Review: "Mirror Box" by SWYM

Live from orbit and direct to tape, Mirror Box is a lo-fi streaked daydream from the kaleidoscopic duo SWYM. If Galaxie 500 and Boards of Canada took a time-trip back to the 70’s together, Mirror Box gives you a window into what those sessions might sound like. 

With ever-so-close drumming, floating vocals, and weightlessly reverbed guitar riffs, this record is carried far far away, and then taken right back to such a cozy intimacy that feels just like home. Blindingly bright and alluringly dark, it suits itself for whenever and wherever, whether it be a mid-August stroll through the park, or a 2AM Autumn walk home. Mirror Box is a start to finish delight, brimming with psychedelic subtlety.

The record’s fourteen tracks create almost endless spaces around almost fragile structures, and that spaciousness becomes an instrument in and of itself on the record. It dives as deep as possible with swirling delays, stratospheric reverb, and phase-shifted everything, all while giving each and every instrument their spotlight at exactly the right time. The bass performance on the downtempo “Mouth of the Cave” is without a doubt straightforward fun, and there’s so much attitude and dynamic present that it becomes an undeniable highlight of the record.

When you hit the 1:40 mark of the track, it places you directly inside of a rocket engine, hitting such a rumbling cosmic high that’s almost impossible to imagine coming down from it. More uptempo inclined tracks like “Midnight” and “Catch and Release” have this chaotically joyful pace, speeding along and time-lapsing through some of the highest points of the album that they’re almost begging for replays before they’re over.

The full-course 59 minutes of the album is for fans of introversion and extroversion in all shapes and forms, soundtracking the listener in any direction they’re going. No matter where you’re headed, Mirror Box will take you there.


See SWYM at Look Up Fest 2018!



Max Schoenfeld

SLC native live engineer and record nerd. Always can be found in the synthesizer section of any establishment.