Album Review: Plunge | Fever Ray
Updated: Jul 12, 2021
Fever Ray releases her long awaited sophomore album in 2017, 8 years after her highly acclaimed self-titled debut, and the anticipation was absolutely worth it.
Most interesting is how Plunge sounds just as dark as its predecessor BUT expressed from a completely different angle. The overall sound is less depressive than her debut, with a more aggressive approach towards the matters she sings for. We have a chaotic mix of political, deeply personal as well as sexual themes alternating into a restless tracklist dressed with her beautifully alien vocals and awkwardly smashing percussion.
The album starts playing and Karin’s instantly recognizable voice has the main part over minimal instrumentation in 'Wanna Sip', followed by the wise and melancholic ‘Mustn’t Hurry’ where she is repeating: ‘Need someone but mustn't hurry, Something more but don't you worry’. Patience is a sign of maturity just like motherhood which she claims to be seeking here. The obscure ‘Fallin’ hits like a drug with an addictive kick and distorted sounds looping throughout the song. After that, a rebel version of Fever Ray is taking over for the next tracks with daring lyrics, fast-paced percussion and controversial attitude, peaking this mood with her -let’s say ‘pop’- single ‘To the Moon And Back’.
Back to her cocoon, the painful ‘Red Trails’ gives the chills with a crying violin that can tear you apart if you happen to listen at your most vulnerable. ‘An itch’ is her last angry stop before the rather tranquil closure ‘Mamas Hand’, the lyrics of which could tell 100 different stories if listened by 100 different people.
Plunge is Fever Ray at her best. No review can describe this mixture of electronic, distorted sounds, unsettling vocals and contradicting moods, all in one body. We'd gladly wait another 8 years if we are promised a Plunge Vol.II !