Photography by Jacob Cutler
- By Mica Kendall -
From acoustic to electric guitar switches to head banging hair flips accompanied by synchronized, guitar dancing, the Soderberg sisters of First Aid Kit know how to put on an electric show that ran on pure talent.
Klara and Johanna Soderberg, the folk country-inspired sisters from Stockholm, Sweden, brought their mesmerizing harmonies that warmed up a sold out crowd at the Boston House of Blues on Wednesday, February 7th.
The night started with the sisters confidently strolling onto the stage with their stylish dresses. Johanna in a short, cheetah print dress and Klara in a red, ruffled dress, that could easily fool the crowd into thinking they were in for a soft vocalized show. However, Klara's powerful vocals in the opening song "Rebel Heart" begged to differ as her voice and lyrics represent the strong women that both sisters are .
"Rebel Heart" immediately captured the attention of the entire crowd,
with its mysterious and slow instrumentals that built up towards Klara's 30-second high note that left the crowd breathless and caused everyone to enthusiastically cheer and clap. After "Rebel Heart," the Soderberg sisters provided their audience with 17 other tracks that contained a great mixture of all three of their past albums, along with their album, Ruins, released a month prior before the start of their tour.
Their 2012 song, "Kings of the World,"
caused the crowd that ranged from teens to the elderly to grab their significant other and dance hand in hand to the upbeat folk tune with a reminiscent Mumford and Sons vibe. "Kings of the World" was the first song of the set to introduce the trombone, which caused the crowd to stomp to the beat, while singing the main chorus: "I'm nobody's baby, I'm everybody's girl" at the top of their lungs. Moving along to showcase their newest work, the song, "Postcard," displayed the Soderberg sisters' evident country music inspiration that made me, a born and raised Texan, feel like I was transported back to Texas.
Diverting away from their debut albums, a standout track on the setlist was "You are the Problem Here," a song the Soderberg sisters wrote for International Women's Day. This song exposed the Soderberg sisters' ability to clash into the rock genre, with a direct spotlight on Klara and her electric guitar as she angrily shouted, "I've had enough." The song was also accompanied by a speech related to the Me Too movement, as Klara talked about the song being written out of pure frustrations with the daily treatment of women. She addressed the perpetrators of recent sexual assault crimes against women stating: "What is wrong with you to do this to another human being?"
The surprises to the setlist didn't end there though,
with the Soderberg sisters playing a cover of Heart's "Crazy on You," that felt like the Soderberg sisters were the musical reincarnation of the Wilson sisters. In addition, the no-microphone, acapella rendition of their song "Hem of her Dress" silenced the crowd as the two sisters' powerful harmonies enveloped the entire venue.
Lastly, the sisters granted the crowd's wish with a four song encore that included inviting the opener and best friend, Van William, onto the stage for the upbeat energized track, "Revolution." This got the whole crowd feeding off of William and the sisters' energy making everyone dance and sway to the rhythm. Finally, the sisters couldn't leave the stage until they performed their number one hit, "My Silver Lining," which the crowd sang all the lyrics louder than the Soderberg sisters performing on stage.
The Soderberg sisters were born to perform together,
with Johanna's feathery vocals contrasting against Klara's bold vocals producing a mesh of harmonies that took the prevalent genres of country, folk, and rock to a new level live. The Soderberg sisters' millions of Spotify listens and their sold out, Boston show are well justified, with their emotionally driven and well written lyrics to their vivacious personalities that shined on stage. First Aid Kit's live show proved how there are no limitations in mixing various music genres and created a memorable silver lining in the hearts of the young to the old in the crowd.