Denmark’s Slaraffenland is a five-piece who play a brand of rock as stark as the North Sea. Often churning and heavy, it’s cold, difficult, but not without its lush resources. The band’s third album, Private Cinema, is nothing short of powerful – to the point of relentless – as their experimental rock slowly reveals its density at a variety of speeds. Dissonant chanting, erractic orchestration, and grinding rock comprise an album not for the weak of ear or attention span.
Private Cinema begins with the shanty stomp "Sleep Tight", which begins as a strong, methodical punch before collapsing into a guitar flurry that’s flanked by various horns. "Show Me The Way" and "Polaroids" follow as relatively-mellow tunes, but the former has alternating horns on both sides of the stereo monitor. The latter is a sandpaper jam with all the instruments swirling at the end. The beginning of the album is a wash of mid-tones and mid-tempo beats that take some chewing to swallow.
The next few tracks are at times desolate and mess with speeds and textures. "This One Will Kill Us" begins as a garage-y roll before it slips into a sax-spiked coma and eventually a rapid-drummed mix of horns and distorted guitars. "The Run Up" is a quiet guitar/horn dynamic that slowly builds up. "Road" lacks percussion, but makes up for with a storm of distortion and intense shield of noise. "Wath Out" ramps up from quick strumming and shouting to a brisk, semi-military pace.
The latter quarter of the album features the aluminal stomp "You Win", the erratic freak-out "Ghosts", and somewhat peaceful outro "How Far Would You Go". It’s a rollercoaster ending of an already exhaustive ride.
Somewhere along the lines of experimental and post-rock, Private Cinema portrays an interesting, but convoluted landscape. Guitars often build heavy winds while horns push them in all directions. Drums can roll and crash like powerful waves, and all combined, are as treacherous as a rough sea. The album will appeal especially to sea-faring and experimental art-rock indie fans alike.