Out of Europe: A Swedish Top Five

While the stupidity of June 23rd and the fumbling-in-the-dark it lead to continues to dominate the news  (unless America votes in a racist, misogynistic Oompa Loompa today) I thought I’d revisit my initial “Out of Europe” list… I thought I’d go for a region, in this instance Scandanavia, but quickly found I’d come up with five from the same country.

So, in the same “this is what we’re saying goodbye to” thought, here’s a Top Five From Sweden (in no particular order, of course, and without a Waterloo in sight*):

Kristofer Åström – How Can You Live With Yourself

There’s just something so amusing and great about the juxtaposition between those gentle strums and lyrics like “I hope you’ll burn in hell”.

Refused – New Noise

I don’t think I ever was or ever will be – especially as my clock has just clicked over another year closer to 40 and I merge quietly into listening to ‘Dad rock’ – to talk about Refused or profess fandom in the same way I’m probably unlikely to be considered serious when I talk about At The Drive In’s Relationship of Command (“Hello, mother leopard. I have your cub”). I will say, though, that I love and loved The Shape of Punk To Come in all it’s screaming, emphatic and brutal force.

Shout Out Louds – Oh Sweetheart

I cannot recall how I found this band back in the mid 2000’s. Their first album Howl Howl Gaff Gaff is chock full of cracking, upbeat and well crafted tunes like this and The Comeback. I can’t say I’ve heard a great deal since though, so perhaps it’s time to head to Spotify….

Junip – Line Of Fire

Having found solo success on his own with his bare, acoustic tracks and covers (including Heartbeats) José González did the sensible thing and got the band – Junip – back together again. I first found them on the The Secret Life of Walter Mitty soundtrack and then their 2013 self-titled.

Last Days of April – The Thunder & The Storm

I could have put anything from Last Days of April here, they remain my favourite European export and I’d be hard-pushed to find a dud in their catalogue. So I went with something form their latest – last year’s Sea of Clouds – if only for the moment halfway through when the pedal-steel and guitar takes over and just keep going.  For a quick LDOA bracer:

It’s On Everything
I Wish That You Would Mean A Lot Less To Me
Forget About It
Who’s On The Phone (because there’s no way of linking to Lily)
Two Hands And Ten Fingers

There’s some honourable mentions for this one (Sweden has sent some wonderful music out into the world) including that one-hit-wonder Glorious by Andreas Johnson, The Knife – purveyors of the original Heartbeats, and Lykke Li’s wonderful Melodies & Desires.


*no matter how many people claim there’s something great in ABBA I cannot stomach them, the DJ at my wedding was even banned from playing them no matter who made a request (I have a list of those that did, too).

9 thoughts on “Out of Europe: A Swedish Top Five

    • Ah! That did make me chuckle.
      Looking from the outside in from here the most shocking and disturbing element (and one that’s making people wonder what’s going on over there) is how the hell he was ever taken seriously enough to become a contender not THE contender. That this bigoted, orange-faced baboon’s rectum with his horrendous views and persona has somehow become a Presidential candidate just beggars belief. Let alone that people can go “well yeah but he’s better than Hillary”…

      Here is a mixed-bag. It’s good up until our PM decides to do something with Brexit and then what’s left of the arse will fall out.

      I’ve said I’m giving it to the next GE and if this terrifying rhetoric against immigration and cultures other than ‘British’ doesn’t look to have slowed then we’re outta here – it’s not an environment I want my son (with his Romanian heritage) growing up in.

      Oddly enough if that bulbous cock-goblin Trump is smacked down I think it’ll go a long way to quelling such rhetoric in politics globally. If not…

      • His popularity is unfathomable to those of us who fear and despise him. But don’t underestimate how much Hillary has been demonized for years, not to mention made some dumb mistakes. I think Trump tapped into the Angry White Voter who found themselves disenfranchised and were willing to follow any leader, no matter how flawed.

        Anyway, don’t mean to pull you offtrack. Will check out the Swedes later.

      • Wow! Unbelievable. It’s about 6:30 am as I write this. I went to bed three hours ago, after watching Trump accept the nomination. To say we are all stunned here would be a complete and total understatement. No one predicted this. No poll had it this way, not Republican, not Democratic. The vote is just about exactly the opposite of all predictions.

        One exception – Trump’s people knew they were going to win very, very confidently. Everyone else missed the signs. So now we now how you felt after Brexit. This, for anyone with any progressive ideas at all, is an unmitigated disaster.

      • Right. I am in Massachusetts and the only consolation we have is that we passed a resolution last night to legalize marijuana. So if my posts for the next four years seem rambling and incoherent, you’ll know why.

  1. Ok, so, listened to everything. Not a bad song in the lot. (And no Max Martin). Comments:

    -As you mentioned, that clash between the bucolic chords in “How Can You Live With Yourself,” and the “You Suck” lyrics is really interesting. I’d hate to be whomever he’s pissed off at .
    -“New Noise.” Liked it. Good energy. Not what I’d listen to every day but every now and again I like a shot of something like this.
    -“Oh Sweetheart.” Nice song, didn’t especially stand out for me.
    -“Line of Fire.” Of these, my favorite. The chord progression grabbed me right away.
    -“The Thunder and the Storm.” Good tune. Might not buy it, wouldn’t turn it off if I heard it on the radio.

    As to ABBA, alas, while I don’t know that I’m a fan per se, I do like ’em. One fine day I’ll post on them and you may want to take that day off. 😀

  2. Pingback: Quick List: A French Top Five | Mumbling About…

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