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Must Listens: First Aid Kit “The Lion’s Roar”

“Must Listens” is a new feature series I’m launching on my column to highlight songs or albums by indie or alternative acts that aren’t necessarily new releases but are getting lots of buzz. This first installment features “The Lion’s Roar” by First Aid Kit.


If you live in Europe, you’re likely to be familiar with Swedish sister folk act First Aid Kit; if you live in the U.S., you might be less familiar. That’s a shame, since ironically this duo from Scandinavia is putting out some of the best Americana folk you can get your hands on these days. “The Lion’s Roar,” the title track from their January 2012 release (video below), is just one of many great examples of what I’m talking about.

First Aid Kit seems to be part of a growing trend for bands and acts across the Atlantic to draw influence from American folk. (Perhaps you’ve heard of Mumford and Sons?) While American music has been drawing from European influences for centuries, it now seems the tide is reversed, and our music is now inspiring people in the other direction.

Wherever the inspiration comes from, the fact is First Aid Kit is making music that is just plain great to listen to. One of the many “MySpace success stories,” they started putting stuff out when they were barely teenagers and growing their fan base online. Since then, they’ve performed at Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Music Festival and a number of others across Europe. They’ve also appeared with Fleet Foxes and recorded with Jack White. They’re currently playing sold out tour dates across Europe.

The Lion’s Roar (the album, not the song) is the duo’s sophomore studio release, which hit No. 1 on the Swedish album charts and peaked at No. 35 in the U.K. The song below is one of my favorites on the record—simple, dark and haunting. Listen to it, and you’ll probably be humming it all day.

If you like what you hear, First Aid Kit’s music is available on iTunes. You can also order vinyl and CD versions through the band’s website.

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About the Author


Growing up in Portland, Oregon, Kim Phelps found her inspiration and love for music listening to local bands play in the coffeehouses around town. She soon found her own voice as a singer-songwriter, and eventually began playing her own gigs in the coffee shops. Her personal influences include Ani DiFranco, Indigo Girls, Ingrid Michaelson and Cat Power, but as an indie musician herself, she has an affinity for any band or artist who pursues creative freedom on the outskirts of the music industry. As our Indie correspondent, Kim makes a point of highlighting up-and-coming independent acts who are creating a buzz and building an audience. When she's not blogging for us or playing in the coffee shops, Kim works as a barista herself to help pay the bills. She currently lives in Seattle, Washington.

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Posted in: Featured, Indie/Alternative Music