workaholism and quirky vocals. Though Swan Lake count Wolf Parade, Frog Eyes, and the New Pornographers among their many other projects, Enemy Mine doesn’t get the songwriting dregs. Crafting sparse, noisy rock that’s both controlled and dangerously unbalanced, each songwriter holds onto his idiosyncrasies: Spencer Krug’s dark romanticism (“Paper Lace”), Carey Mercer’s hyper-allusiveness (“Peace”), and Dan Bejar’s self-referential observations (“Battle of Swan Lake”). The distinctiveness of these three weirdos and their democratic approach gives this unexpecedly harrowing album a remarkable cohesion.
Listen: Swan Lake, “Spider”