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ERIKA'S
TOP 10

 

October 24, 2017
Erika Balint
PLAYLISTS

Erika's
top 10

 

October 24, 2017
Erika Balint
PLAYLISTS

My equally deep running love of intimate concerts and jelly beans both began in Copenhagen. When I came across the equivalent of a candy store for home concerts, I couldn’t help but fill my paper bag to the brim. Here’s what’s in it.

Low-fi is everything you could ever dream of when on the lookout for a home concert. Musicians are all beautifully lined up on virtual shelves, boosting stories of diving into the woods, themselves or the world. They all provide tasters — some more generous than others, all delicious — of their music and ability to create that magical feeling of togetherness. You just have to pick one. Or two. Three maybe? Don’t let ME stop you.

Upon entering the marketplace, my excitement immediately started to run wild at the sight of dozens of musicians — 30 Youtube tabs worth of wild. Thank heavens for filters. Indie, singer-songwriter, alternative were my go-tos. Musicians explosive and smooth, dark and soft entertained my ears.

Paper bag full to the brim, I let my gut do the trimming down to my top 10 Low-fi musicians. Behold my self control. Here goes.

1

Laura Reznek

‘Behave, be kind’ are the first words I read by this strikingly self assured goddess. Laura’s clear voice briefly reminds me of Adele. Her captivating lyrics—introspective and at times dark—soon yank me, ever so softly, to her unique side. One of my favorites in the ‘T-shirts I never get to wear’ category of my wardrobe is a T-shirt that reads ‘Sad songs make me feel better’. You’ll understand why I yearn to share a room with a musician as beautifully melancholic as Laura.

2

Peter Doran

There are holes in most of my arguments, too, Peter buddy. As in Laura’s case, flawlessness is not the only thing on display. The human being is complex, but we’ll turn out just OK if we manage to keep away from tragedy for long enough. Perhaps, even more than OK— one day playing songs to nana in her Irish country side home, much like Peter on a day spent well. Please watch it and tell me your heart didn’t melt like a Malteser, you mischievous little truth bender.

3

3

Richard Maule

If you could pick any one musician to play in your living room, who would it be? Anyone in the whole wide world? After giving it some thought, I landed on Hozier. That’s also who Richard’s soulfulness reminds me of. Richard is a co-creation mastermind — and what concert souvenir more unique than the memory of creating music together, for that one moment in time? He involves the audience in more ways than you could think of. My concert wishlist just got one item longer.

4

Teenage Love

The first time I experienced Teenage Love was at Trailer Park Festival in 2016. They blew me away with their seemingly endless energy, playful lyrics and hilarious mid-gig banter. I soon realized that my super best friend club and adjacent boogie have nothing on the anthems of friendship that these two so endearingly perform. THEY EVEN HAVE UNIFORMS. Gotta step up my super best friend game.

5

Malmö

The first sounds of MALMÖ transported me straight into a French movie — one of those that dig deep into a day in someone’s life. In the fittingly titled Time And Tide Waits For No Man Maria coats tales of passing time in her delicately sultry voice and speaks of the frailty of our human bodies compared to the universe. In all videos I can find of her, she smiles like a nymph, surrounded by nature, playing tiny instruments and making lulling sounds. Maria’s music smiles full of soul, is easy going and always captivating.

6

Ellie

Ellie wooed me with gentle requests to spill out my head, accompanied by soft drumming and soothing guitar sounds. These gentlemen advertise organic sound and that’s what you get. A sound to make pancakes to while looking your lover in the eyes on a Sunday morning. Yum.

7

Great North

Great North songs are story more than poem. In I’m not asking, they sing of the dreamer who doesn’t ask to be saved. ‘No excuses, no promises, not asking you to love me’ they sing, yet they are irresistibly lovable. Great North earns points in my book by exploring a spectrum of emotions — the good, the bad and the indifferent — all making up a charming husband-wife dynamic. These two look to me like a couple that is not each other’s better half. They take turns complementing each other, but never completing each other.  #relationship/band goals

8

Jørk

Jørk got me on the first verse of No Center. The urgency and sense of exile I cherish in pop punk is abundant in the duo’s lyrics — ‘an anarchistic recognition on a never ending mission’ — and performance. This duo is seductive, in your face, powerful, magnetic. I can see myself in the front row of a Jørk concert, letting their melodic outcry carry me till my knees bruise against the low stage.

9

Kayan Project

Much like Eden — Kayan’s lead singer — I also grew up between cultures and languages, borrowing from both to build my world perspective. The trio alternates between Arabic, Hebrew and English in their repertoire. Not understanding the lyrics heightens my listening, looking for other — more visceral — anchors for connection than language. Also, can we talk about how beautiful sounding Hebrew is? Forget talk dirty to me. Talk Hebrew to me.

10

Clara Bryld and Jeppe Højgaard

I had the good fortune of experiencing these two live in a winter garden, under a tree with meandering branches. The whole evening is a blur of fuzzy feelings, wide smiles and frequent cheers. A moment I remember clearly is flashing my T-shirt that reads ‘Stay soft, stay brave’ through the large windows of the winter garden and it feeling like the perfect thing to do. When it comes to the music, you’d better believe the reviews. Clara does have a beautiful voice and lyrics that will make you laugh out loud and dry your tears in the span of a few songs. Jeppe’s improvised trumpet and clarinet notes added to the concert’s unique and in the moment vibe.

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