Release Date: Apr 28, 2009
Record label: Nettwerk
Genre(s): Indie, Rock, Pop
The Cardigans’ Nina Persson singer is as sharp and sassy as ever Few female artists can trill life into a cold breakup line like “Don’t give me platinum to weigh down my wrist / I’ve got injunctions, so cease and desist. ” But sharp-witted, ex-Cardigans crooner Nina Persson is just such a gal, on the lopingly laconic “I Signed The Line. ” And she spends this, her second solo outing as A Camp, delivering droll lyrical punches to the solar plexus against a conversely sunny Spectoresque backdrop (aided by her multi-insrumentalist husband Nathan Larson, among others).
Longtime listeners of the Cardigans will discern a noticeable difference in Nina Persson's voice whenever she sings as part of A Camp, her solo side project, than when she sings with her main band. With the Cardigans, Persson displays a sweet, eternal innocence. With A Camp, Persson sings like a mature, aged woman who's seen her fair share of somber days.
"Love is stronger than Jesus," Nina Persson will have you believe, and to prove her point, she issues a further challenge to "bring on the war and diseases. " Now, whether love is stronger than swine flu remains to be seen, but for Persson, it ultimately doesn't matter-- for her, the power of love is measured not by the elation but the devastation. Ever since presenting herself as a model of cheery Scandinavian congeniality on the cover of the Cardigans' Life back in 1995, Persson has played up the ironic distance between her pixie-esque appearance and the emotional unrest stirring in so many of her songs; on her second album as A Camp, the tally of bruised egos and broken hearts practically reaches pandemic proportions.
Nina Persson's A Camp project debuted in 2001 with a convincingly countrified record. It featured production by Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse, and songs from Persson that accentuated her bright singing personality and meaningful lyrics. It not only succeeded on its own terms, but also proved a charming antidote to the increasingly poisonous records from Persson's main band, the Cardigans, during the 2000s.
To Swedish pop vixen Nina Persson, happiness is a joke that Americans sometimes don’t get. As the subversive blonde behind the Cardigans’ ”Lovefool,” she made an instant-classic stalker anthem sound so peppy it was featured on 90210, and she smuggles more drollery into this AM Gold-style trio’s tribute to fallen kingdoms. ”Here Are Many Wild Animals” may be the best girl-group romp ever written about eating one’s young.
The comeback of Robyn and the emergence of Lykke Li might have threatened Nina Persson’s supremacy as Swedish pop royalty, but Persson’s nature has traditionally been to change directions frequently enough to avoid becoming passé. Significantly, she admirably avoided trying to repeat the success of “Lovefool”, her kitschy 1996 hit with the Cardigans, despite that to do so would have likely paid off big in the short term. Instead, the cold electronic edge of follow-up Gran Turismo and the spacey folk of Long Gone Before Daylight applied the Cardigans’ melodic sensibilities to other parts of the rock/pop spectrum and in doing so provided a more meditative context for Persson’s often dark lyrics.
It’s fair to say that 2008 was a pretty good year for side-projects. As well as Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett taking their opera, Monkey: Journey to the West, to the O2 arena for a critically-acclaimed run, Robert Plant, Gruff Rhys and Alex Turner all received Mercury nominations for their extra-curricular activities. So, onwards to 2009, and already there’s a new album from the offshoot of an established band.A Camp were born of a Cardigans hiatus in 2001 following the release of their 3-million selling Gran Turismo album, when frontwoman Nina Persson teamed up with Mark Linkous of Sparklehouse to pen their eponymous début.