2011 Favorite Albums / 8. Lykke Li, Wounded Rhymes

Lykke Li, Wounded Rhymes

Music Math: Björk circa Debut + 1950s doowop + Igmar Bergman films

Best Tracks: “Youth Knows No Pain,” “I Follow Rivers,” “Get Some,” “Sadness Is a Blessing,” “I Know Places,” “Jerome”

Representative Lyrics: “Like a shotgun / needs an outcome / I’m your prostitute / you gon’ get some”

Notes: This is one of the craziest sounding albums I’ve heard in along time. Li cribs from 1950s pop standards like “Unchained Melody” and groups like The Shirelles, then tosses them in a blender with tribal drums, tinkling bells, and buzzing synths, coming out of it with something that sounds intensely unique and immediately Scandinavian at the same time. Also noteworthy was her live iTunes session EP, which features stripped down versions of many of these songs–most of which lose the echoey backing vocals and allows you to hear her, just her.

Beau’s Critique: “This album makes me want to commit suicide.”

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