Songs for the End of the Day is the new title for the old Pot Pourri section (Nobody knew what it meant anyway); a collection of singles or EP/album tracks that are reviewed together a little more briefly than standard reviews on account of the enormous number of new releases presently. We begin with a couple of new releases from Sweden.
Di Leva and Dogge Doggelito (Sweden) – Kämpa på (single)
Sweden’s Di Leva has featured numerous times in NMC and was one of the most read about artists last year.
This time out he has teamed up with Dogge Doggelito and by accident. No relation to Snoop Dogg or the Bonzo Dog Doodah Band as far as I know.
It seems that Di Leva was sitting in his car on his way home from a concert when Dogge Doggelito (Douglas Leon) suddenly appeared side by side in the next lane and they exchanged greetings. (Di Leva has just completed yet another mammoth tour of Sweden with his David Bowie tribute show).
Shortly afterwards, Di Leva received a text message from Dogge who asked if they should do a song together.
After Di Leva created the music Dogge played his part with a rap that he had been inspired to do after hearing Di Leva’s first draft.
The result of all this activity is ‘Kämpa på’ (‘Fight On’) – a sensitive song about the fact that life is not always fair and that we all get hurt, encounter setbacks and rainy sad days in our lives, but that we have to fight still on for the sake of the heart, life and love.
That’s oh so Di Leva-ish. He’s up there with the very best, anywhere, at that sort of thing.
You may not know so much about Dogge Doggelito. He is a hip-hop pioneer who in the early 90s had his first breakthrough as one of the front men of The Latin Kings, a Swedish language band from an immigrant area of southern Stockholm that took their name from one of Latin America’s most notorious gangs.
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t sure how Di Leva’s brand of soft rock was going to square with rap and rap/hip hop isn’t usually found in these pages anyway. In fact, the only rap song I believe has ever appeared here is the Norwegian ‘happy rap’ track ‘Holde Rundt Deg’.
It does work out quite well as it happens. There is a discernible tune and Di Leva’s gentle, almost falsetto, vocal contrasts with the harsher one (although not too abrasive) of Dogge.
I can’t tell exactly what they are singing about but I can confine there is a lot of rhyming going on.
They seem to have hit upon a new genre along the way. I anticipate there might well be more of this collaboration to come.
On January 18th, a music video for ‘Kämpa på’ will be released.
Find them on:
Bulletproof Poets (Sweden) – Through a Glass (Single)
It’s a little ironic that this new single from Bulletproof Poets should arrive on my desk just as I’m ploughing my way through Ted Chiang’s Story of your Life, upon which the film Arrival was based.
It’s a thought provoking piece about aliens landing on Earth not to zap us but in order to seek our help not now but 3,000 years in the future. To them time is not linear as we are yet to discover. In the book their spacecraft have the appearance of a looking glass (although more like a traditional ‘flying saucer’ in the film).
I’ve always thought Bulletproof Poets to be thought provoking, too, a band whose name arose out of a song about Henry Charles Bukowski, the German-American underground poet, novelist, and short story writer whose work was influenced by the social, cultural, and economic ambience of his adopted home city of Los Angeles. And the main inspiration for which is a poet, Monika Kostera, who is also, bizarrely, a Polish professor in organisation theory and management.
Their forthcoming EP (April 2024) is called ‘In Pink Mushroom Lane’, which sounds like it could be the work of the Floyd, or Procul Harum, and ‘Through a Glass’ is the first single from it.
You will often find references to nostalgia and going ‘down Memory Lane’ in NMC and in ‘Through a Glass’ Bulletproof Poets’ songwriter, Tommy Jensen, has tried to capture the concept of growing up in retrospect from years later but without falling into the nostalgia trap.
It’s partly, but not wholly, because of Helena Montgomery’s vocals that Bulletproof Poets continues to remind me of the era, almost lost in the mists of times now but still always worth checking out, of high quality 1970s English folk-rock from the likes of Fairport Convention, Lindisfarne and Steeleye Span.
Their work would seamlessly fit into the pantheon of that era and if they can kick-start a revival, be it here or in Sweden then all power to their elbow.
Find them on: