Sunday, April 06, 2008

The Universe of Jens

Last night I went to Jens Lekman's concert at Webster Hall with David. Jens - and that's pronounced 'yens' - is a uniquely quirky singer/songwriter from Sweden who's won critical acclaim for his add combination of soaring melodicism and lyrics that are alternately sweet and dark. Here he is:

Jens doesn't skimp on instrumentation - he was joined on stage by a violinist, a cellist, and two horn players, as well as a bass player, a drummer, and his own intimate guitar playing... Here are the players, captured as best as I could...

Here's a live clip of his lovely, cheeky 'You Are The Light'...

A dynamic red blur of Jens strumming and horn players blowing..

His brilliant lyrics are so organic that it's sometimes hard to believe he's Swedish, though the accent does remind you.. here's a sample:

'I had a friend who was slightly overweight/
and that means fat-ass in the seventh grade'

'You said it was all make-believe/
but I thought you said maple leaves'

That last one is uncanny - when I was seven I thought Mister Rogers' little town was Maple Leaf... : - ) Finally, here's 'Black Cab,' the song that first gained my attention, which begins 'I killed a party again / god damn, god damn... The video, starring a hyperactive rolling snowball, is just too cute...'

Cartoon du Jour: And Don't Think...

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