First Aid Kit – Live at the o2 Academy, Bristol

29 Nov

Picture courtesy of

Beauty divine. Romantic bliss. Pure artistry – in the polished figures of these two young sisters from Enskede-Årsta-Vantör – a small borough of Stockholm, Sweden.

More than 1500 people turned up to the o2 Academy in Bristol to watch First Aid Kit perform their scenic harmonies. And everybody left with a smile on their face.

The duo showcased many of the tracks from the second album ‘The Lion’s Roar’ which came out at the start of this year, with only a handful of tracks taken from their 2010 debut ‘The Big Black & The Blue’. All songs were delivered to perfection, with every single specific harmony sounding incredibly strong.

Klara, the younger of the two Söderberg sisters, takes on the lead vocals in most of the songs and her delivery of every single lyric was powerful. You could shut your eyes and think that you were listening to a First Kit Aid record that’s how naturally talented they are proving that the autotune is definitely for only average singers.

A moment midway through the gig was incredibly special. Johanna told the crowd “We’re going to abandon modern technology for a minute.” – which is exactly what they did. Klara took her oak-coloured guitar to the front of the stage, stood next to her older sister and they performed an unamplified version of ‘Ghost Town’. Some of the crowd knew the words. Some didn’t. It didn’t matter. Every person in that room did not dare interrupt such a hushed atmosphere. Any disturbance would have spoiled it.

Other highlights were the delightful ‘Blue’, ‘Emmylou’ and ‘The Lion’s Roar’ – with the latter sounding particularly anthemic with its stop-start nature.

But something that one will never forget is this band’s cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘America’. It’s as if this song was destined to be sung by these girls. Without trying to sound like the commonest cliché in the world there aren’t many moments that lift the hairs on the back of my neck. And even though I’ve seen a video of the original performance in front of Paul Simon himself at the Polar Music Prize, witnessing and hearing it was something I may not ever forget.

By Chris PJ Martin


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