Or: 10 Low-Fi artists who make me want to host a home concert. Plus dream scenarios for all the senses.
Joining the blogging Low-fi crew in the beginning of a new year comes along with neglected resolutions, travel plans for the upcoming months, refreshed bucket lists, good old to-do lists – and a personal Low-Fi Top Ten. All these are not only lists of information, but collections of dreams as well. Postponed dreams, dreams of unknown lands and adventures, dreams of finally getting some shit done. And dreams of the perfect home concert in the perfect home with the perfect artist and the perfect audience.
Fortunately, Low-Fi is helping to turn the last thing into a more realistic undertaking than all the others.
So, while exploring the wonderful selection of Low-Fi artists, I cannot help imagining all kinds of dreamy set-ups of Wheres, Whens and Whats. Let me invite you into my Top Ten of these scenarios. And, promise me, if you plan such a concert you’ll return the favour… Deal?
Subtle paintings in earthy colours hang along the slim hallway that leads into the living room where Jonathan Bremer and Morten McCoy put the audience under their spell. Guests sit on minimalist chairs or lean against the door frame. The bubbles in their drinks – probably G&Ts with rose lemonade or a dry champagne – climb up the glasses in harmony with the tones of the compositions. A piercing November wind knocks on the windows. Melancholy fills the room. And yet, everyone feels warm from the inside.
Even though Jacob Faurholt’s latest release “A Lake of Distortion” was recorded in the shelter of his own bedroom, it tickles this road trip’py feeling that makes me want to pack my bag and jump into a car that is twice as old as myself. At the same time, I can also see a home concert some day in February, feeling safe as in one’s bedroom. Fairy lights on the walls, Brown Ales and ginger beers burning pleasantly in the throat. Remembering memories you’ve only ever experienced through the stories of strangers.
3. Elena Setién
“Dreaming of Earthly Things” is not only the melodious name of Elena Setién’s latest album, but also its perfect description. The music is both airy and earthy, heavy and light. Like a huge, exotic tree planted in a bright winter garden. It’s probably a weekend in June. The day’s been hot and dry, but the evening air gets quite crisp for this time of the year. Most people in the audience have glowing skin from the sun and sip Cava to cool off and honour the Spanish roots of the musician.
4. Blå Nætter
Blå Nætter’s poetic songs invite into an honest universe and a flat filled with furniture saved from past centuries. A ruby-coloured couch (just like the one in their video for my personal evergreen “Lys & Mørke”) builds the center of the living room, letting the guests fall into a cloud of velvet and coziness. The feeling of nostalgia lies over the audience, no matter if they understand the band’s Danish lyrics or not. Since it’s a mild evening in May, most guests will cycle home after the concert, a bit tipsy from the classic beer that was served.
5. mono mono
Karoline Elsig and Jakob Franck’s sound universe awakens all kinds of ambivalent feelings. It is icy but not unpleasant, rather soft and soothing, sharp and hypnotising at the very same time. Even before watching the video of their live session, I saw a concert with light effects and visual projections. Mirroring elements hanging from the ceiling, pillows on the floor. The audience gets cozy – but not too much, the weather outside is in limbo between winter and summer. It’s probably March or September.
The honouring nod towards Neil Young that’s apparent in ELLIE’s music spreads a warm and fuzzy feeling of comfort. The honest sounds literally wrap you in a blanket and put you together with like-minded people, gathering in a welcoming home on a pleasant October night. One with guitars leaning against the wall and vinyls ready to be slipped out of their covers. It’s unpretentious and authentic. It’s like a concert should make you feel.
Having lived in elegant Paris, nordic-cool Copenhagen, vivid West Africa and the diverse US, Astrid Engberg tells stories from all corners of the world, the ones only a travelling troubadour can share. The perfect concert scenario is just as her music – a unique, surprising and colourful jam. An apartment with shelves full of books and walls full of souvenirs. A warm evening in July, somewhere outside of the city. Red wine is being served in beautiful crystal glasses.
Northern Assembly’s melodic folk sounds like colourful vintage rugs and lit candles – the picture perfect accessories for hygge sessions and living room concerts. Maybe in the spacious common area of a collective, during an evening in early December, when the audience can glimpse the first snow falling on the streets. Add hot punch or gløgg to this scenario, and the music’s stories of longing and homesickness make everyone – magically – feel right at home.
By bringing fragility and rawness into beautiful harmony, MALMÖ paint audio-visual images of the wild Nordic landscapes. The perfect home concert happens on an unusually rainy day in late August. Probably in a summer house somewhere close to the sea. The guests sit close to each other and slowly sip their elderflower infused drinks (unknowingly following Ebba’s lead). Sooner or later everyone is mesmerised by Maria Malmö’s enchanting voice.
10. Feel Freeze
Carefree and optimistic – Mathias Vinther Lilholt and Raymonde Gaunoux’s eerie electro-pop basically sounds like spring. And the perfect home concert should feel exactly like that! An eclectic apartment with flashing neon signs on the wall and lava lamps on the floor. The beginning of a party night in April. Fizzy drinks and fun company. Low-fives from us!
Photo by Nick McKinlay