First sight: Lykke Li

Lykke Li

Who is she?

Lykke Li is the 21-year-old Stockholm-dwelling odd-pop vocalist who is here to rescue your weary eardrums from the glut of balladering female soul singers currently riding the Winehouse wave. Which is nice of her, isn't it?

What's her game exactly?

Lykke has more in common with the lush sounds of Canadian singer-songwriter Feist and the hicupping piano prettiness of Regina Spektor than she does the MOR cul-de-sacs of Adele and Gabriella Cilmi. She's already laid down a whole album's worth of musical manna (Youth Novels) with the super-twee Bjorn Yttling (Peter Bjorn and John) holding the production reins, but we'll have to wait a few months to hear it.

So we're talking more kooky Swedish pop, then?

Lykke actually grew up in Portugal - apparently on the top of a mountain - and was raised by tie-dye wearing parents who took her to India every winter. It was obviously a successful upbringing because, while Lykke's vocals can at times sound a touch girlish, they evidently harbour a deep-seated maturity. With her unabashed folk element, cynical mobile phone companies will no doubt be tripping over their chequebooks in order to get her tunes soundtracking adverts full of young, beautiful people having lifestyle fun in an unnaturally green and sunny field. Fingers crossed this never happens.

Where can I hear her?

Her debut UK single, Little Bit, is cuter than a kitten sandwich and is out on February 18 on the Moshi Moshi Singles imprint, but if you want to hear her before then, visit She also plays a one-off show on January 31 at Hoxton Bar and Grill, London.


Leonie Cooper

The GuardianTramp

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