Record #262: Imperiet - Blå Himlen Blues (1985)
In Stockholm, there is a record store called Pet Sounds which is listed on numerous “best record shops in the world” lists. It was at this shop that I asked the man working there for something distinctly Swedish. He told me of a Stockholm based punk band called Ebba Grön who broke up and became a post punk band called Imperiet, and suggested this record, translated as Blue Heaven Blues. I took him at his word, and did not return void. Were their lyrics in English, it’s doubtless that Imperiet would have been canonized among New Order, Psychedelic Furs, Duran Duran, and other post punk/new wave patron saints.
The band plays it faster and looser than their contemporaries though, leaning more towards the punk side of post punk. Especially when you factor in Christian Falk’s baritone growl. But there are enough keyboards and saxophones to keep them from Clashing up the place. The title track the stunner here: ambient synth bells create a downtempo atmosphere that fuzzy guitars and effect-pedaled-basslines crash into. Not bad for a souvenir.