Release date: 7 June 2019
When it came time to make their third album, Younghusband's Euan Hinshelwood had a trick up his sleeve. He wrote all the songs by himself and only played them to the rest of the band as they were getting ready to commit their parts to tape. This technique meant there wasn't a great deal of fuss or overthinking involved, and not surprisingly, Swimmers is the band's lightest and most direct album yet. Most of the dream pop and psychedelic trappings of previous albums are gone, and in their place is strummy, good-natured indie pop made special by Hinshelwood's pleasingly innocent vocals, the breezy hooks, and the lighter-than-air feel of the playing and production. It's an album that goes down easily; it sounds almost exactly like a soft shoulder rub feels. Listening to the songs spreads a gentle warmth through the speakers and the mood is unbroken by jagged tempos or big emotional moments. It's an even-keeled record that rewards easy listening, and if that sounds boring, the band makes sure that's never the case. They put enough care into the simple arrangements and enough tender feeling into the vocals and words that the record never fades into the background. The songs don't hit the listener over the head, they sneak in like quiet bandits and take up residence gradually. "Sister" is a jangling lost pop hit, "Translation" opens the record in lovely, chiming fashion, and "Grinding Teeth" adds some tinny drum machine and synth to the mix for one of the record's highlights. Mostly, though, Swimmers is a flowing, peaceful listen that doesn't need to be broken into small bits; it works best as a unified 35-minute diversion from the stress and struggle of the daily grind.
- Tim Sendra, Allmusic