The Glowing Man Image
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 22 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 69 Ratings

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  • Summary: This is the fourth and final release for the Michael Gira-led experimental rock band's line-up that includes Christoph Hahn, Thor Harris, Christopher Pravdica, Phil Puleo, and Norman Westberg.
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The Glowing Man
He's a real go-getter, getter He's a real heartbreaker, breaker He's a real head-splitter, splitter NO NO NO NO NO NO NO! He's a real mean keeper,... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. 91
    The album is monumental in every sense of the word, a visceral testament to the abilities of an incredible group of musicians, each member contributing equally to its breathtaking chiaroscuro.
  2. Jun 17, 2016
    83
    Gira feeds on the drawn-out, high-tension passages of accelerating cymbal crashes and swelling guitar dissonance, many of which exist on the 25-minute “Cloud Of Unknowing.” But while the axis on which that track rotates features deconstructed, incohesive drum rolls and a kind of radiant summoning from Gira--one that bleeds and pools into negative space you didn’t know existed--the plodding, sinister rhythm that precedes it proves more hypnotic.
  3. Uncut
    Jun 14, 2016
    80
    It has a transitory feel; a half-step back from those monolithic builds and whiplash grooves, gesturing towards something more contemplative and ... well, "softer" feels the wrong word, but weathered by the journey. [Jul 2016, p.80]
  4. Jun 14, 2016
    80
    Another bold, beautiful statement of purpose that also stands as a singularly menacing test of listener endurance.
  5. Jun 20, 2016
    80
    [The Glowing Man] finds Swans ever so slightly more playful, and on the cusp of a new era.
  6. Jul 29, 2016
    80
    Consolidation more than innovation, The Glowing Man still presents the current incarnation of Swans in its best light, as if this is the record the band has been working toward these past seven years.
  7. Jun 17, 2016
    60
    For a record seeking personal elevation via uncontainable energy, The Glowing Man doesn’t always glow often or energetically enough to help its listeners realize that it’s trying to attain such elevation.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Sep 15, 2019
    10
    The perfect way to end this era of Swan's discography. More meditative and transcendental than the rest, the band creates massive soundscapesThe perfect way to end this era of Swan's discography. More meditative and transcendental than the rest, the band creates massive soundscapes that captivate the listener and feel biblical in scale. Expand
  2. Jun 9, 2021
    10
    Not only my favourite album from the trilogy, but also my favourite album by Swans. WLFTMOI, SFTB, The Seer and To Be Kind and are brilliant,Not only my favourite album from the trilogy, but also my favourite album by Swans. WLFTMOI, SFTB, The Seer and To Be Kind and are brilliant, but this is just perfection at it's core! Expand
  3. Oct 27, 2016
    10
    The Glowing Man is the best album I've heard in years. Gira and his talented group of musical alchemists created a perfect piece of music. IThe Glowing Man is the best album I've heard in years. Gira and his talented group of musical alchemists created a perfect piece of music. I could gush on and on about this project, but a 10 will suffice for now. Expand
  4. Dec 28, 2019
    9
    Absolutely epic record. Perfect closer to their rock trilogy. Swans push the possibilities of creating worlds of sound through repetition.Absolutely epic record. Perfect closer to their rock trilogy. Swans push the possibilities of creating worlds of sound through repetition. This is not an easily accessible record, it takes time and patience but when you think of this as an atmosphere - not your every day song - then it becomes increasingly thrilling. This record is not "boring" or "too long" it's incremental, it's creeping, it's growing. Expand
  5. Aug 18, 2016
    9
    The more that I listen to this album, the more that I realize that it is my favorite album in the 3 album trilogy that has comprised theThe more that I listen to this album, the more that I realize that it is my favorite album in the 3 album trilogy that has comprised the latest era of Swans. This album, in its most abrupt moments kicks ass, but also leaves you with a sense of calmness. This is heavy music that isn't exactly aggressive, but peacefully chaotic and beautiful. One of the best albums of the year so far. Expand
  6. Aug 20, 2016
    8
    Note this actually the FOURTH Album in the Trilogy (like all Trilogies lately ...it has more than three). Lets not forget "My Father willNote this actually the FOURTH Album in the Trilogy (like all Trilogies lately ...it has more than three). Lets not forget "My Father will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky" otherwise known as MFWGMUARTTS . That was actually pretty good though shorter than the more recent three.
    Honestly i havent listened to the new one enough to write a further review but felt compelled to point out the 4th thing. Can i edit this comment later?? (btw: just had bit of deja vu...really effin weird like when you watch a movie you think you have seen but then it starts to be familiar and then you realize you have seen it but can only vaguely remember...much like that..its gone now).
    Expand
  7. Dec 20, 2016
    3
    The Glowing Man is an album that's received some pretty intense praise from music critics, but for the average listener, it is a boringThe Glowing Man is an album that's received some pretty intense praise from music critics, but for the average listener, it is a boring listen. It is not uncommon for Swans to play the same note over and over again for minutes at a time, leaving you wondering if the song you're listening to is even a song or just noise. And when a song is boring, it can be boring for up to 25 minutes. (Yes, some of these songs are ridiculously long!) The lead singer's vocals are often very abrasive and tribalistic, and don't add much at all to any of these songs. Despite this, there are some snippets of these various bloated songs that are enjoyable and catchy to listen to. Overall, The Glowing Man appears to me as an over hyped, simplistic album sold as some sort of abstract art piece. But really, it's just boring. Expand

See all 8 User Reviews