Sweden’s Biomekkanik have unveiled their second album, Violently Beautiful, and it’s a corker. Front-man Christer Hermodsson used to play in S.P.O.C.K and currently has a slot in Eddie Bengtsson’s Sista mannen på jorden [EN: The Last Man on Earth] project, so he knows his way around the poptronica circuit. He has also built a reputation as a technically skilled engineer and mixer, as well as an arranger of uncommon talent. As Biomekkanik, he is completely off the leash, confidently prowling terrain normally trodden by Muse, Covenant or even The Psychedelic Furs. Violently Beautiful finds him leading band-mates Andreas and Ingefjord and Mattias Johansson through the matte black landscape of his dreams, where angels play with barbed wire.
In the post-album age, this collection is that rare thing: a set of potential singles that are more efficiently bought together. From the metal-hammering and supersaws of “Leather and Steel” to the heroic one-night stand of “Kamikaze Playboy,” the tracks are guaranteed to shake alternative dancefloors. Amongst all that, the stand-out track is “Melancholy Friend,” which has the feel of 80s new wave wrapped in a shroud. It’s the kind of song that Billy Idol wishes he could still write.