death&vanilla

Strange instruments, breathy European vocals and lovingly recreated Joe Meek-style production – that’s right, this is another in a long line of swirling soundscapes from the ever-reliable folks at… Fire? Yup. Don’t let the cover art fool you – the debut from Swedish trio Death And Vanilla is not the latest Ghost Box release (you’d be forgiven for thinking otherwise). D&V do plough a similar furrow to the likes of Nottingham’s The Soundcarriers, though – indebted to obscure soundtracks (‘Moogskogen’ is total Wicker Man), sixties exotica, and Stereolab in the prime of their wow and flutter.

Its poppiest moments, like the gossamer pop of ‘California Owls’ could almost be Beach House, at least until it descends into a two-minute cascade of bird noises. It’s enchanting stuff, for sure, but it’s only on the motorik folk of ‘Hidden Reverse’ or ‘Follow the Light’’s uncharacteristically pure sunshine pop – the moments when D&V go beyond their influences – that ‘To Where the Wild Things Are’ truly sounds as transcendent as the band wants it to.

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