Marie Dahlstrom is an acclaimed Rosklide-born, London-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and JOVM mainstay whose work has been largely influenced by the R&B and soul she heard in her home as a child — in particular Edwyn Collins, Womack & Womack and Gloria Gaynor and the like were on regular rotation. As a teenager, Dahlstrom discovered Dwele, Dire Straits, Erykah Badu, Kirk Franklin and Fleetwood Mac.
The Roskilde-born, London-based JOVM mainstay first gained attention as a solo artist in her native Denmark, quickly becoming a three-time Scandinavian Soul Award winner. Since relocating to London, the Danish-born JOVM mainstay has become an international sensation, crafting a warm and ethereal sound with elements of jazz, classic soul and contemporary R&B.
Dahlstrom has been extremely busy: After successful collaborations with Tom Misch and Alfa Mist, the Roskilde-born, London-based JOVM mainstay released her highly-anticipated, critically applauded full-length debut Like Sand. Recorded in Los Angeles, Copenhagen, and London, the album features collaborations with James Vickery, Jeremy Passion, Elijah Fox, Beau Diako and a list of others. Dahlstrom also continued her ongoing work with the multi-national, all-female artist collective Her Songs — with the act releasing the Toronto Vol. 1 EP.
Capping off a prolific year, Dahlstom teamed up with London-based producer Dan Diggas and Canadian emcee Aligo on a collaborative EP together 4inaRow. Slated for a a Friday release through Dahlstrom’s JFH Records, 4inaRowwas conceived around a central idea — writing and recording four-track EP in just four nights. Essentially, the EP was essentially an experiment in writing, recording and producing purely on impulse.
Each of the EP’s four songs was recorded between 8:00pm and midnight during four nights in January 2020 — and each individual song has its own story to tell. Generally speaking the process was centered around Diggas providing beats and production while the Roskilde-born, London-based JOVM mainstay and Algo shared vocal duties. “Marie and I lived in the JFH flat for a little over a year and after a few months we figured out a way for us to really tap in and make music together.” Aligo says about the creative process behind the forthcoming EP. “We told ourselves every night for 4 straight days we are going to tackle a pack of beats that Dan made while he was on tour with Mahalia. Theme-wise there wasn’t a plan at first but we knew we wanted to explore different emotions and feelings with each night that passed. By the end we noticed the songs came together in a cohesive way that demonstrated a four stage cycle of love/relationships.”
Late last year, I wrote about 4inaRow‘s first single “Fall Down,” a slickly produced yet delicate mix of soulful, contemporary pop, Quiet Storm soul and hip-hop centered around twinkling keys, skittering beats and dueling verses between Dahlstrom and Aligo. The song manages to capture a relationship in a transitional period in which the couple’s resolve and desire to remain together is being tested — and from the perspective of both people involved. “”Fall Down’ is an ode to arguments that can be common at times, but left untreated could ruin a relationship,” Dahlstrom explained in press notes. “Like autumn, this song is a transition period to a colder and more challenging part of the year and symbolic of the changes that can occur when this happens in relationships: ‘consequences get the best of you.'”
The soon-to-be released EP’s second and latest single “Rising” is slow-burning and shimmering hybrid of Quiet Storm R&B, contemporary pop and hip-hop. Centered round wobbling synths, finger snaps, skittering trap-like beats, “Rising” evokes the swooning, butterflies-in-the-stomach feeling of a new love/new situationship. And at its core, the song is a powerful reminder that love — and the desire to be loved, are all too human.
“‘Rising’ to me feels like the song you hear at the end of a good movie. It tells the second chapter of a love story after the initial spark: Honeymoons and bright flames,” Aligo says in press notes. “An ode to people in love, the lyrics definitely put you in that feel good space and remind the people that might not be in love at the moment, that there is something for everyone out there. It’s about when the moment comes and the temperature rises.”
“Dan’s beat reminded me a bit of butterflies in the stomach when I’m love, and that’s what went on to inspire my lyrics for the track,” Dahlstrom added.