Friday, August 04, 2006

Swedes Please!

This post is going to consist solely of music from artists who call Sweden their home. I figured it was appropriate considering the fact that Koz and I are planning on going to Sweden in the spring. Now let me first just say that Sweden is home to a lot of good bands, The Knife, Jose Gonzalez, The Hives to name a few. The purpose of this post is to introduce these artists and many more. Although Sweden has had its share of worthy exports, its also home to a lot of downright awful music (death metal anyone?). The following MP3's offer a sampling of both the good, and the bad.

The Good:
1. The Knife - Heartbeats - The Knife is beyond words. They're a brother and sister duo who create beautiful electonic soundscapes. Their newest release Silent Shout has been compared to Radiohead's Kid A.
2. Jose Gonzalez - Crosses - Jose Gonzalez is a singer-songwriter who released his debut album Veneer in 2003 (2005 for me and the rest of my American brethren). He relies on nothing but an acoustic guitar and his often haunting voice to create memorable melodies. This song was featured on the season 2 finale of The O.C.
Bonus: Jose Gonzalez - Heartbeats (The Knife cover featured in that Sony Bravia commercial) & Jose Gonzalez - Teardrop (Massive Attack cover)
3. The Hives - Walk Idiot Walk - The Hives are basically the Swedish Strokes so you won't be disappointed. Bonus: The Hives - Here We Go Again
4. The (International) Noise Conspiracy - Capitalism Stole My Virginity - TNIC is loud, infectious rock & roll. True, they do have very Karl Marx-ish political views but it's not so overbearing that it makes them annoying.
Bonus: The (International) Noise Conspiracy - Only Lovers Left Alive
5. The Cardigans - My Favourite Game - Most people have probably written The Cardigans off as a one hit wonder when they released Lovefool, a pop song fluffier than a Nordic lamb. In reality however they are still around and have had a string of hit songs in Europe. Lucky for us The Cardigans have shed their cutesy 60's influenced retrokitsch pop and taken up bliss-inducing blend of rock and trip-hop.
Bonus: The Cardigans - I Need Some Fine Wine and You, You Need to be Nicer
6. The Soundtrack of Our Lives - Big Time - I'm not all that familiar with Soundtrack of Our Lives. the only thing I really know about them is that they're from Sweden and they toured with Oasis in 2005. I will say that Soundtrack sounds a lot like 60's and 70's rock, The Who, to be more precise.

The Bad (or embarassingly good guilty pleasures, I don't judge):
ABBA - Gimme Gimme Gimme
Europe - The Final Countdown
Ace of Base - I Saw the Sign
A*Teens - Dancing Queen
Robyn - Who's that Girl? (some might disagree with Robyn being on the shit end of the stick so to speak, what with her latest outing being produced by The Knife and all but this song is just plain old nauseating)
and finally my personal favorite out of this mind-numbing collection of god-awful music...
Basshunter - Boten Anna and the video to this insanely idiotic piece of euro-dance trash. Watch the video if you want to laugh.

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