Lykke Li - Youth Novels
There is a sea-softened purity to Swedish singer/songwriter Lykke Li’s voice, and this – her first longplayer – is awash with 80s beats, sparse keyboards and airy, monotone vocals. New single ‘Breaking It Up’ is a playful schoolyard chant sung over a bag of electro beats that’s ready to burst. Sometimes she couldn’t pair two stranger instruments like on ‘Dance Dance Dance’ with its coupling of maracas and saxophone, but the effect is delicate rather than overpowering. The standout track on the album is ‘Tonight’, a lullaby of epic proportions, which peters out to just an acoustic vocal, tinkle of piano and tip-tap of a toy drum. Youth Novels is tender, warm and utterly addictive; each instrument, no matter how obscure, becomes a subtle thread in this big musical patchwork, sewn together by Li’s angelic voice. Currently in the middle of a UK tour, she is a bright new star and this CD has so much going on that it threatens to haunt your iPod for months to come.