With the release of 2019’s Mouth Full of You EP, rising Malmö-based shoegazer outfit and JOVM mainstays Spunsugar — Elin Ramstedt, Cordelia Moreau, and Felix Sjöström — quickly established a unique, genre-blurring sound, which meshed elements of industrial electronica, post-punk, noise rock, shoegaze and dream pop. Mouth Full of You wound up earning the band international attention with the EP receiving airplay from BBC 6 Music‘s Steve Lamacq.
Building upon a growing profile, the Swedish trio released their critically applauded, Joakim Lindberg-produced full-length debut Drive-Through Chapel last October through Adrian Recordings. The album, which featured the brooding 4AD Records-like ” “Happier Happyless,” and the breakneck ripper “Run,” a single that reminded me of Lightfoils, The Sisters of Mercy, Chain of Flowers found the members of Spunsugar actively seeking to emulate the sounds of Cocteau Twins, Slowdive, and others — but while simultaneously crafting some of their hardest hitting material to date.
Earlier this month, the members of the Malmö-based JOVM mainstay act released their latest effort Things That I Confuse. While still focusing on an overarching post-punk and dream pop aesthetic, the EP sees the band taking an opportunity to spread their creative wings to craft a broader and more diverse batch of material.
“The songs on Things That I Confuse pretty much wrote themselves in a frenzy. Still, they sound more Spunsugar than ever,” the members of the band explain in press notes. “It’s still as timeless and nostalgic as it is fresh. The four songs consist of two more poplike tracks and two that have kept the more noisy aggressive sound that has become a staple of the band. Now there’s an added layer of an icy lo-fi feel. References to giallo films and Japanese movie monsters work to tell stories of close relationships, trauma and regret that keeps one up at night. Every second is thought through, there’s no unnecessary fluff. Every note serves a purpose on this EP.”
The Swedish shoegazers started off this year with “Rodan,” the EP’s first single. Deriving its name from a Japanese movie monster, much like Godzilla, “Rodan” saw the band crafting a lushly textured song that’s sonically indebted to Cocteau Twins while arguably being their most danceable singles to date.
Much like BLACKSTONE RNGRS, Lightfoils and a growing list of others, the members of Spunsugar push the boundaries of shoegaze and dream pop into new directions and Things That I Confuse‘s latest single “Hatchet” sees the Swedish trio creating a lushly textured sound that meshes elements of industrial electronica, brooding 4AD Records-like atmospherics and shimmering dream pop centered around their unerring knack for crafting anthemic hooks.
While being one of the more aggressive songs on the EP “Hatchet” evokes the whirring thoughts of someone full of regret and self-doubt, replaying their questionable decisions, actions and thoughts over and over and over again.