[sic] Magazine

Pia Fraus – Now You Know It Still Feels The Same

Pia Fraus – Now You Know It Still Feels The Same

Estonian dreampop act Pia Fraus have been active for over twenty years. Like myself, the band can’t quite believe this but they celebrate the fact with their latest release, Now You Know It Still Feels The Same.

Or quite plausibly:_

Now You Know
It Still Feels The Same

(how it displays on the sleeve)

The ‘new’ record is actually a reworked compilation of Pia Fraus’ earliest material on and around their debut album Wonder What It’s Like. According to the band themselves who were 16 at the time, they somehow found themselves in a studio, unable to play their instruments, yet undeterred. “We were dreamy, sweaty and confused” they say. Well all I can say is great job then because this music still stands up to scrutiny.

I like Pia Fraus a lot and would urge anyone to check out the half dozen or so albums they’ve made in the meantime, but this one takes us full circle. What we’re treated to here is a more than admirable venture into shoegaze and dreampop, genres that may have seen their heyday long before Pia Fraus incarnated but which also remain popular to this day. These Estonians make fuzzy, blissed out sixties pop, loaded with kitchen sink melodrama. So, yes, this qualifies as dreampop, no question but with myriad other influences. I get dashes of Mew and Radio Dept as well as earlier acts as diverse as Slowdive, Stereolab, Heart Throbs and even Saint Etienne. You see, Pia Fraus are as poppy as they are dreamy. Their light touch belays a clever sense of irony at times. Just look at the album titles. Wonder What It’s Like for example. Well wonder no longer. Now You Know. It Still Feels The Same.

Clever clever Pia Fraus. I think I’m mildly in love with them.

Now You Know It Still Feels The Same contains 12 rerecorded songs, including all of the debut album, plus other material from the 1998-2000 period.