When I moved to Denmark for the first time as an adult, I fell in with a bunch of sweet people all at least tangentially connected to one another through music. In this little micro-scene, there was one person who stood as a sort-of elder statesman, at least symbolically; and one song that served as a guidepost for what Danish electronic music could do. Bjørn Svin‘s 1997 song “Mer Strøm” was by no means a worldwide hit, maybe not even in 8-bit or IDM circles, nor was he a household name anywhere outside of Denmark (or even in Denmark outside of certain circles), but the song had made an impact in the country and abroad in a way that others of its kind hadn’t yet. I haven’t been back to Denmark for a number of years now, but I suspect the song still symbolizes something for Danish musicians, about Danish music. Something anti-jantelov, exuberant, and free.
A couple of years after the original song was released, Bjørn released this reprise. The best known version of the song often bears a #2 following the title, but this reprise is tagged as #0, so maybe it existed first. I’m sharing it here as a way of kicking off a series of posts focusing on Danish music, music I’ve always championed in the course of doing Palms Out. I’ve done so partly because my Danish half demands it, but also because the country’s music is so perpetually ignored–maybe because its neighbors are such powerhouses of pop and electronic music, or maybe because of its ingrained societal modesty. In any case, my American half makes me partly immune to that hyper-modesty, so I insist on doing my small part to share the country’s music more widely.
Bjørn Svin – “Mer Strøm #0” (Reprise) (1999) (bc)
Bjørn Svin – “Mer Strøm #2” (1997) (bc)