Something ominous is happening in the new video for “The Swan,” the standout track from the full-length debut by UK band Cheatahs: the spartan setup, the stern man eating while tensely squeezing a hand gripper, the repeated shots of Newton’s cradle balls, the distraction of wondering how a British indie band scored Lily Allen in their video. (They didn’t.) Whatever this is building to, it probably isn’t good.
Stick around to the end of the video — just as the instrumental coda of “The Swan” kicks in — to have those suspicions confirmed. “The Swan” may be inscrutable, but Cheatahs’ self-titled album — released this past February — could be one of the year’s best indie-rock records. Full of lush guitars that reference some of the genre’s greats, from Dinosaur Jr. to My Bloody Valentine, Cheatahs could be pegged as a throwback album if it didn’t stand so well on its own.
“The Swan,” which originally debuted on Cheatahs’ EP collection Extended Plays, may be the album’s finest moment. Cheatahs is available now, and the band’s upcoming tour dates are below the video.
4 – The Crocodile, Seattle, WA (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
6 – The Shred Shed, Salt Lake City, UT (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
7 – Larimer Lounge, Denver, CO (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
9 – 7th Street Entry, Minneapolis, MN (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
10 – Beat Kitchen, Chicago, IL (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
11 – Brillobox, Pittsburgh< PA (with Eagulls) (Tickets)
12 – New York, Mercury Lounge, NY (headline – early show) (Tickets)
22 – Best Kept Secret Festival, Netherlands (Tickets)
3 – 6 – Vida Festival, Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain (Tickets)
26 – Deer Shed Festival, UK (Tickets)
9 – Beacons Festival, UK (Tickets)
20-23 – Paredes de Coura, Portugal