Attentive Raveonettes fans passed the summer anxiously, weighing the implications of the revelation that the duo’s forthcoming collection largely sprang from frontman Sune Rose Wagner’s Jim Morrison-inspired bender of booze and benzos. “I was going through a Doors period, and indulging in too much drinking and unhealthy ways of living,” Wagner told Paste in a Web video interview. Even so, it’s likely some fan fears were not solely for his health, but for the sanctity of the New York-based, Copenhagen-bred duo’s peculiar brand of fuzz-pop noir, which filters the vibe of bygone rock vocal acts through the exuberantly noisy proto-punk of the Velvet Underground. Fortunately, Observator is unmarred by the regressive blues and faux-shamanism espoused by the Doors. Instead, the Raveonettes here plot the aural dimensions of a timeless autumn. Ever-present reverb casts long chiaroscuro shadows across undeniable pop hooks in uptempo strummers “Downtown” and “Till The End.” Observator’s melancholy California come-downs are equally arresting, including opener “Young and Cold,” one of three songs featuring piano (a first for the Raveonettes, now six albums deep). In the Web video, Wagner proclaims the record “a nostalgic glorification of unrequited love.” It’s also a crucial listen and one of the most rewarding releases of 2012.
THE RAVEONETTES + MELODY'S ECHO CHAMBER | Paradise Rock Club, 967 Comm Ave, Boston | October 7 @ 8 pm | 18+ | $18.50 | 617.562.8800