This record, I have to say, was the final straw for me. It made me change my decision to stop writing and publishing reviews, because this record is simply one of the most amazing records I've heard this year, and it's one of the best records of the shoegazing movement since...1991. Is that music writer hyperbole? Am I just being dramatic? HELL NO. The duo of Rumskib consists of Keith Canisius and Tine Louise Kortermand, along with one of Jonas Munk, the mastermind behind the wonderful electronica project Manual.
Here's a rundown of what these three have done. They've simply taken everything that was good about the whole shoegazing/blisspop/dreampop/4AD movement, condensed it and interpreted in their own special way, and have produced a record that rivals the best of the records it inspired. Let's put it another way: when I received this record, I decided to listen to it on my nightly stroll down the road. I put it on my discman, turned it up, and had a MASSIVE sense of déjà vu, because I can still recall the first time nearly two decades ago, when I walked down this same long, dusty road all the while having my mind blown by the brilliant, new sounds of records like Victorialand
, Strange Free World
belongs in that pantheon, my friends; it's that powerful and that good
But about that walk. I didn't know what to expect, but the first quiet seconds of "Hearts of Fire" made me think something good was about to happen. And then it did, and oh GOD, did it! At the thirty-two second mark, the sound EXPLODES into a multicolored Technicolor kaleidoscope of sound, with loud guitars, hauntingly beautiful vocals, and some of the dreamiest bliss-pop I've heard in ages. I mean, I still think A Sunny Day in Glasgow is making amazing music, but let me tell you, I quickly forgot about their wonderful revivalist record, because, hell, Rumskib
is effin' REAL, man.
As I walked, I was blown away by the wonderful sounds held within this mysteriously wonderful album. "Sneak" made me walk faster, with its fast-paced rock beat; "Crucial Love Games" made me wish I were in love, so that I could include it on a mix tape; "Girl Afraid" made me both think of The Smiths and of Miki Beryeni, "Think Eyes Away" made me want to find a computer and see if Rumskib had more records, and the concluding song "Love At First Sight" sums up my feelings for Rumskib
--I fell in love with this record from the very first note, and now, after having listened to it about 40 times, I'm still
in love with it.
I have to say this, too. Yes, Rumskib
sounds familiar, but who cares? The best song on here is called "Dreampoppers Tribute," so you should know that they know what they're doing is, in part, an homage to greatness. But then again, we're talking about living in the now
, and what they do sounds wonderfully fresh and inspiring. Kortermand sounds exactly
like Liz Fraser, which makes Rumskib
even more wonderful. That Rumskib shares a label with Robin Guthrie seemingly makes the world seem right, too. I'm just glad there's a band that knows how to make beautiful music with unintelligible words and heavy-handed whammy-bar guitar.Rumskib
, quite honestly, made me fall back in love with music. It made me remember why I started writing about music, and it made me really, truly excited about music once again. Other records have seemingly been that way, but there's no comparison between those records and this one. Early contender for album of the year? Damn straight.