Alice Boman

"My music is quite simple. And I want it to feel kind of timeless."

Alice Boman's voice hits you with presence and fragility draped in direct and emotional music that doesn't try to puff itself up. Or, as the Swedish singer expresses it herself:

"I think my music is quite simple. And I want it to feel kind of timeless, just like that; that it is what it is. Not too much fuss," she explains and highlights the track All Eyes On You as her favourite example of sound and feel.

Simple, timeless music
She released the EP called Skisser ("Sketches", ed.) because that's what it was. Intimate home recordings from her bedroom that weren't intended for the world to hear.

But they certainly reached the audience's ears. The response was overwhelming and the EP received praise from the likes of The Guardian and Interview Magazine.

Sincere, homemade music
The rest is already history. As we speak to her, Alice Boman is in the US doing concerts and PR. It's a sunny Los Angeles morning outside a café on Sunset Boulevard. Some old music is playing in the background, cars are driving by and people around her are having breakfast in the shade, she tells us.

Why are these intimate, analogue recordings so effective?

"I think it's often in the atmosphere of a song. Music that feels sincere or music that I can relate to touches me. So maybe that's it. That people can relate to what I'm singing about.

In other words, simplicity is key. As she states:

"My lyrics are quite simple and maybe don't give room for a lot of interpretation. So maybe there is not even any need for descriptions. And anyway, I like it when you let the music and the lyrics speak for themselves."

Great songwriters
When we ask Alice for her three all-time favourite songs that she would like to have written herself, she mentions simple and melancholic If I Needed You (Townes van Zandt), Videotape (Radiohead), and If You See Her Say Hello (Bob Dylan). "Those three are wonderful, just such great songs," as she puts it.

Such artists also inspire Alice when she's creating new music:

"I often get an urge to write and sing, when I have seen or heard or read something that has touched me. Sometimes, when in the middle of watching a movie or reading a book, I have to stop and go grab a pen and paper and find something to play on.

And also when travelling. There's something about being on the road, being in between places that makes me want to write. Great songwriters such as Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen and the like inspire me. Or simply good songs. Music that feels real always gets through.

Overwhelming options
She also has a very positive view of today's digital music – streaming services, social media, YouTube.

"I think it's great how people are able to reach out to so many more people now. Or, at least it makes it easier to do so. But then, there is also so much out there, that it sometimes feels overwhelming."

"That goes for the music scene as well. It feels like people can do whatever they want. Like there's a very tolerant and open atmosphere. But there is so much music out there. (...) I am not the most updated one, though. I think I listen a lot more to older music than new," Alice states.

She sits on Sunset Boulevard, playing and promoting her quiet music. In June, she'll be releasing a second EP before playing some summer festivals mainly in the UK. Alice then hopes to have the time to write and record more songs. "It all feels very exciting," she concludes. Things are happening right now for Alice.

- Rune H. Jensen, rhj@dali.dk

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