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Red Cell (Sweden) – We will be birds tonight (single)

Birds. A popular theme for song writers. Nelly Furtado, Antony & the Johnsons, and Sweden’s own Johanna Brun (soon) to name but a handful who have been inspired by our ornithological friends. Noel Gallagher has high flying ones. The Byrds just lost one.

Red Cell’s approach to the subject is their archetypal fully orchestral synth pop one that out-erasures Erasure.

The duo’s Stefan Aronsson says ‘We will be birds tonight’ is a song that “pretty much wrote itself a couple of years back”, without detailing the specific circumstances. He adds, “It feels good to finally let go of it.”

I’ve said several times before always to expect a strong hook with Red Cell and this song is no exception although the hooks aren’t perhaps quite as powerful as on the two previous singles of theirs which came this way. But where there’s any marginal loss of melody this time it’s more than made up for by its epic-ness.

The other thing I’ve noted about Red Cell is their ability to hang the hook on a small series of notes. In ‘Good Morning, Good Light’ (September 2022) it was three notes and on this occasion they’ve taken minimalism even further with just two (occasionally stretching to three, you’ll hear what I mean) which pervade it from beginning to end, supported by a battalion of synth pads by the sound of it and a couple of little subtle key changes that catch the attention.

The final product is both listenable and danceable – a combination not easily achieved – and I’ll be surprised if it doesn’t turn up in coastal vacation clubs across the Mediterranean this summer.

I’ve also said previously that it wasn’t difficult to identify ‘elements’ of a host of 1980s synth pop bands apart from Erasure in their work but with this song they’ve shifted much closer to nailing their own unique sound, one which I’m sure will become more recognisable still as time goes on.

Red Cell are Stefan Aronsson and Jimmy Skeppstedt.

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