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Demon

Envelopes

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Album Review

In the tradition of recent cross-cultural mash-ups like Architecture in Helsinki or Arcade Fire (or, for the historically minded, 1980s Anglo-French collective Family Fodder), the Swedish group Envelopes mix and match influences from throughout the history of pop for a sound that could conceivably be termed post-postmodernism: not collage for its own sake but simply the default method of working for young musicians for whom the Velvet Underground's churning primitivism, the minimalist twee pop of Young Marble Giants, Pixies' quiet-loud-quiet dynamics, Beck's appropriations of hip-hop, and Stereolab's neo-Krautrock bossa nova electronica are all grist for the mill. Similarities to all of those artists can be found on Demons (heck, the two-minute first single, "It Is the Law," alone bears some comparison to all five!), but these ramshackle songs are their own peculiar beast. The album title is a play on "demos," and the group — formerly spread between three cities on the European continent but now based in rural Yorkshire — considers it to be more of a tease for their first proper album than a release by itself, but the naïve charms of the Pavement-like "Sister in Love" or the bouncy indie pop of "My Fern" are utterly delightful in and of themselves. To be fair, co-lead singer Audrey Pic's unique sense of pitch (think of Clare Grogan's needling, hiccuppy vocals on those Altered Images singles from the early '80s) might be a deal-breaker for some more traditionally minded pop fans, but Demons is well worth checking out for those who like a sense of the unexpected in their pop.

Customer Reviews

One of my favorite albums of the last decade

This album always puts me in a good mood. It's a shame the band are no longer making music.

Biography

Formed: 2002

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

By the way of France and Sweden, Envelopes feature Henrik (vocals/guitar), Audrey (guitar/vocals), Martin (bass), Filip (drums), and Fredrik (guitar). Henrik, Fredrik, and Martin met during high school while Audrey met Henrik in college; Filip was befriended at a local gig in Sweden. Each was a fan of the Pixies, Kate Bush, Talking Heads, Bob Hund, and Os Mutantes. In between semesters and during holidays, the indie rock band was born in 2002. Their first gig, under the Nicotines moniker, followed...
Full Bio
Demon, Envelopes
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