By: Kerry M
On this, the third record from Sweden's sibling duo The Knife, we find Olof Dreijer and Karin Dreijer Andersson delivering another dose of their signature synthladen eurotrash pop cacophony. Karin's processed vocals often channel a sort of strung-out and carbonite encrusted Kate Bush while icy, Spector-like walls of toe-tapping, synthetic rhythms pulse and careen along accompanying cinematic pads and razor sharp stabs.
Silent Shout is a record that improves with each subsequent listen. Initially, the off-kilter textures and processed tones can be off-putting, almost abrasive, to even the most receptive of synthpop fans. But, with time, the synthetics begin to blur into the background as the layers slowly peel away revealing soul and wit beneath the shimmer and dissonance. The opener and title track, “Silent Shout”, with its bouncy arpeggios set against multi-tracked and processed vocals followed by the hooky “Neverland” with its driving digital percussion and New Wave-tinged vocals sets the dark tone for the album. The lyrical stand out, Marble House, delivers a sort of Bjork meets St. Etienne in a dark Scandanavian alley scored with cheesy sci-fi pads and stabs, which ensconce the sibling's catchy duet.
And while lyrically nothing comes close to eclipsing the pop genius of “Heartbeats” from their previous release, Deep Cuts, several tracks on Silent Shout demonstrate considerable growth both lyrically and musically, making this a solid follow up from a band that has further evolved their own curious brand of synthpop.