A band called The Radio Dept. was formed by Elin Almered and Johan Duncanson when they were in the school together in the late 90's. The name was taken from a gas station/radio repairer in Lund (Sweden) which had a large sign with the name »Radioavdelningen« (The Radio Department in Swedish) hanging outside their shop. Just like today Elin and Johan hung out with people who, if they didn't play music, were into photo, film, art and the likes. The Radio Deptartment was a suiting name as it became a department of its own among their friends' activities.
For a few years there was some random activity, members coming and going, recordings being made but after a while the Radio Dept. seized to exsist. When Martin Larsson and Johan Duncanson started a band together in 1998 they decided to use the name. Between 99-01 the new Radio Dept. did a lot of noisy recordings, often on 4-tracks in friends' living rooms or at home.
In the autumn of 2001 bass player Lisa Carlberg and drummer Per Blomgren joined the band as they started rehearsing in the way bands so often do. The latest recordings were mailed to the Swedish music magazine Sonic and got a great review in April 2002. The song "Why Won't You Talk About It?" was featured on a CD sampler that came with the magazine. That's how Labrador Records discovered the band. After having released a 7" on their own label Slottet, the debut four track ep "Against The Tide", they were signed to Labrador.
The Radio Dept.'s debut album "Lesser Matters", released in the spring of 2003, was an underground success internationally and Labrador's first entrance in the sales charts in Sweden. The buzz that slowly grew to give the band worldwide recognition came with a little help from XL Recordings who released the album in large parts of the world, and the release of Sofia Coppola's film Marie Antoinette, which featured "Keen on Boys" (from "Lesser matters), "Pulling Our Weight" (from the EP with the same name, 2004), and "I Don't Like It Like This" (from the EP "This past week", 2005).
The second album, "Pet grief", was released in the spring of 2006 and showed a slightly more dreamy, less noisy, side of the band. The album reached #11 in the Swedish charts and continued to give The Radio Dept. new listeners all over the world.
In the beginning of 2007 people started talking about new material from The Radio Dept. There was even a rumour going round that they were working on two albums simultaneously and that both would be released in May the same year. In other words; two albums merely one year after the release of the previous album "Pet Grief". Those who had followed the band for a few years and knew how they work probably suspected this would not happen. Obviously, it didn't happen. But what actually did happen that October night 2007 when they were supposed to master their finished album the day after, we'll probably never know.
The single "Freddie and the Trojan Horse" was released in May 2008 and was planned as a first taste of their upcoming album "Clinging to a scheme". The new songs were said to be influenced by minimalistic post-punk, krautrock, repetitive "motorik" beat and ambient noise. We did actually get to hear some of these almost mythical songs. But, the album was not finished in 2008.
Now, the 20th of January 2010, as we're sitting here with "Clinging to a scheme" in our hands we've waited four long years for this new album to materialize. And we only need a simple press on Play and to know it's been worth every second. The band has combined the most unequalled components from their previous albums "Lesser matters" and "Pet grief" with soul guitars, P-funk, glittering, distorted synthesizers, cut/paste- beats, 70's futuristic orchestra sounds and sounds you don't know what they are. Things you've never heard before. "Clinging to a scheme" is way beyond pleasing - it's absolutely breathtaking. -