PREMIERE: Pink Milk’s “Kill 4 U” is the Shoegazey, Introspective Soundtrack to Winter You Need

The Swedish duo's latest is the sonic equivalent of roaming the streets of Stockholm by yourself on a stark December day.

Swedish music has often been broadly summarized as a sonic reflection of the stark Scandinavian landscape. From evidently moody-sounding electronic legends like The Knife even to the more upbeat electro pop queen Robyn, many of the country’s most internationally prominent musicians have been described as artists channelling the isolating, frosty vibes of life in Scandinavia into music that sounds chilly, polished and meticulously compiled. While this sweeping categorization definitely isn’t always accurate – I wouldn’t exactly call Robyn’s “Dancing On My Own” melancholic, but go figure – it does come close to hitting the nail on the head when you hear something like Pink Milk‘s “Kill 4 U”. The Swedish duo’s latest track is a reverbed-out, shoegazey piece of dark wave that cultivates the type of vastly stark and introspective atmosphere specific to Scandinavia.

Composed of Maria (lead vocals and drums) and Edward (guitars and bass), Pink Milk’s releases have been limited so far; they’re just gearing up to release their debut album, Purple, via Black Hair Records. So considering that, it’s quite impressive that their sound seems so defined already. Although the four songs they’ve released range from more conventional rock ballads to moody post punk, they’re all united by an atmosphere of cinematic lust thanks to heavy use of reverb, hazed-out guitars and bellowing vocals. To me, they’re a bit like a cross between post punk/shoegaze darlings The KVB and the cathartic and severe Tropic of Cancer. “Kill 4 U” is no exception: the ghostly vocals practically float over the densely layered and echoing production, creating a sort of sonic melting of all elements. Save for the hard-hitting crunch of the guitars and the moody drumming churning in the background, the instruments seem to almost sway and shiver together in unison. All of this combines to create a vibe that’s lustful, yes, but also lonesome, melancholic and introspective in a very organic way—which is precisely how winter feels in frigidly gorgeous Scandinavia.

So if you live in Scandinavia, listen to this track and be reminded of the wintertime mental state that’s about to envelop you for the next six months or more. And if you don’t live in Scandinavia, well, you won’t only listen to a compelling track—you might also get to feel what it’s like to live through harsh, Scandi winters, even if it’s for just a few minutes.