Issue March 24, 2009

Futuro

The Low Frequency In Stereo
RUNE GRAMMOFON

Describing Norway’s The Low Frequency in Stereo as “eclectic” is an unfortunate understatement. Futuro toggles, in rather freewheeling fashion, between anthemic pop and total weirdness. The most memorable, and best, songs balance the two. “Starstruck” amalgamates a motorik-informed rhythm with space-rock reverb and bubblegum vocals (think Pia Fraus or Deerhunter). “Geordie La Forge” makes me nostalgic for early Stereolab, back when it was noisier and less space-age bachelor pad. However, considering Norway’s musical output has generally gravitated toward evil, the more dissonant turns (“Mt. Pinatubo,” the nine-minute, obviously cosmic “Solar System”) make sense, creating the “bad trip” yin to the Black Angels’ acid rock yang — with sax, no less. Perhaps because of geography or vastly different drug regimen, LoFrequSter’s cluster of kraut, space, psych and pop proves that an identity crisis isn’t necessarily bad. —Michael Powell