A Same Kind of DifferentLinn Koch-Emmery
Musical innovation often comes from opening your mind to the unfamiliar. We spoke to two artists pushing their respective genres forward with the help of unexpected and diverse influences.
Unlike Jaakko Eino Kalevi, whose fifth album was recently released, Linn Koch-Emmery is yet to release her first. However, everyone already seems to want a piece of her and we can only imagine where she will be musically once she has the same number of albums to her name. The vitality of her catchy indie rock is set to mesmerise a large span of audiences while still staying true to the sonic traditions of her genre. As a lover and creator of synth-based music, Kalevi generates fresh, new sounds, mainly through his exploration of technological tools. Still, he maintains a scaled-back soundscape that is accessible and meaningful, in both musical and lyrical composition. It is intriguingly futuristic in its own way. Even though their musical styles differ, these artists are brought together by their ability to create melodies that heavily characterise them as creators. And one thing is clear: diverse and unexpected influences are fuelling both their distinct sounds.
With the buzz building about forthcoming releases, the Swedish artist Linn Koch-Emmery is certainly turning people’s heads. Over the past two years, she has been increasing her repertoire of melodic indie rock, with her artistry landing her supporting gigs and tours for acts such as Johnossi and Pussy Riot. Her raspy and intimate vocals soar over effect- driven and guitar-focused tracks. It’s the perfect combination of accessible pop elements and powerful concert material. This dynamic became even more apparent with her EP Waves, released last year, which followed the well-received Boys of 2017. On Waves, she was even more explosive and energetic, while preserving her melody-heavy sound that has made her stand out as a songwriter. Having been finding her voice as a songwriter since her early teens, Koch-Emmery has always chosen to sing in English rather than her mother tongue –
“Maybe because I naively had my mind set at world domination when I started out. English is not my first language, but songwriting is not rocket science either.” And so, when asked about what rock music needs, she says “good lyrics”. And, apparently, better drummers. She wants to have her mind blown and feel something she didn’t expect to at other artists’ concerts: “Tears are good, at least if they’re in the eyes of the audience.” She’s currently excited about the New York-based indie-rock outfit The Dig, a band whose haziness and most distortion-driven moments resemble her own music. “Their album Midnight Flowers has been my soundtrack to pretty much everything during the past couple of months.” However, she has a much broader palette of inspiration than rock. She also mentions Lil Peep, who died in 2017, and whose merging of emotional rock and hip-hop quickly made him famous as part of the rising genre of emo rap. “He had the ability to make young people feel stuff, me included,” she says. “That itself is more rock’n’roll than anything else.”
Koch-Emmery has been known to incorporate her guitar pedals into her live shows in a chaotic manner, where the performance sometimes shifts away from the microphone to the floor. “Sometimes it just makes more sense to turn knobs and push buttons. I never had the patience to learn to play solos.” Perhaps her previous ambitions of world domination weren’t so naive after all, at least in the world of indie music. Koch-Emmery already has a growing international following, in Scandinavia and Europe, as well as across the pond. Up next is a tour that will encompass parts of Northern Europe and England. After that, we can start to get excited about her debut album, which she’s recording later this year.
Words by Jonas Hallén @jonkien
Artist: Linn Koch-Emmery @linnkochemmery
Photography by Johan Nilsson @johanjnilsson
Styling by Pejman Biround Vand @pejmanbirounvand
Hair & Make-up by Sara Eriksson @saraerikssonmakeup
Special thanks to: The Forumist
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