13 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sweden’s Shout Out Louds add an existential dimension with their second studio album, 2007’s Our Ill Wills. The shimmering ephemeral pop of their debut, 2005’s Howl Howl Gaff Gaff, has been augmented with the sound of experience and a few creepy synth lines. Whereas their debut was the sound of celebration, the follow-up is the sound of the clean-up, the tallying of expense and the realization that debts eventually come due. While death makes itself known on the seductively nippy “Time Left for Love,” mostly it’s a simple, somber overcast vibe that surrounds the easeful shuffle of “Blue Headlights,” where the harmonies skip through the raindrops and dripping piano notes. From obscure popsters such as the Clientele, Trembling Blue Stars and the Apartments to the more mainstream-acknowledged heroes, the Cure and Bright Eyes, Shout Out Louds have found a complex, paradoxical musical place where their joyful rhythms are met with chords that hang in the air with foreboding grace (“Impossible”). They may never reclaim the innocence of their debut, but they’re growing up in style.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Sweden’s Shout Out Louds add an existential dimension with their second studio album, 2007’s Our Ill Wills. The shimmering ephemeral pop of their debut, 2005’s Howl Howl Gaff Gaff, has been augmented with the sound of experience and a few creepy synth lines. Whereas their debut was the sound of celebration, the follow-up is the sound of the clean-up, the tallying of expense and the realization that debts eventually come due. While death makes itself known on the seductively nippy “Time Left for Love,” mostly it’s a simple, somber overcast vibe that surrounds the easeful shuffle of “Blue Headlights,” where the harmonies skip through the raindrops and dripping piano notes. From obscure popsters such as the Clientele, Trembling Blue Stars and the Apartments to the more mainstream-acknowledged heroes, the Cure and Bright Eyes, Shout Out Louds have found a complex, paradoxical musical place where their joyful rhythms are met with chords that hang in the air with foreboding grace (“Impossible”). They may never reclaim the innocence of their debut, but they’re growing up in style.

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