November 25, 2009

Mod-A-Day: Irene

Every once in a while, more often if your lucky, you stumble across a band that just does it for you. You know what I mean, every song they sing, every hook, every jingle, every jangle, every single vocal drop, just works. You like it. That's how it is for me with Irene. Here's a nice pop band, dare I say it, a twee sounding pop band, with a crooner for a singer. No, really. The band pumps out this perfectly beautiful pop music, and there's this bold, loungified vocal over the top of it all. It's gorgeous in both it's surprise and likability.

Irene is a Swedish pop band, with loads of sixties influences, a clear love of soul and power pop both. And over the top of it all is this sort of lounge thing, thanks to big, bold, deep and booming voice of "Bobby" on vocals. The music isn't lounge music at all, but the voice is one that cold martinis and manhattans are served behind all the time (at least in the cool cocktail universe where stuff like that really happens). The music is an ifectious concoction of northern soul horns, power pop guitars, and a firm grasp of what make a good pop song. The band has released a slew of singles, a record's release to be sure, with even a Christmas holiday offering in the mix. From 2005 through 2008 they have turned out some really great recordings, the standouts being "Stardust", one of their earliest, it's short and sweet, and has a great soul vibe under the pop guitars. Also good is their cult "hit" "Baby, I Love Your Way" which could have dropped off any Style Council album in their early days. It's a straight forward bit of pop with soulful horns and catchy hooks and melodies.

It seems that the band members have gone their separate ways with different projects for the time being. But one can hope they all decide to collaborate for one or more new songs.

Irene -- Baby, I Love Your Way

Irene -- Stardust

Irene -- By Your Side