There are three things that can make a person feel better after a long irksome day at work during this bi-polar Canadian weather. A cup of hot black earl grey tea with a spoon of honey, a queen-sized bed and Acid House Kings.

Basically, Acid House Kings is equivalent to the sun peaking out after 6 days of hide and seek. Listening to their album Music Sounds Better With You fresh out of the oven definitely brightened my day. I instantly fell in love with the duet Heaven Knows I Miss Him Now and Windshield. Picking a favourite would be tricky.

The Swedish band, consisting of Joakim Ödlund, Niklas Angergård, Johan Angergård and Julia Lannerheim kicked off their return after 6 years since Sing Along with Acid House Kings (which was totally awesome! Make sure to listen to This Heart is a Stone) this week with a vital 10 track album titled Music Sounds Better With You.

If I were to describe what it sounded like in 3 words I would say bright, summer and castanets. Track 5, (I’m In) A Chorus Line makes me feel like a girl waking up to birds chirping on a June morning. I picture myself in a floral spring dress eating strawberries by the river.

The album gets 4.5 cups of hot tea out of 5 on a cold Canadian day.

And now our whimsical Q&A with Johan Angergard

Describe the perfect picnic.
A windless, sunny day on the hill around Ale Stenar with no people around, a bottle of wine with a 94% grade from Wine Spectator, my girlfriend and a good book about death. Then after a couple of hours it starts blowing a bit and the waves become bigger and I have my surf board in the car and I go down the hill and get it and go out to sea and start surfing – as if that was something I’d always done.

Acid House’d you decide on the name?
When we started a lot of bands were called things like  Springfields, Poppyheards, Popguns, Popinjays, Summer suns etc. Things that should either sound like “summer” or sound “pop”. In some kind of act of rebellion, and inspired by Biff Bang Pow!’s album “The acid house album” we decided to name ourselves Acid House Kings. I understand if people think it’s a really bad name, but I’ve grown quite fond of it.

Do you sing your own songs in the shower?
No, but only because I don’t sing in the shower.

Mermaids or fairies?
I love water so I’d mermaids.

What artist/band was most influential when you were a young teen?

If I was to name just one it would be The Smiths. But The Jesus and Mary Chain “Psychocandy” was the first indie pop album I bought and I was very inspired by both the feedback guitars and the way they dressed. I started dressing in black a lot when I was 13 mainly because of them. And then a couple of years after this I discovered all the bands on Sarah Records which was also a huge influence.

What makes you proud to be Swedish?
We take care of each other.

A friend is visiting Stockholm for the first time, what are your top 5 things to do/see?

1) Nostalgipalatset. A bit expensive, but they have a very good – and large – selection of second hand vinyl.
2) Gondolen. A restaurant with amazing view over the city and the inlet which serves the best drinks in the city.
3) Södra Teatern. Teater = theatre. It’s the best place for concerts in Stockholm. Almost everything I’ve seen there has been great – it’s a beautiful place furnished in red with a quiet audience.
4) Skansen. It’s most elder people and families with small children who go there. It’s some sort of zoo with Scandinavian animals like elks and bears, but they also have a bunch of old houses so you can see what Sweden looked like 150 years ago. I usually get very depressed by this kind of houses so I don’t know why I like it. But I do. And there’s a nice view over the city too (yes, I have a thing for views).
5) Fredhäll. Great place to go swimming in the summer. You can jump from cliffs there and it’s more or less in the middle of the city.

Cool. Now go check out their website. Or take a listen on iTunes.

~Nilou Yekta