At first I was pissed that the late show at Mercury Lounge got pushed back even further, but I was very excited to find out that Frida Hyvonen was going to open up. She is also from Sweden and played these very emotional and intense songs. At times soulful, and then sometimes downright hilarious. She would eat 1 grape before each song that I thought was quite sexy.
I passed up seeing Jens Lekman play at Bowery and opted to see him play solo in a more intimate space. He is one of those performers that can captivate an entire crowd with only his voice and guitar. Jens is an incredible performer, has confident stage presence, and his live performance is even better than his recordings. His set included a surprisingly large amount of crowd participation for a NY crowd including whistling, verbal drum beats, clapping, and sing-alongs. He asked one fan to hold the lyrics to a song that he would sing in Japanese as we passed photos from the 70’s that he had found under a rock. Another interesting song was when he invited Frida to do a Finnish song with him. She translated each of the phrases for us and sounded like an instructional language guide converted into a humorous song. The ambience in the room was so engaging and filled with such warm vibes. In the middle of his song “Julie” a surprise 2 person horn section appeared from the back, one standing on the bench with a sax and the other with what I think was a trombone! He closed the set with a song played on a thumb piano that was quite wonderful. I can’t believe how incredible his voice is and left the show so happy and wanting more. This was one of the most unique live experiences I’ve had in NY and one of the best shows I’ve seen at the Mercury Lounge.