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Foto: Kattis Strömgren

Foto: Kattis Strömgren

Foto: Kattis Strömgren

Foto: Kattis Strömgren

m_lighthouse-01sv_foto_kattis_stromgren

FOTO: Kattis Strömgren

FOTO: Kattis Strömgren

FOTO: Kattis Strömgren

 


 

Lighthouse Press information

Industry Sheet 2017


Reviews/Blogs on “Silence in the City” (2017)


Review: Blues’n’Roots Corner (The Netherlands)

Published: April 19th 2017

Author: Martin van der Velde
Zangeres–gitariste Linda Brandemark tourde intensief door Zweden, Frankrijk, Duitsland en Canada en had al een aantal solo albums onder de naam Linda Malmström op haar naam staan voordat ze in 2003 zanger-gitarist Mats Brandemark tegen het lijf loopt. Ook Mark heeft dan al een redelijke staat van dienst als bandlid van Big Road en Mobben and Fools & Friends, waarmee hij diverse albums heeft opgenomen en uitgebreid in Zweden, Nederland, Duistand en zelfs de United States heeft getourd.
Een toevallige ontmoeting waarbij ze samen een duet uitvoering van Steal Him Away brachten deed hen besluiten om als duo verder te gaan. Met constant een rijk gevulde agenda en door heel Zweden en Duitsland opgetreden te hebben ontstaat in 2010 het idee om een complete band te formeren. Pas in 2014 krijgt dit idee gestalte in de band Lighthouse Sweden.

In gitarist Tobias Bergström, drummer Thomas Björklund en bassist Marc Gransten vindt het duo de juiste begeleiders en neemt in hetzelfde jaar hun zeer goed ontvangen titelloos debuut album op. Al geruime tijd is Lighthouse Sweden in de studio te vinden voor opnames voor een nieuw album. In de periode 2015-2016 legt de band in de studio Murfalon House in Uppsala Zweden hun zojuist verschenen album Silence In The City vast. De band put uit een breed zelfgeschreven repertoire zonder zich aan één stijl te willen binden. Net zoals het debuut album telt Silence In The City elf tracks die zich bewegen tussen americana, country, melancholische pop en blues.
Even moet ik denken aan de hit Moonlight Shadow van Mike Oldfield en Maggie Reilly’s, wanneer ik de eerste tonen van Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart hoor, maar krijgt dan toch een heel andere eigen wending en neigt net zo als Hole In My Soul en We Used To Be Lovers meer naar melancholische pop. Derrick Big Walker komt op harmonica ondersteunen op het bluesgetinte Everybody’s Been A Fool. Country klanken, mede door het af en toe inzetten van een pedalsteel guitar bepalen juist weer de sfeer op Easier To Lie, Can’t Find My Way en Window To The Sky. Met Angels, een nummer dat ik zou bestempelen als softpop komt dit album tot zijn eind. Silence In The City is een gevarieerd album geworden, waarop vele muziekstijlen samenkomen en door de uitstekende zangstemmen van Linda Brandemark en Mats Brandemark tot één geheel samensmelten.


 

Review: Concert Monkey (Belgium)

Published: April 22th 2017

Author: Walter Vanheuckelom
Zangeres/gitariste Linda Brandemark tourde intensief door Zweden, Frankrijk, Duitsland en Canada en had al een aantal solo albums onder de naam Linda Malmström op haar naam staan voordat ze in 2003 zanger/gitarist Mats Brandemark toevallig ontmoette. Ook Mats had al heel wat muzikale ervaring als lid van bands, zoals Big Road en Mobben And Fools & Friends, waarmee hij verscheidene albums opnam. Het bleek goed te klikken tussen Linda en Mats, want ze begonnen als duo op te treden, werden verliefd op elkaar en trouwden met elkaar. In 2010 richtten zij hun eerste band op, maar het was toch wachten tot 2014 eer Lighthouse Sweden enige vorm kreeg. Datzelfde jaar nog verscheen hun debuutalbum ‘Lighthouse’, dat overal goede kritieken kreeg. Nu ligt de opvolger ‘Silence In The City’ in de winkelrekken. Het bevat elf nummers die allemaal geschreven zijn door Gunnar Hofverberg en het koppel Linda en Mats Brandemark.

Het album ‘Silence In The City’ opent met het voortreffelijke ‘Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart’, waarvan de melodie, de sound en de gitaar aan de hoogdagen van Dire Straits doet denken. Deze vloeiende pop rocker wordt door zowel Linda en Mats gezongen. De gitaar van Tobias Bergström doet mijn tenen krullen van genot. ‘Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart’ heeft heel wat hitpotentie en het zou me niet verbazen mocht dit nummer heel wat airplay krijgen op de populaire radiostations. Ook met ‘Neon Signs’ blijft Lighthouse Sweden de pop/rock weg bewandelen. Hier zingt Linda alleen en valt het nog meer op, wat een mooie en volle stem deze vrouw heeft. Ook hier weet gitarist Tobias Bergström te bekoren met zijn snarenwerk en Johan von Feilitzen zorgt met de viool voor de fijne afwerking. Met ‘Everybody’s Been A Fool’ zorgt Lighthouse Sweden voor een aanstekelijk bluesy nummer, waarin de stemmen van Mats en Linda weer mooi samenvloeien. Instrumentaal beheerst het knappe blaas en zuigwerk van Derrick Big Walter op de bluesharp deze blues song. Lighthouse Sweden bestrijkt met hun muziek een uitgebreid spectrum aan genres, zo gaan ze de country tour op met de ballade ‘Easier To Lie’, waarin Magnus Larson met de pedal steel gitaar de sound mooi helpt inkleuren.

‘Hole In My Soul’ klinkt weer erg pop, al zijn er zeker ook funky invloeden in terug te vinden. Zangeres Linda weet het nummer vocaal weer erg goed te brengen en de gitaar riffjes van Tobias Bergström zijn weer om van te smullen. Ook rock’n roll is de band niet vreemd, want het country getinte ‘Silver & Gold’ is een ideaal rock’n roll nummer om de beentjes eens los te gooien. Linda laat ons tijdens ‘Silent City’ nogmaals genieten van haar veelzijdige en erg mooie stem. Deze mix van folk, pop en Americana is een uitstekend nummer, waarin de Lap Steel van Martin Högvall weer voor erg mooie klanken zorgt. Mats zingt het melancholische pop nummer ‘We Used To Be Lovers’. De pedal steel gitaar en de mandoline bepalen de sfeer in ‘Can’t Find My Way’, een vloeiend alternatief country nummer met een erg catchy refrein. Wat genre betreft ligt ‘Window To The Sky’ perfect in het verlengde van zijn voorganger ‘Can’t Find My Way’. Lighthouse Sweden sluit hun tweede album ‘Silence In The City’ af met de dromerige, zeemzoete ballade ‘Angel’. Lighthouse Sweden is een aangename ontdekking voor mij. Er staan een paar heel knappe songs op ‘Silence In The City’. De prachtige stem van Linda Malmström geeft veel nummers een meerwaarde. Aangenaam en gevarieerd album. (8/10)

http://www.concertmonkey.be/albumreviews/lighthouse-sweden-silence-city


 

Review: Flyin’ Shoes (Scotland)

Published: April 24th 2017

Author: Norman John Darwen

This Swedish five-piece, under the leadership of the husband and wife team of Mats and Linda Brandemark (with the latter taking – just – the majority of the lead vocals), offer an excellent selection of blues – try ‘Everybody’s Been A Fool’ or for a more modern take, ‘Hole In My Soul ‘ – Dire Straits styled rock as on the opening ‘Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart’, country with the likes of ‘Window To The Sky’ and lots of Americana. In truth, you’d be hard pressed to identify them as not American. Their attention to detail means that they have enlisted the help of various guest musicians, including two pedal steel guitarists and the excellent California blues man Derrick “Big” Walker on harmonica. All eleven songs are catchy and by turns melancholic, thoughtful or joyously rocking; the set itself is definitely recommended.

http://flyinshoes.ning.com/profiles/blog/show?id=2554640%3ABlogPost%3A84878


 

Live Review: Örebroguiden – Lighthouse Sweden bjöd på mångfacetterad Americana (Sweden)

Published: April 28th 2017

Author: Anders Olofsson

Lighthouse Sweden bjöd på mångfasetterad americana
Under torsdagskvällen spelade bandet Lighthouse Sweden på East West, bandet släppte den 22 april i år albumet Silence in the city. Själva säger de att albumet innehåller låtar som rör sig mellan frid och kaos, vilket tycker jag är lite talande för spelningen som sprider friskt inom americana genren.
Jag tycker att både Mats och Linda har mycket bra röster, samt att gitarristen verkligen kan sin sak då han ibland sveper ut i riktigt sköna solon. Lighthouse Sweden gör en bra spelning och jag gillar speciellt de bluesigare låtarna de framför.

http://www.orebroguiden.com/?p=101513


 

Review: LA Music Critic – get it or forget it! (USA)

Published: May 5th 2017

Author: Indie Voice Blog

Review: Swedish-born Mats & Linda Brandemark burst onto the scene with a musical style that marries indie rock with Americana, creating their own unique offering to indie music today. Like that other Swedish pop band of husbands and wives, Lighthouse Sweden gives us music filled with soaring vocals, music that makes you move, and more goodies than you can list, like the intriguing “Neon Signs.” “Everybody’s Been a Fool” brings on the full Americana experience as Mats provides those down-home vocals, coupled with great harmonica, that immediately give rise to comparisons to Bob Dylan. We especially love how the band takes turns at lead vocals, with each song giving us a different piece of this incredible cake. We are truly impressed with the way they have captured the essence of a true American musical genre, and made it their own. Check out the guitar riffs on “Hole in my Soul.”
Recommendation: Three cheers to Lighthouse Sweden for giving their fans a true taste of American music. Silence in the City is a must-have for every true audiophile and a worthy addition to your Americana collection. You should definitely Get it.

http://www.lamusiccritic.com/indie_voice_blog/get-it-or-forget-it-abby-and-the-myth-ray-goren-lighthouse-sweden/


Review: Ergo – Bredare genombrott att vänta (Sweden)

Published: May 5th 2017

Author: Andreas Jakobsson

4 av 5

Med det självbetitlade debutalbumet som kom för tre år sedan lyckades Mats och Linda Brandemark göra sig ett namn inom americanakretsar genom positiva recensioner och radiorotation. Med ett internationellt distributionsavtal verkar det upplagt för ett bredare genombrott med andra albumet. Och lyssnar man på ”Silence in the city” finns det egentligen inget som talar emot det.Uppsalamakarnas elva nya låtar bjuder på kvalitet rakt igenom. Det är americana med olika mycket inslag av country, blues, och rock med två bra sångröster som kompletterar varandra bra. Några spår, som ”Love can seriously damage your heart”, ”Easier to lie” och ”Neon signs” känns extra mycket, men albumets största styrka är att det helt saknar svagare spår. Ett starkt låtmaterial har genom en snygg och varierad produktion blivit ett album som står sig bra oavsett vad man jämför det med.http://www.ergo.nu/musik/20170505-bredare-genombrott-att-v%C3%A4nta


 

Review: Uppsala Nya Tidning – Självklar musik (Sweden)

Published: May 6th 2017

Author: Ulf Gustavsson

4 AV 5

Det finns musik som ter sig självklar så fort man börjar lyssna på den. Dit hör den speciella blandningen av amerikansk rotmusik, country och pop som utmärker Uppsaladuon Mats och Linda Brandemark, alias Lighthouse Sweden.
Öppningsspåret ”Love can seriously damage your heart” på duons nya fulländare får öronen att haka fast direkt, en suggestivt pådrivande och lätt oroande countrypopballad med snyggt kommenterande blueslicks på gitarren, och en duosång som för tankarna till Lee Hazlewood och Nancy Sinatra. Eller varför inte Nick Cave och Kylie Minogue.
Läckert hur duon emellanåt lägger in syntar och danspoprytmer, utan att tappa kontakten med rötterna. En vinande steelgitarr eller ett bluesigt munspel tar oss raskt tillbaka till prärien igen. På ett smakfullt sätt anknyter duon till en klassisk berättande sångtradition – även om jag gärna hört mer av deras röster tillsammans.
Bästa spår: ”Window to the sky”

http://www.unt.se/kultur-noje/skivor/sjalvklar-musik-4639868.aspx


 

Review: Midwest Records (USA)

Published: May 13th 2017

LIGHTHOUSE SWEDEN/Silence in the City: So how can a pair of Swedes come up with something that’s got so much rocking roots Americana running through it that it feels like the elixir of the mix that would come from Dire Straits backing Mellencamp? A wild concept album that captures the best of all the driving folk/rock you ever loved, you have to wonder how these contemporary cats found such hippie vibes in their psyches. A glorious, wild ride take to the max, this set grabs you right from the git go and never lets go. A winner throughout.

http://www.midwestrecord.com/MWR1226.html


 

Review: Donald and Sheryls Blues Blog (USA)

Published: May 15th 2017 (USA)

Author: Donald Crow & Sheryl Crow

Mats and Linda Brandemark, along with Gunnar Hofverberg, collaborated on the material in their latest release, “Silence In The City.” Mats and Linda met, married, and have made a ton of good music along their way that will surely have a broad appeal, especially given the various styles represented within these eleven cuts. As you listen, some of these songs would be right at home down on Beale, while others would satisfy the Saturday night crowds down on Lower Broadway, some 200 miles eastward here at home. As for the singers, Linda possesses one of those voices that can go from sultry to soaring with ease, while Mats is sort of the yang to her yin, with a more laid-back, laconic delivery akin to fellow European bluesman Hans Theesink.
They pretty much evenly split the lead vocals and duets, and begin the proceedings with the duet full of sage advice for lovers and would-be lovers, “love is a blessing/love is a curse,” and “Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart.” Just a bit later, some tasty harp from Johan von Feilitzen backs both singers as they remind us that, at least once, “Everybody’s Been A Fool.”
Linda digs deep into Americana territory as she sings of trying to break free from a bad relationship, but finds it just “Easier To Lie” than face the truth, and steel guitar adds to the cut’s authenticity. Mats takes his turn at lead vocal on another fine Americana tune, realizing that his relationship has reached the mythical Crossroads, as “I Can’t Find My Way to your heart any more.”
Another of those kick-ass roots-rockers served as our favorite. Both singers let loose on an Eagles-flavored romp entitled “Silver And Gold,” and again has Johan on the harp.
With “Silence In The City,” Linda and Mats of Lighthouse Sweden know that life is a journey and not a sprint. Their clever, heartfelt, and unique looks at love from both sides make this set the perfect soundtrack for lovers everywhere! Until next time….

https://donandsherylsbluesblog.wordpress.com/2017/05/14/lighthouse-sweden-review-may-15-2017/


 

Review: Munich Talk (Germany)

Published: May 15th 2017

Author: Bernd von Kreikmann

Einige Leser haben schon gefragt, wann ich wieder die beliebten – bei uns aber häufig nicht verfügbaren – CD Neuerscheinungen vorstelle und rezensiere.
Nachdem ich die verfügbaren CDs durchgehört habe, habe ich mich zunächst für eine unglaublich gute, mitreißende und aufregende Neuerscheinung von 02.2017 entschieden.
Um es im Vorwege ganz deutlich zu sagen „SILENCE in the CitY“ von Lighthouse Sweden ist schon jetzt meine Neuerscheinung des 1. Halbjahres und steht als Must Have in meine Sammlung und die meiner Freunde und Leser.
Der Clou des Albums ist zweifellos, dass Lighthouse Sweden eine schwedische Band ist. Der von Ihnen bevorzugte Musikstil Americana entstand Tausende Kilometer von ihrem Lebensbereich entfernt. Wer glaubt es handle sich um ein musikalisches Experiment, irrt. Lighthouse Sweden spielt den Sound derart authentisch und perfekt, dass man wohl nicht auf die Idee käme, sie seien keine US Spitzenband.
Ökonomisch betrachtet ist das Album allerdings ein Experiment. Richtig gehört: Während amerikanische Musiker ihre Bluesalben über Plattenfirmen oder bei Konzerten in Europa vertreiben, hat Lighthouse Sweden das Konzept schlicht umgedreht und erweitert. Das Album kommt sowohl in den US als auch in Europa in die Plattengeschäfte. Clever!
Die Musiker tragen die 11 Titel Ihrer Show begeistert und unwiderstehlich vor – die Hörer von Konzert oder Album/Konzert werden von der ersten bis zur letzten Note gepackt und mitgerissen.
Ich bin sehr gespannt, wie sich Lighthouse Sweden’s neues Konzept entwickeln wird. Musikalisch besteht keinerlei Zweifel an der TOP Qualität der 11 Titel.

http://www.munichtalk.com/2017/05/15/lighthouse-sweden-silence-in-the-city/


 

Keys and Chords (the Netherlands)

http://www.keysandchords.com/album-review-blog/lighthouse-sweden-silence-in-the-city


 

Review: Sound Guardian, Blues Corner (Croatia)

Published: May 8th 2017

Author: Mladen Loncar

Dana 22. travnja izdavačka kuća Moody Maraccas objavila je album “Silence In the City” sastava Lighthouse Sweden. Globalnu promociju odrađuje kalifornijska Frank Roszak Radio Promotions. Vjerujem da nije mnogo poklonika ove glazbe čulo za ovaj bend, a i meni je ovo prvi susret s njima.
“Silence In the City” drugi je album Lighthouse Sweden, koji nam kroz 11 pjesama pokušavaju dočarati svoje viđenje prezentacijske forme ovog glazbenog stila. Raspon glazbenog interesa ovog benda doista je pak širok i raznolik. Njihove skladbe kreću se između kaosa i spokoja. To je doista velika širina kakvoj nema premca. Ovakav sadržaj glazbena kritika je već prepoznala kao nešto na što vrijedi obratiti pozornost. Album je već naišao na odlične kritike diljem svijeta te je postao dio plalyista nekoliko radio postaja u SAD, Njemačkoj, a evo sada i u Hrvatskoj.

Lighthouse Sweden su glazbeni par, supružnici Mats i Linda Brandemark, koji su okupili sebi pristale glazbenike i zajednički idu u pohod koji poprima svakim danom sve više svjetske razmjere. Njihov nadahnuti i dinamični spoj americane i rocka dao je kultivirani zvuk koji nedvosmisleno pripada tradiciji američkog modernog rocka.
Na svom novom albumu bend nam donosi jedanaest pjesama koje navode slušatelja da se posveti istraživanju na kraju krajeva bezvremenskog rock ‘n’ rolla. Možda  je njihova glazba malo daleko od bluesa, ali ako se pažljivije posluša o čemu se radi, zasigurno se može čuti i osjetiti taj prizvuk i taj ‘feeling’. Naime, meni osobno ne treba puno da u glazbenoj formi pronađem blues, pa čak i kada mnogi kažu da ga tu uopće nema. Drago mi je da to ovdje nije slučaj. No, sve dalje oko toga zapravo bih prepustio vama, da sami čujete i da sami odredite kako stoje stvari vezane uz ovaj album.

http://www.soundguardian.com/lighthouse-sweden-silence-in-the-city


 

Review: Michael Doherty’s Music Blog (USA)

Published: May 9th 2017

Author: Michael Doherty
Lighthouse Sweden is a band based in Uppsala, Sweden, and led by married couple Linda Brandemark and Mats Brandemark (each of whom had released albums with other bands before teaming up). Lighthouse, the band’s first CD, was released in 2014. They’ve now followed that up with Silence In The City, a delicious blend of pop, folk, country and even blues sounds. Both Mats and Linda provide lead vocals on different tracks, but it is often when their voices are combined that the real magic happens. In addition to Linda and Mats, Lighthouse Sweden is made up of Tobias Bergstrom on electric guitar, Marc Gransten on bass and backing vocals, and Thomas Bjorklund on drums. Joining them on this release are Johan von Feilitzen on drums, percussion, guitar, keys, harmonica and backing vocals; Martin Hogvall on mandolin and lap steel; Sven-Olov Kontio on pedal steel; Magnus Larsson on lap steel; Derrick Big Walker on harmonica; and Olof Aslund on saxophone. All of the songs on this album are originals.

Silence In The City opens with a love song; that is, a song about love. It’s titled “Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart,” and is an interesting song for a married couple to use to kick off their new album. “Love is the blessing, love is the curse/Is it for better, is it for worse?/Make you crazy, even insane/Love can seriously damage your brain/Making a promise, taking the vow.” It has a good bluesy edge. It is followed by a pop song titled “Neon Signs,” with Linda on lead vocals. This song features some excellent lyrics, with certain lines standing out, such as these: “I’m changing to another station where I can hear you breathe” and “Closer to sanity than you ever were.” This song has something of a 1980s vibe to it.

The band then gets bluesy with “Everybody’s Been A Fool,” with Mats taking lead vocal duties. It starts with lyrics from those trusted blues subjects: “You’re on the street/You got no money/You got no job/You got no honey/Pick up your guitar/And start to play/Everybody just walks away.” Partway through this one, there is a cool and kind of sexy blending of the two voices, the harmonica providing a third voice. Something about this song reminds me of some of Leonard Cohen’s late work. So yes, I love this track. It’s one of my favorites on this album, and it does have a positive bent in lines like, “So when you think you’re on your own/Don’t forget you’re not alone/Everybody’s been a fool.” Lighthouse Sweden then turns toward country with “Easier To Lie,” with Linda on lead vocals. She gives a great vocal performance here. The song has a country pop feel, fitting for lines like “My life feels like a country song.” This is a song that really grew on me. “Now you’re asking me, am I all right/And you hear me say I’m fine/Oh, why is it easier to lie?”

“Hole In My Soul” has kind of a disco beat and a bit of a funky edge. Wow, these guys dip into all sorts of musical territories. And yes, this one is fun. Linda’s vocals here have a kind of Pretenders thing happening. And the second time she sings, “I got the blues now,” we get a bluesy guitar lead, as if cued, as if obliging her. They follow that with a lively country song, “Silver & Gold,” that features some good moments with saxophone. Then “Silent City” has a cool western sound and another wonderful vocal performance. This song provides the album’s title in the line, “Silence in the city when I walk with him.” There is something sweet and pretty about this song that I really like. “The things I see, the things I feel all took me by surprise/I just want to listen and look into your eyes.”

Mats then takes lead vocal duties on “We Used To Be Lovers,” which has a cool vibe. “And I know your life has taken its toll.” I like this song a lot, but perhaps my favorite track is “Can’t Find My Way,” which is a fun, upbeat folk rock tune, again with Mats on lead vocals. While the sound is very positive, the main line of the song is “I can’t find my way to your heart anymore.” They stay in the folk and country realm with “Window To The Sky,” with Linda on lead vocals. “Please don’t ask, please don’t tell/Plenty of people go through hell/Couldn’t tell the truth from the lies/Looking up at the sunny sky, I really want to cry.” The album then concludes with a beautiful, moody pop song, “Angel,” with Linda again on lead vocals.

http://michaelsmusiclog.blogspot.se/2017/05/lighthouse-sweden-silence-in-city-2017.html


 

Review: Rootstime (The Netherlands)

Published: April 1st 2017

Author: Eric Schuurmans

In Zweden sloeg een vonk niet alleen muzikaal tussen Linda en Mats over, want ze trouwden en bleven beiden muziek maken. Hun verhalen zullen hen blijven vergezellen als ze onderweg zijn en, er zal steeds het verlangen zijn naar “meer”.
Linda Malmström (zang, akoestische gitaar) en haar man Mats Brandemark (zang, akoestische & elektrische gitaar) komen uit Uppsala, SE. Beiden zijn muziek veteranen. Linda schrijft songs en bracht zelf al vier albums uit en Mats speelde al in drie bands. Momenteel vormen ze het duo Lighthouse en spelen ze samen in een band, Lighthouse Sweden.
Linda Malmström schrijft songs en treedt al op sinds beginjaren ’90. Haar muziek is een mix van folk, country en pop. In 1998 bracht ze haar eerste album ‘First Attempt’ uit. Haar vierde album ‘Shine On’ kwam in 2008 uit op haar eigen Moody Maraccas label. Linda studeerde muziek in Canada, tourde met een jazz koor, met een Koerdische folk band en trad al op in Zweden, Frankrijk, Duitsland en Canada. Buiten haar solo werk treedt Linda ook op met de band Mama Earth (‘One Mother, One Earth’ [2002]) en als trio met de Dragon Dolls, met wie ze twee EP’s uitbracht (‘Back To Summerland’ [2013] | ‘Battles & Hymns’ [2011]).
Mats Lindemark tourde al uitgebreid in Zweden en nam met zijn bands Big Road, Mobben en Fools & Friends al enkele albums op. Mats tourde in de US, Nederland en Duitsland.
Linda’s & Mats’ samenwerking start in 2003, wanneer ze een song herschrijven, die ze in een show in Katalin in Uppsala, waar ze beiden optraden, als duo wilden brengen. Door “Steal Him Away” (geschreven door Linda) te brengen, was het duidelijk, dat hun stemmen perfect bij elkaar passen. In 2004 beginnen Linda en Mats in Zweden als duo op te treden en touren ze ook in Duitsland. In 2010 komt het idee om samen een band op te starten. Door de komst van twee kinderen werd het maken van een debuut album vertraagd. Aanvang 2014 speelt Lighthouse zijn eerste shows en in april brengen ze een titelloos debuut album uit. Hun sound balanceert op een lijn tussen Americana en R&R.
Het album van Lighthouse Sweden kreeg denaam ‘Silence In the City’. Linda, Mats & Gunnar Hofverberg scheven de elf nummers. Ze stonden in de studio samen met producer/gastmuzikant Johan von Feilitzen en Tobias Bergström (elektrische gitaar), Thomas Björkland (drums), Marc Gransten (bas, zang) en enkele gasten.
Het album opent met twee (herkenbare) poppy songs: ”Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart” en ”Neon Signs”, waarbij de opener zeker even knipoogt naar Mike Oldfield’s (ft. Maggie Reilly) “Moonlight Shadow”. Met ”Everybody’s Been A Fool” gooien ze het stuur om en kiezen ze voor een meer bluesy song, waarin Derrick Big Walker voor de harmonica grooves zorgt. In ”Easier To Lie” bepaalt een country deuntje de relaxte sfeer en kleurt de pedal steel gitaar van Martin Högvall alles in. Het wordt funky met ”Hole In My Soul” en rocken in ”Silver & Gold”. ”Silent City” en ”We Used To Be Lovers” zijn opnieuw twee pop getinte songs en “Can’t Find My Way” en ”Window To the Sky” twee alt-country songs. Het album sluit af met “Angel”, een dromerige poppy ballade, die de veelzijdigheid van dit muzikaal Koppel bevestigt.
Met filosoferende verhalen over ervaringen en gemoedstoestanden brengt Lighthouse Sweden op hun debuut ‘Silence in the City’ een verzameling van melodische, goed opgebouwde en gevarieerde nummers. Ook al zijn beiden Zweden, hun muziek en songwriting klinkt Amerikaans. ‘Silence In The City’ is een uitstekend album, met diverse muziekstijlen en de uitstekende vocale harmonieën van Linda & Mats Brandemark. Luister & Geniet!
“ Even both musicians are from Sweden, their music and songwriting sound American. ‘Silence In The City’ is an excellent album, with various music styles and the excellent vocal harmonies of Linda and Mats Brandemark.
Listen & Enjoy!… “

http://www.rootstime.be/index.html?http://www.rootstime.be/CD%20REVIEUW/2017/APRIL1/CD104.html


 

Review: PhotosBluesrock and more

Published: May 23rd 2017

Lighthouse Sweden is het verhaal  Mats en Linda, die elkaar ontmoette, trouwde en muziek maakte. Als je er naar luistert, is er het een gevoel van verlangen, misschien omdat de muziek zo ver weg was gemaakt…….

Hun liedjes zouden goede metgezellen zijn iedereen die op de wegen reist, kronkelt door de heuvels rustige steden en stille steden ‘s nachts. En daarna
Deze band uit Zweden creëert een dynamische mix tussen klassieke americana en hedendaagse rock. Hun tweede album werd gerealsed  op 22 april 2017.
Lighthouse Sweden is gemaakt door muzikaalechtpaar Mats & Linda Brandemark. Zij hebben een geluid gekweekt dat ondubbelzinnig in de traditie van de Amerikaanse hedendaagse rock behoort. Beiden van hun albums leveren elf nummers die de luisteraar begeleiden in een verkenning van melancholische popmuziek, catchy Americana en tijdloze rock n roll.

http://fotosbluesrockandmore.blogspot.se/2017/05/release-lighthouse-sweden-silence-in.html#more


 

Review: Rootsville (The Netherlands)

Toen Linda Malmström een connectie kreeg met Mats Brandemark werd dit zowaar een click die niet meer zou stuk te krijgen zijn. We schrijven 2003 en beiden hadden er dan al een degelijke staatvan dienst opzitten. Toen ze samen als duet eerder toevallig ‘Steal Him Away’ brachten werd sit het startschot voor zowel professioneel als privé een mooie verbintenis.
We moeten evenwel wachten tot 2014 eer de band ‘Lighthouse Sweden’ stilaan vorm begin te krijgen. Hun debuutalbum ‘Lighthouse’ mag in 2014 rekenen op niets dan positieve kritieken. Samen met gitarist Tobias Bergström en de ritme sectie Thomas Björklund en bassit Marc Gransten werken ze sinds dan aan hun road to succes.
In de daaropvolgende periode trekken Linda en Mats samen met hun band en diverse gastmuzikanten naar de Murfalon House in Zweden om hun volgende ‘Silence in the City’ te gaan opnemen. Daarvoor putten ze uit hun rijke repertoire aan nummers met als gevolg een album met 11 originals.
Hun stijl kan je zo niet meteen vastpinnen en gaat van American over Country naar Blues. Zelfs met de 2 eerste nummers’ Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart’ en ‘Neon Signs’ lonken ze een beetje richting pop. Beide nummers kan je best vergelijken met de uit België afkomstige formatie ‘Intergalatic Lovers’. Met ‘Hole in my Soul’ gaan ze gelukkig voor mezelf een beetje de funky blues toer op.
Met het daaropvolgende ‘Silver & Gold’ laten ze pas echt horen hoe veelzijdig ze wel kunnen zijn met een heerlijk country deuntje. Na terug een beetje te fliten met het commerciële aspect van de muziek gaan ze met ‘Can’t Find My Way’ terug de Alt-country richting op. Afsluiten doen ze met de dromerige ballad ‘Angel’.

http://rootsville.eu/2015%20album%20reports/2017/reports/lighthouse%20sweden%20silence%20in%20the%20city.html


 

Review: Le Zicazic (France)

Published: May 14th 2017

Author: Fred Delforge
Mats et Linda Brandemark avaient l’un et l’autre pas mal bourlingué chacun de leur côté avent de se rencontrer, elle sous le nom de Linda Malmström et au sein des Dragon Dolls avec qui elle avait tourné dans toute l’Europe et au Canada, lui avec Big Road, Mobben et Fool & Friends qui l’avaient conduit de Suède jusqu’aux USA en passant par l’Allemagne et les Pays Bas. Pas étonnant que lorsqu’ils jouèrent pour la première fois un morceau ensemble en 2003, le courant réussit à passer au point qu’ils commencèrent à se produire en duo un an plus tard avant de se marier, de former Lighthouse Sweden en 2010 et de finalement sortir leur premier album en 2014. Unanimement salué pour sa musique qui relève autant de l’Americana que du rock contemporain, le groupe a un temps défendu ses compositions à la scène et le voilà aujourd’hui à nouveau dans les bacs avec « Silence In The City », un deuxième effort sur lequel les guitares et les voix de Linda et Mats, la guitare de Tobias Bergström, la basse de Marc Gransten et la batterie de Thomas Björklund s’efforcent d’installer des ambiances accueillantes et des couleurs chatoyantes dans lesquelles les deux voix n’ont plus qu’à trouver des harmonies parfaites pour que le résultat soit impeccable. Fort de cette qualité artistique irréprochable, Lighthouse Sweden n’a plus qu’à prendre l’auditeur par la main et à l’accompagner dans une sorte de roadtrip où l’on utilise les chemins de traverse pour mieux découvrir des villages paisibles dans lesquels le temps semble s’être arrêté à un moment précis. On en passe ainsi par « Love Can Seriously Damage Your Heart », « Everybody’s Been A Fool », « Hole In My Soul », « We Used To Be Lovers » ou encore « Window To The Sky », des compositions faussement minimalistes dans lesquelles le chant un peu linéaire et les mélodies délicates ne font qu’accentuer le capital charme d’une musique à la fois forte et intense pour finalement applaudir des deux mains un album qui vient du froid mais qui a su se gorger de chaleur et de convivialité pour mieux séduire. On ne regarde plus la Suède avec le même œil après « Silence In The City » …

http://www.zicazic.com/zicazine/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=14003&Itemid=62


 

Reviews/Blogs on “Lighthouse” (2014) 

(för svenska, klicka  här!)


 

REVIEW: BLUES BYTES (USA)

Published: September, 2014

Author: Graham Clarke

If you listened to the self-titled debut recording from Lighthouse with no prior knowledge of the band and without consulting the liner notes, you would almost swear that you were listening to a great new Americana band, probably from the heartland of America. However, Lighthouse is actually a collaboration between Mats and Linda Brandemark, two of Sweden’s finest roots artists.

Lighthouse offers 11 outstanding tracks that mix pop, rock, and Americana seamlessly. Among the standouts are “Passing Me By,” which benefits greatly the shared lead vocals of the Brandemarks, and from Martin Högvall’s lap steel guitar, the lovely “Darkness (Hides Behind the Sun),” the “road” song “No U-Turn,” and the melancholy “Queen of Hearts.”

The Brandemarks are both excellent vocalists and sound great together. Musicians include Johan von Feilitzen (electric guitar, keyboards, drums, backing vocals), Rolf Viberg (bass), Marc Gransten (bass), Dirk Reidstra (tenor sax), Gunnar Hofverberg (mandolin), Magnus Larsson (lap steel), Pelle Henricsson (drums), Peter Lindberg (pedal steel), and Thomas Ohlsson (drums). They really capture the essence of this style of music.

Lighthouse is as good an album of roots and Americana music as I’ve heard this year. Even though the performers live thousands of miles away, they have a firmer grasp of the genre as many of the artists from the country of its origin


 


REVIEW: GOLDMINE MAGAZINE (U.S.A)

Published: 2014

Author: Bruce Sylvester

LIGHTHOUSE Moody Maracas (CD)*****

A Swedish duo, Lighthouse has plenty of Scandinavian angst, while the mood, accents and sound are solid Americana with elements of ’70s rock. Take the strong opener, “Passing Me By” on a crumbling relationship. It could almost step off Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” as golden soprano Linda Brandemark trades lines back and forth with gritty-toned Mats Brandemark
They’ve got a knack for hooks. Take the fusion of optimism and sad wisdom of “The darkness hides behind the sun. It’s up to you,” that could well fit Marianne Faithfull. The finale, “Memories,” shows that (like big Mac did on side 1 of the “Rumours” LP) they know how to ease a collection down to its close. And when a single line on “As Good as It Gets” goes from Barcelona to New Hampshire, we realize how global rock has become.


 

REVIEW: THE ROCKER (U.K)

Published: September 4, 2014

Author: Stuart Hamilton

And finally for today, we’re off to Sweden, to listen to an Americana duo. You know it makes sense. Although this is the debut album from Lighthouse, the folks concerned – Mats & Linda Brandemark – have plenty of form.

They’ve been involved in outfits like Big Road and Red Valley Band, but this release sees them trying to straddle the worlds of country and contemporary pop, with an Americana swing. And some of it works very well.

When they whip out the mandolins, lap steel, banjo and pedal steel, and get their twang on, then it’s an enjoyable listen. And there are some good songs in there as well. The best of them include ‘Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)’ and ‘Queen of Hearts’, and with some excellent vocals and musical performances, this might be the one to get them some well deserved attention.


REVIEW: KEYS & CHORDS (HOLLAND)

Published: August 26, 2014

Author: Patrick van de Wiele

Mats and Linda Brandemark is a musical couple from Sweden. Linda sings and plays acoustic guitar and Pats plays acoustic- and electric guitar. Both are veteran in the music business, Linda has 4 solo albums released under the name Malmström and mats has been a member of 3 bands.

Now they have a duo, and released their first debut album. Despite the fact they are Swedish, the record sounds like a mix between Americana and rock and roll. Together with Gunnar Hofverberg they wrote all songs themselves and the multi instrumentalist Johan von Feilitzen produced the album.

“Passing me By“ is an up-tempo song where “As Good as it Gets“ goes more in the swamp direction. “Struck by Lightning” even has sting arrangements. The ballad “Queen of Hearts“ is also a very good.

All and all it is a nice debut album and you can hear that there are experienced musicians working.

 


 

REVIEW: ROOTSTIME (BELGIUM)

Published: September 1, 2014

Author: Eric Schuurmans

“Americans from Sweden …”

Linda (vocals, acoustic guitar) and her husband Mats Brandemark (vocals, acoustic & electric guitar) are from Uppsala, SE. Both are music veterans. Linda writes songs and released on her own four albums. Mats already played in three bands. Currently, they form the duo “Lighthouse”. Linda Brandemark (born: Malmström) writes songs and has been performing since the early 90s. Her music is a mix of folk, country and pop. In 1998 she released her first album “First Attempt”. Her fourth album “Shine On” was released on her own label in 2008: Moody Maraccas. Linda studied music in Canada, toured with a jazz choir, with a Kurdish folk band and has performed in Sweden, France, Germany and Canada. Besides her solo work Linda also occurs with the band “Mama Earth” (2002: “One Mother, One Earth”) and as a trio with the “Dragon Dolls”, with whom she released two EPs. Mats Brandemark already toured extensively in Sweden and recorded a few albums with “Big Road”, “Mobben” and “Fools & Friends”. Mats also toured in the USA, the Netherlands and Germany. Linda’s & Mats collaboration started in 2003, when they re-wrote a song to show at Katalin in Uppsala, where they both performed. Them as duo by singing the song “Steal Him Away” (written by Linda), it was clear that their voices fit perfectly together. In 2004 Linda and Mats begin in Sweden as a duo act and toured in Germany. In 2010 came the idea to start a joint band. The arrival of two children was making a debut album delayed. In 2014 “Lighthouse” played their first shows and they released a self-titled debut album in April.

Their sound balances on a line between Americana and R & R. Album tracks: 1 “Passing Me By” – 2 “As Good As It Gets” – 3 “Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)” – 4 “Stuck By Lightning” – 5 “No U-Turn” – 6 “Queen Of Hearts “- 7″ Inside Out “- 8″ Take Me Back “- 9″ Got To Run Free “- 10″ Love Ride “- 11″ Memories “- All songs written by Linda Brandemark, Mats Brandemark & Gunnar Hofverberg. A long line of artists collaborated on the album, which revolves around the essential sound and ideas of the duo. The constant that holds everything together and the musical gaps supplements is multi-instrumentalist and friend Johan von Feilitzen. The album features eleven tracks all written by Linda and Mats with Gunnar Hofverberg. They mix very smart tempos and styles, making the whole remain very entertaining and varied. On the tracks they sing both solo and together and it is clear that they can get.

The first opener “Passing Me By” is the first of the country colored tracks that steel guitar from Martin Högvall and the vocals of Linda the right sound meekrijgen by the rag. Cool 2 “As Good As It Gets” rocks rigid and sturdy, and let us know the voice of Mats and guitar Feilitzen. 3 “Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)” and 7 “Inside Out” are poppy, but also melodically by the vocal harmonies of both. With 4 “Stuck By Lightning” and 8 “Take Me Back” neighborhoods Linda and Mats from what we could hear before. Dirk Riedstra on sax and Johan von Feilitzen (string) here are their partners in this emerging mood. In 6 “Queen Of Hearts” Linda brings an enchanting ballad. 9 “Got To Run Free” for Linda a vocal country escapade while Mats solo himself on guitar. We finish with 10 “Loveride” and 11 “Memories”. 10 “Love Ride” is a solid rocking Americana (Where have you been, lover boy?) while the real valve 11 “Memories” is the only song where Feilitzen is not heard on electric guitar. Tobias Bergström here is the guitarist, Peter Lindberg plays pedal steel, mandolin by Gunnar Hofverberg.

Linda, yes Linda Linda is country … Memories, (delicious) memories! With philosophising stories about experiences and moods brings “Lighthouse” on their debut a collection of melodic and well-constructed music. Even though both from Sweden, their music and songwriting sounds American. The self-titled debut of “Lighthouse” is an enjoyable and varied album that makes you look forward to a sequel.


BLOG: VENTURA COUNTRY STAR (USA)

Published: September 22, 2014

Author: Bill Locey

Rock ‘n’ Roll Call: Lighthouse

Lighthouse has a self-titled new one and it’s on Moody Maraccas. Lighthouse is a couple of Swedes – Mats and Linda Brandemark doing that folk rock thing and naturally, they sing in better English than most of us can speak. And they push all the right buttons as well – they offer consistently soaring harmonies, the occasional swell electric guitar solo and the exuberance of folk itself. All that comes together perfectly especially on “No U-Turn,” a law I broke numerous times during my last expletive-filled adventure to Hell-A, making that one my new favorite song and somehow reminiscent of “You Were on My Mind” by the We Five. It’s also the philosophical equivalent of Mojo Nixon’s traffic report: “Man, you’re doomed no matter which way you go.” And more often than not, Linda sounds like Joni or Joan in a folk rock band – always a good thing and the musicianship is first rate.

 


 

REVIEW: MUSICZINE (HOLLAND)

Published: September 5, 2014

Author: Jean-Claude Mondo

Lighthouse is a Swedish band by the couple Mats & Linda Brandemark. Before getting married, the latter had already released four solo album, in her maiden name, Malmström, of course. Mats had already recorded several, along with different groups; including Big Road, Mobben and Fool & Friends. So this is the first joint album of the spouses; whose music seems to come from the States, because it is immersed in a tinted Americana rock or pop, although particularly melodic.

“Passing Me By” opening track on the disc, takes perfectly this profile range in which Johan von Feilitzen doubles on guitar and keyboards. It is Important to note that he provides most of the instrumental parts. “As Good as it Gets” stays on the given path. The vocal arrangements are well executed and the guitar turns the song bold. Johan (von Feilitzen) plays keyboards and banjo on “Darkness (hides behind the sun)”, a track that mixes accents roots folk, country and pop. He also arranges strings and keyboards on the excellent “Struck by Lightning”, a particularly melodious song that Mats and Linda sing in very expressive voices. Folk ballad, “No U-turn” is fueled by mandolin, bouzouki, steel guitar and two harmonicas.

Linda’s voice is clear throughout “Queen of Hearts”, another ballad enriched by contributions from mandolin, cello (synthesized by the Johans keyboard), acoustic and electric strings. Both rich and harmonious,” Inside Out” illustrates their art to make a good composition. On “Take me Back” Lindas singing reminded me of the late Sandy Denny, when she campaigned in the island folk combo, Fairport Convention. More pop, delicious “Got to Run Free” in the footsteps of Blondie’s voice fits perfectly with Mats composed americana; for example “Loveride”. Linda is alone at the microphone to attack “Memories”, the last country song, covered by the haunting lap steel of Peter Lindberg.

 


 

REVIEW: CASHBOX MUSIC REVIEWS (USA)

Published: August 18, 2014

Author: David Bowling

Linda (vocals and acoustic guitar) and Mats Brandemark (vocals, acoustic, and electric guitar) are both veterans of the music scene. Linda has released four solo albums under the last name Malmstrom and Mats has been a member of three bands during his career. They have now formed a duo named Lighthouse and have just released their self-titled debut album.

What is interesting about the duo is they are Swedish but produce a very American sound that straddles the line between Americana and rock & roll.

While they are a duo, they produce a full band sound. A number of instruments and artists move in and out of their music but the constant is multi-instrumentalist Johan von Feilitzen, who fills in a lot of the gaps.

Despite their country of birth, they are in many ways American songwriters. The lyrics tell stories of their thoughts, philosophy, and experiences. The music is both melodic and well-constructed.

They wisely mix up the tempos and the styles. “Passing Me By” moves in a country direction due to Martin Hogvall’s lap steel guitar. “Struck By Lightning” travels in a different direction with some strings and a sax as accompaniment. “Queen Of Hearts” is an enchanting tale whose lyrics would fit a beer hall.

Lighthouse has released a sophisticated and enjoyable debut album. One can only hope it will lead to more of the same in the future.

 


 

BLOG: BLUES @GREECE (GREECE)

Published: September 4, 2014

Author: Michael Limnios

Lighthouse: Navigation On The Roots

Interview by Michael Limnios

Q&A with Swedish duo of Lighthouse (Mats & Linda Brandemark), a blend Americana and Contemporary Rock

How do you describe Lighthouse sound and songbook?

Linda: Our sound is characterized by energy and clarity I think. Each song is very different from the other but it has a clear theme, rhythm, and feel to it. I think a lot about what kind of emotion I want to share when I write songs and record them. And when I play them live of course! Our songbook is a mix between my songs and the songs written by Mats with Gunnar Hofverberg. I think that our different styles of songwriting and perspective complement each other really good.

Mats: The short description of Lighthouse music would be that it is eclectic… you can hear different influences in the songs…I myself started out listening to blues as well as the American and British pop charts. Through the years I have listened to various kinds of music: from root blues (Muddy, Howling Wolf, John Lee Hooker etc.) on to their early rock heirs such as The Stones, The Kinks, The Who, Van Morrison etc. Apart from that I`ve had periods of listening to soul (Tamla Motown and Stax artists) as well as some jazz greats ( Miles Davis, Roland Kirk, Chet Baker to mention a few). Eventually I´ve gotten into a period of more country/Americana oriented music, listening to Hank Williams, Dwight Yoakam, Steve Earle, Gillian Welch among others. To end this long list of influences I have to mention Ry Cooder, Taj Mahal, Bob Dylan and Tom Petty… all of which have been on my record player frequently

What characterize your music philosophy?

Linda: For me, music is energy and emotion; it’s about giving and receiving. So hard to talk about music in words sometimes, and it’s hard to tell what differs music that you really get affected by from music that leaves you cold. Think it has to do with sincerity. I like music that feels honest.

Mats: As for music philosophy, I really can´t say I have given it much thought… I try to play and sing and make as good songs as I can… with the aim of touching people´s hearts… be it a live audience or someone listening to our recordings.

Why did you think that the Americana music continues to generate such a devoted following?

Linda: Americana music for me is very lyrics based music, and it is also pretty basic, roots music. That kind of music for me is timeless.

Mats: Probably it has something to do with its origin in roots music and storytelling. That mixture of European and African culture landing on the American continent is talking directly to you.

Are there any memories from gigs, jams and studio which you’d like to share with us?

Linda: When I was 17 and studied music in Canada I played at a festival up in the Rocky Mountains. It was the most beautiful scenery I have ever been around, full moon over the Rockies, great music and cool people.

Mats: With so many years of playing live, there are plenty of memories of course… It´s a well-known musicians pastime, whenever we meet, to walk down Memory Lane and tell stories from the road (about great gigs, terrible gigs, weird gigs etc…)

One memorable night that comes to mind dates back to April1989 at O´Keefes Bar in Brooklyn, New York. I was in New York City visiting my good friend singer/guitarist Wild Bill Durkin. During my stay in NYC he booked us some gigs with different line ups. On that particular Friday night in Brooklyn our drummer was Howie Wyeth, who played with Bob Dylan in the 70`s (the Rolling Thunder Review era..) We played two sets in that half full barroom, mostly ol´time rock & roll… and we were really cooking. Now I am glad to have a faded polaroid from the event.. Some guy at the bar took our photo after the gig… all sweaty shirts. I think I paid him a dollar for it. (this was before the mobile phone took over the world) There we stand: me, Wild Bill, bass player George Bacon and Howie Wyeth… frozen in time.

What do you miss most nowadays from the music of past? What are your hopes and fears for the future of?

Linda: I miss sometimes the feeling that music is genuine, that songwriting and playing music, recording and playing live is a craft you learn and practice. And love doing. I miss the notion that music comes from the love of art rather than an urge to be famous.

Regarding music, I hope that musicians would be able to live off their music, and that culture could be a bigger part of society. I fear that music & art will be considered an unnecessary thing. Music is something that easily can unite people no matter what religion, nationality, gender; it is an important universal language.

Mats: I can´t say that I look back very often. My hopes are that there will continue to be places, big and small, for live music. And that we don´t end up just having big arena concerts where you are 100 yards away from the stage.

If you could change one thing in the musical world and it would become a reality, what would that be?

Linda: I wish that the cynical and sexual exploitation by the music industry would go away. Not good for the young girls and boys growing up.

Make an account of the case of Americana in Sweden. Which is the most interesting period in local scene?

Linda: The concept of Americana is kind of new in Sweden. In the sixties it was pop, rock and blues, in the seventies progressive political rock, in the eighties sleaze rock and synth based pop. During the Nineties it was grunge and electronic music. Americana feels very 2010 – and forward. First Aid Kit was the first famous official Americana band in Sweden. Although I have been playing it since 1995, it was never talked about as Americana, but more singer/songwriter. So Americana is an “in-word” in Sweden right now, but I think a lot of people are unsure of what it is.

Mats: Here I can only agree with what Linda says.

What are the lines that connect the legacy of Blues with Americana and Rock n’ Roll culture?

Linda: Genres are not that interesting to me as a musician. It is more for the music industry to talk about. I write songs, and I have a lot of different inspirations to my songs that I hear, from all the music that I listen to. Never think to myself; hmm, think I’ll write an Americana song now …

What has made you laugh lately and what touched (emotionally) you from the local music circuits?

Linda: I work with local bands a lot, with informal education in rock/pop, and the other week I started coaching a young punk band, 13 years old, two guys and a girl. Their energy in the rehearsal room, their Swedish punk lyrics and their skills both made me really happy and much moved.

Mats: A couple of weeks ago me and Linda were guests at a wedding. At the party we danced to this great klezmer band from Uppsala, Flygande Bokrullen. Dancing like crazy to their music made me laugh and  it was exhilarating.

Let’s take a trip with a time machine, so where and why would you really wanna go for a whole day..?

Linda: I would have loved to be at Woodstock! I now, not so original, but man it would have been so cool!

Mats: I wouldn’t mind going to The Bands Last Waltz concert (1977, I think it was). Man, what a band and what a night!  It would not last a whole day, though… but to make it 24 hours I could hang out with the guys after the show, I guess.

 


 

REVIEW: ROOTSY (SWEDEN)

Published: June 6, 2014

Author: Magnus Eriksson

 Linda Brandemark has previously released records using her maiden name Linda Malmström, one of which I have reviewed here at Rootsy. Now that she shares the spotlight together with Mats Brandemark in their new band Lighthouse, the music is heavier, the group sounds tighter, and previously vulnerable styles are replaced by more self-conscious attitudes or a more audacious musical image.

The Brandemarks share the role of lead vocalists and their voices contrast beautifully, the gentle versus the rough, a tension that adds excitement to the duets.

Their sound as well as the songs tend towards rock-inspired Americana. Johan von Feilizen’s guitars on “Struck by Lightning” highlights the gospel-influences feel of the tune. Personally, I sense a Pete Carr-vibe going, and I suspect that it is von Feilizen on that deliciously fluttering wah wah-guitar on “As Good as it Gets,” turning it into a brilliant piece of swamp rock.

But other, more soothing atmospheres also contribute to the band’s sound. On “Darkness (Hides behind the Sun),” Linda Brandemark’s heartfelt expressions are accompanied by a soft background of banjoes, acoustic guitars and airy beats, before the electric guitars take over and head off in another direction.

The music is distinctly colored by this contrasting relationship of different temperaments amid varying tempos and inflections. The record does not contain a singe weak track, so listening to the music created by the Brandemark couple it is an uninterrupted pleasure.

 


REVIEW: ERGO (SWEDEN)

Published: April 28, 2014

Author: Andreas Jakobsson

 

Measuring Up to the Best

Spouses Mats and Linda Brandemark have released several records under names such as Big Road and Red Valley Band, but the self-titled debut from Lighthouse is their first joint album. Their sound is a predictable blend of Americana and pop and their songs do not particularly stand out in comparison with other examples of their genre, but that’s not a problem, since their material holds its own without resorting to gimmicks just to be different.

Linda and Mats Brandemark started playing together in 2004 because they believed their different styles complemented each other. On “Lighthouse” you will quickly understand why. They both have sharp singing voices, with bright and subtle expressions juxtaposing nicely with darker and raspier ones, a contrast that is put to good use in songs where the two singers share the lead vocals. In combination with the ambitious recording and a beautiful mix by Refused and In Flames producer Pelle Henricsson, the result is an album that holds its own with the best of the genre.

 


 

REVIEW: UNT (SWEDEN)

Published: April 16, 2014

Author: Stefan Warnqvist

 

Uppsala-based duo Lighthouse impress with their first record

Uppsala-based musicians Linda and Mats Brandemark have released records under their own names and as members of Dragon Dolls and Big Road, respectively. Both have been recognized outside of Sweden and have toured extensively abroad. With Lighthouse, they have recorded a record together, on which they perfect the blend of well-crafted Americana, country music and popular rock that mark their earlier works.

The North American musical tradition has markedly influenced the duo, and their record leaves the listener with impressions of far-reaching vistas, of the barren kind as well as lush wooded valleys. The record is probably best suited for a summer road trip across the US, but is stands up equally well on repeat in your living room.

Traditional rock instruments aside, “Lighthouse” tastefully utilizes mandolins, lap steel, banjoes, pedal steel and twelve string guitars without it turning into pastiche or sounding kitschy. Americana is a well populated genre and the album could easily have drowned in that completion among other uninteresting entries, but “Lighthouse” sticks out for several reasons.

The record exudes modern rock rather than unassuming campfire music, and the duo’s song writing avoids the most predictable routes. This is true for their earlier works as well, and here they have sharpened their respective strengths.

As singers they complement each other well, and their contrasting voices add multiple nuances to their music. The lyrics contain a lot of darkness and melancholy—expressed to perfection by both vocalists—while the music gives space to the lighter and more hopeful atmospheres. The interplay between words and music lends attitude and a bit of drama to the songs, and combined with the carefully planned structure, the record exhibits quite a bit of character. It undoubtedly feels like a musical journey with a beginning, middle and end: a record that should be enjoyed from start to finish. Song standards are high, there are no discernable lows but rather quite a few songs with strong hit-potential, as with the opening track “Passing Me By,” “Darkness (Hides behind the Sun),” “Take Me Back” and “Queen of Hearts.” This is everything but your run-of-the-mill Americana album. A small caveat might be that the song titles do not display the amount of originality found on the rest of the record.

To record an Americana flavored album that stands out from the competition is no easy feat, but with Lighthouse, Linda and Mats Brandemark have put together a remarkably pleasing record.

Best track: “Queen of Hearts.”

 


 

REVIEW: JOYZINE (SWEDEN)

Published: May 14, 2014

Author: Mikael Mjörnberg

 

On the album “Red Valley,” released in 2006, Linda (then Malmström) and Mats Brandemark sing a wistful duet called Steal Him Away. An auspicious, country flavored ballad that blew me away at the time and that will still give me goose bumps as soon as I hear it. It is simply a marvelous piece of music.

Since then, Linda and Mats, the now wedded vocalists, have continued to create music together, but it is not until now (as far as I can remember) that they have rekindled that magic. With “Lighthouse,” they have returned to the old haunts of Steel Him Away, and that uncontrollable twitch in my nerve-endings is back.

We are talking about two voices that complement each other remarkably well. Linda Brandemark produces a beautiful and technically controlled timbre and Mats Brandemark’s grit is underpinned by at least 15 streaks of melancholy. Combined with a collection of talented musicians that let it loose on the banjo, pedal steel and other lively instruments, there is a lot of space for greatness.

But of course, it is with the songs that we get the icing on the cake. The duo’s blend of foot-stomping Americana, country music and melancholy pop will make your mouth water. Alright, you might not find a tearjerker like Steel Him Away, but in Queen of Hearts you have an Americana-flavored ballad that will certainly produce one or two tears from the softhearted. The breadth of the band is also its strength. The Brandemark Duo will faultlessly move from mournful magnificence to a more perky and up-tempo stomp.

I had no idea I was even waiting, but now that the “Lighthouse” record is on constant repeat I’m realizing how much I needed another slam-dunk from the Brandemark camp.