Swede pulled together in early 2005, when John Skoglund (guitar/vocals), Brian Mason (drums) and Derrick 'The Syndrome' Surrett (bass) found a common interest in playing straight-up power pop in the spirit of Weezer, Foo Fighters and hook-throwing deity Neil Diamond. They set up in Skoglund's garage one day, and it all came together so tightly there was really no need for any more layering. As a three-piece band, they had all the spirit and sound they required. Swede was solid. Skoglund and Mason are the band's main songwriters, who know what the listeners wish to hear from a band in the power-pop realm. I was lucky enough to have received an email from the band with two new 'super secret, unreleased tracks' that not even many insiders had the chance to hear. You will be jealous to know that I'm hearing full-flavored, ultra-catchy rock and roll, that would make even Mr. Diamond blush. The first of the two, 'Downside' is a mellow drive of sentiment that runs away from the worry that leads to life's inevitable let downs. The reserved guitar fuzz under Skoglund's smooth vocals is of the perfect consistency for Weezer-style directions. But I'm going to go ahead and dismiss any reliance on Weezer. Swede's sond holds it's own as a rock number, as it seems to reach farther into territory once covered by the Police or Elvis Costello. The second jam, 'All the Nonsense I've Seen', picks up with a Beatles-inspired rhythm in the style of 'Help!', which seems to be just the idea of which Swede wants it's listeners to take heed. You see, Swede's three members haven't fooled themselves into thinking that they're something new for the ages, and they don't want their audience to think that either. The band plays what they enjoy and has a great time doing it. That, in itself, is a refreshing thing to see. With countless modern bands struggling for the critical spotlight, and most drowning in their abundance of silly concepts and unsure concentrations, Swede brushes off the pressure with true, fun, unpretentious power pop.