By far the best thing I have seen and heard in 2009; fascinating sounds wrapped up in amazing images (the videos are truly grabbing and inspiring).
Shame for the lyrics, mostly plain, non descript, vaguely supernatural, disconnected it seems but that is the only weakness if I may say because Karin Dreijer Andersson's singing is almost glossolalic and quite similar to that of Liz Frazer (Cocteau Twins).
Apart from that, the entire album is a haunting and sombre journey through frozen landscapes, empty nights with under cover and stifling sensations all the way through. Very little joy, hardly any breathing space.
And then there are those two shamanic singers, man and woman, whose voices are coming out of nowhere and singing, low and deep, fading memories and desperate hopes. Their visionary chants are supported by an amazing range of percussive effects which create a very peculiar pulse: either peaceful, tense, thrilling or ecstatic.
Overall, this album is taking us back to these ancient times and realms where 'Dead can dance' used to reign and to deliver their sybilian messages to their entranced audience. Still this fever is less catchy, less conspicuous, almost atonal but all the songs, even those that may sound less melodic, do have this ray or this fear that is creeping behind the eyes.
Finally, I would say this album is more voodoo than mystic, it has been designed to be murmured in the woods, alone and barefoot by a fire, but not to be sung in chapels or amongst sharing crowds; it is creating a unique and personal relationship and everyone is free to merge their own dreams within this dream.