If the dark promise of Gothic angst floats your boat then Dag fÃ¶r Dag are right down your alley. Like the less savoury cousins of the White Stripes hiding in a Swedish forest, Dag fÃ¶r Dag unleash a feast of obsessions on Boo.
Only last year, Dag fÃ¶r Dag dabbled in 80’s new wave revival on their debut EP Shooting For The Shadows. The duo has since found a more individual style and their first full length album spans a range of genres that takes in folky gothic and minimalistic indie rock a la the White Stripes. Combine that with ominous references to “the dirty seeds you saw” and lines like “I keep your biggest secret within me” and you get a canon of dark, brooding and ever so slightly unsettling songs.
Dag fÃ¶r Dag, or -day after day’ in Swedish, are the brother and sister duo of Sarah and Jacob Snavely. American-Swedish by background, the two siblings settled in Sweden a few years ago which makes for an interesting breeding ground for their Americana-in-exile excursions into North American pop and folk history. The pair make uneasy entertainers on Boo: Jacob breathless and frantic and Sarah brooding and obsessive.
By and large, the rockier songs are the standout tracks on Boo. Tracks like -Seven Stories’, -The Leather Of Your Boots’ and the catchy -Animal’ combine solid hooks with the kind of primitive rock-a-billy instrumentation of snare drum and distorted guitar that worked so well in the hands of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion or the White Stripes. -Wouldn’t You’ shows a different side of Dag fÃ¶r Dag, with the duo fusing the Velvet Underground’s -Ocean’ with the brittle beauty of new wave pioneers Young Marble Giants.
Renown singer-songwriter Richard Swift kept the producer chair warm for almost half of the album, contributing his trademark crisp, acoustic sound. Swedish geezer Johannes Berglund produced seven of the 13 tracks, adding a European twist to Dag fÃ¶r Dag’s essentially American songwriting. Boo doesn’t make for easy listening, but ever so often it succeeds in introducing a new take on the Americana ballad that is worth the effort.