Latitude 2014

Lykke Li sparks lighters in the air moment at Latitude 2014

Scandinavia puts on a strong showing at this year’s event.

It’s a pendulum swing for Scandinavian acts in terms of the emotions rinsing BBC Radio 6Music’s closing sets. Last night’s Röyksopp & Robyn tag team gave the killer punch with euphoria. Sunday’s headliner has the opposite effect. Lykke Li’s gained a reputation as a veritable beacon of sadness. Latest record ‘I Never Learn’ is essentially an audible handkerchief, a purging of feelings that makes love out to be some horrendous vice.

This billing does make some sense, though. It’s not an arms aloft souvenir to take home from Latitude. Instead it’s a slow farewell, a swansong to an impassioned festival. Tame Impala are in a similar frame of mind on the Obelisk Arena, Kevin Parker pouring sorrows under a psych filter. When this Swedish triumph sings of rainfall, darkness, whichever sodden misery wrench she’s honing in on, it works. Lighters are in the air. Worn heavy feet embrace their wellies just one more time. Maybe misery has an unlikely new home in the form of this closing set.

Older numbers like ‘Little Bit’ up the anti, but it’s in the more recent ‘Never Gonna Love Again’ that Lykke gives method to her unnerving sadness. It even comes out sounding slightly celebratory, somehow. A late entry cover of Beyoncé and Jay Z’s ‘Drunk In Love’ (mixed with ‘Rich Kids Blues’) does the rest of the talking.

Photos: Sarah Louise Bennett.

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