Last night I headed over to Notting Hill Arts Club to catch a glimpse of up and coming Swedish pop sensation Tove Lo. Supported by Danish duo Kill J, the evening was a real Scandi-fest and it didn't disappoint.
Before I can say anything about opening act Kill J's music, I first have to mention the lead singers haircut. It is, quite frankly, astonishing. We're talking peroxide blonde bowl-cut/monk-vibe with a shaved back and mullet-esque pony tail... I know... wow right!?
With hair like that my assumption was that Kill J were probably too edgy to function and that the haircut would be making up for a distinct lack of musical talent - shame on me, I should stop being so cynical. They were fantastic.
Their current single 'Bullet' was my favourite - I love the line "I'm just a dumb fuck taking the short blows"
Before long it was time for the main event and Tove Lo came bounding enthusiastically onto the stage to kick off her first ever UK show.
What I love most about her music is her ability to package complete emotional honesty in really damn catchy pop songs that have you swaying round a party at 3am, mascara tears running down your face wondering why you haven't got a boyfriend.... (yes girls, we've all been there). Drugs, sex and one-night-stands all feature prominently in her lyrics but never once do you feel alienated as a listener. Instead, as the video for 'Habits' depicts so well, we think "yeah, you know what I've been there too, and what a fucking mess that night was".
The raw quality of her vocals and the way she sings her feelings so literally make for incredibly endearing and empowering music, and it's clear from the way she performs these tracks that they all hold very personal meanings for her.
I blogged about one of her tracks 'Out Of Mind' a while ago and it was fantastic to see it played live... it is just SUCH a good song. Listen again here...
I have no doubt that 2014 is going to be a big year for this girl, and I can't wait to hear what gems of honesty she has to give us next!
If I had one complaint from last night it would be about the two people standing in front of us. I have never seen anyone remain more stationary at a gig. Music wasn't made so you could stand still to it... that's what audio books are for... MOVE!
If you want to see Tove Lo for yourself then she is playing at Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, London on Tues 6th May - I will most likely be there too, but watch out if you're thinking of slouching unenthusiastically at the front. This time I will not hesitate to push you out of the way....