Alice in Videoland

Alice in Videoland

Alice in Videoland

Maiden Voyage Plus

Artoffact

Ah, Sweden… if there’s one thing folks from that part of the world know inside and out, it’s how to put together a flawless pop song. Alice in Videoland is certainly no exception to this rule, penning incredibly seamless dark disco that trumps anything The Killers offered up on their debut, or Metric spent their career refining. The quartet borrows heavily from electronica, fashioning these tracks around a clockwork rhythm section so tight there’s no room for error. Over this, any number of guitar and synth melodies vie against each other in a power struggle for catchiness. This is dance music without question, but the band isn’t content to rest on a single shining moment of brilliance and ride it out through the track’s entire duration, it’s mercurial enough to engage both the mind and the body. Check out the disparity in tone between the sinister Knife-esque serrations of “Panic” and the sugary percolations of young blood that run through “Video Girl” for the full range of emotion Alice is able to bring to the dance floor.

This U.S. re-issue of the band’s 10-track album tacks on five additional songs — mostly remixes and alternate versions — that feel like a desperate play to revive a party that’s died on its own terms and are largely unnecessary. Plus might be pushing it, but on the whole this record is definitely a successful maiden voyage.

Artoffact Records: www.artoffact.com

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