After four years without releasing a studio album, Miike Snow is back and honestly I was not too excited to hear iii. This is because Miike Snow is a band I never really got into and the brief period they had captured my interest has gone away. I did not listen to any of the singles and just dived into this blind. After a listen, I felt like there was no reason for me to feel so apathetic. iii is not a great album, but it definitely fits in well in their discography.
A few seconds into “My Trigger,” the album’s opening track I knew what to expect and I pretty much got just what I thought I would. The keyboard on this song adds some authenticity as there are plenty of electronics used on this track, and the rest of the record. The echoing effect’s added to the vocals here took some getting used to and I still am not wild about the distortion during the “oohs” and “ohs” but they don’t take away too much from this.
“Genghis Khan,” the big single on here, is undoubtedly fun, with all the qualities of a good pop song. The lyrics are a little on the nose during the chorus but besides that I like the metaphor the band is going for. The song is about jealously, even when you know there is no reason for it. This is similar to “Somebody Else” on The 1975’s last album, and while more catchy is not nearly as well written as that track.
The sample, or at least I assume it’s a sample, used on “Heart Is Full” is well utilized and the song itself is one of my favorites here. I really enjoyed the auto-tune used at the beginning and the backing beat is solid as well. I wish there more songs that felt as well constructed as this one. It has the most interesting instrumentation and definitely has the most going for it. Also the bonus track remix with Run the Jewels is excellent.
Following this is the very electronic heavy “For U” which I was not crazy about, seeing it as feeling a little scattered sonically. The saving grace here is Charlie XCX who provides great work in her chorus, making the song feeling like the mainstream pop song I felt it might have wanted to feel like.
Another song that has grown to become one of my favorites is “Feel the Weight” which definitely showcases the most emotion in the vocals, despite being a little oversaturated in electronics. The message is not anything new, basically saying you do not know what you have until it is gone but it is handled well and is probably the best written song Miike Snow put on here.
This calmer tone is carried through the rest of this album, with “Back of the Car” is also much mellower, despite some odd assisting vocals in the chorus. The only song that is particularly interesting from this point is “Over and Over” which has a pretty dark opening with a toned down beat and whispered vocals. This sound is not consistent as Miike Snow goes in and out of there typical style. I guess that makes this track a unique one but that besides that it is not too much of a stand out.
There really is not too much to dive into with this record. If you like Miike Snow, this is exactly what you should expect from them at this point. I wish they would have stretched themselves and given more after a long time with no new content but this is inoffensive. There really aren’t any horrible songs here and plenty of good ones so give this a listen if you are fan of this kind of electronic indie pop. I just wish this was a little more exciting than it ended up being.
Best Tracks: My Trigger, Genghis Khan, Heart is Full, I Feel the Weight
Worst Track: Lonely Life (just for being the most forgettable)