Some very big noises are being made in the mainstream press over this Swedish duo, and their calculated pop sensibilities and surface-deep accessibility go a long way to explaining that. This is pure, unsullied, synth-pop, well-crafted and slickly produced, reaching back through the decades. The standout track here is ‘Wonders’, which opens with an epic-feeling synth riff, echoing the biggest, catchiest nineties chart house, dragging forth powerful images of huge clubs, darkness, strobes, and hundreds of waving arms at three a.m. There’s no contemporary twist here; it’s lifted straight from the era. Meanwhile, ‘M.A.G.I.C.’ is simply a lazy Pet Shop Boys pastiche – no more, no less. ‘Voyage’ is superbly put together, massively melodic, and brilliantly written. Its downfall is in its complete and unashamed lack of originality.

By Chris Watkeys

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