Album Review: First Aid Kit – The Big Black and the Blue

By on Wednesday, 9th December 2009 at 2:00 pm
 

First Aid Kit (side)I initially fell in love with Swedish sisters, First Aid Kit, a few months back having caught their amazing cover of Fleet Foxes’ Tiger Mountain Peasant Song over on YouTube. I was instantly struck by the undeniable talent of these two young girls, the both of them possessing fantastically strong voices, as well as some enviable finger picking guitar skills. Alas, I was super excited when TGTF were sent their debut album for review this week. Released next January and titled The Big Black and the Blue, Klara and Johanna are certainly set on sprinkling folktastic joy upon their audience in 2010.

Track one, In The Morning, introduces listeners’ to the siblings’ beautifully rich, now trademark harmonies. A stripped back number, the sisters’ textured voices pleasantly wash over each other as a humble acoustic strums in the distance. The hearty thuds of the album start to kick in around track three – Sailor Song. Quite an apt name for this sea shanty of a number – the raw percussion and melodic acoustic ultimately spinning it into a real folk foot stomper. The fairytale-like Waltz For Richard, meanwhile, displays Klara and Johanna’s crisp, yodelling voices to perfection, as a fragile finger picking sequence tinkers in the distance. The flute-led I Met Up With A King showcases First Aid Kit’s fantastically charming lyricism, as well as their surprisingly gruffer-sided vocals. Track six, Ghost Town, is a haunting ballad placed amid the album, complimented by a weezing accordion, as well as a starry piano which hovers above the song’s sedative chorus. A Window Open’s swaying melody, meanwhile, has itself an element of woodland waltz about it, while the light and fluffy Will of the River’s acoustic wisps wrap the album up more than nicely.

First Aid Kit have an undoubted ability to capture an essence of magic in their music. Their earthy soundscape makes you feel like walking through a green forest in a fairisle jumper, surrounded by mystical fairies as friends. Their perfectly crafted folk is dream-like, warming to the bones, and most importantly, genuine. One criticism I’d share would be the girls’ heavy reliance on their harmonies, resulting in the vox growing a little heavy on some tracks. But the talent these Soderberg sisters possess is sparkling, and all they can do from here is grow and grow. Long live the First Aid Kit!

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MP3: First Aid Kit – You’re Not Coming Home Tonight

Watch the video to the beautifully tumbly Hard Believer below.

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First Aid Kit’s The big Black and the Blue is out on 25th January 2010 on Wichita Records. Pre-order it now.

Tags: album, albumreview, firstaidkit, review

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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest tours, gigs, and music we love and think you should too.

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