If, like me, you’re a massive fan of anything folky and Norwegian then you too will be pleased to hear that indie faves Kings of Convenience are back with a new album. Declaration of Dependence is the duos third album and there’s been a five year gap since their last material, Riot on an Empty Street. So was it worth the wait?
As soon as opener ‘24-25’ begins, it’s glaringly obvious that it has been. Bøe’s vocals are as haunting as ever and recall the calming debut Quiet is the New Loud. The tempo picks up (slightly) on the outstanding ‘Mrs.Cold’. From the soft lyrics to the delicate guitar melodies, this track is a perfect example of why Kings of Convenience are so well-loved.
There’s an innocence about this album, with the cover art of the band lazing around by the beach and the typically KoC lyrics about heartbreak and misunderstood relationships captured perfectly in the “I could never belong to you” chorus of ‘Boat Behind’.
Declaration of Dependence is not a big leap from previous Kings of Convenience albums and offers little in the way of originality, however there is something safe about the album which has trademarks of the band scattered throughout. With so many bands striving to create a new ‘unheard’ sound and failing, it’s nice to see KoC working with the same resonance they’ve always had and not determined to change it but instead make it even more beautiful and heart-warming.
And if for some reason you are not a fan of anything folky or Scandinavian, then Declaration of Dependence might just be the album to change all that.
Words: Michael Rudge