Monday, February 15, 2010

Music I've Listened To: "In and Out of Control," by The Raveonettes

As any long-time fan of The Raveonettes will tell you, every album of this Danish retro-alt. pop duo's feels like a soundtrack to some underground, unreleased Warhol film discovered in a dusty vault that you had to pay a seedy, mustachioed janitor to get access to. The lyrics and the instrumentals drip with ambience and style.

Their first EP "Whip It On" felt like the backdrop to a modern crime noir set in the hot deserts of Vegas.

"Chain Gang of Love" felt like an acid-trippy silent film taking place during the tumultuous transition from 1950s to 1960s Americana.

"Pretty in Black" was the B-Movie; a blood splattered Spaghetti Western piece of nostalgia.

"LUST LUST LUST" was a Tarantino-inspired, Grindhousey crime spree flick.

With "In and Out of Control" comes a beach-blanket-bingo sort of dance-pop with a sound rooted firmly on the happy-go-lucky beaches of East Coast suburbia. The instrumentals pop and swing and snap along at an easy, sometimes low-fi pace. But while the music may be all doo-wop and beach rock, the lyrics however allude to something far more sinister; a seedy underbelly that stains conjured images of patterned one-piece bikinis and pastel ascots. You can't help but groove to tracks like "Heart of Stone" and "Last Dance," but a closer inspection of the content reveals sordid tales of rape, rage, crime, and drug use on nearly every track. While the sound departs from the distinctly West Coast feel of previous Raveonettes albums, by no means has the band lost its direction or mindset. This is one groovy album a-go-go that fits perfectly into their already impressive body of work.

Go Download: "Breaking Into Cars," "Suicide"

4 out of 5 starxx

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