Posts Tagged ‘Gothenburg’

If there was ever a time to appreciate archival live recordings, that time is now.

Many years ago, I heard the brilliantly talented and famously cantankerous guitarist Robert Fripp of King Crimson posit a provocative position on the subject of live recordings. “Of the many, many performances [I’ve seen] over four decades,” he told an audience at SXSW in Austin, “I have [never] left and felt I wished to have it on tape. There was nothing in my experience of any of [those] events which were other than available to my experience. And if I wasn’t there, I missed it. And if I missed it, photographs, recordings, nothing could bring this back to me.”

The core idea Fripp articulates is undeniably true: Nothing can fully replace or replicate being at a concert in person, as it happens. But let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater. Archival live recordings are, as Ma Bell used to say, “the next best thing to being there.” As undeniably magical as live concerts can be, they are by nature fleeting, real-time experiences. Yes, they live on in our memories, but what’s the larger cultural value of these unique performances? When the technology was invented in the 1870s to record and preserve audio, after the spoken word, the earliest recordings captured on those cylinders were of musicians performing live. Preserving performances is arguably the fundamental underlying purpose of recording technology.

Hearing a show you attended can stir memories back to life. Amazing as that is, live recordings even allow time travel and can place us at the Tower Theater in 1975, the Roxy in 1978 or Wembley Arena in 1981 when we couldn’t have possibly been there any other way. Is it the same as having had Bruce stand on your cocktail table during the middle of “Spirit in the Night?” No, but close your eyes, let your imagination flow, and it is awfully close.

Gothenburg 28th July 2012 allows fans who weren’t there at Ullevi to travel through time and space to hear one of the best nights on the Wrecking Ball tour in a closing run of European concerts that was, to quote Stevie Van Zandt’s predictive tweet before the show, “one for the ages.”

There’s something about rainy shows that brings out the best in Bruce and the E.Street Band. The show opener, a cover of Creedence’s “Who’ll Stop the Rain?” is a bellwether for great things to come, with crunchy guitar leading the way. Fan-band bonds are solidified through sparkling takes of “The Ties That Bind” and “Out in the Street” (with extra long intro) before we move to the less-traveled corners of Born in the U.S.A. with an excellent “doubleheader” of “Downbound Train” and “I’m Goin’ Down.” The former extends the guitar-richness of the show’s opening salvo and benefits from the heft of the horn section; the latter restores a bit of often-missing edge to the self-deprecating tale.

The aforementioned guitar tone extends seamlessly into a sharp “My Lucky Day” in one of only four Wrecking Ball tour performances. Special nights are built on special songs, and Gothenburg has particularly juicy ones.

What is it about “Lost in the Flood?” Bruce and the band can let it lie dormant for ages, then nail it as they did in NYC 2000. “Flood” had gone unplayed for three years prior to Gothenburg, wasn’t soundchecked, yet the mighty E Street Band is more than up to the task. “In the key of E minor,” says Bruce, “then we’re gonna hit the big chord.” Do they ever. The big chord that follows Roy’s prelude smashes forth an electrifying version that sounds as vital and fresh as it did four decades prior. Bruce vocals are especially gritty, evidenced by this not-so-subtle lyric change: “Hey man, did you see that? Those poor cats were sure fucked up.” Damn.

The energy generated by “Lost in the Flood” propels the ensuing three-pack from Wrecking Ball (“We Take Care of Our Own,” “Wrecking Ball,” “Death to My Hometown”) plus kindred spirit “My CIty of Ruins.” Pick your cliche—firing on all cylinders, in the zone, killing it—all would apply, and doesn’t the horn section sound fantastic? Despite the stadium scale of the show, Jon Altschiller’s mix is tight and close, with Roy’s piano and Max’s high-hat in particularly sharp focus.

“Frankie.” Merely typing the song title brings a smile. The marvelous, lost-and-found Springsteen original premiered on the Spring 1976 tour, his first new song after the release of Born to Run. It was performed around a dozen times that year and cut for Darkness a year later (despite Bruce’s introduction saying The River). It was recorded again for Born in the U.S.A. in 1982, and that version was eventually released on Tracks in 1998.

The song’s live outings in modern times are equally limited. One-off attempts in 1999 and 2003 showed “Frankie” deceptively tricky to get right; something about the song’s lilting quality and mid-tempo pacing proved elusive. But after working through the arrangement in soundcheck, Bruce unlocks the wondrous heart of “Frankie” and lets it wash over Gothenburg in a spellbinding performance.

The show’s second act begins with slightly off-kilter take of “The River,” though normal service is restored in a crisp “Because the Night” and on through “Lonesome Day,” “Hungry Heart,” “Shackled and Drawn,” and “Waitin’ on a Sunny Day.” We step back into special-show territory with another great pick from Tracks, the rollicking River outtake “Where the Bands Are” dedicated to the fans who had travelled from show to show around Europe. It is the last performance to date of the irresistible track.  Thanks for the words Erik Flanagan

The Band

Bruce Springsteen – Lead vocal, guitar, harmonica; Roy Bittan – Piano, keyboards, accordion; Nils Lofgren – Guitar, lap steel, backing vocal; Garry Tallent – Bass; Stevie Van Zandt – Electric and acoustic guitars, mandolin, backing vocal; Max Weinberg – Drums; Jake Clemons – Tenor saxophone, percussion, backing vocal; Charlie Giordano – Organ, keyboards, accordion; Soozie Tyrell – Violin, acoustic guitar, percussion, backing vocal; Everett Bradley – Percussion, backing vocal; Curtis King – Backing vocal, percussion; Cindy Mizelle – Backing vocal; Michelle Moore – Backing vocal; Barry Danielian – Trumpet; Clark Gayton – Trombone; Eddie Manion – Baritone and tenor saxophone; Curt Ramm – Trumpet

If I Break Horses’s third album holds you in its grip like a great film, it’s no coincidence. Faced with making the follow-up to 2014’s plush Chiaroscuro, Horses’s Maria Lindén decided to take the time to make something different, with an emphasis on instrumental, cinematic music. As she watched a collection of favourite films on her computer (sound muted) and made her own soundtrack sketches, these sonic workouts gradually evolved into something more: “It wasn’t until I felt an urge to add vocals and lyrics,” says Lindén, “that I realized I was making a new I Break Horses album.”

That album is Warnings, an intimate and sublimely expansive return that, as its recording suggests, sets its own pace with the intuitive power of a much-loved movie. And, as its title suggests, its sumptuous sound worlds – dreamy mellotrons, haunting loops, analogue synths – and layered lyrics crackle with immersive dramatic tensions on many levels. “It’s not a political album,” says Lindén, “though it relates to the alarmist times we live in. Each song is a subtle warning of something not being quite right.”

As Lindén notes, the process of making Warnings involved different kinds of dramas. “It has been some time in the making. About five years, involving several studios, collaborations that didn’t work out, a crashed hard drive with about two years of work, writing new material again instead of trying to repair it. New studio recordings, erasing everything, then recording most of the album myself at home…”

Yet the pay-off for her long-haul immersion is clear from statement-of-intent album opener ‘Turn’, a waltzing kiss-off to an ex swathed in swirling synths over nine emotive minutes. On ‘Silence’, Lindén suggests deeper sorrows in the interplay of serene surface synths, hypnotic loops and elemental images: when she sings “I feel a shiver,” you feel it, too.

Elsewhere, on three instrumental interludes, Lindén’s intent to experiment with sound and structure is clear. Meanwhile, there are art-pop songs here more lush than any she has made. ‘I’ll Be the Death of You’ occupies a middle ground between Screamedelica and early OMD, while ‘Neon Lights’ brings to mind Kraftwerk on Tron’s light grid. ‘I Live At Night’ slow-burns like a song made for night-time LA drives; ‘Baby You Have Travelled for Miles without Love in Your Eyes’ is an electronic lullaby spiked with troubling needle imagery. ‘Death Engine’’s dark-wave dream-pop provides an epic centrepiece, of sorts, before the vocoder hymnal of closer ‘Depression Tourist’ arrives like an epiphany, the clouds parting after a long, absorbing journey.

For Lindén, Warnings is a remarkable re-routing of a journey begun when I Break Horses’s debut album, Hearts (2011), drew praise from Pitchfork, The Guardian, NME, The Independent and others for its luxurious grandeur and pulsing sense of art-pop life. With the electro-tangents of 2014’s Chiaroscuro, Lindén forged a new, more ambitious voice with total confidence. Along the way, I Break Horses have toured with M83 and Sigur Rós; latterly, U2 played Hearts’ ecstatic ‘Winter Beats’ through the PA before their stage entrance on 2018’s ‘Experience + Innocence’ tour. Good choice.

A new friend on Warnings is US producer/mixing engineer Chris Coady, whose graceful way with dense sound (credits include Beach House, TV on the Radio) was not the sole reason Lindén invited him to mix the album. “Before reaching out to Chris I read an interview where he said, ‘I like to slow things down. Almost every time I love the sound of something slowed down by half, but sometimes 500% you can get interesting shapes and textures.’ And I just knew he’d be the right person for this album.”

If making Warnings was a slow process, so be it: that steady gestation was a price worth paying for its lavish accretions of detail and meaning, where secrets aplenty await listeners eager to immerse themselves. “Nowadays, the attention span equals nothing when it comes to how most people consume music,” Lindén says. “And it feels like songs are getting shorter, more ‘efficient’. I felt an urge to go against that and create an album journey from start to finish that takes time and patience to listen to. Like, slow the fuck down!” Happily, Warnings provides all the incentives required.

releases May 8th, 2020

Marti West Portrait.jpg

Marti West sent us his latest song and we were instantly struck by how powerful and close to our own life stories it was. We’re incredibly grateful for the awesome people that joined us, such kind, giving, energetic souls that just went for all our ideas and provided their own amazing creativity. Enjoy ‘Give Me Light’!

Marti West is often on the move. Born in Massa Marittima, near Siena in Tuscany, the Italian-English songwriter spent his early years living in Italy where he was first exposed to music through local opera performances in the town piazza. Musical masterpieces by Verdi, Donizetti and Puccini were often heard through an open window and instilled a love of melody and storytelling at a young age.

Since then, he has lived in London, Oxford and Bristol studying music and always releasing songs along the way, before finding his current home in Gothenburg, Sweden. The sparse northern landscapes and minimalist aesthetic of the Scandinavian lifestyle have affected his work, and his mini-album “VIII” to shows a more textured nuance to the writing.

His latest single “Give Me Light” continues this artistic trajectory, placing ethereal vocals in an atmospheric setting drawing comparisons to Elliott Smith, Dustin Tebbutt and Bon Iver.

One of 2015’s most ambitious records, Anna von Hausswolff is a diamond in carving out colossal songs which start in one place and evolve into a myriad of others before, very often, bursting into something quite magnificent. We fell in love with The Miraculous the first time we heard the sprawling 10-minuter Come Wander With Me/Deliverance – before the whole album sound tracked a grey October in Budapest. The fourth album by Sweden’s Anna von Hausswolff grapples with mortality, but the music is far from morose. In fact, Dead Magic is possibly her most triumphant release to date, offering uplifting crescendos propelled by rising rhythms, swelling guitars, and von Hausswolff’s seemingly-unlimited vocal powers. It helps that von Hausswolf recorded the organ parts in one of the largest churches in Scandinavia, giving the album’s cathartic bombast and even more epic feel. But it’s not the tools von Hausswolf used that make Dead Magic so intoxicating; it’s the transfixing vision and unswerving commitment she brings to every note that she utters.

http://

Me, my band and Randall Dunn spent 9 days in Copenhagen recording this record. The great pipe organ you’re hearing is a 20th century instrument located in Marmor Kirken, “The Marble Church”, Copenhagen.

Here is a poem for you by the Swedish writer Walter Ljungquist (1900-1974):
”Take the fate of a human being, a thin pathetic line that contours and encircles an infinite and unknown silence. It is in this very silence, in an only imagined and unknown centre, that legends are born. Alas! That is why there are no legends in our time. Our time is a time deprived of silence and secrets; in their absence no legends can grow.”

Please enjoy the music. Yours sincerely, Anna von Hausswolff” released March 2nd, 2018

They’re a young band of women playing boisterous indie rock outfit from Gothenburg, Sweden. and I heard about them recently. It’s sorta post-Riot grrrl, post-No Wave, experimental music and completely engaging from beginning to end.”,  just listen to the track  ‘Stupid’

http://

No automatic alt text available.

Thursday, August 10
Frank Ocean • Pixies Flume Young Thug • • • • • The Shins Danny Brown Angel Olsen The Radio Dept. The Black Madonna • • • • GraveyardKornél Kovács • • • Young M.A Tash Sultana Avantgardet Sunflower BeanJarami • • • • • Her Alma Let’s EAT GRANDMA Anne-Marie • • More artists.

Image may contain: text

Friday 11 August
Major Lazer The Xx • • • • • Ryan Adams Sampha Feist The Afghan Whigs Mac Demarco • • • • • Perfume Genius Jens Lekman Thee Oh SeesJon Hopkins (DJ sets) • Sabina Ddumba • Diplo • Fatoumata Diawara & Hindi Zahra – Olympic Cafe Tour • Invsn • Mobilegirl • Fireside • Julia Jacklin • 070 shake • Janice • Lydia Ainsworth • More artists.

Image may contain: text

Saturday 12 August
Lana Del Rey • Regina Spektor • Band of horses • London grammar • Oskar Linnros • Conor Oberst • George Ezra • Tycho • Frida Hyvönen • Lisa Hannigan • Eva Dahlgren • Yung Sherman • The Blaze • Safe! • Cashmere Cat • Fatima Yamaha • LVL UP • Josefin Öhrn + the liberation • Léon • Hurray for the riff raff • Kikagaku Moyo / jǐ hé xué mó yàng • More artists.

No automatic alt text available.

Swedish duo Pale Honey a few times in the past, but they have been pretty quiet for the past eighteen months or so. The pair have often drawn comparisons to the likes of PJ Harvey and Sleater-Kinney, but there is a lot more to them than mere pale imitation.

What is certain is that they have their own breed of nervy, direct, and distortion heavy indie rock at their disposal and happily their new single Real Thing sees the band continue to plough these furrows, but also experiment more with percussion and electronics. It’s the first taste of their second album, which should be due next April/May 2017.

http://

PHOTO: Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band in concert at Ullevi Stadium, Gothenburg, Sweden.

Ullevi stadium, in this industrial port city on Sweden’s west coast, was built as a soccer stadium with a capacity to hold up to 43,000 fans. Last night, as Bruce Springsteen and his E Street Band took the stage here, the large LED screen behind the band blared the number of paid attendees at 63,367.

“Thanks for having us back,” Springsteen said before striking the first chords of “Meet Me in The City,” a track from his 1980 album “The River Collection.” The song, like much of his music of that era, perfectly blends his trademark bar-band rock sound with heartfelt lyrics of loss and redemption. “We’re very happy to be back here in Sweden,” he said.

The show was the band’s third sold-out performance in Gothenburg in a month and caps a European tour that saw Springsteen and his band pack arenas across the Continent.

Nearly 70,000 fans jammed Wembley Stadium in London last month to see Springsteen perform a 33-song set that stretched well past three hours. In Berlin, more than 65,000 fans dodged rain and humid weather in June to see the 66-year Springsteen perform at Olympiastadion, the cavernous sports arena Hitler built for the 1936 Olympics that saw “The Boss” belt out a rousing, sing-along rendition of “Born in the U.S.A.”

In all, Springsteen has sold out more than two dozen arena shows in more than a dozen European countries on this tour, with thousands of die hard fans crisscrossing the continent to see him perform. From Milan to Dublin, Oslo to Rome, many of his shows sold out in minutes of tickets going on sale. Even ardent longtime fans, including many ex-pat Americans living abroad, can’t recall a European tour that attracted more capacity crowds.

Yet despite an enormous and sustained popularity in Europe, Bruce Springsteen — that quintessentially American rocker — appears to draw his tightest connection to the continent here in Sweden.

IMG_3979

The Scandinavian country was the first European concert Springsteen played on his first world tour back in 1975. Though that performance — in support of “Born to Run” — drew just over a thousand fans to a concert hall in Stockholm, it has taken on mythic proportion among Swedes.

“It’s one of those events like Woodstock where more people than could possibly have attended claim to have been there,” says Daniel Eriksson, a Swedish music journalist and longtime fan of Springsteen. “After the show Bruce ate at McDonald’s which only existed in Sweden for a couple of years, so it was probably the only thing that reminded him of home at the time.”

Springsteen later admitted to a local Swedish newspaper that he was petrified ahead of that Stockholm show.

“It was one of the first European countries I visited, 1975, and I was actually terrified,” he told the Aftonbladet. “I had never left the States before, barely left New Jersey and had no idea what would happen,” he said. “I’ve always been received well in Sweden ever since.”

Then there’s Clarence Clemons, “The Big Man” to Springsteen fans, who played saxophone for the band until his death in 2011. He was married to a Swede for nearly a decade and spent months at a time touring the country in support of his solo work. Those performances, along with his soulful, out-sized personality, elevated Clemons to cult status in many corners of the country and raised Springsteen’s profile among younger Swedish fans.

In 2012, on his last tour of Europe, Springsteen chose Gothenburg to perform “Jungleland” for the first time since Clemons‘ death. The song, which includes a roaring saxophone solo, was performed with Jake Clemons, a nephew of Clarence who now plays saxophone with the band. “Moments this beautiful can only happen when the artist and audience are as one,” Springsteen’s longtime manager, Jon Landau, said at the time.

That performance was part of a pair of sold-out shows the band played in Gothenburg in 2012 and still rank as a career highlight for Springsteen, Landau says. The shows drew more than 140,000 raucous fans.

“The two shows in Gothenburg were among the very highest moments in Bruce and the Band’s history of performing,” he told the Expressen, Sweden’s largest daily newspaper. “The crowds were among the greatest I have ever seen–for any artist and the audience comes with a great knowledge of Bruce’s work, a depth of feeling for all of it, and a special empathy for his artistry.”

Though he’s always maintained enormous popularity abroad, Springsteen’s current streak of sold-out shows is especially striking given the disdain many Europeans continue to have for U.S. foreign policy in places like Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. During the invasion of Iraq under George W. Bush – the height of anti-American sentiment in Europe – Bruce continued to sell-out arenas across Europe.

Springsteen definitely touches a nerve in Europe,” says Erik Kirschbaum, a Berlin-based journalist and author of “Rocking the Wall: The Berlin Concert That Changed the World.” The book details Bruce Springsteen’s concert before some 300,000 fans in East Berlin on July 19th, 1988 and argues that performance – and the speech, in German, Springsteen gave at the show – helped bring down the Berlin Wall.

“I think his eagerness to tackle issues and themes that are important to ordinary people goes down exceptionally well in Europe,” Kirschbaum says. “But also his courage to stand up and be critical of the United States and its government at times is also something that a wide swath of Europeans recognizes and appreciates.”

“It may sound a little bit crazy to an American, but Swedish people can really identify with the lyrics and the simple themes of the songs,” Martin Wallenberg tells me outside Ullevi Stadium. He and his wife drove just over four hours from a Stockholm suburb to see the Gothenburg show. This is his fifth Springsteen concert, the 49-year old says. “I saw him back in the late 1980’s for the first time and it really became clear to me that seeing Bruce in Sweden was something special.”

Like the U.S. leg of his tour, last night’s show in Gothenburg included performing the whole album of “The River.” Released when he was 31-years old, Springsteen acknowledged the subtext of the album during a nearly four hour performance in a port city where the sun stays out well past evening hours in summer.

“Time sometimes feels like it’s slipping away,” he told a crowd of fans that have now had 36-years to absorb his albums. “When you enter the adult world, the clock starts ticking and you’ve got a limited amount of time to do your work, to raise your family, to try and do something good.”

Onstage, Springsteen used personal stories of love, life and lust to connect with the audience between some songs. He also showed-off a playful coziness he still shares with the band: clowning with the guitarist Steve Van Zandt and occasionally sharing the microphone with band members.

He surprised fans standing close to the front rows of the arena by stepping onto a platform where people could reach his legs, take selfies and give high-fives.

Like at many of the shows on this tour, Springsteen used “Hungry Heart,” arguably the most popular song from “The River,” to best connect with the audience. While leading a raucous rendition of the song, he circled the stage and offered up his microphone to fans on the ground level to sing along.

“We ain’t too old to party, people,” he said, upright and back on stage while sharing the microphone with Nils Lofgren and embracing his his wife and backup singer, Patti Scialfa. “We aint too old to party.”

“Let’s dance to Joy Divison and celebrate the irony”

The Don Darlings opens the lid and release a first single from their forthcoming third album, to be revealed in its’ full glory this fall. The band has deepened the cooperation with producer Hans Olsson Brookes (Kleerup, Timo Räisinen) and The Don Darlings new sound has taken shape in Svenska Grammofonstudion.

A meeting between Joy Division and Nick Cave in East Berlin. Dance and gloominess. Repetetetive and cinematic. Electro and rock. Damon Collums dark, distinctive voice creates the melancholy that has become so significant for the band. As The Don Darlings now are treading new musical ground ,expectations rises.

http://