The new box contains no fewer than three different Williams recordings of that most popular of all guitar works, Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez – from 1964 with the Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, from 1974 with Barenboim and the English Chamber Orchestra, and from 1983 with Frémaux and the Philharmonia Orchestra – plus a performance of its much-loved Adagio in Williams’s celebrated 1993 “Seville Concert”.
On the follow-up to her landmark debut, Happy Come Home (1987), Victoria Williams' skills as a multi-faceted songwriter become increasingly stronger and more distinct. The lack of aural opulence – such as Van Dyke Parks' string arrangements – reveal a less-forced approach, resulting in a giant leap forward in terms of the development of Williams' own voice. Likewise, her rich Louisiana bayou roots increasingly influence her music and act as a strong motif throughout not only Swing the Statue, but her future releases as well – most notably her contributions to the Original Harmony Ridge Creekdippers. Perhaps drawing upon her own experiences, Swing the Statue has an air of melancholia wafting throughout much of the album. Both "Boogieman" and "I Can't Cry Hard Enough" – while divergent in terms of musical style – speak directly to the feelings of loss and abandonment. These aptly juxtapose against the innocence and youthful awe of "Look at That Moon" and "Wobbling" as well as the spiritual guidance found in "Lift Him Up" and "Weeds." Unlike Happy Come Home, Swing the Statue is exceedingly more reserved and somewhat stark – with an emphasis on acoustic instrumentation. These aptly inhabit Williams' remarkably jazzy arrangements.