My teenage years made me a label junky, so a lot of the new music I come across is due to newsletters and updates and the like; Swedish label Rama Lama Records is one such label that’s had my attention for the past few years. Today they’ve shared a new track from Lilla Parasit, which is sort of a Scandinavian supergroup of sorts; it’s a bombastic indie rocker, with all sorts of movement pushing and pulling at the song. I love the opening guitar riffs; they feel gut-wrenching before falling back to let the vocals come through. When the vocals fall away, this is where the band wins your heart; they fill the space with various arrangements, stretching the song into this pop exploration. The band will release their debut mini-album on March 20th.
One of my favorite things in the last few years, at least so far as the progression of musical trends, is the move to craft pop music that sort of survives around the narrow tropes we’ve concocted, like in this new tune from Steve Buscemi’s Dreamy Eyes. Sure, there’s a definite pop sensibility, particularly in the way the guitar lines jangle and sparkle. But, there’s a heaviness to this tune, one that seems to exist outside our expectations of what pop music is. Part of that comes in the vocals, part of it comes in the descending of the chorus; it’s not uplifting, and yet it is. There’s a bright nature to the brooding, giving you promise through the shadows. Just happy this tune’s out there. You can find it on the band’s new Sweetie LP, which drops on February 14th via Rama Lama Records.
Kluster B, formerly Kluster, caught my attention a few years ago with their debut album, Civic, but they’ve been mostly quiet since that time. Today they return with a new single, signalling a new LP on the not too far distant horizon. In the song, I feel as if they’re taking notes from the likes of early Pinback, drawing on indie rock influences and fusing them with bits of jazz structure and pop moments. Linnea’s voice haunts the tune during the verses, and shimmers in the chorus as the guitars clang noisily, eventually leading towards a closing that could easily slide into the best of dream pop vibes you’ll hear this week. Keep an eye out for a new LP with their label Rama Lama.
I was turned onto Lilla Parasit because of my love of Melby, a Swedish outfit I’ve written about quite a bit; Are, the leader of this group is also in the aforementioned outfit. They’ve just released this new track from their forthcoming album, and I’m just sitting here bobbing my head to the steady drum beat that serves as the song’s background. In a sense, the song sort of reminds me of the propulsive pop moments that made me fall in love with Broken Social Scene; this is catchy and organic, with sort of a natural joyousness lurking in the guitar notes. Americans are always into the cool Swedish sounds, and this is about as cool as it comes; look for the band to drop a mini-LP in March of 2020 via Rama Lama Records.
There’s a lot of incredible pop music coming out of Stockholm, but for me, Steve Buscemi’s Dreamy Eyes have been high upon my radar of rising stars. They’ve been popping up in the last few months with new tunes after taking a brief break from making magic; our sources have told us a full-length is lurking out there for 2020. This new tune’s full of bold pop sensibility; they toy with you almost the entire way through the track, building tension with these ringing guitars and soaring vocals. The song’s hook comes by way of the “ooh ooh oohoo” in the chorus; you’ll be hooked on the undeniably catchiness, I swear. This single’s available courtesy of Rama Lama Records.
Perhaps the title is misleading, as I’ve definitely covered the various members of Lilla Parasite in some fashion or another, most recently with Are Steinsholm’s other band, Melby. But, this is a Swedish super-group of sorts, though they’re offering up a more folk-laden version of pop music than what I’ve grown accustomed to from the region. There’s this faint warble in the vocal, which I can’t tell if that’s due to singing in English, or if its merely the nature of the song, but distinctive voices always catch my ear. Musically, the band has this almost like glade majesty, as if you were a deer traipsing about in your favorite meadow as some minstrel fashioned a song for your journey. It’s a cool introduction to a band I hope you’ll enjoy.
After releasing a wonderful debut, Swedish outfit Steve Buscemi’s Dreamy Eyes are on the minds of tons who dabbled in dream pop/shoegaze. Well, it sounds like they might have an album right around the corner, as they’ve just dropped this new single on us out of nowhere. Siri Sjoberg seems to have the perfect voice for the band’s sound, able to rise above the noise and shatter it with her heavenly tones, while also careful to slink back behind the wall of atmospherics when necessary. For those of you who love pop music, but also want it to slightly shimmer in distortion will surely find you adore this band’s work.
You know I love Julia Rakel; I was really pushing her indie fEElz EP earlier this year. She returns today with this brand new single, a sort of hazy ode to summer time. Her production is always spot on, and the little musical accents here really help create that sort of sunny blur that only means you’re getting closer to that oasis; it’s a nice touch in the song’s latter half when she ties in a vocal counterpoint to add layered depth. It’s been a great year for Julia, and it looks like she’s going to continue that momentum going forward, so Happy Friday for that one.
Swedish act Kluster got a lot of time on this site back in 2018 with the release of their Civic LP…and now they’ve got a brand new single to share. This number definitely shows the band’s songwriting approach, filling in the track with these little twists and turns that take you on little jaunts within the tune itself. Guitars and fuzz weave in and out, but personally, I’m really taken by the build that occurs just after the 3 minute mark; the group vocals quietly rise until the guitars crash in and out noisily before a nice pop wash coats the top and draws the song towards its close. Give it a listen, won’t you.
Swedish act Cat Princess have popped up on this blog before, so I’m sticking to my guns in my appreciation of the group as they drop new single “Rocko’s Theme.” It’s the perfect mixture of all these little musical tidbits that I can’t quite put my finger on, or really figure out why I’m stuck so hard on this song…which is perhaps the best compliment I can give the act. It starts off with this sort of jangling guitar shuffle, opening up into a nice little crooned vocal, almost lounge act in presentation. Suddenly, you’re spun into this world of cult musical stardom like a Hedwig or RHPS; it’s a full on arty performance with just enough hooks to keep you tapping your toes. The band drop their debut on May 17th via Rama Lama Records.