Nov 20 2015

Sofia’s on the move

Jonas
Photo: Jonas Löfvendahl

Photo: Jonas Löfvendahl

• 32 year old Swede Sofia Assarson is part of our local favorite band Castlewoods – together with Maja Fredriksson and Johanna Lannerö. A folk-indie kind of vibe, from Joni Mitchell via Kate Bush to Beach House.

The debut album was recorded at Studio Oodion, in classic Music A Matic’s headquarters in Gothenburg. Where both Håkan Hellström and Joakim Thåström been before. It was intense, nine days recording with Swedish snuff and late night whiskey along with studio owner Henryk Lypps homemade fish soup and technician Thomas Andréns endless patience.

– It was magic! Now we just wanna hit the road and play live. An album today is an expensive business card, a chance to introduce ourself to the world, says Sofia. Right now she lives in Berlin. Doing her thing.

– I write new material and network. Berlin is beautiful, to meet and jam together, sleeping on someone’s couch. I wanna make a living in music and there are no shortcuts. It’s about working hard.

Next thing for Castlewoods?

– We just got a tour booked in northern Europe through a booking agency and concept called Meta Projects. They chose us among a number of different bands and have a true love for Swedish folk-indie. It´ll be six dates in Germany and Amsterdam for starters, says Sofia.

3 short Sofiafacts

• Lives: Gothenburg & Berlin.

• Reads: Right now the latest books of Haruki Murakami and Patti Smith.

• Listens to: Gillian Welch, Katzenjammer, José Gonzales, Jessica Pratt, I Wish I Was A Fish.

Until the album arrives, check out this vid; beach-India-style.


Okt 15 2015

We met Pug

Jonas

hqdefault

We had the good fortune of meeting Joe Pug yesterday in Gothenburg, Sweden. He’s on tour and played a great gig at Bar Kom. The ending, when the band left stage and strolled down onto the floor singing in the small audience was enchanting. Thanks for the magic, Joe!

We asked for some of Pug’s darlings and got this:

• Pod: The Moment with Brian Koppelman:  ”In this program, screenwriter Brian Koppelman interviews artists and business leaders that inspire him.  Specifically, he talks to them about how they handled certain crucial ”inflection points” in their lives.  That is, he wants to know why successful people process the high and low points of their careers differently than the rest of us.  Start with the interview he does of Seth Godin and move on from there.”

• Music: ”Warm Enemy” by Christopher Paul Stelling:  ”I had the pleasure of playing the Paradiso in Amsterdam with this American songwriter.  We swapped records after the show and I found myself returning to this tune.  His guitar playing is a personal, nylon-string take on John Fahey and Joseph Spence that is absolutely gripping.

• Book: The Remains of the Day, Kazuo Ishiguro:  ”I read this classic of modern fiction on the flight over to Europe this summer.  Told from the first-person perspective of a mid-20th century English butler – stay with me! – it explores the act of relinquishing the notion that your individual life had meaning beyond your own private joys and sorrows.  The narrator, Stevens, spends the book reflecting on a career that he spent in the service of an aristocrat whom he considered a ”great” man.  As the book unwinds though, he begins to question whether or not his employer was indeed great and therefore whether or not he himself spent a life doing meaningful work.  This is a short, wonderful read.”


Sep 4 2015

A direct order from John Grant

Jonas

• We always do what Mr John Grant says. You should to.

More about John Grant: the man’s website. Friday ya’ll!


Sep 24 2012

What are you listening to… Stephanie Dosen?

Magnus

Ever since 2007, one album has been haunting me. Stephanie Dosen’s –  ”A Lily For The Spectre” (Bella Union) that had to be one of the greatest, and most well kept secrets of that year.

The album is pure magic, and Dosen’s voice and presence is everything I wish for in genuine music. Her voice. Her distinct yet subtle way of presenting her stories, is nothing less than divine.

Stephanie Dosen, a Wisconsin born singer/songwriter of fantastic proportions, that later moved to UK and in 2008 became the lead vocalist for Massive Attack on their european tour. And the later, toured with the Midlake and also contributed with vocals on ”Bring Down” from the album ”The Courage of Others” (2010).

Been waiting to see what would be following that album up, but it has been really quiet, until the rumors start spreading that an album might be on the way…

An album with Simon Raymonde in the form of a band called Snowbird… And if you read about it on Bellaunion.com, we can expect contributions from Radiohead, Midlake and Jonathan Wilson. This is bound to be great, beyond great.

What you might not know: Dosen is super talented when it comes to knitting and designing… http://tinyowlknits.wordpress.com/

I had the opportunity to ask Stephanie some short questions… here is what she said:

 

– What are you listening to, right now?

”-My fountain, birds, wind chimes & ambient anything.”

– Best book read in a while?

”The Sea Priestess by Dion Fortune.”

– Your hopes for this year?

”Finish my book and get the Snowbird record out!”

– Three artists who inspire you?

”Joni Mitchell, Indigo Girls, Cocteau Twins.”

– Who deserves a breakthru in 2012?

”Whoever Einstein came back as.”

 

We are so looking forward to the Snowbird album, meanwhile…

A lily for the Spectre is one of my absolute favorite albums… if that has not already been made obvious… Listen for yourself:

 

 


Sep 4 2012

What are you listening to, Brown Bird?

Magnus

Photo by Mikael Kennedy

The list of great bands from Providence RI can be made long. We have met quite a few of them on our journey here on Kentuckyseven. When we hooked up with The Low Anthem, we asked them about what bands to look out for. They named the band Brown Bird, and the love was instant.

Dave Lamb and MorganEve Swain create something of a supernatural feeling with their music. Nature is present, the great unknown feels present and yet this is as ”close to the ground” as possible. The sensation of rural North America is magical. This is what music is all about. Instruments as well as harmonies shows you pictures of love and struggle and relations between man nature and everything in between.

I just want to sit next to an open fire in a small wooden cabin, and listen to this music. And let myself be swept away to places not yet known to me.

We asked Brown Bird about things that they like to be swept away by:

What are you listening to, right now?

”At this very moment we’re on tour driving from Tempe, AZ to SanDiego, CA listening to the audio book of ”Slow Fade” by Rudolph Wurlitzer narrated by Will Oldham and D.V. DeVincentis. The music we’ve listened to most on this trip has been Erkin Koray, Omar Khorshid and Gabor Szabo.”

Best book read in a while?

DL: ”Henry Corbin’s ”Swedenborg and Esoteric Islam.” I found out about this book on the Museum Without Walls section of webofmimicry.com. To a westerner raised in a household of American Christianity, Corbin’s article on the Imaginal World and his comparisons between the Esoteric Christian and Esoteric Islamic interpretations of the stories of Adam & Eve and Noah’s ark were a breath of fresh philosophy. Or perhaps he’s articulating some of my own views much more eloquently than I ever could.”

MES:” I find it hard to read while on the road, but the last book I completed was ”A Separate Country” by Robert Hicks, which is about a confederate general living in New Orleans dealing with post-war guilt. I read it during a week off that we were lucky enough to spend in the Bywater of NOLA, which heightened the whole experience.”

Your hopes for this year?

”We hope to thoroughly enjoy playing our last few tours of the year. We also hope to record our best full length album yet when we head back into the studio this December.”

Three artists who inspire you?

”It’s really hard to pick just three but if we have to narrow it down here’s the first names that come to mind right now.
Trey Spruance (Secret Chiefs 3, Mr. Bungle) an incredible guitar/prepared instrument player and arranger.
Joel Thibodeau (Stringbuilder, Death Vessel) one of the best lyricists/songwriters around.
Chris Corsano (Six Organs of Admittance, SunBurned Hand of the Man, Bjork, Rangda, etc.) an innovative and very skilled drummer with a great feel and unique style.”

Who deserves a breakthru in 2012/2013?

”We’re gonna go ahead and show some New England pride here by mentioning a few of our friends whose music we love and want the rest of the world to hear and hopefully love as well. Joe Fletcher & The Wrong Reasons, Death Vessel, Micah Blue Smaldone and Alec K. Redfearn & The Eyesores. All of these groups have new albums coming out at various times over the next year and from what we’ve heard of each, they are not to be missed.

Here at Kentuckyseven we are looking forward to hearing more great music from Dave and MorganEve, so we will be looking out for the next album. That is a promise.

Check out Brown Bird online: BrownBird.net

Listen to Brown Bird:

 


Mar 13 2012

What are you listening to… Tiger Lou?

Magnus

Rasmus Kellerman photo by Hugo Kjellén
Photo by Pär Hugo Kjellén

One of the truly greatest album from a Swedish artist in 2005 was Tiger Lou’s ”The Loyal”.

With the feel of being inside a German car driving at top speed down a wet autobahn in the dark, just sensing the colors on the side of the road rushing by. Barely.

The despair and the joy in Rasmus Kellerman’s voice like a narrator to the movie that is played on the windshield. Pure magic.

The first album ”Is my head still on?” (2004) with the enormous hit single ”Oh Horatio” felt new yet timeless at release, it still does.
Tiger Lou’s most recent album ”A Partial Print” (2008) carries a heavy load, with great dignity. The music is unique in a very Tiger Lou way. Dark with a drive. Drums and guitars that remind us that it is possible to create great music with small means. Those ten minutes that is ”The More You Have To Give” and ”The Less You Have To Carry” is short of perfection in my book.

After three full-lengths as Tiger Lou, Rasmus Kellerman released ”The 24th” as himself. The sound is very different, acoustic, more personal, a diary if you will.

We had to have a talk to Mr Kellerman, to see what’s in store for 2012… and more…

What are you listening to, right now?

”Arrow” by Jacques Greene & Koreless, ”Nova” by Four Tet & Burial, ”Grace” by Keith Kenniff, ”Where Are Your People” by We Have Band, ”Josie” by The Darcys, ”Hold On” by SBTRKT, ”Be There In Bells” by The Pines, ”No Respect” by Machinedrum, ”Just Smile For Me” by Bondax & Bobbie Gordon.”

A regular song salad.

Best book read, in a while?

”I look forward to the two new Chuck Palahniuk books I just ordered. And I’m about to start Blue Nights by Joan Didion. Been a while since I finished a book. I’m an easy starter, hard finisher.”

Your hopes for this year?

”Get my shit together and write more songs for my new project, which is gonna be great. Finish up some new Tiger Lou songs perhaps, do a gig or something. Do a few techno tracks. Go to Greece in the summer. Become a better designer. Be a good husband. Have fun. Live/work in California.”

Three artist who inspire you?

”Right now I think what Burial is doing, and how he does it is very inspiring. That would be my ideal situation, being able to write & record your tunes in peace, and email them to someone and have that be it. No tours, to promo, no fucking around. Just music straight from one heart to another. Jacques Greene does some amazing rule bending, which I love. And Radiohead have their own universe.”

Who deserves a breakthrough in 2012?

”I think SBTRKT should be a household name. Him and Jacques Greene. The sheer melancholy, beauty and groove of the music they keep producing amazes me. I wanna be in their sphere. Me and everyone else.”

 

Kentuckyseven suggest you check out the sweetness created up until now…

Spotify: Tiger Lou, Rasmus Kellerman


Okt 25 2011

Interview: Swear and Shake

Magnus

The New York based indie-folk-pop band Swear and Shake has caught our attention with their enchanting music and sound. When we first listened to them, it felt as if we had been friends for years. This is something you have to get your ears into.

After last years EP ”Extended Play”, they are now finishing up their new release.  This is truly a band to follow. We hope for great success, nothing less.

Kentuckyseven got curious and wanted to know more about this awesome group of people,  so we had a chat with Kari Spieler, the great vocalist and musician:

 

When listening to your music, one thing comes to mind. You guys complement eachother extremely well. How did you all get together?

”Adam and I met while studying at SUNY Purchase ( a state university just outside of New York City). While we weren’t close friends, we were both active singer-songwriters on campus and often had class together. About a month or so before graduation (2010) Adam asked me to sing on his song Johnnie and things instantly clicked between us. We immediately started booking shows and thinking up band names. Our drummer and bassist, Tom and Shaun, joined us shortly after that. The boys grew up together on Long Island and had been playing music since they were in grade school. It all happened very naturally.”

There are thousands of bands accesible to everyone today online, how has that effected you career?

”The internet is a bands best friend. Especially this band. We are huge advocates for using social media outlets. We are all over Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube. We’re proud to be on internet radio sites like Grooveshark and Spotify. Through great websites like Frostclick.com our first EP was downloaded for free by over 200,000 people. We successfully funded our forthcoming record with the help of our fans and Kickstarter.com. We are big supporters of all different types of blogs, big and small.
It’s important to get your music out there to anyone and everyone. Using the web is a good way to keep in contact with people, and it’s also enabled us to bring our music to lots of ears without the help of traditional music business outlets. I think people appreciate being able to connect with us directly and we enjoy it as well.”

How would describe your music to someone who never heard you?

”We usually put ourselves in the Indie-Folk-Pop genre. We write singable stories you can dance to. That’s how I like to think of it. If I were to compare us to other bands or musicians I like to say Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros meets Mumford and Sons with a little bit of Cat Power for attitude.”

While riding to a venue, what do listen to? Are you synced, do yo agree on the same tracks?

”This is a good question. My one rule is that once you put something on, you have to let it play through without changing it. We don’t always agree on everything. I usually get vetoed actually, haha. Pandora on our phones is usually a good compromise and that works out well assuming there’s good service. I enjoy listening to classical music stations on NPR when we’re driving for several hours at a time, that makes the boys fall asleep, anyway. My favorite thing is to watch Tom jam out to Styx while he’s driving.”

What artists have influenced your music?

”Our influences come from all over the place. Starting with the classics, The Beatles, Dylan, The Mama’s and The Papa’s, as well as soul music like Bill Withers, Aretha Franklin, and Smokey Robinson. I’ve found great inspiration Patsy Cline and Kitty Wells. On the newer side of music, we love The Format, Margot and The Nuclear So and So’s, The Avett Brothers, Broken Social Scene, and we are proud Phantom Planet fans.”

Any bookworms in the band, any advice on authors to check out?

”We all enjoy reading but none of us are bookworms. I’m not up to date on new authors. I’m currently reading The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway. Shaun and I share a love of Kurt Vonnegut. One of my favorite books is East of Eden, John Steinbeck which influenced a few of my songs. I remember reading in an interview with Mumford and Sons that they too found inspiration from that story.”

What can we expect from your coming album?

”Expect a very dynamic record from us. The best thing about being in this band is the collaborative effort between all of us. While Adam and I write the songs, Tom and Shaun bring them to life. It definitely represents us as a matured and seasoned group. The EP has more of a singer-songwriter feel. This record has a depth you can really get into. It shows our versatility and passion. You can expect to hear usual stories of love and sorrow as well as songs about demolition, adventure, and much more.”

Tell us about the idea for financing the new album, who came up with the idea?

”Kickstarter.com has become a very popular fundraising website in the past couple years. We’ve known a few different bands that have successfully funded their projects through this site. It was Adam’s idea to give it a go and we took to it pretty quickly. It follows our philosophy to get our fans and family involved as much as we can. We really attribute the record’s existence to the them and Kickstarter and we’re very grateful and humbled by the experience.”

Last, if you would name one band who you wished would have a breakthrough in 2012, except yourself, which we are hoping for, who would you choose?

”The band we would choose to have a breakthrough with out a doubt is Pearl and The Beard. They don’t really need our best wishes, they are really kicking butt right now. We love these people and love their musicianship. Definitely check them out.”

Listen to ”Johnnie” and get to know the music. Check out the website for more information: SwearandShake.com

Johnnie by Swear and Shake


Sep 21 2011

What Are You Listening To, T&O?

Jonas

Trummor & Orgel is intense stuff! Instrumental, darting, heavy. The band smell of a 1965-joint, Hansson & Karlsson, Swedish hammond-psychodelia with a vengeance. It´s a jazz volcano ready to hit the streets.

Their new album Out of Bounds is released today, Sept 21, and we vote for a immediate success. Thanks to the two brothers Anders Ljunggren & Staffan Ljunggren of Trummor & Orgel who took time out of their busy schedule to answer our five Q´s.

 

Photo: Daniel Olsén.

¤ What are you listening to, right now?
”At the moment we’re listening our own album “Out of Bounds”, haha. No but really, we’re very satisfied with the result and feel that this album is the one you can listen to many times. Otherwise, we have rediscovered a lot from the nineties like The Charlatans and the Stone Roses.”

¤ Best book read in a while?
”Well, we don’t necessarily read the same books, but “Recording the Beatles” by Kevin Ryan and Brian Kehew helped out a lot during the making of the record.”

¤ Your hopes for this year?
”A: Well, most of all, with our new record out we hope to reach out to even more people and find new venues and festivals to visit. It is a fantastic feeling to be able to meet the fans and to have the opportunity to actually get more fans.”

¤ Three artists who inspire you?
”Musicwise, at the moment we are inspired by bands like Death Cab for Cutie and Two Door Cinema Club for their immediate melodies and pop tunes. However, in the background you will always find The Cure and My Bloody Valentine mixed with Brian Auger and Small Faces.”

¤ Which artist or band deserves a breakthru?
”There are a lot of great bands out there that makes fantastic music. Side Effects is a young Swedish band which sees huge potential, playing psychedelic pop at its best. I’m sure we will hear more from them in the future. Frantic Sunday is a band from our home town Uppsala which is a great live act. Also, Andreas Stellan (also in The Works) who is currently recording his own Swedish material has a great voice and really deserves some serious attention.”

¤¤¤Check out their first single, Worlds Collide:


Jul 15 2011

Interview: My Morning Jacket

Jonas

One of the best albums of 2011 is My Morning Jackets ‘Circuital’. This darling rockband is touring the shit out of it as we speak. Sat 16 th July they gig Latitude Festival and Sun 17 July the gig Somerset House w awesome support of The Head And The Heart.

Kentuckyseven got a minute with mighty drummer Patrick Hallahan, do check it out.

¤ Circuital was recorded in Kentucky, your home-state. Was that special to you?

”Recording an album is always a special time for us, but recording at home took  it to another level.  There’s just a certain comfort when at home…a centering element. And because of this, we didn’t have to focus on our surrounds, just the music.”

¤ How is the music-scene in Kentucky today?

”The music scene in Kentucky is complicated.  On one hand, you have the mindset that musicians should maintain the traditional bluegrass roots.  On the other hand, you have people wanting to invent.  We like to invent…”

¤ We´d love to go to Kentucky and listen to live music. Where to go?

”Renfro Valley.”

¤ Your hopes for 2011?

”Have a healthy baby.  Play as many shows with my friends as possible.  Make more time for my family.  Give back to the universe for all of this positive energy.”

 ¤ Kentuckyseven loves the new album, how do you guys rate it?

”Too close to the fire…I’ll leave the rating to you.  Rest assured, we’re really happy with how things turned out.”

¤ What books or records did inspire you in the making of Circuital?

”Circuital was inspired by life lessons, personal growth, and realization.  There are no direct connections to books or records…they are two of many things that shaped our minds leading up to this point.”


Jun 4 2011

Interview: The Low Anthem

Magnus

June 4 The Low Anthem´s USA-tour hits our dreamvillage of Louisville, Kentucky. They play Headliners Music Hall (together with Daniel Lefkowitz and The County Line) and it will for sure be a night to remember.

Kentuckyseven had a chat with bandleaders Ben Knox Miller and Jeff Prystowsky when they visited Gothenburg, Sweden. We talked about Pringles chips, the soundtrack of Sweden and the smart kids of Deer Tick.

Welcome to Sweden! Last time you played here were a much talked-about gig at Pustervik in the summer of 2010. You recall?

“Sure, that was one special evening. It was late, late at night, a really rowdy crowd who had their fair amount of Swedish beer.  We started out with all our instruments on stage and I know we looked at each other and didn´t know which way it would turn. But after three or four songs we knew, everything connected and we really enjoyed it.”

You even played to the crowd in line outside the bar who couldn´t get in?

“Yeah, that’s right (laugh). It was sold out and a long line of people stayed outside. It was raining, and we stopped and played a song for them outside. The night was dark, it was very special. “

The song  “I´ll Take Out Your Ashes” is your most Swedish song ever, Ingmar Bergman-style. Beautiful, guilty, sad feeling. Like a soundtrack of Sweden. What can you say about that song?

“Really? Well now for sure we will play that one tonite. The song was written a night after hanging out at a bar with my friend who just told me a story about her mother passing away, about how her family was feuding about how to deal with the ashes. The family was fighting about who should come to the ceremony, and who shouldn’t. Meanwhile the ashes was at my friends house, on her kitchentable. For months. She more or less wrote the song, just telling me the story.”

In our ears you got two different type of songs. One aggressive, direct, rock-style. One slow, thoughtful, folk-style. Why does it come out like that?

”It’s all about commitment. We just don’t play the arrangements. We keep ourselves to a high standard of really being there emotionally in the songs. And whether it’s the loudest, most abrasive song or the most beautiful, inviting rich song, it’s the same level of commitment to it, so I think that is the same about those two styles. I really didn’t look at it as a matter of styles, just a matter of intensity.”

You´re from Rhode Island. What can you say about the place?

”We live in Providence, in Smithsville. There is a wonderful community of artists there, and an artschool, and Brown University, where we went. The schools are very liberal, and the area is very un-American. And also it is very off-the-map, no national music comes there. Which is kinda good.”

Deer Tick is another Kentuckyseven fav-band, also from Rhode Island, you know them?

”Sure, we know them. They are wild, but it is somewhat staged… they are actually smart kids, they are making an effort to look weird you know. They love the artistry, and they are cool like that. By the way, you need to check out another guy from Rhode Island, Death Vessel. And Brown Bird, you need to check them out as well.”

Social Media, such as Facebook and Twitter. Is that important to you? How do you handle it?

“We don´t.  I think it´s pretty boring for the fans with a twitteraccount that some publisher or pressguy takes care of. It´s seldom from the artists themselves, and rarely any personal and interesting stuff.” But we do write all the emails, for the mailing lists and such.”

Finally, the future. Where will The Low Anthem be, say in 10 years?

”Making records.”

Artist to artist:

Q: John Grant:

”How have you managed to keep from having your collective digestive systems destroyed by the ravages of Pringles whilst on the road?”

A: Ben Knox Miller: ”I think that the food at the venues saves us, coz if we were left at our own devices we would probably eat the food from the gas stations, you know those Swedish hot dogs, love em. So we balance the crappy food with Pringles. And ketchup.”

The gig after the interview was amazing, and the guys were as well. We hope to see them again in Sweden soon. And by the way, the played their most swedish song, upon request…

Read the review here: The Low Anthem @ Pustervik