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Mårten Lärka’s Christmas calendar “Trasiga pepparkakshjärtan”

December 2, 2016 at 4:21 pm

Mårten Lärka's Christmas calendar

Yesterday the Christmas season started for real as I had to scramble up att seven and join my daughters in front of the TV to watch this year’s Christmas calendar. And every year it’s both fascinating and a bit stressful to see how much a holiday can dominate society during one whole month. In the music business many say that December is the worst period during the year to release music, if it’s not Christmas songs of course.

I’m not going to revel in Christmas vibes here on the blog, though, with just a couple of exceptions. I will probably have a traditional post about new Christmas songs later on, and also present a tip about an alternative Christmas calendar today. It’s the singer-songwriter Mårten Lärka who this year counts ten year for his Christmas track “Trasiga pepparkakshjärtan” (“Broken gingerbread hearts”). He’s celebrating this by inviting friends and artist colleagues to make their own versions of the song, which he presents every day in the calendar together with some other clips. Most of it is in Swedish. He writes:

“There’s a huge varaition among the contributions. One clip from Paris gives me goosebumps and another from Brunflo (town in Jämtland, in the north of Sweden) is a piece of fascinating swamp blues and yet another is a collage of images, so strong I don’t know how to handle it.” (transl. from Swedish)

You can follow the calendar on Mårten Lärka’s Facebook page and here below you can listen to the original song and also watch the first part. And first up was the mentioned swamp blues with Jens Gustavson in Brunflo.

Weibenfalk – “Nu är vi här”

November 29, 2016 at 3:30 pm

Weibenfalk

For his next album Thomas Weibenfalk wanted a more open and a closer sound than on the last album, also this time in collaboration with the producer Andreas Dahlbäck. And when he lets us taste the record on the new single I can sense it immediately. It’s less “Vassa eggen” and more live vibes, and one reason is that it indeed is recorded live in the studio, with Jens Frithiof on guitars and Surjo Benigh on bass, among others, with no unnecessary adds, as he writes. His presence is perfect and the sound pure candy for someone who likes singer/songwriter-rock in Swedish. It’s a growing track with an increasing dramatic ambience which ends with an instrumental crescendo where we can revel in wonderful, chrunchy guitar layers and whining guitars that send shivers down my spine.

I asked Thomas to tell us something about the song:

“The song ”Nu är vi här” speaks, to a large extent, to the people I got to know, and who became some the best friends in my life, during my time in Skåne and Lund. We had great fun together and a small group of people formed that hopefully will stick together all life. At least on distance.
As you get older you get a job, start a family and move out to other parts of the country and you don’t see each other that often anymore. I think many recognize that. We also live in a world of violence, egoism and despair which I’m also trying to reflect in the song and on the entire album. We easily get stuck in our own stress behind screens och cell phones, forgetting what really means something: the people around us.” (transl. from Swedish)

Producer: Andreas Quincy Dahlbäck
Music, lyrics, vocals and guitars: Thomas Weibenfalk
Guitars: Jens Frithiof
Bass: Surjo Benigh
Keys: Mikaela Hansson and Joel Sjödin
Drums, vocals: Andreas Quincy Dahlbäck
Sound engineer: Frida Claeson Johansson

Weibenfalk on Facebook – on Spotify – on Apple Music

Lilou & John – “100 Faces”

November 23, 2016 at 6:48 pm

Lilou & John

I’m almost hypnotised by Lilou’s vocals. Her dark alto voice breathes of blackness, mystique and rock attitude, like a magical music incantation I just have to listen to again and again. Together with her husband she form the duo Lilou & John, who earlier this Autumn released the debut EP “100 Faces”.

Here we hear them in five tracks that spans from epic folk songs to alternative rock and indiepop, all wrapped in an unpolished sound that perfectly matches Lilou’s charsima. Each song also has a corresponding music video created by different video artists from USA and Brazil. You can watch an example here below in the video to the song “When Murder Victims Die”, a video created by Patrick Paax. The other videos are available on their Youtube channel.

Lilou & Johns site – on Facebookon Spotifyon Apple Music

About “He Broke My Neck, Joséphine”: …inspired by a vivid dream that came to Lilou one night. The ghost child Elizabeth shared with her the last days of her life, and in the dream Lilou felt the brutality when the father of Elizabeth’s love Joséphine broke her neck. It happened somewhere at the end of the 19th century or beginning of the 20th not far from the city of Jönköping.

About “100 Faces”: “About our instinct to always hide our true self, maybe further emphasized by the alienating effect of the modern society of consumption and our emotional difficulties.” (transl. from Swedish)

About “When Murder Victims Die”: …tells the story of the post-traumatic experiences of a child surviving a brutal serial killer. The lyrics was highly influenced by Motörhead and Lilou decided at an early stage that she would sing the song in a weird, tim-burtonesque way, balancing on the edge of quirky disharmony.

Oh Jonathan – “Animal Song” video

November 22, 2016 at 6:34 pm

Oh Jonathan

The duo Oh Jonathan released this nice video today to put some focus on their song “Animal Song”. It’s feelgood pop in triple time with pump organ and a sunny circus atmosphere that should make the cloudiest day seem a little bit brighter. The song is taken from their new EP “Frickin’ Fairytale”, which is available now.

Oh Jonathan på Facebookpå Spotifypå Apple Music

Simon Norrsveden – “Tarquinia”

November 22, 2016 at 5:15 pm

Simon Norrsveden

Few artists can make the lyrics sound so engaging as Simon Norrsveden. And on his fifth and latest album”Tarquinia”, this is even more obvious when he has downscaled the arrangements to a more analogue and organic sound. Here we come much closer and his bright crystal clear vocals deliver every word like if it’s a secret just for you. We meet him in magically beautiful time-stops-for-a-moment-songs like “Tarquinia” and in strong pop tracks with choruses and phrases that stick in your mind like in “Lika Tight som Rock’n’Roll”. The analogue noise has it’s effect and makes the songs feel alive. Rough panned drums, raw, crunchy guitars and other colourful touches in the production keep you on your toes throughout the journey through the album, contrasting the sweet melodies. In the end I’m also rewarded with the final and best song on the album, “Babies”.

Simon Norrsveden on Facebookon Spotifyon Apple Music

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