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iTunes Review

The Swedish duo of Joakim Benon and Elin Kastlander use hipness and chutzpah in their elegant, atmospheric pop, appropriating and borrowing from artists like Dr. Dre and Lil Wayne, seemingly anomalous acts for a pop band to purloin from. But coloring their Enya-esque landscapes (framed in copious black eyeliner and gothic iciness) with the swagger of hip-hop proved to be a winning formula; check their tracks “Ecstasy” and “Still.” On V, hip-hop takes a back seat to pop, with nods to old-school royalty like Leslie Gore (“It’s My Party”) and some lyrical naivety of their own that rivals Gore’s time (“Something inside tells me we should be together”; “What is life if we can’t live forever as one?”). Kastlander matches Gore’s “I’ll cry if I want to” line with “God is here, say ‘hi’ if you want to,” delivered as dryly as a frozen creek bed. Gossamer guitar notes, stately synths, and strings surround lyrical expletives, shimmering reverb draped on Kastlander’s sweetly raspy voice. V is just as bewitching now as when the duo were a lower case entity (“jj”), and it's even a little bolder.

Customer Reviews


i just wanna hear her sing

A New Thing

The composition is lovely, it's unique, and the voice is nice. We should have more genre like this.


Genre: Alternative

The Swedish duo of Elin Kastlander and Joakim Benon, jj emerged on Gothenburg's Sincerely Yours Records in 2009, with a particularly gratifying take on the musical preoccupations common to much of the label's roster. Their neo-Balearic indie pop filters Air France's tropical haze, the Tough Alliance's penchant for slyly irreverent appropriation, and the Honeydrips' fragile twee pop melodicism into a beguilingly lush, gently electronic style reminiscent of prime Saint Etienne with a smoother, beachier...
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