I miss live events.
I never thought I’d long for the days of queuing outside a venue, body to body, with a thrilling sense of anticipation. I’ve not been to a live music event in ages.
Hmmm…this isn’t strictly true.
Last summer, Sweden saw a small number of events open, and I attended one with (very loose) social distancing restrictions. It was slightly unnerving to be near people again. And this was indoors! It was still an exhilarating experience with superb musicians.
The depressing thing was even before Covid, live music venues were declining to frighteningly low levels. As this pandemic continues, I fear for how many will remain.
Reminiscing these special nights aptly shines our reverse lights on a young Swedish collective – Oscar Soul Experience (OSE). Lead by 22-year-old Swede Oscar Ögren, the band has become one of the Stockholms highlights, regularly performing at venues across the city.
The band emphasis is firmly in delivering a memorable live music experience. Backed by driving bass, hot lickin’ drums and scintillating guitar chords, the band deliver live gigs with an old school on-stage intensity.
While Oscar’s fashion statements are understated, his music inspirations are loud, originated by Prince, Mick Jagger, and Jimi Hendrix’s extravagant roots. These icons made live performances art and OSE emulate their stage dramatics, so they feel like one-off events – entertaining and unscripted.
The band recently released two newly edited videos (see top video and below) recorded at Kristinehovs Malmgård. The visuals capture not only their music dynamics but also the live music atmosphere I so badly miss.
Oscar Soul Experience LP
During the unprecedented year 2020, Oscar Soul Experience released their debut album ‘OSCAR Soul Experience‘ on LP. Unfortunately, as numerous noteworthy releases, it slipped under the radars as viruses and politics gripped the nation’s consciousness.
There is an abundance of homage styled licks, strong sexual desires and straight-up soul.
The 11-track album surprised me. I had my doubts that the energy of their show would transfer to acetate.
OSE achieved the goal of capturing the live-recording sonics and present a devoted letter to soul-funk and touch of rock. There is an abundance of homage styled licks, strong sexual desires and straight-up soul.
Recorded in the US, it includes several guest artists from Denver, Dallas, Shreveport, and New Orleans.
Oscars’ opening cry ‘Let’s get into it! Lets do it!’ it sets the album’s pace with a roar. Vocally Oscar is perhaps not as distinctive or character full as the legends (not many are born that gifted) however he compensates with skilled tonality, excellent songwriting and appealing honesty.
The explosive opening track Sick And Tired slaps you in the face and electrifies with the bands’ scintillating energy. 65-year-old Zion Baptist Church singer, Eula Gibson contributes her uniquely soulful voice to the catchy Consuming. The organ keys breathe fire on this upbeat track!
What you Want delivers a trademark funk groove while still being unique and far from conforming.
Angie is a dizzying psychedelic swirl as she awakens Oscars desires. The stuttering outro is simply sublime.
The sexual heat continues to rise with the bass-driven invitation to ‘Sex Me‘. Oh Oh emerges from the Rolling Stones’ influential shadows with an addictive hook, flaming guitars, and a chord-ripping rock foundation.
When the band release the accelerator with tracks such as Wake Up and Another Woman, they ease the soul like a gentle sunrise. Listen closely and you’ll detect a lot of music history in this album.
It may be a while before I’m squeezed next to a group of sweaty people in a dark room again, but I’ll relive the moments with this album and smile!
And to keep it real I may even step on my own toes.