Saturday, August 30, 2008
Kristoffer Ragnstam @ Pianos, NYC
Is it just us? ... Or is the number of talented artists coming from Sweden getting too numerous to count. Already this past year we've seen big impacts from the likes of Lykke Li, Melpo Mene, and Robyn. Now we can add Kristoffer Ragnstam's name to the list. Ragnstam just recently came out with a new disc titled, Wrong Side of The Room, and we were able to take in his live performance the other night at Pianos in NYC where he played to a full house(for photo's click here).
Ragnstam who started out as a drummer, played an energy infused guitar driven set, featuring heavily on the new material off of Wrong Side Of The Room. Where the arrangements and nuances on the LP are intricate and complex, during the live show Ragnstam and his 4 piece band delivered on the raw power of his static & frayed pop/rock melodies. With a non-stop breackneck pace Ragnstam and the boys blistered through songs like "2008", who's new arrangement benefited from the live experience, along with "I Heard About My Own Death..." which had a soaring chorus thanks to his keyboard player who was mixing in the samples and effects all night in brilliant fashion. On the older track and crowd favorite "Breakfast By The Mattress", we saw Ragnstam and his guitarist playing off each other, while the single "Swing That Tambourine" saw Kristoffer put down his Framus guitar in favor of the aforementioned tambourine, which then launched into a frenzied version of the track that had the crowd shaking.
Leaving one final lasting impression before the night was through, Ragnstam jumped into the crowd while his guitar player launched into a solo on the closing track "Delicious", which fell onto a rousing ovation on a memorable night in the States for Ragnstam.
Check out & listen to Kristoffer Ragnstam on myspace.
photo & story contributed by Robert Proffe