After delighting us with a wave of bright and glittering singles over the last six months, which have included ‘Summer Of 99’, ‘Rendezvous’, ‘Fool Alone’ and the most recent ‘One Day’, Swedish dream-pop outfit ViVii have now returned to announce the full details behind their long-awaited second album ‘Mondays’, as well as delivering the new lead single ‘Read Between’.
Lifted from their forthcoming new full-length, which lands on May 21st via Dumont Dumont, ‘Read Between’ continues the band’s bold and uplifting aesthetic with this warm and breezy new groove. Capturing more of that smooth yet progressive direction they have shown throughout these comeback releases, their latest effort shows us just how engaging and captivating they are planning to make this new record.
Speaking about the new offering, they said, “We wanted to make a song that didn’t have any set rules to it. Just a journey song, much like a classical music score. The first bit was written in a big brick church from the 1800s somewhere in Holland.
“It talks about not being able to understand how the ordinary life of school, work and other social situations should be handled. It’s not easy when u feel like you’re from another planet.”
While adding about the new album, “Mondays have always left a bad taste in our mouths as we grew up. So by meeting up every Monday in our studio and making music we made that day the best day of the week, maybe trying to rewrite the past in a way. Entering the studio doors equals a safe zone, where everything feels possible and no rules have to be followed in any shape or form.
“So Monday after Monday passed and all of a sudden we had an album ready to share.”
Vivii’s second studio album ‘Mondays’ follows on from their heavily-praised 2019 self-titled debut, a record that went onto be streamed more than 16 million times, with the single ‘Savant’ streamed 4.5 million times on Spotify alone, and earned the trio numerous accolades since then. Their sublime dream-pop took them round the world on tour, from their production base in Uppsala, an hour north of Stockholm, all the way to the California of The Beach Boys.
- One Day
- Summer of 99
- Disco All Night Long
- Fool Alone
- Swimming Pool
- Smack Down
- Read Between
- Wider Sun
- Baby Be The Light
Even in the long ago distant times of two years ago, ViVii were defying (and denying) the challenging (or simply boring) realities of life. Even in the good old days of 2018, on only their second single, ViVii had one thing in mind: dreaming up a better world through song.
“Think of 1969 and you think of The Beach Boys era,” says Emil, the smiling enthusiasm all over his face as he recalls the pilgrimage the trio took to the beaches and neighbourhoods that birthed Brian Wilson’s teenage symphonies to God. That passion is there, too, in ViVii’s single ‘Rendezvous’, the second taster of the treats to come on the band’s second album.
“We just grew up on that time and sound. All that jingle-jangle music, we all love it so much!” he adds with a laugh. “So it’s an homage to that time. It’s a romantic tribute to a place and a time and a sound that means so much to us.”
‘Rendezvous’ was preceded in August 2020 by the BBC 6 Music-playlisted ‘Summer of 99’. The first fruits of their 2019/20 sessions in Anders’ Uppsala studio, it’s the perfect example of the trio’s sparking, spectral song writing and is another homage – this one to Emil and Caroline’s romance.
“We did the lyrics together,” says Emil, gesturing to his wife. “It’s very personal. For my part, it’s about us growing up. We have such a long history. I’ve been thinking a lot about the lyrics we tend to write, and when I think about teenage rebellion that most kids have, I didn’t really have that. Instead of that I fell in love with Caroline – I fell in love like crazy!” he admits with a laugh. “That was my rebellious time! I was so gone in that. I didn’t see anything. I wasn’t out drinking our partying – in fact, I didn’t start drinking till I was 30!
With ViVii, that connectivity – emotional, musical, soulful – goes three ways. Alongside Caroline and Emil’s personal partnership, their friendship with Anders goes way back, too.
And it underpins the odd but functional manner in which this self-sufficient trio wrote, recorded and produced their new album: working once a week, on Mondays only, because the rest of the week they each had, well, real jobs: Emil works in a cemetery (“I put people in the ground, in the urns”), Caroline is an economic consultant and Anders is an accountant. “Really serious jobs,” smiles Anders.
Opening ViVii’s second album ‘Mondays’ is the achingly youthful romance of ‘Fool Alone’. Bewitching and transporting, it’s both nostalgic and future-facing, pre-Seventies and post-2020. It’s also a fantastic showcase for Caroline and Emil’s harmonies, and for Anders’ mastery of studio acoustics and studio electronics.
“It sounds like something from the Sixties, something very familiar – but also brand new,” says Anders. “And it’s such a simple song. All of our songs usually start that simply, but then in the studio we add all the electronics. But we can still play all our songs unplugged.”
“That,” says Emil, “is the core of our songs: guitar, singing, good harmonies.”
“And we have that teenage vibe because that’s when we got together,” concludes Caroline. “Musically, that source is never-ending for us.”
As opening statements go, as a promise of a hopeful 2021, they don’t come any better. Yes, it might be, right now, a messed up life. But with songs like these, ViVii show that it’s still possible to be gloriously carefree. That it’s still possible to dream.