MIIKE SNOW play Sound Academy May 1. See listing. Rating: NNNN
Miike Snow's 2009 self-titled debut saw a couple of big-time Swedish pop producers (Britney Spears's Toxic was their doing) teaming up with American rock singer/songwriter Andrew Wyatt to try some low-key indie pop. An improbable equation, sure, but the results were highly addictive. After spending most of the time since then on the road, they've become a proper band, and that new dynamic plays the biggest role on their new album.
There's less emphasis on mood this time around and more focus on the actual songs, but they definitely haven't become a conventional rock band yet. The dance music aspects are more clubby, but the pop threads are also more upfront. This gives the album a more varied feel, though at first it also seems scattered and unfocused. A few more listens and it all makes sense. Less immediately rewarding than their debut, but worth taking the time to get to know.
Top track: Vase