March 29, 2003

Ronderlin "Wave Another Day Goodbye"

These are testing times. With war, terrorism, unemployment and uncertainty, it's really easy for you to get stressed out. Relaxation? That's so 1990s; we've got too much to worry about right now; let's schedule relaxation for, say, 2033. Besides, when society is built on and obsessed with fear, anxiety and nervousness, doesn't it seem a bit anti-social to be calm, cool and collective?

Leave it to Sweden to provide some cool, chilled-out music. Ronderlin are Hidden Agenda's latest Nordic offering, and their arrival couldn't have come at a better time. Their light, folky-pop is a balm for trying times. How could it not be? Their music is soft, soothing, and gorgeous; with piano and acoustic guitar and a very soft-voiced singer, there's no way that Wave Another Day Goodbye is going to offer anything less than a relaxing, meditative listen. There's not much information about Ronderlin, but that's okay; their music doesn't really require much in the way of identity. Though the little promotional blurb suggests that Ronderlin is less Nick Drake, more Smiths, I'm hearing more than a passing resemblence to Coldplay, though I don't think Coldplay really have the same emotional fire that burns brightly through Wave Another Day Goodbye.

In a perfect world, songs like the title track, "Summer Likes The Wind" and "You Made Somebody Want You" would gain airplay on "modern rock" radio, and it's a shame that they aren't. Ronderlin have a sound that's all their own, yet is totally accessible, enjoyable, and very, very pleasant. That may not be music to your ears, but it certainly is to mine. Wave Another Day Goodbye is a fresh-sounding record that, while slightly innocuous at times, certainly shows a great deal of promise. Then again, they're not trying to be anything that they're not, which leads me to think that Ronderlin are, indeed, poised for great things. Too bad America probably isn't listening...

--Joseph Kyle

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