Today we have more excellent post-punk music for your listening pleasure. If you paid close attention to our pages last month, you probably stumbled upon a review I wrote about Pang – du är död, a 7″ vinyl version of the critically acclaimed single by Vacum, a Swedish post-punk that roamed the scene in the late seventies and early eighties. Those who somehow missed that review should know that Vacum is a legendary band active from 1979 to 1981 that released many excellent recordings like three full-lengths, Rädd för tystnaden, Den sista vintern, and Flugor och rosor. They also published four singles, The Hollow Men, Maskerad, Vem lyder, Dagar I morgon, a self-titled EP, and Kärlekens kleptomaner EP. Then the band went on hiatus for several decades, but returned with Pang – du är död and Survivors in 2019. Of course, their label Massproduktion reissued their catalog, with some titles repressed several times.
That’s the case with Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter, their debut full-length release from 1980. I will talk about the latest 2023 Record Store Day repress. This edition includes Korståg, their latest full-length recording from 2020. The band remastered Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter to mark the 40th anniversary of their debut, while the Korståg includes a re-recorded version of the old track and one cover song. Vacum and Massproduktion also thought about the packaging. This double album comes in a high-quality cardboard gatefold with printed inner sleeves, lyrics, and all the necessary information about the band and record label. Also, it’s good to mention that this release comes with a double-marbled vinyl, which looks divine and goes perfectly with the remaining visual aesthetics.
Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter carries sixteen compositions that flawlessly reflect the times this album came out. If you compare this material with the recordings by the British and German post-punk bands that roamed the scene back in the early eighties, you’ll notice Vacum were ahead of their time. It doesn’t sound overly futuristic, but you’ll hear some impressive sonic maneuvers that some renowned UK82, anarcho-punk, post-punk, and goth rock bands used on their recordings, released sometime in the mid-eighties. Even without remastering treatment, you can hear how Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter had much better production than many post-punk or punk rock recordings. Considering that most of those records were low-budget recordings, Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter sounds way better than almost any other punk rock record published in the early eighties. Soundwise, the band resonates with exceptional ideas, experience, and musicianship. You’ll hear many outstanding segments where Vacum bursts with tremendous power and dynamics. Their relentless energy is on an entirely new level for those times. You will be blown away by how many good vocal harmonies, singalongs, chord progressions, riffs, basslines, and rhythmic sequences they invested into Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter. It’s one of those albums you need in your record collection if you’re profoundly into the European post-punk scene.
Korståg represents a perfect cross-section of their discography distilled into a selection of eleven compositions. You can also check out their Bandcamp page, where the band posted an expanded version with Rädd För Tystnaden 16 Brottstycken Ur 5 Verkligheter and Pang – du är död. Soundwise, Vacum retained that old-school harshness, aggression, and power but with a more polished sound. That really doesn’t come as a surprise since the band re-recorded these compositions. The sound aesthetics remain the same, while the ambiance is more appropriate for new listeners who want to discover old-school post-punk or punk rock sound. Vacum and Massproduktion did outstanding work with this release, which will unquestionably appeal to anyone who wants to delve deep into the impressive discography of this legendary Swedish post-punk band. You can purchase this double vinyl record via Massproduktion.