Montag, 24. Oktober 2016

The Radio Dept. - Running Out Of Love






















Streitigkeiten mit ihrem Label Labrador Records führten dazu, dass The Radio Dept. ihr viertes Album erst mit Verzögerung, sechs Jahre nach „Clinging To A Scheme“ veröffentlicht haben. Vor Gericht erhielt das Plattenlabel Recht, „Running Out Of Love“ erschien auf Labrador und ist gleichzeitig das Ende der langjährigen Liebesbeziehung zwischen Plattenfirma und Band, die zukünftig ein anderes zu Hause haben wird.

Johan Duncanson und Martin Larsson greifen, ein Blick auf das Cover genügt, textlich zu den Waffen und attackieren die schwedische Regierung, Faschisten, Rassisten und natürlich Labrador Records. Musikalisch legen sie die Gitarren fast komplett zur Seite und führen uns zurück in die elektronischen 90er Jahre. Opener „Sloboda Narodu“ könnte von „Screamadelica“ stammen, das folgende „Swedish Guns“ lässt an den Trip Hop von Leftfiels „Original“ denken, „Occupied“ entleiht sich die bedrohlichen Synthiebögen aus „Twin Peaks“, an anderen Stellen schimmern House, Techno und immer wieder New Order durch.  




Running Out Of Love’s direction isn’t apparent at first, with deceptive opening track Slobada Naru based around upbeat timpani taps and chiming guitars. Once Swedish Guns arrives with its urgent strings and gunshots, however, it’s clear that the record is of a more pessimistic character than 2010’s Clinging to A Scheme, with Johan Duncanson’s customarily uniform vocals lamenting Sweden’s arms industry, selective police brutality, and their long-running court case.
With so many axes to grind, Running Out Of Love becomes a riveting and richly European record, hinting at Kraftwerk’s icy Computer Love synths on We Got Game, Idioteque’s IDM beat on the haunting seven-minute centrepiece Occupied, and Massive Attack on the looping bass of Committed to the Cause. Even songs that feel more familiar, such as the bouncy Bound to Happen or the drippy adult contemporary of Can’t Be Guilty, are tinged with an unusual resignation. Angry, acquiescent and apathetic all at once, Running Out Of Love is an ideal album for our anxious times.
(The Skinny)




Shared early last year, “Occupied” is the album’s political and creative center. Constructed over a thumping beat and drone, this is The Radio Dept. at their most thematically merciless: over a seven-minute track, Johan Duncanson speaks of grief, capitalism and power.
Yet, the discourse never feels alienating. That’s because Running Out of Love also has its human side (its latter half, to be more precise). “Can’t Be Guilty” is the only true pop song to be found in the album — something so quiet and dreamlike that could have been found in their previous works.
What is certainly undeniable is that Running Out of Love showcases a band that has been frustrated for too long. Perhaps we could have have witnessed something like that in Clinging to a Scheme’s criticism of the bourgeois, yet that was a scattered view of the world. This is a darker, more direct take from a band that sees in pop music a place to distill their ideas.
Which brings me back to that initial thought: The Radio Dept. have always relied on dreamy soundscapes in order to get their message across. Now they speak of drinking Cuba Cola (“This Thing Was Bound to Happen”, one of the album’s finest moments). Some could hear the sound of a band losing all their meaning, which is understandable. The Radio Dept. stopped perfecting the music that involves abstract concepts like youth and innocence. They started taking action.
(Pretty Much Amazing)




The Radio Dept. in Deutschland:

02.02.17 Köln, Gebäude 9
03.02.17 Berlin, Berghain