20 Watts

City Sounds 4/5: Stockholm by krkuchta

Listen to WERW'S Sounds of Stockholm Monday from 11pm-1am


City Sounds goes abroad once again, and this time we’re going to the Venice of the North: Stockholm, Sweden.

As we discovered from when we went to Paris, the history of music in a European city is way harder to cover than music from an American city. I mean, some of these places have hundreds of years on us. Nevertheless, we will venture into Stockholm and see what we can gather. There will most definitely be some ABBA–I can guarantee that.

Besides ABBA of course, Stockholm has many artists that have caught international attention. Bands like The Knife, Those Dancing Days and Lykke Li have found success around the globe, shining some light on Stockholm and Sweden in general.

Stockholm is home to a variety of musical genres. But, like every city, there are a few that it’s known for. Metal is huge over in Sweden, and Stockholm has put out big names like In Flames and Opeth. The general alternative rock sound is found in bands such as the Concretes and Shout Out Louds. Don’t forget the indie pop explosion that includes Stockholm natives Miike Snow and Peter, Bjorn and John.

Stockholm has been blowing up the music world for the past few years with this mass distribution of amazing artists, and City Sounds is going to take a gander at them all. Listen to City Sounds on WERW, Monday nights from 11pm-1am.

–Kyle Kuchta

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News Of Note: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominations for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, LL Cool J, Kiss and more; Black Gold will tour the US With Girl In A Coma; The Boss Turns 60, Coldplay Gives To Charity; Michael Jackson’s New Single, Album, And Movie; And Much More! by laoppedi

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio

PREVIEW: WATCH the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ video for Californication.

Rolling Stone reports that the Red Hot Chili PeppersLL Cool JKiss, Genesis, the Stooges and ABBA are among the artists nominated for the 2010 class of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees. This is the first year in which LL Cool J and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are eligible for induction. Last year’s inductees included Jeff Beck, Metallica and Run-DMC.  (Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Industry News, Week 3)

Brooklyn’s indie duo Black Gold has decided to embark on a US tour supporting Texas-native punk sweethearts, Girl in a Coma, as reported by Filter. The multi-instrumental duo comprised of Eric Ronik (lead vocals, keyboards) and Than Luu (drums, percussion, vocals) will be performing tracks from their debut full length entitled Rush, which was released this past February. You can check out their dance beat-infused tunes on both iTunes and Myspace.

An unreleased Michael Jackson single and album has been announced for release in October, reports NME.COM. The track “This Is It” is the fist posthumous Jackson single to be released and will come out October 12, followed by a compilation album on October 26 and a movie entitled “This Is It” on October 28. In a message on Jackson’s Web site, it was revealed that the compilation album will be a two-disc set featuring past hits, previously unreleased mixes and a spoken-word piece from Jackson called “Planet Earth.” [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Syracuse Reacts to Michael Jackson’s Death]

Syracuse.com’s Listen Up Blog posted an especially sentimental birthday note to The Boss, who is celebrating his 60th Birthday today. Bruce’s last gigs in ‘Cuse include a two night stand at the Dome in 1992 and a critically acclaimed show at the Landmark Theater in November 1996. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee apparently celebrated his 60th during a concert on September 21 in Des Moines, Iowa. Seriously, Bruce? No rocking the Spectrum (actually, he’ll be there in October) or perhaps MSG (where he’ll be this November) on the big day? I guess you are getting old…

Pitchfork and NME.com report that Coldplay have donated one million pounds ($1,616,809 American dollars) to the charity, Kids Company.  Kids Company aims to provide support for inner-city children. According to NME the band also plans to give music lessons to kids at Kids Company centers.  [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: The 20: An Essential Guide to Britpop]

Ted Leo & the Pharmacists haven’t had much luck with record labels in the past after Lookout! Records folded and Touch and Go stopped releasing new records.  Pitchfork reports that the band has signed to Matador Records.

–20 Watts Staff

Swedish Meatballs #1: Familjen by crumblymuffin
July 15, 2009, 1:57 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

Familjen, a.k.a. John T. Karlsson, mixes crazy synth squeals and dance floor rhythms

I’ll preface my first entry onto this lovely site with an admission of my true guilty pleasure: Swedish Dance-pop.  I love the stuff.  The country shouldn’t need another excuse to be loved (it already has socialized healthcare, Volvos, IKEA, and who can forget those meatballs?), but the birthplace of ABBA seems to have an unending ability to know exactly what makes me happy.

The music has this certain artistic and ethereal beauty lacking in most other club music scenes, paralleled only by its ability to take absolutely cheesy over-production and oftentimes downright strangeness, and turn it into a total booty-shaker.  As a result, every Wednesday I’ll share with you, the reader, a bit of Goethenburg, a bit of Stockholm, a bit of Sweden, a bit of true greatness.

To start, I’d like to share one of my all-time favorite Swedes, Familjen.  Born John T. Karlsson, he possesses an unbelievable knack for taking crazy synth squeals and mixing them with great dance floor rhythms.  However, the money-maker for me has never been his music (although it could be for many), it’s his voice.  Karlsson has the voice of an angel, smooth and silky with just a trace of femininity that makes it almost laughable, until the bass hits and you can’t help but shake your head in amazement.  Listen to his single “Det Snurrar I Min Skalle,” which was my introduction to his work.  The song has some of the most silly noises in it that I’ve ever heard and his voice sounds like a 17-year-old boy’s, but when that chorus bit drops, it’s a little slice of heaven.  Thanks Sweden.

Here’s a link to his MySpace — listen to the track “Det Snurrar I Min Skalle,” it’s a total knockout.

— Dan Creahan