The compulsion to mention that the Soundtrack of Our Lives is from Sweden is like that irresistible urge to tell someone where you are when you're on a cell phone. Despite the fact's irrelevance, the conversation seems incomplete without it. After all, there's nothing particularly "Swedish" about this grungy, shiny band. Any similarity to Abba or Yngwie Malmsteen is purely geographical. In fact, the international noise conspiracy cooked up on the quintet's latest release finds its gorgeously disarrayed lineage in the deafening pop roar perfected by a long line of British bands, from the Who to the Stone Roses. Origin Vol. 1 is a tour de force, featuring wailing guitar lines, soulful organ licks, exquisite harmonies and even a cameo from French sex kitten/actress/chanteuse Jane Birkin. And -- if you can believe what music journalists say -- the live show packs even more pop power. With instantly memorable melodies, sumptuous textures and raucous energy, the Soundtrack of Our Lives makes a joyful noise unto the Nord.
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