Performed almost entirely by Swedish-born singer-songwriter Theresa Andersson in the kitchen of her New Orleans home, helmed by Swedish producer Tobias Fröberg, and mixed in Andersson and Fröberg’s hometown of Gotland, an island in the Baltic Sea, Hummingbird, Go! has a unique cross-cultural bloodline. The album mixes a distinct Swedish pop approach with the warm, vintage sounds of the Big Easy: there are shades of Dixieland jazz on “The Waltz”; a sample of drummer Smokey Johnson’s “I Can’t Help It” provides the basis for the handclappy “Birds Fly Away”; and “Locusts Are Gossiping” smolders with a soulful, down-South vibe evocative of a Tennessee Williams play. That Andersson doesn’t write her own lyrics makes sense, as the emphasis of songs like the percussive instrumental title track and “Waltz”—with its vibraphone sounds created with Barq’s root beer bottles—is on the multi-instrumentalist’s rhythms and polyphony. In fact, one of the album’s most stirring moments is “Innan Du Går,” a song sung completely in Swedish and featuring the gorgeous harmonies of Ane Brun. That’s not to say that words don’t matter; Andersson has outsourced wisely, with poet Jessica Faust and Fröberg splitting lyrical duties throughout. The trio achieves a kind of symbiosis of character on Hummingbird—without a credit sheet, you might not even know who did what.
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