Hanif Eternity Will Last a Long, Long Time

Apparently, the Swedish band Hanif emerged in the mid-'90s out of the Gothenburg alt-country scene. First I had to wrap my mind around the idea of "Swedish alt-country," not to mention what might distinguish the Gothenburg scene from say, the Stockholm scene. Well, the two-song calling card that Hanif is using to woo North American audiences melted away any of my wariness immediately. They play the kind of jangle-pop that would have fit seamlessly into the flow of Tomorrow the Green Grass by the Jayhawks. Their endlessly infectious song "Eternity Will Last a Long Time" features Everly Brothers-style harmonies and catchy guitar hooks that sound like lead singer/guitarist Andreas Magnusson is channelling Roger McGuinn circa 1966. Based on this single and the pleasing, laid back "Lead Me On," Hanif may just be the band to make Swedish alt-country into a viable "scene" rather than just an amusing oxymoron. (Independent)