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Cardigans, The

On record, The Cardigans followed in the exalted Swedish rock & roll tradition of fellow countrymen ABBA: bubbly smooth Euro-pop buoyed by the breathy vocals of an attractive frontwoman.

Hailing from Jönköping in southern Sweden, The Cardigans were fuelled by a deep and abiding faith in novelty, with the word kitsch rapidly earning a permanent place in most descriptions of the group.

cardigans_002Nina Persson was a coy, supercute bubblegum vocalist – Betty Boop meets Kirsty MacColl and The Cardigans’ busy orchestrations dripped with the fizz of 60s pop and cocktail jazz.

Oddly, the group also had a fixation on Black Sabbath – as evidenced perfectly on their version of Iron Man from their 1996 album First Band On The Moon.

Before they formed The Cardigans, guitarist Peter Svensson and bassist Magnus Sveningsson played in a hardcore metal band, so the cover is less surprising. What is surprising is how well it works.

It’s a thrill to hear Persson purr “heavy boots of lead, fills his victims full of dread” over a Jim Hall-style jazz guitar figure.

Nina Persson
Peter Svensson
Magnus Sveningsson
Lasse Johansson
Bengt Lagerberg
Drums, flute