First Aid Kit
It's going to be a busy year for First Aid Kit, their new single 'You're Not Coming Home Tonight' is released this week and they're here in the UK playing shows to promote it. Amid a whirlwind of press commitments and gigs they found time to talk to us before jetting back to the tranquility of their native Sweden.
Klara, Johanna, how are you?
We're great! Although to be honest a bit stressed at the moment, but that has nothing to do with our musical path, it's rather the obligation of going to school that's bothering us…but you just have to live with that we guess.
How does a UK audience compare with the one's back in Sweden?
It's hard to tell at this point, because we haven't really interacted that much with the UK audience yet. But the impression we got from our first gigs in the UK was really good. One thing that we can say for sure is that the UK audience has a better understanding of our lyrics, which in many ways draws us closer to them. In Sweden a lot of people seem to neglect the lyrics if they're not in Swedish, which is a pity since we consider our lyrics an important part of our music. Another thing that has struck us when playing outside of Sweden is the fact that the concert audience isn't always comprised by teenagers, but often by adults. This is something we really welcome. Some teenagers are so worried about what other people think about them, that they don't dare to like an artist that is new, unless the artist is really hyped and famous.
Where did the name 'First Aid Kit' come from?
It came from Klara randomly searching dictionaries at age of 12 to find a good band name. Since then it's just stuck with us. We don't consider it the best band name in the world, but we do like the underlying meaning of it – the fact that music can be a consolation of some sort.
Being sisters, do you think it's easier to make music together?
It's definitely beneficial to the music if those collaborating when creating it are in good terms with each other and can be honest, which we consider to be the case with us most of the time. We rarely catfight you see.
Your Fleet Foxes cover is excellent. Do you know if they've heard it?
Yes, they've heard it. Actually, the day after we uploaded it, when we woke up, we received a very positive comment about the video on MySpace from the band and they uploaded our video to their MySpace profile. We got all hysterical! We were overwhelmed with joy, because that was just totally unexpected and we had been listening to their album every single day that summer. In November last year we went to their show and they randomly invited us up on stage to perform 'Tiger Mountain Peasant Song' with them! That felt very surreal, but we're very thankful for what that video has given us.
What can we expect from your full length album when it's released?
Ten pretty good songs. We're not really sure how the songs will be arranged since we're in the process of recording them right now. There are some things that we dislike about the EP and other things that we're proud of. So it will surely be different from the EP, but still the same, if you get what we mean.
Will you be playing any of the UK festivals this year?
Yes we will, plenty of festivals actually. However, we can't announce anything yet but it's going to be great. We love the UK!
What music are you both currently listening to?
Right now we're really into Fionn Regan and Johnny Flynn. We like Slow Club as well, a brilliant band, and the Louvin Brothers are (were) amazing too.
Who do you see as your main influences?
One influence worth mentioning is Bright Eyes, since the music of Bright Eyes was what got us starting on our own careers. When we heard "First Day of My Life" it was literally the first day of our musical lives. What Conor Oberst made was just so totally different to the music we'd listened to before. It was the honesty and the simplicity of his expression that got us the most, we believe, and we're still striving for those qualities in our music.