27th of June saw the UK release of Röyksopp’s highly anticipated second album ‘The Understanding’; the follow up to 2002’s million-selling ‘Melody A.M.’.
Late June saw the Bergen/Tromsø duo playing Glastonbury and while prepping for their gig at Glasto’s Other Stage, Röyksopp’s Svein Berge and Torbjørn Brundtland could bolster their psyche with the first batch of UK reviews which turned out to be some very positive ones.
The Observer kicks off the ‘Understanding’ campaign by awarding the album five out of five stars and declaring that “there’s no one more ‘now’ than these Norwegians”. An excited Craig McLean states that Bergen is the new crucible of dance-y music: If you’re after fruitily inventive music that’s filling up dancefloors, warming up radiowaves, sounding great in shops, and flooding out of myriad pop telly channels through the night, get yourself over to Bergen, Norway. There you’ll find Kings Of Convenience, Annie, Sondre Lerche and Ralph Myerz and the Jack Herren Band, It’s a scene that’s been putting the cheery Euro-willies up serious old electronica for a while now. But with the second album from local heroes Röyksopp, the ‘Bergen Sound’ comes of age.”
McLean denies any allegations that Röyksopp have gone too soft on their second album: “Chill-out? Pah. This is get-up and get-living music. Even the closing ‘Dead To The World’, and elegant glide of Eno-like ambience, is profoundly uplifting. The Understanding is the sublime work of clever-clever Scandic arty-pants who’ve found the ghosts in their machines, and spirited them into their music. With the Mylo album selling and selling, and Greatest Hits-toting, Glastonbury-closing Basement Jaxx sounding as vital as ever, Röyksopp are in good company. Now is the summer of our disco-tents…”
BBC.co.uk Music/Dance’s Paul Sullivan is equally pleased with the new Röyksopp outing: “…’The Understanding is a well-conceived and deftly-executed step out of the huge shadow cast by their ultra-bright debut.”
Jive Magazine (US) awards ‘The Understanding’ four-and-a-half stars out of five.
Earlier this week Röyksopp played a sold-out show at London’s Koko which and judging by the positive live reviews things are looking bright for tonight’s gig at Glasto. sd
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