The Raveonettes – Observator


Hard to believe that the Raveonettes released their debut mini-album Whip It On 10 years ago. It’s probably even harder to believe that the band has survived the last decade after failing to deliver a real hit. Under Vice they may not have released their most memorable output but what’s remarkable is the consistency and regularity in the work of Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo.

Observator comes only a year after Raven in the Grave which is easily the weakest album in their discography. But the duo have made an admirable turnaround with their sixth full-length working in Venice Beach during Wagner’s recovery from a nagging back injury and bout with depression.

Produced by Wagner and Richard Gottehrer the legend behind “My Boyfriend’s Back” and the Raveonettes’ 2005 album Pretty in Black Observator eases up on the noise and searches for other textures besides distortion. A reverb-laced piano leads the scenic “Observations” which evokes a cruise through L.A.’s seediest strips wearing rose-coloured glasses. They then take a bright and jangly indie pop turn with “The Enemy” which sounds lifted right out of Sarah Records’ catalogue.

Ending on the speedy noise pop of “Till the End” the Raveonettes might sound indecisive about where to head sonically in their second decade. But at least Observator ’s a step in the right direction when it comes to the actual songs.