Fever Ray Plunge
Karin Dreijer has been so good at creating spectacle—with ornate masks and costumes, through her secretive persona, on The Knife’s choreography-forward Shaking the Habitual “farewell” tour—that it’s been too easy to miss the meaning behind her music over the years. Not so on the second album from Dreijer’s solo project, Fever Ray. Where 2009’s eponymous debut felt shadowy and lyrically abstract, Plunge gets right to the point, with the Swedish singer declaring, “Wanna do it? If we do it, it’s my way” early in first track “Wanna Sip.”
From there, Plunge continues as a condemnation of sexual politics—and an affirmation of personal power—peaking during the unambiguous “This Country,” which culminates with Dreijer repeating “This house makes it hard to f*ck/This country makes it hard to f*ck.” Of course, such sentiments hit hardest when accompanied by magical melodies, and though Plunge largely succeeds at that (stream especially: slinky psuedo-ballad “A Part of Us” and the pulsating, dancefloor-ready “To the Moon and Back”), the ethereal electronic tunes sometimes can’t quite compete with their creator’s stunningly plain-spoken message.