As Sirens of Lesbos gear up for their second full-length record, Peace, the Swiss collective usher in a new era that’s a further cross-pollination of their Worldbeat sound. Following up 2021 single ‘(I Don’t Know, I Don’t Know, I Don’t Know)’, ‘Sweet Harmony’ is another delirious taste of the group’s new offering – an eagerly-awaited LP that’s also set to feature Bootsy Collins, Flatbush Zombies’ Erick the Architect, dreamcastmoe, Joshua Idehen and Treasure Bloom.
“We listen to a radio station called Vintage Radio a lot, they play music from the pre-streaming eras,” the band say of the track’s creation. “That’s where we heard ‘Sweet Harmony’ by The Beloved again. It’s so catchy and kitschy, so ‘90s.” They decided to rework the chorus into a new song and play around with the vocals in the studio, with the music itself a coagulation of ‘90s sounds like UK soul, ambient and slow pop – with an effervescent drum ‘n’ bass breakdown, too. It’s no accident that ‘Sweet Harmony’ is also the name of the enormous 1992 piano rave tune by Liquid.
Capturing that unifying spirit of the dancefloor, there’s also a distinctly political slant to the track. Sirens of Lesbos have long been a group with their roots in what’s happening worldwide, and the lyrics are a unifying call to arms (“Let’s come together, right now, oh yeah, in sweet harmony”) that also signal times of upheaval, a natural causation of the division sown worldwide in recent years, whether through the far-right power grab or Brexit.
The band wrote ‘Sweet Harmony’s lyrics in the early days of Trump’s presidency, stunned that a despot like him could occupy the White House. “He’s a demagogue, he used the same ruthless tactics and spread the same hateful logic like some of the worst figures in history – it felt like World War III was around the corner,” they say.
Years on from that fateful moment in history, you could argue that, on a global level, things are worse than ever: with looming climate destruction and politics in complete disarray. There’s no better time for those moments of joy, love and heady musical fervour that Sirens of Lesbos are channelling into their sound: Peace is the answer.