HANNA MED H
ALBUM RABID RELEASE: NOVEMBER
26, 2003 REVIEW: JANUARY 10, 2004
sibling duo have a lot of things speaking for them. Their idiosyncratic
take on electronic pop does its best to shatter gender roles and is characterised
by a very personal use of cheap synth sounds, combined with the, eh, rather
odd vocals of both Karin and Olof Dreijer. Still, I can’t really
find it in myself to fully appreciate them, for no other reason than the
fact that the end result simply doesn’t speak to me. Other than
on a theoretical level.
“Hanna med H” is their second album 2003, and follows up the
much acclaimed “Deep Cuts”. The soundtrack to the film with
the same name is a bit of a departure from their earlier work. But only
partly. The music is still mainly based on sounds that, at least to my
ears, sound like they’re squeezed out of those old digital synthesizers
most people would rather try to forget. But The Knife relish them, and
manage to bring them out of the eighties and into the noughties. Being
a soundtrack album, “Hanna med H” is largely instrumental,
and not all of it works without accompanying images.
Some pieces are pleasantly atmospheric, whereas others sound like digital
muzak from the lobbies of hell. There’s also some pointless Teutonic
techno body (“Wanting to Kill”) and, worst of all, “Poetry
by Night”, what sounds like a stillborn attempt at an Enya song
– teethgrindingly bad.
But everything’s forgiven when I play “Handy-Man” for
the third time in a row. A simple body tune that’s probably the
best song The Knife have ever done. In any case it outshines everything
on “Hanna med H”.