Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fever Ray: "The Wolf"

In my days as an intern over at FADER, it occurred to me not only that Fever Ray was an immense pleasure to listen to, but also a commercially viable artist whose manipulations of Grimm's Fairytale ghoulishness, eerie fashion, and icy electronics would someday hit a greater audience. "The Wolf," Fever Ray's contribution to the upcoming "Red Riding Hood" soundtrack, makes it clear: if we were expecting an upbeat, family remake of the children's classic, we'd better shift our expectations. The new tune picks up the elegiac control of Fever Ray's eponymous 2009 effort and cracks it apart. The sparse, rhythmically-disturbing percussions that characterize Karin Dreijer Andersson's music is present as always, but with "Wolf" we hear a more unhinged side of the artist: an almost PJ Harvey-esque howl bellows desperately through the song, like the haunted rattle of night wind in Halloween trees. If that wounded yelp is any indication of how Fever Ray's as-yet-unannounced sophomore LP will sound, an auspicious time is indeed before us.

 Fever Ray - The Wolf

According to IMDB, the soundtrack to "Red Riding Hood" also includes Fever Ray's dark-alley song, "Keep the Streets Empty for Me." The visually stunning video below blows away the pop world's artist-poseurs with plain old-school talent.

And, if the Andersson tracks didn't make it clear enough, stadium-anthem synthsters The Big Pink come in nearly at the soundtrack's close with an atypically spooky little number:

If "Red Riding Hood" proves as excellent as its soundtrack, we may be seeing one more kooky feather in Crazy Face Amanda Seyfried's blockbuster belt. Me and the bf might even be seeing it one of these days. Maybe. I mean, we really probably won't. We sure as hell--on the other hand--will be watching out for this soundtrack's odd, grim gems.

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