Ikons ‘Life Rhythm’ – album review
Ikons – Life Rhythm (Service)
CD / DL / LP
2 July 2012
Taking their influences from shoegazing and indie Swedish band Ikons deliver a soaring album of dreamlike pop.ÃÂ
Gothenburg is a city that has a proud tradition of producing innovative music that challenges established norms. Ikons are a seven-piece band that certainly maintains this trend and their new album, ”ËLife Rhythm’ already looks like becoming yet another Swedish classic. Following up their acclaimed, self-titled 2010 debut which was described by NME as ”Ëa step in the direction of future greatness’, ”ËLife Rhythm’ certainly takes further great strides down this road
Founding members Torbjorn Johansson and Jonas Bengtsson have been creating music together since school, but the continually evolving dynamics of the line-up has ensured an increasingly adventurous sound. Live performance is something that Ikons place great emphasis on and they earned rave reviews for their appearances in support of Spiritualized on their Scandinavian tour.
”ËLife Rhythm’ takes the listener on a dreamlike stroll through sublime guitars, soaring melodies and harmonic twists that you simply don’t see coming. There are hints of Ikons influences like Jesus and Mary Chain, Neu! and The Pastels, but this is undoubtedly a sonic adventure that is all their own.
Opening up with the haunting riffs of ”ËJust Gazin’, followed by ”ËSister’ and ”ËPolaroid Cocaine’, the listener is left in no doubt that ”ËLife Rhythm’ is destined to be one of the finest releases this year. The ethereal quality of the vocal mix alongside top quality production ensures that once these tunes are inside your mind, they will stay there.
Torbjohn has recently spoken of the attraction of unpredictability in music and this is certainly true in tracks like ”ËFree Spirit’ and ”ËAzalea’. Ikons also make vivid use of vocal samples, often from the films of Harmony Korine, but still maintain a captivating, pure-pop essence. In contrast, ”ËBye, Bye, Bye,’ and ”ËDisapproval’ are beautifully melodic offerings that could fit into any period of rock history albeit crafted with compelling twists.
You can watch the video for ”ËSister’ which uses edited footage from Harmony Korine’s ”ËMister Lonely’ here.
Ikons believe that music should offer a sense of transportation and the hypnotic vocals and irresistible hooks of ”ËLife Rhythm’ certainly do that.
All words by Dave Jennings. You can read more from Dave on LTW here.