You just can’t go wrong with Swedish music. In the last decade, acts like Peter Bjorn & John, Shout Out Louds, and Lykke Li have all done their motherland proud, and now there’s another band to add to that distinguished list.
With their pop sensibility and crisp production, Turn Off Your Television share some similarities with those artists, but they break from the herd by infusing their music with a rustic feel usually reserved for folk. The result is the best of both worlds: Turn Off Your Television’s songs are catchy but emotional, airy but earthy, and always captivating.
That unique balance is what makes their self-titled debut such an intimate and affecting affair. Turn Off Your Television is unrelentingly beautiful, with each track hanging heartfelt sentiment on effortlessly catchy melodies that burn with quiet intensity. The album would be a steal at any price, but you can go and download it for free. And, seeing as how it’s a shoo-in for our Best of 2011 list, we’d highly recommend you do so.
We persuaded Turn Off Your Television to take a short break from making and giving away fantastic music to share a list of their influences with us. You can read it below.
Turn Off Your Television’s Poetic Memory
Swedish depression: Simple as that, being a Swede is a great deal of the band’s sound. There is a special something bittersweet in our music, thanks to the weather/climate and the overall (sometimes lonely) “moderate” way of living.
Old guitars: Old things just sound better, may it be guitars, microphones or old recordings. Many times our best songs have emerged playing on old acoustic guitars from the 50s and 60s. They may not sound “good” in a traditional way, but they’re musical and honest, just the way we like it.
Strange microphones: We just love em’ — clean is boring. We have used microphones made out of shotgun shells, old telephones, or even ones made of copper. It’s sometimes hard to use them live, but we have come up with a solution for that too lately. Be sure to check that out!
The 60s, 70s, and the 90s: Music from this era has a special place in our hearts. Not that we are reactionists in any way, but many of our favorite bands derived from this time.
Sparklehorse: A great deal of inspiration from this band. We are not trying to sound anything like them, and maybe that’s impossible, but the feeling, simplicity, and great melodies are always there.