Fredrik made a name for itself with the irresistible 2008 track "Black Fur," from its debut album Na Na Ni. Three years later, the Swedish band has shifted away from pop and undergone some lineup changes, morphing from a sextet to a duo and now (with Fredrik's third release) a trio: founding bandmates Fredrik Hultin and Ola Lindfel and new addition Anna Moberg. While the band continues to exploit its knack for melody, it's progressed into darker and more experimental territory.
Recorded in a 19th-century garden shack in Malmo, Sweden, Flora's songs are sprinkled with synthesizers alongside an assortment of homemade string instruments, and seem to straddle the line between the earth and another world. The album's first single, "Rites of Spring," conveys an eeriness that calls to mind Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring. Instead of drawing from the hopefulness of a new season, the song unfolds into something more sinister. Hultin's words subtly distort otherwise tranquil nature images, as he sings, "There's a rattle in the water lilies" and "The rainbow chemicals are breaking slowly." But, alongside such a gently escalating arrangement, "Rites of Spring" is more magical than menacing.