What's cooler than being cool? Well, Scandinavian showgazing for one…

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The Radio Dept : Ewan

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The Radio Dept : Ewan

Sweden’s The Radio Dept are clearly gunning for us. Like The Bravery after six months in the deep freeze or the Delays in a laudanum-induced delirium, ‘Ewan’ announces both their arrival to do some brisk chart business and the official return of ‘shoegazing’ (oh, go and ask your dad).

A huge, rumbling rhythm section ripped from the corpse of New Order ploughs through the speakers. A melody so huge and yet so ethereal it’s impossible to decribe as anything other than ‘glacial’ sears through the middle of it like an ice pick to the cerebral cortex. And then there’s singer Martin Larsson. “You can feel the sunshine fading/And you’re stuck waiting” he sighs as guitars fuzz and feedback surrounds him, threatening to crack the icy spell and plunge us into the freeze-rock depths below. Somewhere outside Reykjavik, the foundation stone is laid for – yes – a sonic cathedral.

A two-minutes-and-20-seconds-long slab of pure heartache at zero degrees Celsius, ‘Ewan’ is the sound of The Dears, A-Ha and fringe-period Ride swapping sob stories over shots of icy Stoli. Fridge rock starts here.

Paul Moody