Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Jens Lekman | #1 with a Bullet

Jens Lekman's fantastic new album, Night Falls Over Kortedala, doesn't come out stateside until Oct 9. However, it was recently released in Europe and immediately went to #1 on the Swedish music charts. Not only do the Swedes make good music, they buy good music too.

It didn't seem to scratch any other European charts but it's still impressive. Could you imagine The National going to #1 on the US charts? Never.

Lekman beat out some Elvis Pressley hits collection and, thank goodness for this, Amy well as a bunch of other artists that have funny symbols over the letters in their name.

The best way to describe the album is chamber pop on 'roids. It has the fullness of an orchestra recording but with the same pop sense that Lekman always brings. The other joy of the album is how the style of the songs switches regularly while still flowing from song to song. It starts with a song reminiscent of Sinatra and the big band era. Then it goes into a disco tune. There's a track with a world beat feel to it and on and on. It's a great piece of music and craftsmanship.

Lekman's US label, Secretly Canadian is running a nice promo for the new album. If you pre-order the album through their website, it'll come with a code for downloadable bonus tracks. The tracks include songs that Lekman recorded in his apartment with just his guitar and a loop pedal. They include two unreleased tunes, alternate versions of some of the new songs and a cover of a Paul Simon song (something off of Graceland). Paul Simon covers seem to be hot these days for whatever reason.

Jens Lekman | Your Arms Around Me | Buy


casey said...

It's easier to make an impact in European countries, 'cause they're so much smaller. America is a tough nut to crack due to the sheer size and regional disparities. But with the current state of the mainstream being so good-awful, who would even want to?

Still, congrats to Jens. I still have a crush on Sweden (mostly for its technical death metal) but I no longer support IKEA.

casey said...

I meant God-awful. Good-awful is a totally different animal.

the misomaniac said...

ah, i agree with both of you, but you seem to neglect to address the inherent coolness of the swedes.. which [no offence to you] the vast majority of american consumers lack..