The Tough Alliance
(09.2008, Modular Interscope)
File Under = Carefree indie dance party
Released in their native Sweden in 2007, I discovered The Tough Alliance's New Chance earlier this year and was immediately sucked into their refreshing brand of tropical retro-electro pop. I don't know why I didn't post on them earlier, well, actually I do. It's all the pressure of this so called blogosphere to be constantly writing up the newest, most recent phenomenon. Well Forest Gospel ain't no Brooklyn Gorilla Gum so I don't know why I'm sweating it. I mean, we're community here right? Ha. Fortunately The Tough Alliance are finally unleashing this beast in the US so that I can write about it and pretend I am still hip and talking about the newest freshness (don't worry, I'm getting professional help). On the surface its simple, The Tough Alliance are a carefree indie pool/dance party waiting in eight beautiful tracks. However, some part of me wants to reach beyond that. Why? Because when I listen to New Chance it doesn't feel like merely some naively assembled one trick pop pony. the album is replayable to infinity and carries a truck bed full of nuances that teeter between dumb luck and genius. And despite hailing from the frosty clutches (at least in my imagination) of Sweden, The Tough Alliance feels somehow as if it came from sunny expanses of Miami. Don't exactly know why I think of Miami when I listen to this because I have actually never even been there. But in my imagination the streets are filled with red convertible Ferraris and 80s indie hipsters cruising past the palms in neon sun glasses. Sometimes I wonder if these type of descriptions are more detrimental than positively informative, so for the sake of clarity, this is an extremely good thing and a healthy break from most anything else claiming itself as indiecentric party music (not that they're officially making that claim). In conclusion, to keep up with my wild band comparisons in the past few reviews, I would sit this thing somewhere between The Avalanches, early Architecture in Helsinki and neon sunglasses. Have at it!