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Back in 2002, Danish duo The Raveonettes recorded “Attack of the Ghost Riders,” a deceptively brilliant storm cloud of a tune that was equal measures cacophony and melody.
While the main debt of this premiere single was owed to The Jesus and Mary Chain, the tunefulness evidenced went far beyond the haze of distortion such a comparison might suggest. There was something almost pulpy about the song and its evocative title, sure, but there were also bloodlines there which ran back past JAMC’s ’80s roots and stretched back to the meticulously crafted vocal harmonies of the 1950s and ’60s.
A decade on, it turns out the latter tradition, the one preoccupied with deliberately constructed melodies, won out. Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo’s music has never sounded as thoughtful or–let’s just go ahead and say it–pretty as it does on “Observations,” the first single from their upcoming sixth LP, Observator (coming September 11th on Vice). It remains possessed by the minor key mood which has haunted all of their recordings but occupies a much more spacious habitat than early recordings. Instead of being fueled by thick guitar parts, “Observations” is anchored by lilting piano chords and brushed drums.
People often speak of bands’ sounds “maturing” over the course of a career, but here is a case where such talk is fully warranted. “Observations” is “Attack of the Ghost Rider” all grown up. Sune and Sharin have ditched their Jim and William Reid costumes, slipped into something more comfortable, and discovered that it was a better fit all along.
Click here to listen to Observations on Spotify.