Artist: Swingin’ Utters (Official, Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Last.fm, Fat Wreck Chords, AllMusic, Wikipedia)
After a lengthy hiatus, San Francisco’s Swingin’ Utters have kept themselves quite busy the last couple of years, releasing three EPs and two full-length records. Poorly Formed is the band’s latest full-length and the first to include new bassist Mike Peck and the first to include songs co-written by guitarist Jack Dalrymple. One would think that these changes, especially the loss of longtime bassist Spike Slawson, would result in a less than stellar record, but that simply isn’t the case with here.
Poorly Formed is an exceptionally tight and cohesive record that is quintessential Utters while at the same time displaying a growth and added dimensions to the band’s signature sound. What makes this record work, and makes it better then its predecessor Here, Under Protest is that cohesion. While Here, Under Protest was a great collection of songs, it felt more like a collection of songs than an album; I’m sure some of this was the result of it being their first full-length record in nearly a decade, during which time they were all busy with other projects, resulting in a record that sounded more like an assortment of songs from said side-projects than a Swingin’ Utters album. That is not the case with Poorly Formed. Any dust that had collected during that hiatus has been completely cleared off and the band is now tighter than ever.