Local Wire

Dungen

Everyone goes through a phase where they wish they'd lived in the '60s. You know, the world roils outside, but in the bedroom, the record player is turned up to the latest thing -- musical bliss. Well, guess what? We've got soldiers slogging through a dead-end war, and now we've got Dungen, a bunch of hipstery-looking guys from somewhere in Sweden making the kind of music you thought went out of style at Altamont. Ta Det Lungt ("Take It Easy") is hands-down the best headphone record you've heard in years -- a warm, dark, psychedelic exercise in rock musical adventurism. Keith Moon drum fills, Hendrix guitars, late Beatles melodies, Bitches Brew horns, Pet Sounds-style studio play: Somehow, the Dungen sound adds up to more than the sum of these vintage parts. Maybe that's thanks to a post-rockish willingness to let sounds just coalesce around each other, seemingly going nowhere in particular, but how. The bonus tracks on this overdue domestic release are a little more loosey-goosey than the outright shambolic 13 that comprise the original record, but once you've entered the Dungen headspace, it seems niggardly to complain. "Take it easy," indeed.
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Maya Singer