27 Aug 2004

Helena Josefsson, backing singer at AGM Studios (VI): Winokur's 13 songs about love

Justin Winokur, from California, spent years in heavy/rock/punk/industrial bands like Mortal and Spitkiss sitting on a not-so-metal secret: he wanted to write love songs. Not just wanted to; he couldn't help it. No matter what he tried to write, just about the only thing that ever came out was a sad love song.

After years of shelving those songs, he gave in and sold everything he had to fly to Sweden to record his first album, "Thirteen Songs About Love," with his hero producer Christoffer Lundquist at the Aerosol Grey Machine Studio.

Justin has been recording at the Aerosol Grey Machine Studio in Sweden from November 2002 through March 2003. The new album will feature Jens Jannson (Brainpool, Righteous Boy, A Camp) on drums and Christoffer Lundquist (Brainpool, Roxette, Per Gessle, Ulf Lundell) on a variety of instruments. Additional players include select members of Malmö's Philharmonic Orchesta and vocalist Helena Josefsson, from Sandy Mouche.

Thirteen songs about love (2004.08.27, JWC Records)
No Truth Anymore; Shooting Star; Blue Eyes; Lullaby; I Loved You More; Just Be In Love In My Dreams; Fly Away; Never Go Back Again; Just Go Out With Me; You Took It All Away; Celestial; I Run Away; Every Day Is Roses

Thirteen songs about love is the new album by Justin Winokur. He recorded it at the Aerosol Grey Machine Studio in the winter 2002-2003, with Christoffer Lundquist, Jens Jansson and Helena Josefsson.
"This album features Jens Jansson (Brainpool, Righteous Boy, A Camp) on drums and Christoffer Lundquist (Brainpool, Roxette, Per Gessle, Ulf Lundell) on a variety of instruments. Additional players include select members of Malmö's Philharmonic Orchesta and vocalist Helena Josefsson"

25 Aug 2004

P, C & C find GT's five errors and Brainpool's long-running soap opera (VII): Junk - A Rock Opera - The Story

LJdM is impressed by Brainpool's Junk - A Rock Opera. You can follow the story of the opera here in some of the official videos and reading Junk - Lyrics.

Junk - Disc One

1. Overture
2. How to Find a Decent Sushi Bar
3. Here Comes the Man
4. Penthouse Party

5. Junkyard Commercial Spot

6. This is Junk
7. Metro Jets Premiere Concert

8. Working With My Hands
9. And the Wall
10. Designer Dream
11. Cottage Cheese
12. Orange Peel
13. Anybody Home
14. No Sunny Days

Junk - Disc Two

1. World Going Wrong
2. Hostile Takeover (2nd Overture)
3. What Have I Done And Why Did I Do It?
4. Metro Jets Premiere Concert Pt. 2
5. Do You Really Think That You Deserve All the Money That You Earn? (The making of the suit of armour)
6. All Free Agents
7. Skyscraper
8. Who's That Man?
9. Martina Says:
10. Junk

11. Keyboard Wizard
12. Glycemic Index (How To Find a Decent Sushi Bar - Reprise)
13. Here Comes the New Man
14. Los Reyes De La Musica Rock Progresiva

Our previous commercial success might be to our disadvantage since we keep comparing our present more moderate success to that, even though what we get to do now is absolutely amazing. We’ve been able to spend four years on recording a double album and do it exactly the way we wanted it, which is quite fantastic. And even more incredible is that we’ve been allowed to perform it on stage with an orchestra and one of the world’s best conductors! But at the end of the day, we’ve always tended to view all our achievements as major disasters!

We may only be a footnote in Swedish pop music but in that case we want to be a damn weird footnote! It sould be unpredictable and take a long time to read!
David Birde (Junk Musik)
David Birde - Junk Musik

24 Aug 2004

P, C & C find GT's five errors and Brainpool's long-running soap opera (VI): Junk Opera presented live

According to Judith Seuma, from The Daily Roxette, Brainpool’s latest project “Junk: a Rock Opera” is out in the stores since last Thursday, August 19th. The double CD – which has also been presented live with the Malmö Symphony Orchestra (MSO) during the Malmö Music Festival on the same day – contains a total of 28 songs in English. The band, consisting of Jens Jansson, David Birde and Christoffer Lundquist, celebrates its 10th anniversary with this release, which is the first since 1999 when they released “You Are Here.”

In 2000, Brainpool left Epic and began working on Junk, a sweeping two-disc rock opera set in a not-too-distant future where international megacompanies own everything, including Brainpool. The biggest of these is Junk, Inc., which is gradually taking over the world one piece at a time in order to push its forgettable, disposable products. The company buys out Brainpool and recasts them as Junkpool, house band of a legendary rock club also recently bought by Junk and revamped in the name of profit.

David Birde, who was working at an advertising agency when he wrote the story, isn’t afraid that the album might be too political; the band describes the album as a criticism of modern consumption- crazed society, which “produces junk, talks crap and stinks like trash.”

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The live version of Junk with the MSO naturally differs considerably from Brainpools CD-version, which is being released by Playground Music. The group has worked on the recording off-an-on for about four years, in between other projects. Most recently, Lundquist – who has played with Roxette – co-produced Gyllene Tider’s “Finn 5 Fel” album. Some of the songs from “Junk” are available to listen to on the band’s official website.

The Junk Opera concert performed with Sweden's Malmö Symphonic Orchestra (directed by Anders Eljas) and some singer friends (Robert Jelinek, Freddie Wadling, Helena Josefsson) and musicians (Fredrik Blank, Magnus Börjeson and Clarence Öfwerman) has been broadcast on Swedish National Radio and television, featuring 60 classically trained musicians and 10,000 people in attendance. The 9 p.m. news was even postponed as Junk aired.

I would’ve found it very difficult to write “Junk” about something that I didn’t find important. It would’ve made it harder to be bombastic and sincere if one found the subject matter, trivial or a work of fiction.

We started this about four years ago. “Junk” is all about our consumer society, something that we too are very much a part of. It’s very difficult for anyone to defend themselves against it. And we are certainly not in a position to pass judgment on other people’s consumer habits. We’re just as bad as everyone else!
David Birde (Junk Musik)
David Birde - Junk Musik

The perfect scenario would be if someone in, say Berlin, Boston or whatever, decides it would be fun to stage our rock opera. Then we could arrive at the premiere, drink some champagne and then go home again.
Jens Jansson (Junk Musik)
Jens Jansson - Junk Musik

19 Aug 2004

P, C & C find GT's five errors and Brainpool's long-running soap opera (V): GT25 - Sommarturné 2004

2004.07 Gyllene Tider Tour

Le Journal des Mouches misses Mazarin but GT25 Turné has been a huge phenomenon in Sweden this summer. A post-tour advertisement appearing in several newspapers reads “Thank you all who made GT25 the biggest tour in Sweden through all time!” The ad goes on to proclaim a sold-out tour, (492,242 tickets!!) and that “Finn 5 fel!” has sold more than 210,000 copies so far, and “GT25” (Greatest Hits) more than 65,000.

According to TDR, under clear skies, a capacity crowd of some 32,000 people gathered in Stockholm’s Stadium to see Gyllene Tider’s triumphant return to the venue that was the highlight of the Återtåget tour in 1996. For some, it’s a nostalgic trip down Memory Lane. The concert set list is full of songs that take Swedish adults back in time to when they themselves were teenagers. But new teenagers also were there. It seems everyone in Sweden this summer loves Gyllene Tider.

“This is the biggest thing that ever happened in my life, after my children being born” said Göran Fritzon to Aftonbladet at Ullevi. “I don’t really know what to say. I’m speechless,” added Per Gessle. “It was really hard to keep the tears in the first couple of songs,” confessed Micke “Syd” Andersson, “my voice trembled when I sang the backing vocals.” After the show the band went to the VIP area to celebrate the record with their families and friends who had come to support the band.

When The Daily Roxette came to Örjans Vall it was pouring cats and dogs, the rain started trickling at 5 and escalated to a downpour at 7, when The Latin Kings entered the stage. TDR had a little talk with Per Gessle at 7:45 (see below). During the interview, Mats “MP” Persson allegedly got sick of the rain and told the others that he would stop it. So MP sticks his hands in the air and shouts. The rain stops immediately. When TDR comes out from the interview at 8 the rain is gone! While the setlist didn’t contain any surprises, the concert itself did. Gyllene Tider’s members became “honorary citizens” of Halmstad 2004 for being such great ambassadors for the town for so long.

After the concert Sweden’s Princess Madeleine came backstage and congratulated Gyllene Tider on a great show. Then the Golden Lads entered the semi torn down stage and had cake and champagne before the press. Anders sprayed the photographers with champagne… All in all… a great end to a great tour, by a great band.

  • 18/08/2004 Örjans vall Halmstad
  • 17/08/2004 Jogersö Oxelösund
  • 14/08/2004 Torget Skellefteå
  • 13/08/2004 Park arena Sundsvall
  • 11/08/2004 Sundbyholms slott Eskilstuna
  • 10/08/2004 Gränsö slott Västervik
  • 07/08/2004 Ullevi Gothenburg
  • 06/08/2004 Elmia-fältet Jönköping
  • 04/08/2004 Eiravallen Örebro
  • 31/07/2004 Mölleplatsen Malmö
  • 30/07/2004 Värendsvallen Växjö
  • 28/07/2004 Karstorps fritidsområde Skövde
  • 25/07/2004 Lugnet Falun
  • 24/07/2004 Stockholms stadion Stockholm
  • 23/07/2004 Stockholms stadion Stockholm
  • 21/07/2004 Rottneros park Sunne
  • 20/07/2004 Idrottsparken Norrköping
  • 18/07/2004 Sofiero slott Helsingborg
  • 17/07/2004 Pinneviken Lysekil
  • 15/07/2004 Örjans vall Halmstad
  • 14/07/2004 Örjans vall Halmstad

By the way, today it is an important day. Don't forget it! Tonight it will be the premiere concert of Brainpool's rock opera, JUNK. Christoffer Lundquist, Jens Jansson and David Birde have been working on it since 2000. LJdM will review the concert very soon. Helena Josefsson, Clarence Öfwerman and Magnus Börjeson are going to take part in the concert.

15 Aug 2004

Sandy Mouche is looking for a White Lucky Dragon (II): 2004 Summer Gigs in Sweden

Sandy Mouche 2004 Summer Gigs

* Kroksjöfestivalen, Småland 2004 · 07 · 07


* Pop i parken, Pildammsparken, Malmö 2004 · 07 · 31

* Shemusic Festival, Pildammsparken, Malmö 2004 · 08 · 04

* Malmöfestivalen, Bastionen 1 2004 · 08 · 04

The lovely Swedish band, Sandy Mouche plays gentle indiepop with a twist in Bastionen. The group flirts with their view of the idyllic French; The Riviera, red wine, worn out yellow piano keys on a detuned piano and warm coloured colduroy suits. The beautiful singer Helena in front made a great impression on the many Danes, that probably had never witnessed SM's sweet sweet brand of pop music. Several songs were in French, which was a nice touch. For some reason girls singing in French is just, well, a really nice touch.

Johnny Bråttom Records is putting out a new comp called Höstmusik (fall music), the second in their series of seasonal themed collections. The song "Notes and bills", by Sandy Mouche, is included.

In 2001, Viktor Banke, Adam Svanell and a couple of other friends started organising concerts under the name "Trevligt med rockmusik" in the small town of Kristianstad. In just a year, Adam and Viktor came up with the idea of releasing records as well, and Johnny Bråttom Records was formed. Trevligt med rockmusik fell asleep after little more than two years, as both Adam and Viktor had moved out of Kristianstad, but Johnny Bråttom lived on. Johnny Bråttom's first release, a co-operation with Trevligt med rockmusik, was the compilation cd "Svensk populärmusik vol 1". It featured Swedish artists like Slagsmålsklubben, Dr Higgins, Laakso, Thomas Denver Jonsson, Svenska akademien and Björn Kleinhenz. Adam and Viktor continue to release Swedish independent music in different genres.

Höstmusik also includes songs by Wichita Linemen and Boy Omega.

Here's the tracklist:
01. 50 Hertz - Vill du gifta dig med mig (och min bror)?
02. André featuring Habib - Whatyousayin'
03. Boy Omega - East
04. Suburban Kids with Biblical Names - Trumpets and violins
05. sandy mouche - Notes and bills
06. Talking to Teapots - The great summer that never came
07. Bremen Brotröster GmbH - Alright all night
08. Wichita Linemen - For all the marbles

It's a trap

"Notes & Bills" was born after a drive when I heard a r'n'b tune on the radio. Martinique wrote the cosy bridge. It is often like that, I know I want to sing and record but there is a big gloomy pile of everyday musts and useless words between me and the future dream. I just want to ignore the pile but it's hard. This song helps me sink into the dark red velvet sofa which is the gravelled road to the Sandy Mouche village.
Helena Josefsson (Sandy Mouche)

Updated 25.08.04:

Sandy mouche has confirmed September 20 as the release date for the their new Christoffer Lundquist-produced album "White Lucky Dragon". The first single is "C'est Pas Juste".

It's a trap

5 Aug 2004

P, C & C find GT's five errors and Brainpool's long-running soap opera (IV): Lundquist with Bo Sundström at AGM and rehearsals for JUNK premiere

While Gessle is touring with Gyllene Tider around Sweden, the producer Christoffer Lundquist is not having holidays. He has been working in Brainpools new rock opera and producing the new album of Bo Sundström.

Bo Sigvard Sundström (a.k.a. Bo Kasper), was born on 16 october 1961 in Piteå, Sweden. Singer and songwriter, he grew up in Enskede, outside Stockholm. He was a member of the Bo Kaspers Orkester and now he has begun his solo career. He is recording his first solo album, Skåne, at the Aerosol Grey Machine Studio with Christoffer Lundquist, Jens Jansson and David Birde. You can visit Bo Sundström's Official Website

Brainpool are rehearsing for the upcoming premiere of their opera, August 19th, 2004, in Malmö.

And suddenly, we were about to perform our rock opera together with a symphonic orchestra on Malmö festival’s main stage! So there was a radical change from one day to another. So we decided to go ahead with it, without really having a clue how we were going to do it, or what it should look and sound like. As often is the case, we first decided to do it, then set about doing it. Just imagine what it’ll be like, everyone so polite and quiet and Jens Jansson behind his monstrous drum set, going BOOM! The sound of bursting heart strings! On some tracks it would be good to have the orchestra, but not on every one. One wouldn’t want them imitating our riffs, that would sound awful. It’s better if they just enforce some of the more sensitive parts.

The discussions first started back when we were recording and touring. It started off as a musical idea, primarily but we soon realized we had to fill it with some lyrical content. And the most natural option seemed to be to comment on contemporary society and all its flaws. We want to take a stand, which is quite narcissistic really since “Junk” won’t stop anyone from buying anything. But it still feels pretty good to speak one’s mind!

David Birde (Junk Musik)
David Birde - Junk Musik

In the orchestra rehearsals, they asked us how noisy we would be when we were taking photos, and when we assured them it would only produce a “click”, they said that “no, that was bound to disturb the Russian conductor”! We mainly want the orchestra because it improves our image! Because it’s cool to use them as extras!
Jens Jansson (Junk Musik)
Jens Jansson - Junk Musik