On Tuesday night, December 4, Sweden Makes Music hosted an event at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn. The night was filled with its fair share of Swedes as you could hear them chatting excitedly in their mother tongue. The line-up consisted of three artists, Vacation Forever, ViVii, and Cherie. Each band had a short but sweet performance, with no more than four songs each.
The First band, Vacation Forever, is the new band of talented, and of course, Swedish lead singer Zacharias Zachrisson. 2017 was a very difficult year for the lead singer, dealing with severe stage fright, leaving his founding band, Tussilago, and the death of this mother. After some time off, Zackrisson came back with a vengeance with his new band and creating some intense, atmospheric pop-like music. Their first song was “Blank Ocean,” a multi-layered and ambient ballad. However, the band kept experiencing sound difficulties throughout their performance, making it hard to hear the lyrics. At one point Zackrisson took out his earpiece and exclaimed, “The show must go on!” And continue it did as the audience fell more in love with each song.
After the stage team quickly broke down and re-setup the stage, the second band, ViVii took to the stage. The band is made up of married couple, Emil and Caroline Jonsson, and their mysterious third band mate that stayed in the background, artfully shredding the guitar. Emil and Caroline were affectionate onstage, immediately sharing a kiss on stage before they started to play. One of the songs that they played was their newest release “Suckerpunch.” With a self-explanatory title, this song is mystical and brooding. The band explained the lyrics of the song as, “Been trying to stay out of trouble our whole lives, trying to do it all right. But that doesn’t really matter when life comes around and knock you out cold with a suckerpunch.” It is a somber song that sounds absolutely beautiful.
The third artist was Somali Swedish RnB singer Cherrie accompanied by her brother and producer on stage. Before every song, Cherrie gave a little story about each one. This was helpful considering that all of her songs were in Swedish. However, as Cherrie aptly put, “music is universal.” The subject of her songs ranged greatly from neighborhood gun violence, to telling a friend to leave a bad relationship. The most different in artistic style from the other two bands, the crowd danced to her soulful voice and her brother’s vibratory beats.