October 4, 2017 The Rasmus – Dark Matters (Album Review)
Melancholia never sounded as sweet as the dance-able beats of Dark Matters, the newest offering from Finland’s The Rasmus. Available on Friday, October 6th, 2017 via Playground Music Scandinavia, the collection blends paradise and Pop, darkness and dance.
Finnish rockers The Rasmus originally formed in 1994 in Helsinki while still in high school. Over the next eighteen years, the boys would release eight studio albums – from 1996’s Peep to 2012’s The Rasmus – with album sales totaling more than 2.3 million units worldwide. Furthermore, 2003’s Dead Letters would prove a break-out international hit for the band – especially here in the U.S. – thanks, in part, to the single “In The Shadows.” The album made the Top 10 in ten countries, and reached No. 1 in Germany, Austria, and at home in Finland. A favorite across the globe – beloved for their unique brand of Nordic melancholia – The Rasmus have won numerous awards across the span of their career, and have a proudly die-hard international fan-base.
Now poised to make their triumphant return after five years away, The Rasmus – Singer-Songwriter Lauri Ylönen, Guitarist Pauli Rantasalmi, Bassist Eero Heinonen, and Drummer Aki Hakala – present their ninth studio release, Dark Matters. Produced by the Swedish team The Family (Iggy Azalea, Fifth Harmony), the ten-song collection is chock-full of infectiousness galore. In fact, there is no denying the addictive spells cast by The Rasmus from the first seconds of the album, first track “Paradise.” Your hips will shake, your butt will shimmy, and a smile is guaranteed to cross your face thanks to this rocker with delicious radio friendliness. The superb production and clean sounds continue into “Something In The Dark,” a catchy spell that is equally danceable and yet, somehow, a pinch darker in nature.
There is gritty Rock guitar work to kick-off “Wonderman,” a self-affirming, midtempo exploration of the super-hero in us all. Held down by electronic beats, “Nothing” celebrates a sadistic love of committing the same sins on repeat; a delicious toast to doing nothing right. The beats continue into “Empire,” which despite using some seriously catchy clichés (“I hate to see you leaving but I love to watch you go”), somehow manages to still sound fresh and modern. It is followed by more joyfully poisonous Pop moves in “Crystalline.”
There is a delicious darkness and light to “Black Days,” where electronic elementals weave radio friendliness into a sea of perfectly bleak celebrations that are characteristic of The Rasmus. If you are stuck trying to feel something on a down day, wave your hands in the air and join our black parade! As we march into the “Silver Night,” the wolves howl to a damned catchy beat that swirls like the reflections of a Disco ball onto a crowded dance floor. One can almost guarantee a club remix of “Delirium” – a dancing and prancing ethereal dream – which flows beautifully into electronic ballad “Dragons Into Dreams,” a splendid visualization of epic silver-screen fantasy adventures that closes the collection out on a truly inspiring note.
The Rasmus are undeniably catchy on Dark Matters, which is, in truth, anything but dark. There is dancing and electronic beats, hip-shaking and heroes. Undeniably melodic, a wet dream for radio, these Finns create a delirious blend of infectious sounds that will prance its dance shoes across your heart. From melancholia to nothingness, sadistic thrills to heroic heights, Dark Matters is heavy on all things modern, addictive, and fabulous. For these reasons, CrypticRock give The Rasmus’ Dark Matters 4 of 5 stars.