Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Phoenix rises again

naaah not those Phoenix


             It took me about 6 months to start liking music again. Add an extra 2 or 3 months to want to write about it and share bits of music that excite, endear, surprise me... and we reach 9 months. hum.
Thing is, when you write for other people, it takes an extra energy or motivation to take to the computer again when you get back home late, when the last thing you want to see is a Facebook page or a blog.

             But, here we go again. I took my time, but I now feel ready to talk about music with you, to go back to gigs and buy records. First, it started with a tour of my old favourite records: singing along, dancing in the kitchen, remembering how I know some songs by heart because the lyrics are so beautifully crafted.   You know, falling back in  love again.

Then I kept that little Facebook page that's been fed with snippets of new music that I came across. That's how I stumbled upon First Aid Kit's cover of Fever Ray's "When I Grow Up". And then... gosh I wanted to write about it!


                Covers, a difficult art: stay too close to the original and you get labelled a copycat without a vision, appropriate the song to your own style too much and you lack respect to the original. There is a fine balance. Some artists are master at surprising us with covers that manage to stay true to the songs ' roots yet shed a new light on it.

                Back to First Aid Kit, they first came to the public awareness in 2008 with a cover of Fleet Foxes' "Tiger Mountain Peasant Song". The Söderbrg sisters followed this first good impression with a lovely album titled "The Big Black & The Blue" in 2010.
Folky harmonies and that naïve seriousness only encountered in teenage voices made them stand out with what was a very decent first effort.

In 2012, they will be back with a 2nd album "The Lion's Roar"; to whet our appetites and show us how much they've grown they've just served up this stunning cover.
I love the original: dark, moody and transporting us to the limit of danger. Yet this fragile cover, with all its differences stays true to the Fever Ray tracks whilst transposing it in a different world. Amazing feat by Klara and Joanna!

Let me know what your favourite covers are and we'll do a blogpost or two about the best ones...and don't forget to keep your ears peeled for The Lion's Roar

Welcome back!


  1. Welcome back! Happy to read you again.

    My favourite covers are - very predictable - Jeff Buckley's version of Cohen's 'Hallelujah' and Johnny Cash's version of Will Oldham's 'I See a Darkness' with the man himself on backing vocals. The latter is special, my former boss used to play in Oldham's band and had a hand in that song.

    'Mr. Tambourine Man' of The Byrds and 'With a Little Help From My Friends' of Joe Cocker were part of my childhood. And then there is Cat Power, a whole story on her own which you already described so eloquently. Her rendition of 'I Found A Reason' makes me cry.

    Those are my favourite covers, the ones that exist on record at least. Tom McRae likes to sing partial covers during his live gigs but that's Tom. He can do that. :-)

    Looking forward to reading your next post.


  2. Thank you Catherine, will keep your suggestions in mind!

  3. Great posting! looking very attractive, i promise my dear, i will come back soon to this fabulous blog...

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