Category: Live Music

Live Footage: Swedish Punk Rockers Sista Bossen Perform an Explosive Set at Tapetown Studios

With the release of their full-length debut Se Upp För, the Malmo, Sweden-based punk rock act Sista Bossen, comprised of Hampus Sunden, Frans Möller, Fredrik Persson, 
Patrik Schlegel and Kristopher Ståhlgren have developed a reputation across their native Sweden and the rest of Scandinavia for meshing high energy punk rock with psych rock in free flowing, anarchistic and humorous fashion — and unsurprisingly, their sound and songwriting winds up being wild, explosive and unpredictable yet centered by a crooked yet infectious melodic sense. 

The Malmo, Sweden-based punk rock act’s sophomore effort Titta inte på mig (när jag dansar) was released earlier this year by Danish indie label Crunchy Frog Records in collaboration with Kollektivet Records. The up-and-coming Swedish punk rock outfit was recently invited to stop by Aarhus, Denmark-based recording studio  Tapetown Studios — and if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past 15-18 months or so, you’d know that Sound of Aarhus along with the Aarhus-based studio have developed a continuing video series in which they invite national, regional and even internationally recognized touring bands to come into their studios for a live session. A number of bands have played including British indie rockers Ulrika Spacek, the Gothenburg, Sweden-based trio Pale Honey, the Bay Area-based JOVM mainstay Tim Cohen and his primary project The Fresh & Onlys, the renowned British psych rockers The Telescopes, and a growing list of others. 

Sista Bossen’s Tapetown Studio session which was sponsored by Crunch Frog Records, is the first session in its history to be sung completely in Swedish — until now, bands have written and performed material in English. But most important, it’s an incredible display of the mischievousness and explosive quality of their overall sound and live set; if anything, it’s the most energetic set I’ve come across as the band’s lead singer shouts, stomps and rolls around the floor with childlike fury and abandon. Along with that, there’s a playful musical joke in which the leader singer asks the band to play a little softer before the set’s fittingly explosive and quick conclusion. Regardless of the language, these guys kick ass — and have a mosh pit friendly sound. 

Live Footage: Acclaimed and Up-and-Coming Austrian Artist Inner Tongue Performs “2 Seconds”

Inner Tongue is the (mostly) solo recording project of a rather mysterious Vienna, Austria-based singer/songwriter, composer and musician, who grew upon an intensely musical home — his father is a saxophonist, who constantly wrote songs, so musical instruments were always lying around and his parents frequently shared their favorite albums with him; in fact, Inner Tongue formed his first band when he was 6. “We started out using one of my dad’s synths to play a pre-programmed beat,” he recalls. “I’d sing something that sounded to us like English.” Unsurprisingly, the Austrian artist, who cites Bjork, Moby, Portishead, Micheal Jackson, Sonic Youth, Radiohead, Pet Shop Boys, Aphex Twin, and The Cure’s The Cure In Orange as influences — although those influences don’t quite correspond to his own sound and songwriting approach continued playing and writing music, playing in a small number of bands, including one that had briefly worked with Duran Duran and David Bowie’s producer before getting dropped by their label. 

Interestingly, with the release of some of his earliest solo work, the Austrian artist quickly garnered comparisons to James Blake, Childish Gambino, Frank Ocean, Death Cab for Cutie, Sohn, and Chet Faker/Nick Murphy. His quietly released yet critically applauded 2015 debut EP Tz Ka allowed him to open for the likes of Ghostpoet, Everything Everything and others. The Vienna, Austria-based singer/songwriter, composer, and musician’s full-length debut Favours was released earlier this year, and interestingly, the album’s overall sound and thematic concern is inspired by a deeply personal yet remarkable story. Back in 2013, Inner Tongue was diagnosed with a rare vocal-cord disorder that was so severe that only a handful of specialists throughout the entire world were capable of treating it; but eventually his condition required surgery, which left him, for a time unable to talk. Understandably, the months that followed the surgery were emotionally and physically shattering but he began composing music again.  At the time, singing was out of the question and as the Austrian singer/songwriter, composer and musician says in press notes, “I decided to modify my musical focus temporarily by writing songs which could produce a melodic tension without vocals, but which featured the traits of forward-looking pop music. It was as if someone had pressed a resent button on the musical identity I had of myself.” Adds Inner Tongue, “I used to layer many sounds and melodies before, and felt like I hid the core of any idea behind that technique.”

Some of the Austrian artist’s full-length debut was made at home with most recorded in a friend’s stood in Vienna. Foals’ John Catlin, who collaborated with him on his 2015 debut EP assisted once again although his involvement varied throughout; however, as Inner Tongue says, Catlin “was continually involved as a producer and friend,” who also mixed the album with some further overdubbing where necessary. As the Austrian artist readily admits, the entire experience of writing and recording his full-length debut provoked ” “a lot of soul searching, trying to become a better mixing engineer and producer. I’m somewhat controlling when it comes to my music, and I need to get the little details right.”

However, unlike his debut EP, Favours was more of a collaborative effort, as he shared his ideas with a collective of very dear and close friends. “All contributions are built on a vision I initially had and then gain shape during the process,” Inner Thought says. His live backing band contributed much of the music with his father playing sax on “New York.” The live version of “2 Seconds,” Favours’ latest single features a sparse yet soulful arrangement centered around twinkling Rhodes piano keys and Inner Thought’s achingly tender vocals, which manage to express a plaintive, vulnerable need. It’s a delicate, sensitive yet incredibly sexy song that balances earnest emotion with deliberate attention to craft. 

Live Footage: JOVM Mainstays Palace Winter Perform Moody Album Single “Baltimore” at The Village Recording

Over the past few years, I’ve written a bit about the Copenhagen, Denmark-based electro pop duo and JOVM mainstays Palace Winter, and as you may recall the act, which is comprised of Australian-born, Copenhagen-based singer/songwriter Carl Coleman and Danish-born, Copenhagen-based producer and classically trained pianist Caspar Hesselager can trace its origins to the individual members of the group having a mutual familiarity and appreciation for each other’s work in a number of different projects. And as a result, the duo were encouraged to start collaborating together. 2015 saw the release of their debut single but the following year was their breakthrough year, as their debut EP Medication and their full-length debut Waiting for the World to Turn were released to critical praise from the likes of The Guardian, NME, The Line of Best Fit, and airplay from KCRW, KEXP, Norway’s P3, Denmark’s P6, as well as by BBC Radio personalities Guy Garvey, Lauren Laverne and Tom Ravenscroft. Adding to a growing profile, the duo have a Hype Machine #1, have opened for Noel Gallagher,and have made appearances across the European festival circuit, including sets at Guy Garvey’s curated Meltdown Festival, Roskilde Festival, Green Man Festival, Sziget Festival, Latitude Festival and Secret Garden Party among others.
Building upon a rapidly growing international profile, Coleman and Hesselager released their sophomore album together Nowadays last month, and album single “Empire” revealed a band that had been subtly expanding upon their sound and songwriting, as the single found the band pairing breezy, melodic, radio friendly pop with much darker thematic concerns — in particular, the loss of innocence and the tough, sobering life lessons of adulthood but also, the recognition of the freedom and power that comes as one takes control of their life. “Come Back (Left Behind)” was loosely inspiredly the major motion picture, The Witch while dealing with themes of grief and yearning. And as the band’s Carl Coleman adds, the song has the duo moving the focus away from the acoustic guitar and finds them employing the use of piano and 12 string electric — and while propulsive and danceable, the song managed to sound as though it were released in 1985. 

“Baltimore,” Nowadays’ latest single is a bit of a return to form for Coleman and Hesselager as the moody track is centered around strummed acoustic guitar, shimmering and arpeggiated synths, and propulsive rhythm section with Coleman’s plaintive vocals. Interestingly, the song delves into feelings of being suffocated by love, followed by remorse, frustration, bitterness and anxiety. 

Recently, the band along with touring members Jacob Haubjerg (guitar) and Jens Bach Laursen (drums) performed “Baltimore,” at The Village Recording, and visually, the live session further evokes the song’s moodiness and overall themes — while giving the viewer a sense of their live set. 

Live Footage: Renowned Post Rock Duo El Ten Eleven Perform the Meditative Yet Cinematic “Phenomenal Problems” off Forthcoming Album

Comprised of Kristian Dunn (double-neck bass/guitar) and Tim Fogarty (drums), the Southern California-based post rock duo El Ten Eleven have developed a reputation for using a dizzying array of effect pedals and looping pedals to create a dense, complex, enormous and incredibly cinematic sound.  And since their formation back in 2002, the band has been steadfastly DIY in their approach, producing and recording their own records; however, with their forthcoming, seventh full-length album, and first for Topshelf Records, Banker’s Hill, the duo enlisted Sonny Dipierri, who has worked with Animal Collective and Dirty Projectors to produce the album, marking the first time that they’ve ever worked with an outside producer.

Slated for an August 10, 2018 release, the album reportedly finds the duo thematically explore the paradoxical beauty in anxiety, the importance of family and familial bonds, particularly in a world gone absolutely mad, and the fleeting possibility of satisfaction. Interestingly, the album’s first single “Phenomenal Problems” finds the duo deliberately walking a tightrope between an introspective and meditative nature and a widescreen, cinematic quality as the composition is centered around a propulsive boom bap-like beats and drumming, enormous, arena rock friendly power chord-based hooks within a twisting and turning song structure. And while the song will further cement their established reputation for crafting the densely layered and deceptively complex compositions, the new single is a subtle expansion of the duo’s sound and songwriting. 

This recently released live footage captures both the simpatico between Dunn and Fogarty while being a revealing and up-close-and-personal view of the musicians’ technical and musical prowess; after all for a duo, they manage to craft a sound that makes you think that there’s 4, 5 maybe even 6 musicians.