The Sound Of Scandinavia
Is it something in the water? Is it the melancholy of the long winters or perhaps the summer nights with never-ending light?
What explains the sheer quantity of music the world enjoys that is produced by the relatively small population of Scandinavia? In fact, Sweden alone is third in music exports, behind only the UK and US with their much larger populations.
What would popular music be without ABBA? What would the 90’s be without the Swedish pop producers Denniz Pop and Max Martin, the latter still working and poised to have produced and written more number one hits than George Martin, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney? What would the electronica scene be without Röyksopp and Trentemøller? Without Swedish House Mafia and Avicii? International pop without Robyn, Zara Larsson, or Seinabo Sey? Indie pop without Agnes Obel, José González or Kings of Convenience? Jazz without Jan Johansson, Lars Danielsson or the Esbjörn Svensson Trio? The long tradition of classical music, represented by current standard-bearers Anne Sofie von Otter and Esa-Pekka Salonen? And what would the metal scene be without the seemingly endless supply of fantastic bands coming out of the Finnish winter darkness?
Music defines us in so many ways, and it is one of the strongest expressions of Scandinavian culture. Since the early 80’s, we at Primare have been working to allow the conversation between the artist and the listener to be as ‘lagom’ – balanced, coherent, and neutral – as possible, conveyed the way the artist meant the work to be heard.
In this series, we talk with some of the most talented and interesting artists who have been influenced by Scandinavia, its natural beauty and unique culture.
The Artist Interviews
We had the luck to meet and interview the rising star on the Swedish scene of country and bluegrass stage: David Ritschard. David is you, me, the bus driver, the nurse, the people on night shift, the people trying to make ends meet. He is the very reflection of the ordinary, in his own unorthodox way, by just being himself. A man of mystery, bravery and a heart big enough to cover the distance between Stockholm and Nashville.
We took some time to speak with one of Copenhagen’s finest artists, Anders Trentemøller, about becoming a father, his creative process, and sometimes being afraid of the gear he has accumulated over the years. Few artists have managed to capture the dark melancholic atmosphere of Scandinavia as well as Trentemøller. Over the years, his sound has developed from a one-man show into a full band live experience, all the while maintaining his trademark intimate details and subtle nuances.
Paavo Siljamäki has been at the center of electronic dance music for over 20 years as a co-founder of the three-man band Above & Beyond and its Anjunabeats record label. In recent years, he has come home and found a new peace in the environment that he grew up in, the magical lakelands of Finland. Paavo has a unique ear for detail in production and a one-of-a-kind perspective on how we are incorporated within Mother Nature herself. We visited Paavo to find out how Scandinavia has shaped him as a human being and artist.
Born in the Swedish city of Helsingborg, raised by the underground. Per Hammar has over the last decade built up a collective underground movement connecting Malmö & Berlin with his inspirational ‘dub techno’. His record label Dirty Hands and his events Kiloton is slowly becoming an institution with its ever growing presence in the global underground scene.
Jamie Perera is a singular artist who combines science and music production to create something entirely unique. The Erased Tapes collaborator and composer is one of three people behind the concept of the ‘Climate Symphony.’ Jamie and his colleagues asked the question, “What would 12,000 years of collected climate change data sound like if it was converted into a symphony?” We talked with Jamie about the concept and the music in this exclusive interview for Primare.
Tom And His Computer
Right on the edge, in between the dark and light, between the future and a fabrication of the past, is probably the best way to describing Tom and His Computer music without any mention any genres.
We visited Thomas in the middle of a typical Copenhagen backyard to talk about his new album ‘Future Ruins’ . his creative methods and the what shapes him as a cutting edge artist.
We listen to music, but how much of it is a visual experience and what signals does a photograph send?
We followed Malmö based photographer Johan Rönnow for a day at work and interviewed him on the art of capturing music, the artist behind it and making a difference in the artistic profile. One could think we are in the middle of a Quentin Tarantino shoot, but this is just a normal day in the life of Johan Rönnow.