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Niccokick, a guitar-driven Swedish indie pop ensemble that sounds something like a wry, brazen mash-up of the Shout Out Louds and Timo Raisanen, formed in the fall of 2001 as a vehicle for songwriter Andreas Söderlund. Having come up with a handful of songs, Söderlund rounded out Niccokick's ranks with his brother Mathias, Martin Stääv, and Philip Hall. The band spent the next year recording a series of demos, the first of which garnered a warm reception from the Swedish indie music press, including Sonic magazine. By the time 2003 rolled around, Niccokick had released their first vinyl EP, Bye Bye! Friend; made their first appearance at Sweden's Emmaboda Festival; and welcomed new member Daniel Teodorsson into the fold. The band's debut CD EP, Turn 27, was released before the year was out. Thanks to the popularity of the disc's title track, the buzz surrounding Niccokick only got louder in 2004: the band's schedule was loaded with dozens of live gigs; they made their first appearance on Swedish television; and their third EP, Run! Run! Run!, was released -- all by the time mid-summer rolled around. Niccokick's debut full-length, Awake from the Dead, My Dear Best Friend, came out on Razzia that fall. The band spent the next three years touring and working on new material, and narrowly escaped breaking up due to burnout in 2007. Niccokick powered through, however, and went on to release their second full-length album, The Good Times We Shared, Were They So Bad?, on Razzia early the following year. ~ Margaret Reges

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2001 in Sweden

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