Swans albums are the unparalleled expression of multi-instrumentalist Michael Gira, who often sounds like he's either deranged with enthusiasm or deranged with bitterness. Then again, Gira — Swans' guts and soul for three decades now — may just be deranged. Twelfth release The Seer does not break from tradition. Maybe it's the album's sweeping story, maybe it's the way guest artists — members of Low and Mercury Rev, among others — file through tracks like mourners at a wake. Maybe it's the obnoxious two-hour length. Whatever the case, The Seer feels like a career epitaph, Gira's closing argument against the sanctity and much-leaned-on song structures of rock music. It's grotesque, schizophrenic, and teeming with queasy noise; it will elicit physical revulsion rather than forge emotional connections. Gira uses big sounds as beats ("Mother of the World") and repeated sounds as drones ("A Piece of the Sky"). The title track is like standing underneath an enormous circus tent as it slowly collapses, leaving no light or air or route of escape. Gira's career has been one of violations and risks; there are plenty here. However, his trademark brand of post-rock/ambient alienation may finally leave listeners indifferent.