Live in Concert: Lykke Li in Singapore 2011

When I first saw that Lykke Li was coming to Singapore, I could barely believe my eyes. Lykke Li falls in the category of performers that you could only wish would come to Singapore, considering her music cannot be found on mainstream radio. the crowds here tend to tune into Linkin Park or James Blunt. Fortunately, the fine people of Greenhorn productions and Esplanade have made it their mission to bring in Indie acts. from the beginning, these acts came for Esplanade’s annual Mosaic Festival but have since expanded to ad hoc performances throughout the year under the Mosaic programming. my homie Linda had the fortune to catch Lykke Li a month ago but she lives in New York City, the city of all things good like the last minute Radiohead concerts happening next week. They are in town for an appearance at Saturday Night Live and decided to do 2 shows in NYC. I AM SO JEALOUS! nobody stops over in Singapore that way. at least nobody cool.

Suffice to say, I was pretty excited about Lykke Li. The show started fashionably later than usual, considering the roads around Esplanade were closed for F1 and the organisers were considerate enough to start the show late. the stage was a gloomy black when the music swelled to envelope everyone as we waited in anticipation for the band to appear on stage. black cloth streamed from the ceiling which got everyone even more excited.

and the band appeared. everyone from the back rows rushed forward and crowded around the stage. I’m glad that Esplanade isn’t as sticky about  such things as they used to be when they first started these concerts, where they used to make people return to their seats. in a classical concert, perhaps. in a rock concert, expecting us to rock in our seats won’t work at all. Bryan and I decided to lepak in our seats and jiggled to the music instead while almost everyone else was dancing on their feet to Lykke Li. the ushers didn’t bother stopping the thousand cameras and camera phones that came out the minute she started gyrating on stage.

Listening to Lykke Li live is an amazing experience, a far cry from listening to her from laptop in office where I turn the volume down and her  unique voice comes out really thin and whiney. but with her band beating on the drums and banging on the keyboards in the background, i was smiling throughout the concert.

like most of these indie concerts, attending these things is like a mini reunion. you meet some old friends, you recognise the few people you always see at these gigs. it’s a rather cosy and exclusive feeling to know you’re with people of the same music taste. This gives me hope that there is a small yet lively indie audience on our shores.

at the end of the concert, while Lykke Li and band were doing their encores, a rabid fan jumped on stage towards Lykke Li, who was shocked for a split second before realising the fan wasn’t out to attack but, but merely wanted to sing with her on stage. so Lykke Li surrendered her mic and started banging on her cymbals instead. the rabid fan grabbed the mic and started singing the chorus while doing the Visa running man dance. she then pointed the mic at the front rowers so they can sing too. she placed an arm around Lykke Li so they could sing together and posed for a photographic moment. There was security poised at the edge of the stage but they hesistated, all the while monitoring the situation. When Lykke Li didn’t scream nor did the band skip a beat but continued playing instead, the security just watched the rabid fan pranced around, not unlike Lykke Li’s dance style. when Lykke Li took back her mic, security frowned at the fan and pointed her down the stage, which the fan readily hopped off, having had her moment with Lykke Li.

I thought that was the best part of the concert.

I’m Good, I’m Gone with Black Cab Sessions


Dance Dance Dance. this is not the original video so please ignore the mad twirling and listen to the lovely song.



  1. Lolitapopz · · Reply

    We are doing a lesson on her this week! Main angle is about how it is interesting that she managed to hold a very successful concert despite not being mainstream.

    So now she’s probably going to have a few thousand more fans. Haha. The kids think she’s really cool!

    She sounds like a more coherent Kahimi Karie and somewhat Frente-ish to me. 🙂

    1. your lessons are so interesting! do you come up with the topics yourself? the school / centre seems to be rather liberal on the subjects you teach!

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