The Soundtrack of Our Lives

Ready for the Swedish Invasion? “Infra Riot,” the garage rock opening track on this superb album, is a call of warning: The current music scene in Sweden (which also houses The Hives and Citizen Bird, among many others) is too fantastic to remain in Scandinavian obscurity, and the aptly named The Soundtrack of Our Lives has all of the facets that just might wake the timid American mainstream.

Since forming in Gotheburg, Sweden, in 1994, the band has garnered exceptional praise, winning the Swedish equivalent of the Grammy in 1997, as well as being personally invited to open for the Rolling Stones in 1999, and now just finishing a worldwide tour with Oasis.

Metamorphosing from the ‘80s garage band Union Carbide Productions (touted by Kurt Cobain, Sonic Youth and the Ramones as the prodigal sons of the MC5), SoOL has since diversified its psychedelic whirlpool of sound without mellowing. Behind the Music, the band’s third album to date, offers 15 songs that blend the best from the world history of rock, punk and folk and teenaged-angst-garage rock into one infectious strain.

“Nevermore,” a glisteningly crisp pop song with classic “woo woo” background vocals, extended lead and tambourine, deserves be heard from every AM car radio. “The Flood” builds like a tsunami just offshore and sweeps the listener into a passionate torrent. Only the finger strummed “In Your Veins” slows the pace to a sappy violin saturation point, but not enough to stick in the engine of this cruising album. Several songs resonate Abby Road/White Album references, but unlike Oasis this band has intelligent and mostly melancholic lyrics, which are even more impressive considering the secondary language handicap.

Lyricist/singer Ebbot Lyndberg sings, "We’re taking over and you’ve got nothing to say, so we might as well blow you away," and the group backs up his declaration by delivering sparkling pop songs played with strength and conviction.Soundtrack of Our Lives performs with the Cato Salsa Experience (see Music) on Thursday, Nov. 21, at the Brick Works in downtown Chico. Tickets are $10 in advance or at the door. Doors open 8:30 p.m.; show starts 9 p.m.