Danish duo Sharin Foo and Sune Rose Wagner, The Raveonettes to you and I, return with a bang, both in the literal and the figurative sense! ‘Bang’ is the first single from the bands 4th studio album “In And Out Of Control” and is a track that once again demonstrates the bands effortless ability to produce stellar pop songs of shimmering brilliance.
Released as a double A-side alongside ‘The Last Dance,’ ‘Bang’ finds The Raveonettes swapping their effects pedals in favour of surfboards to compose a glistening melodious sound which owes more to Beach Boys harmonies than to the Mary Chain guitar thrash of old. On this track at least, it appears the Raveonettes aren’t fixing to ‘Kill Surf City’ just yet, although beneath the veil of ice cream sweetness there lurks menace, “barbed wire kisses” and darkness at the core. Despite the sometimes disturbing lyrical ambiguity of lines such as “Bang! / You’re so vicious baby / Bang! / You sure know how to control me” and “When I scream out baby / Bang! You know I love it all the time” the Raveonettes still manage to leave an overall impression that you’ve just been listening to the perfect upbeat end of summer tune. Yet again they provide a shining example of how to produce pristine pop that is timeless, yet modern.
Whilst ‘Bang’ may be the more commercial, radio friendly number, it’s ‘The Last Dance’ that is the stronger of the two tunes on offer here. Initially it appears to be an innocent song laced with melancholia dealing with traditional Spector-esque prom night gone wrong style heartbreak, but closer scrutiny reveals there are darker themes at play. This isn’t just any old last dance this is the final dance in the true “God putting Patrick Swayze in the corner” sense. Thematically it’s almost like a Ronettes influenced relative of “Girlfriend In A Coma” as Wagner and Foo sing “And every time you overdose I rush to intensive care / Another sad eye stare before you disappear / If this is the last dance, if this is the last dance / Then save it for me baby.” It’s classic Raveonettes, hauntingly dark lyrics drenched in a gorgeous melody infused with a sense of bruised nobility and doomed grandeur.
The Raveonettes thankfully have not tried to reinvent the wheel here, they are doing what they do best, producing effortlessly brilliant fifties and sixties influenced rock n’roll which puts many of the jejune bandwagon jumping revivalists in the shade. Long may they continue to “Rave On”.
This was originally written for Altsounds.com which you can read in full here