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The Guardians New Band of the Day: Serenades


Hometown: Stockholm.

The lineup: Adam Olenius (vocals, keyboards), Markus Krunegård (vocals, keyboards).

The background: We've fallen in love with Swedish duo Serenades (signed to Gaga mentor Martin Kierszenbaum's Cherrytree imprint), that's for sure. No idea how long it will last, but right now, their track Earthquakes is one of the best – that is to say most swooningly beautiful – we've heard all year. Not that it's a competition or anything, but Polly et al should just be grateful they don't open the Mercurys to entrants from Scandinavia.

It takes about eight seconds of Earthquake's stabbing violins and the boys' coos and aahs – straight out of the Paddy McAloon/Green Gartside school of breathy emoting, all machine gleam and passionless polish – for us to succumb. Apologies for making that the second mention of Prefab Sprout since Monday, but it's been that kind of week. We're also going to mention A-ha, because that's what Earthquake sounds like: the A-ha of Take on Me and Hunting High and Low; pure electronic pop melancholy.

We can barely tear ourselves away from Earthquake to tell you about the other tracks on Serenades' self-titled 2012 debut album. Ironically, it was another tune, Birds, that first drew our attention to the pair way back in the mists of time (yesterday). We liked it as soon as we heard it on YouTube, but that's because we're suckers for Prefab/ABC/Scritti-style pop. And what with next year being the 30th anniversary of 1982, we thought the song – and its heady, epic Trevor Horn-worthy production – marked the impending date well.

Then we got sent the album and, while there's nothing on it quite as magnificently windswept and forlorn as Earthquake, the songwriting is definitely on the right lush, layered path. Opener All The Words is choral synthpop with a lyric about a boy calling up his ex, drunk, missing her like mad – it's like a fey Swedepop version of Drake's Marvin's Room. Come Home is for fans of Aztec Camera and The The, full of yearning and a desire not to be alone at Christmas. There's a lot of songs on Serenades about the weather – they should cover Magazine's About the Weather – and about how certain conditions affect our mood. Well, if you're feeling down, try Earthquake, because its little tremors – those quivering vocals and shivering strings – will shake you out of your gloom.

The buzz: "Serenades make world-brightening, swooning loveliness" – The Line of Best Fit.

The truth: We're gaga for Cherrytree's latest signing.

Most likely to: Cheer you up.

Least likely to: Change the weather.

What to buy: Come Home is released by Polydor on 14 November.

File next to:
I Ching, Friends Again, Lotus Eaters, A-ha.

Links:
http://www.theserenades.com/.

-The Guardian.co.uk

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Comment by AmyPond on November 5, 2011 at 7:57am

:) Good info.

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