Music has always been a great way to escape and to create an atmosphere where I am, it’s something that can anchor me in a culture. First at the høsjole, I heard about Kim Larsen and the højskole song book and it’s very nice, but it wasn’t something I was relating too so much.I was having a hard time being motivated to learn danish so I looked for artists I could listen to.
I found Mø…she sings in English, mostly ( I fixed that issue, I discovered Medina and Emil Stabil, my Danish is under control). You must know her. Or you must know that song. Unless you are in a coma or somewhere far away in Antartica.
Soon enough even American teens will know how to pronounce ø thanks to MØ!
Remember when I talked about being straightforward and honesty with Borgen? Mø also comes to my mind.I saw her live at Tinderbox in Odense and she is incredible, she has this raw energy and you feel that she is really “alive” while she sings. She lost this earphone they have to hear themselves sing ( I guess omg I know nothing about music please don’t throw stones at me) a couple of times and keep doing it perfectly and she did crowdsurfing. She was just running like a crazy devil on stage and jumping all around, her hair all over her face and it was actually awesome. To not have a perfect choreographed performance. I am really looking forward to see her again at Smukfest!
Before seeing her live I read often that people found her awkward. Unsurprisingly it comes from an american public. I don’t know if it’s about being in Denmark extensively or me not so much into this sleek perfection every popstar in America shove in your face, but I would pick awkward in a million times. I don’t think she is awkward at all or then we are all awkward.That awkwardness for some, it’s called being natural and not self conscious about it, how cool is that? It’s nice to see someone human as long as it’s genuine. And that’s maybe why I like MØ. If I have to believe someone is perfect, it’s hopeless and somehow depressing. It shows the gap between american entertainment and the way it is in Denmark. Danes overall are quite humble, they don’t show off, it’s not in the culture to try to impress (or they do it but in a different perspective) and it’s not cool to pretend to be better than your neighbour. And equality being valued very much here it’s unlikely you will see this superstar phenomenon develop so much. I am not saying popstar and idol don’t exist in Denmark or that you can casually talk to your favorite singer in the street (or maybe you could…) but that it isn’t as big as in the US for example. In France we also have more mystery and distance even though it’s changing now (more towards american standard) so I find the danish perspective very fresh.
To me, through her music, Mø represents very well this youth in Europe, the one we evoked through Vores Europa. We are spoiled, we have so much but we can’t decide and we have this urge of doing something of expressing something when we are confused and full of energy so what should we do? We need to spill it out and it’s a bit messy maybe. But with her it just sounds very good! And when I saw she worked with Diplo, it was like a dream. I love Diplo, for me Diplo is that time in Africa when my British roomie would wake me up listening to Express Yourself and it’s (funnily) connected to my time there and London.
Of course, I did some digging. MØ was in a punk band before (MOR) and well they sang in DANISH, so here I am, polishing my language skills! The down side is, I can’t find any lyrics I guess they were too underground for that… A Dane transcripted one of the song for me, well it’s a lot of cursing and punk stuff but it’s nice , he said it reminded him of his youth ( I had no clue he was 70). It’s not like us, French are so bothered, listening to songs we don’t understand. All in all I just like the sound and the vibe of it.
Her early songs are a lot more rude and kind of stupid (ahaha, let’s be honest), it felt like this full on “fuck everything” attitude, but still some are really catchy and some lyrics just crack me up anyways. It’s nice to see her evolution because it blows up the myth of this “I am such a genius my first song became a huge hit”. She has been doing music for a long time, so it’s inspiring! When you see people working so hard and that it pays off it makes you want to do something yourself.To do what, I have no clue but I’ll find out in Canada.
When I discovered MØ I was in a place in Denmark where I felt most doors to understand the culture or to integrate were closed,I just didn’t get anything. Then her music was one thing that felt familiar. Because relating to honest and authentic emotions is beyond cultures. That’s why music is so important for me. There is always a song, an atmosphere an artist, connected to all the places I lived.
A nice interview here with Nardwuar (he is so weird and funny, and the way he pronounces her name is priceless)