THE SOUNDS Are back stronger than ever with Things We Do For Love, first full album in seven years

Swedish indie rock group The Sounds release sixth album, first full album in seven years, Things We Do For Love (out now: June 12, 2020viaArnioki Records).

Considering The Sounds’ 22-year career, it’s no surprise that Things We Do For Love is a musically accomplished and sonically polished master class in electro-flecked, neon rock. With ‘parenting’ now a band concern and musical history with a wide wingspan, The Sounds are no strangers to growth and change. The album harnesses their hard-earned maturity and dynamic chemistry into effervescent zing and escapist ‘80s indulgence reminiscent of the quintet’s Platinum-selling 2002 debut Living in America.

Listen to Things Things We Do For Love HERE

Things We Do For Love instinctively recaptures The Sounds’ perky, punky best; conjuring images of smeared neon nights on the town, falling in love (or lust), and the mutual tingle of things left unsaid, all with a sparkle of defiant optimism – forever reaching for something brighter and better than the socially-mandated status quo. The first single and title track, “Things We Do For Love”, hits you right in the face with an explosive entrance of layered synths, whirlwinds of guitar solos, and percussion shaker sections. This rollercoaster of love single introduces the record like the “thousand pounds of dynamite” lyrics suggest, and offers the perfect explanation for how anyone feels when the love bug takes hold. “There’s so many things that you do for love – as a mother, as a lover … or for money. Whatever your love may be,” says vocalist Maja Ivarsson. “And that can mess you up – or mess things up.”

The frenetic feel continues with the second single, “Safe and Sound”, reaching back to the year 2006 with the band’s trademarked sleek synths. Maja’s vocals flow strong in each verse, running alongside a gunning bass, pulsating keys, and a mirrored kick drum, “I wanted it to sound like you’re in fifth gear in your car… just driving into the moonlight,” says Maja. The track feels like the search and yearning for something new, leading perfectly into the contemplative and atmospheric “Changes.” “For me, ‘Changes’ is about not only motherhood, but I’ve had such a crazy life. I’ve done everything. I’ve done all the bad things. I’ve done all the good things,” Maja recounts. “But to be able to change is always good.” 

The shifty and shimmying “Bonnie and Clyde” describes the titular iconic duo and embraces that love can sometimes be toxic and dangerous, but it’s all about taking the risks. Elsewhere on the album “Hollow” talks of revenge-filled anger that has built up within time, while “Dreaming Of You” is the complete opposite – depicting the unsaid words of saying something to someone they care about. 

Though all members contribute to songwriting, Maja has found herself more involved than she’s been since the band’s first two albums – now often collaborating with drummer Fredrik Blond. While The Sounds’ personal lives are lately very different from their 2000s perma-tour, bright-lights blur, their new sense of structure has massively benefited Things We Do For Love. The album’s 11 songs are effectively a “best-of” selection culled from many years of unusually disciplined and purposeful songwriting, scheduled around school runs (both Maja and guitarist/keyboard player Jesper Anderberg have become parents since their last album) and other everyday duties. “Dim The Lights” has the band calling out the fact of not being kids out in the world anymore. Sometimes we need to “dim the lights, lock the doors” to reflect on our emotions and figure out the search for who we really are. 

Things We Do For Love is astonishingly fresh as its triumphant. It captures The Sounds at the very height of their collective powers: an intersection of young-at-heart verve and chiseled expertise that only happens once in a band’s lifetime, if at all.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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