Rumskib – S/T


Rumskib, the Danish duo of Keith Canisius (guitarist, vocalist, composer, producer) and Tine Louise Kortermand (singer), have all of the tools to be a success in the dreamy, ethereal shoegaze genre, or as some call it, “nu-gaze”. They have a captivating female singer who croons over reverb drenched, dreamy guitar soundscapes, their well crafted songs shimmer with heavenly melodies and they have a guest artist, Jonas Munk (Manual), who adds programmed beats and airy synth washes to give the songs a multi-layered and textured edge.

There is a problem though that may hinder any widespread acclaim for this young band. The problem lies in the fact that the music on this debut disc is a musical dead ringer for the sublime sound of the Cocteau Twins, leaving the listener to ponder whether to like Rumskib for paying homage to a great band by emulating them or to dislike Rumskib for being second-rate imitators. This reviewer’s feelings on the subject lie somewhere in between.

Rumskib achieve their nu-gaze sound with an assortment of distorted guitars, keyboards, tape loops, echo boxes, reverb and various electronic percussives. With both Canisius and Kortermand providing vocals, the result is something comparable to a mix of the Cocteau Twins, Delays and Curve. But their derivative compositions are mostly a bit heavier than the lush, gossamer melodies of the Cocteau Twins and a bit lighter than the alternative, guitar-driven noise-rock of Curve.

The songs on this self-titled disc use intervals of delicate and fuzzy guitars and waves of spacey synths along with earthly beats and tones for an atmospheric rock sound that is sometimes thick and complex and sometimes soft and airy, more similar to the Cocteau’s line of EPs than their full-length albums.

While the similarities to the Cocteau Twins abound, some choose to overlook them or have come to terms with the parallels or perhaps just prefer music in this genre over others (as does this reviewer), as Rumskib count Ulrich Schnauss, Serena Maneesh and Jatun among their fans. I suggest you pick up a copy of Rumskib and decide for yourself.