Large Meets Lykke Li
With her second album due for release at the end of this month and an upcoming UK tour to follow, Swedish singer/songwriter Lykke Li talks to Large about ignoring the critics and exploring her darker side.
After the global success of your first album Youth Novels, are you nervous for the release of Wounded Rhymes?
No I don’t allow other people to influence me or my music. What I have and what I do isn’t for any critic, music is the most sacred thing I have, and when I create it I go inwards and allow myself to feel.
Your new material is a lot darker than previously. Was it a conscious decision to do this?
The process I go through to make music is never a conscious thought as such, what comes out just reflects whatever emotional path I’m on at the time of writing the material
You’ve had a busy time since your debut, with one of your songs featuring in the Twilight: New Moon soundtrack. How did you get involved with that project?
I was contacted and asked if I could provide a piece of music for this very emotional scene they had in mind, and I wasn’t sure as I hadn’t seen any of the films but eventually I came up with something that fit well. It’s always nice to be asked to be part of something, such as film soundtracks.
You’ve spoke in the past about disliking the industry’s obsession with looks, but last year you were also the face of Levi’s Curve ID campaign alongside Pixie Geldof. Did your ethics conflict with the contract?
It was ok, turned out to be a good day job as I needed money to fund a short film called Solarium I was working on. We filmed it after my tour in the Californian desert, and the cash I made from working with Levi’s went towards that.
You return to the North West in April after last playing here in 2008. Are you looking forward to coming back?
Yeah, I’m excited to return to the UK. It’s always good to meet new audiences.
Did you get any opportunity to sample Northern nightlife last time?
With the tour dates all being so close together, after a show we usually have to pack up pretty quickly to get back on the road to reach the next venue in time so I don’t have much chance to go out after I’ve come off stage.
Who would you list as your influences?
I don’t really have specific influences, it’s more about me creating moments. Listening to my music is like taking a peek into my heart and life.
You’re from Sweden originally, are you still based there?
Not so much anymore, I tend to move around a lot depending on whether I’m touring. I don’t think I could move to the UK though. Winters at home are awful; it’s made me hate the cold!
Obvious comparisons are made between you and your friend Robyn with both of you originally from Sweden. Are you still close?
She sang some backing vocals for me in the acoustic video of ‘I’m Good I’m Gone’; that was about three years ago, but yeah she is still a good friend of mine.
‘Wounded Rhymes’ is released on the 28th February, with Lykke Li headlining Manchester Academy on the 19th April.