Swedish band Little Dragon talk about their new album

Swedish band Little Dragon talk about their new album

The Swedish band talk about their new album, writing lyrics and hitting Hong Kong

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Little Dragon - coming to Nine Dragons, uh, Kowloon, and Hong Kong soon?
Little Dragon - coming to Nine Dragons, uh, Kowloon, and Hong Kong soon?
Photo: Warner Music Hong Kong

Drummer Erik Bodin might describe his Swedish electronic music group, Little Dragon, as "[four] old friends making music", but don't be fooled - they are not your typical band. Sure, they might have met in high school, started jamming and eventually started writing songs together, but fast forward 20 years, and these old friends have toured the world many times over. They've graced the stages at Ultra and Lollapalooza multiple times, to name but a few, are often away from their homes in Gothenburg for months at a time, and have numerous albums under their belt.

You might not have heard of them yet, but with all the attention they've gained from their fourth and most recent album, Nabuma Rubberband, they're certainly a name to keep an eye out for.

"Although it's been nearly two decades since we got together, it doesn't feel any more strange than what reality feels like all the time," says Bodin. "I think we've all been dreaming of this [success] and thought that it would become true also. It feels more real than surreal."

Nabuma Rubberband, was released in May, and as usual, Little Dragon's sound crosses genres. "I tend to say to people we play pop, but we don't have any guitars, so it's very synthy," he says. "We try to keep [our sound] open, organic and fun, and still be deep and serious. We're more about mixing things and coming up with something new."

Bodin admits that he and the other members were a little bit nervous about working with other musicians for the first time on Nabuma Rubberband. "We're so used to doing everything ourselves, and being in control, but this time we wanted to get some help from somebody on the outside," he says. "When you do things yourself, you just feel it, but when you work with somebody else you have to" be more specific, he says. "Towards the end, we really figured out how to do it. It was a healthy process for us."

The songs on Nabuma Rubberband are "deeper, darker and richer" - look no further than the music videos for Klapp Klapp and Pretty Girls. "The two music videos are connected, and both kind of have a zombie theme. Pretty Girls … it's a classic and feels quite timeless."

Yet the writing process for this album was largely the same. "There's no real fixed procedure. Sometimes somebody is just sitting, making some music, and Yukimi [the lead singer] will walk by, get inspired and start writing lyrics. Other times, we work from scratch together."

One thing did change during the production of this album - Little Dragon got a new studio. "We've always been lucky, we always had our own studio, from the very beginning. Over the years, it got a little bit small for us, so we moved up one floor in the same house."

Although Little Dragon is set to begin an intense touring schedule for Nabuma Rubberband until the end of December, Bodin is disappointed that the there is only one stop in Asia. "Asia is a big piece of land, and we want to go to more places than just Singapore." However, the members of Little Dragon have been to Hong Kong before, and hope to come again soon - they actually filmed a video for one of their songs, Runabout in Hong Kong back in 2009.

They're already looking forward to working on their next album after touring. "We're really hungry to write more music nowadays. We don't want to wait too long. We want to keep on being Little Dragon."

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
Little Dragon on fire

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