rather be a bandit than a lover…

I know it might sound like hyperbole, but I’d say at this very moment Sweden’s Little Dragon is one of the best bands on the planet.   While many claim an unclassifiable and unique sound, this band actually has one, and a good–really good–one at that.  Singer Yukimi Nagano’s melodies (beautifully haunting, soulful, and catchy all at once) immediately draw you in, but its the subtly sophisticated musical arrangements and great lyrics that keep the songs sounding fresh after repeated listening.  Above is a video created by Yukimi’s dad!

A bandmate of mine originally told me to peep these “cats from Sweden,” after my ear perked up during a DJ set while our band took break.  Since then I’ve been listing to their amazing debut album, and eagerly anticipating their latest album which dropped a few weeks ago and which I got in the mail last week.  I’d highly recommend both.

What excites me the most about this band is that they are badass musicians who use their musical chops for good and not evil.  In other words they use their skills to service the music, not self indulge (in a similar way that made the Beatles and Miles Davis so great).  Their songwriting and musical arrangements are filled with all these subtle bits of awesomeness, but it never takes away from the simple artistry of the song.  Nagano is such a captivating performer and Erik Bodin’s superb drumming hints that he’s been studying ?uestlove and Dilla.  You can really hear this in their live performances, and damn would I sure love to see these guys live.  Below are some great youtube moments.  Check out how they incorporate electronics into their live setup while staying a true “live” band, with rhythmic hits as nasty as the J.B.’s and breakdowns as organic as any classic jazz group.

Rather be a bandit than a lover / Rather be a man with the other / to run the mountain down run it down

Rather be a whisper in heaven / then a daughter locked in your prison / so run the mountain down run it down

Published in: on September 21, 2009 at 12:14 pm  Comments (2)