Nostalgic dark-hearted indie Danes The Raveonettes have been riding mediocre pop success for a while now. Since emerging onto the music scene with their eight-track EP Whip It On back in 2002, they’ve had a loyal following that has perhaps now dwindled slightly but never deserted the duo: Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo.Their most recent and fifth album: Raven in the Grave takes them back to their roots, with a dazed out-of-focus sound laden with subtle messages disguised by confusing twists.
Whether the songs are enough to beat the super success of their 2003 debut LP Chain Gang of Love, though, is questionable. Recharge & Revolt the opening song echoes the success of their first record, combining vaporous vocals with a howling guitar reminiscent of The Velvet Underground.
Alas the rest of the album doesn’t quiet warrant the same enthusiasm as it lacks assortment in abundance. Across its nine tracks Raven in the Grave seems to have tried to reuse parts of past songs, which has resulted in the tunes sounding overly similar to one another. However in small doses it is still entertaining.
While some musicians can get away with regurgitating the same sound the same cannot be said for The Raveonettes as their music is too lightweight to rely on pure determination. Although it must be acknowledged, that as on everyone of The Raveonettes albums, the record does have some great tracks, even if in varying.
War in Heaven is comparable to the sound of The Horrors echoing a dark, sinister sound. While the hammering dramatic tune of Evil Seeds unites an alarming guitar with vocals aimed to tap at the emotions. Ignite oozes 90s rock with a new wave synth drumming edge. The charming resonance of Summer Moon is a welcome mid-album track with a different sound from the duo.
Despite the gloomy tone that the album projects it is a welcome quality, which puts this Raveonettes record up with their 2007’s keyboards-dominated left-turn LP, Lust Lust Lust.