« Wounded Rhymes » (Atlantic Records)
The second album from this Swedish beauty is a veritable casket of pop jewels, featuring a dreamlike singing voice, tribal rhythms and spellbinding melodies.
Lykke Li – full name Lykke Li Timotej Zachrisson – was born on 18 March 1986 in Ysta, Sweden. Her mother was a photographer, her father a musician. Small wonder, then, that Lykke found herself catapulted into an artistic world at a very tender age. She soon learned about rootlessness, too: her parents relocated first to Stockholm and then to Portugal, where the family spent five years living on an isolated mountaintop. To say nothing of the many extended trips to India, Nepal or Morocco, all with young Lykke in tow.
As her twentieth birthday approached, Lykke decided it was time to get serious about music, using popular community website MySpace as a vehicle for a small selection of pieces combining pop and electro. Little Bit, a debut EP collecting these songs, was released in 2007 and earned her considerable praise in the media. This in turn brought her to the attention of Björn Yttling from the group Peter Bjorn and John, who agreed to co-produce her first album.
Youth Novels, a canny blend of pop and electro, came out in Sweden on LL Recordings in February 2008 and was unleashed on the rest of the world in June the same year. The album was a massive success, and the media promptly took the young Swede to their heart. In February 2009 Lykke Li resurfaced in the company of Kanye West and Santogold on the song “Gifted” from The Spirit Of Apollo, the star-studded debut album by hip-hop duo N.A.S.A.
Lykke Li opted to record her second album in Los Angeles, a location with romantic associations for her (The Doors, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young etc). Released in February 2011, Wounded Rhymes sees her vaulting that tricky “follow-up album” hurdle in style.