Cold Water SwimmersCold Water Swimmers: Holiday At The Secret Lake – album review

Holiday At The Secret Lake

DIY Or Die

Limited edition vinyl here/ DL

Release date 16th April

Louder Than War Bomb Rating 5

Album photo credited to the great Paul Husband.

Cold Water Swimmers finally release their debut that will surely be recognised as one of the best albums this year by far. You can argue with Wayne AF Carey all the fuck you want but he will win hands down…

I’ve got a massive love for this band as you may know. I’ve followed them from almost day one and they’ve gripped me with how complete they are. Chris Bridgett, Carrie Lawson and Selina Clements Woolnough are the closest and tightest unit on the scene. All beautiful people who know their shit after years of experience on the circuit. Chris cut his teeth with Dub Sex as you all know and now writes stuff of brilliance that needs to be heard by the masses. Produced by Simon ‘Ding’ Archer who I’ve described as the Steve Albini of Salford in numerous reviews, this is a magic album. None of these songs are new to the initiated, yet if you’ve followed the band from the early days you’ll notice a massive difference in sound, style and production. Chris was determined to get each song just right and Ding has helped massively with his vision. Everything has been scrutinised down to fine detail including the track listing and the excellent album cover by Paul Husband.

Breaking Hearts is an uplifting starter that just breathes fresh air into your world. It’s pulls at the heartstrings and sounds so clever. It’s intelligent indie at it’s best. Love Is Insane is an alternative country type number that rips the riff off The Ace Of Spades and turns it upside down into Bridgett’s way of thinking. A top stomper. Summer Breeze is just one of the best songs I’ve heard in my life. Everything about it sends shivers down my spine every time I hear it. “See I was a junkie for 15 years. Could have took a bath in my mother tears” is a line that kills me. A personal reflection on his past that gets to me. Such an amazing piece of guitar work to boot.

Burn Your Idols is an indie pop bouncer that just infects you. A proper nod to looking up to people who don’t meet your expectations as you age. An anthem for the disinfected youth if you’ve ever heard one. A quick lesson. Don’t look up to anyone you don’t really know. A bruising riff kicks off Falling Apart with brooding bass from Carrie and Selina smoothing it over with her great yet simple drum patterns. I’ve always thought the lyrics were about Theresa May but I’m probably wrong. Bridgetts commands that guitar yet again. Be My Sunshine goes country again in their own unique style with Carrie providing great backing vocals to Bridgett’s Manc / North East vocals. It’s just beautiful stuff that hits you in the heart.

Everything We’ve Ever Had (We’ve Had To Fight For) is an early tune about austerity and still sounds as powerful as ever. A post punk number that has been proper beefed up in the hands of Ding and is the sound of industrial Manchester in a perfect song that just uplifts your tingling sensations. Replaced By Robots is a cracking swipe at a classic interview question “Where do you think you’ll be in five years time” A proper punk number that recalls early Pete Shelley in Bridgett’s own mind. I remember Chris taking the piss with Carrie about the lyrics at an early MMTV appearance. Why it sticks in my head. So Young is just brilliant. A perfect indie punk number that lifts the mood. It’s got the feeling of an up beat Spiritualized number. Bang on drumming, a great acoustic riff topped with a great electric riff running through, Carrie having a vocal blast and the tribal beats of Selina topping it off. The sound of summer from a nostalgic point of view. Another early song ends this fantastic album with a downbeat I’ll Be Your Witness, the crashing drums, menacing bass and the commanding vocals from Bridgett who  gives us another taste of his excellent guitar skills which go towards a psychedelic angle to bring the whole affair to a dramatic close.

Album of the year contender anyone? I’ve not hear one as good yet. As debuts go this is perfection from the mind of Chris Bridgett who has threatened this for some time and come up top trumps. One for any music lovers collection.

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Words by Wayne Carey, Reviews Editor for Louder Than War. His author profile is here

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"I'm a 50 year old man, and I like it!" A music nut from North Manchester residing in Northwich. If it's good I'm on it. Most genres covered but mainly alternative post punk indie with a love for all things psych.

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