Frida Sundemo invites us to a world of her own unique form of scandi-pop on her new album, Flashbacks and Future – and we want to live there forever!
Frida released her debut album, Dear, Let It Out, exclusively in Japan in 2010, and its lead single ‘Towers’ became a number one radio hit. In 2013 she released her EP Indigo to massive critical acclaim from the likes of NME and The Guardian, her following 2014 EP, Lit Up By Neon, achieved equally great acclaim – now, on her second album, she’s ready to take things a step further.
The album is clearly inspired by space and the unknown from the “Prelude” which kindly invites us to visit that Sundemo has created, full of synth beats and minimal electro productions that can take your mind away from like for nearly an hour.
The album finds itself between three different places, shimmering synth-laden, club-ready tracks like the title track, “Flashbacks and Future,” the rousing, racing and overall anthemic songs like “Islands” and “Stay Young” and finally the ballads that show Sundemo’s vulnerable side.
“We Are Dreamers,” a single already released from the album, shows her club-ready side the best, with the rousing build up to the chorus before we get the atmospherical synth breakdown that we could totally get down to in a club at 3am!
Surprisingly, for an album that has a space theme where the cold and clinical moments give those vibes, it’s the softer, more personal moments that are truly the highlights of this album.
“It’s OK” features an undercurrent like pulse that lies under her voice, lifting it to highs while stating, “this is what it feels like to be alive,” admitting that we have to go through pain to be human. “Gold” on the other hand has a more positive sentiment that replaces the pulse with a kick drum that mimics your heartbeat and draws you further into her world than you already were.
The album isn’t perfect though, at times (mainly towards the end of the album), similar sounds keep rearing their heads, “Forever Us, “Stay Young” and “Violent” all have a racing and rousing vibe that blends into one by the time you’ve finished the ethereal set.
Deciding to end an album that relies on production with a simple piano ballad is a risk, but it totally pays off. While keeping with the theme of the album, it strips back all the cold and clinicalness of the previous songs and lays herself bare. She admits that it’s lonely being in this world that she has created for herself and her listeners.
It’s not an album that you’re going to have on repeat like an Ariana Grande or Nicki Minaj album, this is much more an experience – the sonic intensity would leave you exhausted if this was played ten times a day.
Check out Sundemo’s spacey new album below and let us know what you think in the comments!