|Swedish four-piece Audrey formed in 2002 and started performing gigs in April of the same year. Having recorded a demo in the studio of an artists’ collective in Gothenburg in the summer of 2003, the positive responses were immediate. Word was out on an eclectic new band.
Moving forward a year or so, Audrey began to develop their sound and the embryo of their dark, suggestive pop took its first form in a run-down music house in the archipelago of Gothenburg. “It’s really the worst place. The building was about to be demolished as we rehearsed there. The toilet was broken, the pipes had frozen and there were mice running around on the floor”, says guitarist Victoria Skoglund.
Describing Audrey’s music is no easy task. If the group has succeeded in finding a central theme, it’s a balance in the melodies - shimmering beautiful seconds of pop meet dark sadness. The harmonies (everyone in the group shares vocal efforts) shift quickly between keys and moods. The hierarchy of the group is minimal and each song is improvised out as a whole. Straightforward, conventional narrative, is replaced by abstract meanings which strengthen the melodies. “I like it when the lyrics can mean different things, that we give clues to our audience. Sometimes we can write quite incoherent things, but we are looking for a feeling in the music”, says Victoria.
In the Spring of 2005, Audrey’s debut EP was released in the UK and the band toured as support to their Gothenburg friend and contemporary José González. Some warm reviews and a BBC radio session followed, along with more UK shows the following Autumn.
In July 2005, the four girls went into Gothenburg’s Elements studio along with producer Paul Bothén, in order to record their debut album. Paul’s credits include the Grammy-nominated “Northern Blues” by Kristofer Åström and “Moby Dick” by The Bear Quartet. Paul and the band expected the recording to take two weeks, in the end it took a total of two months, with sessions continuing into 2006.
The result is a landscape of sounds, rich and grand, with a naked honesty often lacking in so many over-produced efforts. Think Steve Albini meets Don Fleming meets Dave Fridmann. Vocal harmonies mix with dark pop melodies, post-rock sounds and orchestral arrangements. Perhaps one can hear respectful nods to; Cat Power, Karin Dreijers of The Knife, Dirty Three, Low and Sigur Rós, but the result is very much their own.
Still in their early twenties, with an independence of spirit and a disdain for musical cliché, this is the sound of a band beyond their years, yet only just beginning. This is Audrey's debut album. This is Visible Forms.