Stockholm-based quintet Shout Out Louds released their first record, Howl Howl Gaff Gaff
in 2005, introducing their blend of melancholy pop music to the world. They returned a couple
of months ago with Our Ill Wills, a denser, more expansive record. Any music
coming out of
Lead singer Adam Olenius doesn't look Swedish at all: He's a cross between Jose Gonzales and Jason Schwartzman. Olenius, guitarist Carl von Arbin and bassist Ted Malmros line up on stage with Olenius in the middle. It's this synchronicity that'll carry them through their set. They begin with their new single from Our Ill Wills, "Time Left for Love." Olenius' wailing and heartaching vocals penetrate throughout the usually muddy sounding auditorium. They follow that with "The Comeback" from Howl, a crowd favorite. The crowd dances along to the catchy beats. Passion and energy simply pours out. "Impossible" is one of the best from the night with the weepy/Robert Smith-esque vocals, keys, glock and castanets aiding the song to rock out. The lone female of the group, Bebben Stenborg, sings the Camera Obscura sounding ballad "Blue Headlights" radiating a magical quality. Shout Out Louds may be classified as pop, but sometimes their music border on twang. "Tonight I Have to Leave It" ends set with a jangly and multi-instrumental explosion of drums/guitar/castanets/tambourine resulting in sheer joy and exhilaration. The palpable excitement gets penetrates Olenius as he jumps into the crowd. After a brief respite, they all come out for the encore. First they play the lengthy psychedelic tinged and distorted "Hard Rain" followed by the ballad driven "Meat Is Murder" (not a Smiths cover). They finish out the night with their best track from Howl, "Very Loud." It's a poppy, emotional, upbeat and somewhat twangy track with an highly infectious chorus. Half way through the song, the group burst into "Train in Vain" by the Clash then back to their song. The Shout Outs successfully conquer America and our hearts.
Time Left for Love
Please Please Please
Wish I Was Dead
Tonight I Have to Leave It
Meat is Murder
Swedish band Johnossi comprised of duo John Engelbert and Ossi Bonde released their self titled debut this year. While Shout Outs are pop centric, Johnossi are more rock orientated. Engelbert plays an electric acoustic guitar while Bonde drums. They make it seems simplistic enough but their music sounds much more complex. Engelbert comes out wearing a sling on his arm obviously having seriously injured it, yet he still plays his guitar. What a trooper. It looks painful for him to play but he doesn't show much sign of it. Flags from various nations including Sweden and France hang from the stage adding a colorful flair. They play their first song, the darkly garage rock "Press Play" containing murky lyrics: "I know you wanted to grow as a person inside/but all your dreams collide." Engelbert shouts while Bonde pounds on the drums and drips with sweat. "Glory Days To Come" continues with the heavy snares and kicks becoming a less heavy and more upbeat track that fuzzes out in the end. Someone in audience asks him what happened to his arm. His response is sort of incomprehensible but he mentions something about sleeping on it wrong and having to go to the hospital and health care in US vs
Download: Johnossi - "Man Must Dance"
Setlist: Press Hold
Glory Days to Come
Man Must Dance
Things to Do Before You Die