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In a Nutshell

Pelle Carlberg

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Album Review

After a stretch of albums as the leader of second-string Swede popsters Edson, singer/songwriter Pelle Carlberg struck out for a solo career with 2005's Everything. Now!, which continued on the same low-key, moody path his former band had followed. However, something seems to have changed between that album and its follow-up, In a Nutshell: by some distance Carlberg's best album so far, In a Nutshell is an inventive, tuneful collection of pop songs in a variety of moods and styles, with a quirky sense of humor that occasionally recalls Carlberg's Swedish compatriot Jens Lekman. Carlberg's rueful lyrics — song titles include the downright Morrissey-like "Clever Girls Like Clever Boys Much More Than Clever Boys Like Clever Girls" and "I Love You, You Imbecile" — are, as on his earlier albums, matched to largely minor-key tunes. But In a Nutshell has more detailed and varied arrangements than was Carlberg's wont before, with the result that "Crying All the Way to the Pawnshop" and "Showercream and Onions" echo the perkier side of Belle & Sebastian, and "Why Do Today What You Can Put Off Until Tomorrow" is a reverb-heavy reverie for solo acoustic guitar and voice that's closer in sound and spirit to, say, Neutral Milk Hotel. The increased sense of humor and more varied lyrical tenor combines with the catchy tunes to make In a Nutshell an immediately likeable bit of semi-twee Swedish indie pop.

Biography

Born: Sweden

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '00s

Pelle Carlberg is a Swedish indie pop singer/songwriter who is accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Henrik Nilsson. He is signed to Twentyseven Records in the United States and Labrador in Sweden. Carlberg grew up in Uppsala, Sweden, and beginning in 1988 played in a string of bands. After studying English at the University of Stockholm, he put together Edson while working at an office job in the late '90s. The band offered a few recorded efforts until...
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In a Nutshell, Pelle Carlberg
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