Lykke Li (real name: Li Lykke Timotej Zachrisson) is a Swedish indie pop singer whose 2nd full-length record ‘Wounded Rhymes’ is released today.
Showing considerable growth and maturity in both sound and substance, it’s hard to believe that the girl is still only 24 years old. She’s stated that being 19 and in love when recording her 2008 debut ‘Youth Novels’ had a direct effect on that record’s mood and sound. Conversely, it’s a bit different this time in her post-breakup world. Describing her current state of mind with phrases such as “sadness is my boyfriend” on the track “Sadness Is A Blessing”, one could easily be led to believe that that the heavier lyric content might make for a slow, depressing album…but instead these songs build and soar thanks in part to the lush production done by fellow Swede Björn Yttling (of Peter, Björn & John fame).
The two incorporate several styles throughout the track listing, from the dancey tribal beat of lead single “Get Some”, to the somewhat twangy “Unrequited Love”, some trip-hop sounds, the Phil Spector-styled Girl Group sound on “Sadness Is A Blessing”, and the beautiful “Love Out Of Lust” which to me carries a bit of a Kate Bush or Cocteau Twins feel.
Lykke Li – “Youth Knows No Pain”
Lykke Li – “Love Out Of Lust”
The material was written in Los Angeles, for no more of a reason than to get the hell out of her home in Stockholm for a bit. As she told Pitchfork in an interview this past November:
“I’m from Sweden so I don’t enjoy winter at all; there’s nothing cute about it. Right now I’m in Stockholm, and it’s so f&%*ing cold and dark. I have such a dark mood in myself already so I don’t need things to be darker.”