First Listen: El Perro Del Mar "Pale Fire"

The new album by Swedish indie singer Sarah Assbring aka El Perro Del Mar once again shows her ability to pick up on the trends and to turn it into sweet pop. Doing that, she has gotten more electronic this time around, incorporating sounds from chillwave to nu-disco, slow house and some dub. She is late, but not too late on most of the genres, adding her own lush version of Lykke Li-like vocals to the mix to hold it all together.

And it mostly works quite well, I have to admit. Don’t expect any revelations, but a well crafted, condensed easy-listening walk through the production of internet-based beats and bleeps from the last few years. Nearly every song brings in some new shade of one of those styles without breaking into a sweat, or breaking the continuum of the album. Apart from the pre-released “Walk On By”, I think “Love Confusion” and “To The Beat Of A Dying World” are the better tracks on the album, holding a certain suspense and unease the other tracks are lacking to a certain degree.

Because if there is an overall problem with the album, it would be that Assbring is a bit too uninteresting as well as seeming to be uninterested herself sometimes. The passive attitude – mainly carried by her voice – makes me feel like being on some kind of anti-depressant somehow, like perceiving the world through a protective haze of some emotional distancing device and dissolving all heartbreak in sweetness. I would love to hear someone taking this album a bit further and produce some additional dance remixes of the tracks, igniting the fire a bit more.

The album will be released on Memphis Industries on November 12th and is now streaming on The Hype Machine, below.


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