On paper, you might assume that Swedish/American electronic act Miike Snow have been slacking since the release of 2012’s Happy To You. It’s true that new album, iii, was four years in the making, but the reason for the delay seems to be just how prolific the guys of Miike Snow have been in their side projects. That’s what happens when you put two of Sweden’s most creative producers and team them ultra-talented American vocalist Andrew Wyatt. When the trio takes the stage April 13th and 14th at the Independent they are bringing us new music that’s been honed by all the different work they have done in the last few years.
While not working on Miike Snow, Christian Karlsson, and Pontus Winnberg have a long history of producing hits as Bloodshy & Avant. Additionally, they both put out music in the last couple years in other side projects. Karlsson is half of club favorite Galantis and Winnberg worked on one my favorite albums of 2015, Sky City by Swedish super group Amason. Meanwhile, Andrew Wyatt was doing some awesome collaborations of his own, including providing the vocals for A-Trak‘s big single “Push.”
When you are kicking ass in so many other projects you probably don’t want to put out any new music as Miike Snow until you know you have something special. With iii, I feel like the group has recaptured that infectious pop sound that skyrocketed them to fame with 2009’s self-titled debut. The stand out single has to be “Ghengis Khan”, which features one of the few music videos I love watching from start to finish. Wyatt’s high-register vocals melt into the clipped hip hop drumbeat and synth tones in a perfect pop creation.
But the album isn’t just a vehicle for one single, it really is a complete work. As always there are the weird quirks, tones, smooth samples and harmonies that are a hallmark of the group. A great example is “Trigger” a janglin’ 70s backbeat is layered with funky, highly modified vocals. It’s like a Stevie Wonder song created by a robot on acid. I also got a kick out of the bonus track version of “Heart Is Full” which features a few verses from Run The Jewels. There’s nothing like a horn-heavy hip hop beat and rhymes from Killer Mike and El-P to put you in the right mindset.
If you can’t catch Miike Snow Wednesday or Thursday next week you can still catch them Friday at Outside Lands!