Lykke Li premieres stark new video on eve of Greek gig
In terms of pure coldness, expect Lykke Li to be nothing less than chilling Wednesday night at the Greek. The serene and cozy setting of the Griffith Park venue is no match for the dramatic, ice-queen vamps of the Swedish singer's more recent work, "Wounded Rhymes," which turns the bubblegum sinister.
Consider it a dance album that at times feels like a score to a conceptual art project. Li dispenses with the tweenness and niceties of her debut and instead finds comfort in tribal beats and tales of love gone wrong. As a singer, she is direct -- strong, clear and not trying to do too much. A recent show at the Wiltern foreshadowed a theatrical program that should be able to take flight at the Greek. Expect Li's songs to be outfitted in black and white shadows and the occasional winged creature.
The starkness of the below clip offers a pretty good feel for what it's like to step into Li's world. Recorded in Sweden before she left for her current tour, this stripped-down version of the new album's "Jerome" features the artist's band delivering the dark, twisted pop that Li has become so adept at.
Comforting sounds -- the charm of a xylophone -- are turned inside-out, whereas the spookiness of a church organ becomes something of a relaxant. Meanwhile, Li's emotionless stare makes it difficult to turn away, as she imagines her lover shouting, hounding, crying and whining (her words) as she orders, "Swear you'll never leave again."
The bill Wednesday is start-to-finish solid, with a pair of locals opening. Arrive early for the sunny-side-up slacker anthems of Best Coast and the worldly grooves of Fool's Gold. It's at the Greek (2700 North Vermont Ave.), so festivities get underway at 7:30 p.m. sharp. Tickets ranging from $27.25 to $35.00, not including service fees, are still available.
Image: A close-up from the new Lykke Li video.