The Knife / Fever Ray principal Karin Dreijer has stood at the cutting edge of music and fashion for more than 20 years, so it’s certainly surreal to see them working a desk job in a run-of-the-mill office in the video for the new Fever Ray song, “What They Call Us.”
In the clip, written and directed by longtime collaborator Martin Falck, Dreijer patiently waits for a cinnamon bun to finish reheating in the microwave, makes Xeroxes of her face on a copy machine, is buried in a huge stack of paper and wanders into an “it’s your last day” party that turns quite erotic.
Musically, “What They Call Us” is as foreboding and unusual sounding as what we’ve come to expect from Fever Ray, with fat electronic beats topped by wobbly, repeated synth figures. Dreijer co-wrote and produced the song with her brother and former The Knife bandmate Olaf Dreijer.
It’s unknown whether “What They Call Us” heralds a new Fever Ray album, which would be Dreijer’s first since 2017’s Plunge. It was supported by an extensive world tour that ran through the following year. The Knife, which scored an international smash with 2002’s “Heartbeats,” has been inactive since 2014.