Paradiso, Amsterdam, Netherlands – 7th March
“We’re standing here tonight, by all the women who have ever felt uncomfortable or victimized by a man. We want you to know that you’re not alone and we’ve got your back,” announces younger First Aid Kit (FAK) sister, Klara Soderberg, to the hushed crowd.
On the eve of International Women’s Day, it feels apt, yet also slightly unnerving (considering the context of their topic), to hear such young women talk so openly and honestly about their experiences of sexual harassment. Their mid-set declaration for change, is met with cheers and telling nods, from what tellingly feels like a close network of sister-hood.
From their vocals alone, you would never guess that Swedish sisters, Klara and Johanna, are both in their twenties. As their voices and lyrics embody such distinguished intelligence and wisdom beyond their age, as if they are two old-souls who have experienced another generation or two upon this planet.
FAK’s latest 2018 album release, Ruins, is well-received by the slightly older demographic of fans standing in the audience tonight. Particularly the jaunty track, ‘Fireworks’, which is an easy-going and uplifting campfire sing-a-long.
It does feel at times that the sister’s Scandinavian heritage is thoroughly disguised by their Americanisms and orientations – from their revolving deep-south stage backdrops, the band’s cowboy themed outfits, to the southern vocal twangs.
It’s only during the track ‘Emmylou’ that the lyrics “Stockholm’s Cold, but I’ve been told, that I was born to endure this kind of weather” that comes as a gentle reminder of their upbringing. Yet, these sisters do genuinely seem true to their inspiration and, regardless of their birth-right, it does ingenuously come across like they are destined for a life on the road and are as international as it comes.
It’s really enchanting to witness two such beautiful personalities channel a joy and heartfelt energy into the room tonight – and the exciting thing is; this is far from the end of the trail for this harmonious duo. It really is only the start of their journey.