Thursday, November 13, 2008

we saw: Frida Hyvonen

"Winter Knows Best"

Last night Swedish songstress Frida Hyvonen played her last Stateside show before returning to Sweden. Lucky for her the transition back to Swedish live shouldn't be so tough, as last night's show was held at the Church of Sweden, a lovely Scandinavian chapel located in the heart of Midtown (E. 48th & 5th). The second floor of the Chapel, with its incredibly gothic windows, and almost Medieval chandeliers, gave the small room an incredibly warm and intimate vibe. There were candles everywhere, and even a Swedish minister. Frida, with just her piano and a friend to accentuate the backing the vocals, played a short set heavily focused on her recent release Silence is Wild, including opener "Dirty Dancer", "Birds", "Why Do You Love Me So Much" and "Science." I noticed it on her records before, but Frida really is like 21st century, Swedish Joni Mitchell; strong voice (both literally and figuratively), passionate, often self-deprecatingly witty, lyrics and an absolutely instinctual feel for her instrument. Yes, her "piano fingers" were sprightly last night, and the acoustics of the upstairs chapel at the Church of Sweden were pristine. Until Death Comes classic "Once I Was A Serene Teenage Child" was my personal highlight of the evening, with its sardonic lyrics ("You said you were a poet/ but your poetry wasn't obvious to me/ when you said you had the stuff to drive me/ wild"). As expected with any intimate show in a church, "the feeling of power was intoxicating magic." I highly rec'd Frida's latest on Secretly Canadian (Silence is Wild) for fans of St. Vincent, Joni Mitchell and El Perro del Mar.

Frida Hyvonen- Enemy Within

Frida Hyvonen "Dirty Dancing"

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