Danish export Slaraffenland’s new record, We’re on Your Side, might very well be the most original recording you’ll hear all year. After all, it can’t be easy to piece together songs in such a way as you’d swear you were listening to a record being played backwards, so I imagine not many bands give it a go. Of course, had the band taken a step or two from a well-worn playbook, it might have hidden a possibly homicidal confession beneath the tracks to give this album some lift. As it is, aside from its neither-rhyme-nor-reason structure, the most memorable things about these 10 songs are the dreary, almost martial percussion and robotic vocals randomly draped over a bleak backdrop I’m sure no one is actually meant to see, but is nevertheless hard not to visualize.
Every once in a while the record approaches likeability, like on “Meet and Greet,” a catchy, nicely harmonized song that masquerades as a sweetly quiet track, something that might serve as mood music for a yoga studio. But more often than not, its seemingly deliberate quirkiness is just not something I can get into.
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