Tonight, an unimposing London pub on an obscure Islington side street play host to Gothenburg's finest - Pale Honey.
When I arrive, there's lots of chatter in the bar, Tuva and Nelly are still in there having a glass of wine in the evening sun, they seem relaxed and happy. The venue itself is small, capable of holding a mere 100 people, so it's understandably sold out on the strength of their eponymous debut. It's their first visit to London (and the UK) and they seem as effortlessly cool in person as on their LP.
After strong support from the excellent Anglo-Swedish band, White Fever, the crowd are raring to go and after a short intermission, Tuva, Nelly and Co. take to the tiny stage. Tuva gives a brief introduction before the band dive into the set.
Bolstered with the backing of new beardy band-mates on bass and guitar/synth, their minimalist sound becomes a powerhouse of riffs from the off. While Tuva breaks a few times for a bit of crowd banter, there's little in the way of lulls. She is softly spoken and during one short stint of chatter, Tuva asks as it's their first visit to London, what they should go tomorrow and while a few decent London-based suggestions are put forth by the crowd, one guy shouts "Home", she takes it well and puts him down quickly while the crowd boo enthusiastically and Pale Honey launch into another track from the LP.
Their stage presence is great and in such an intimate setting their set feels like a very personal performance. As they play their way through Youth and Bandolier the crowd are singing along, lending more weight to their already powerful performance.
It's a shame they had no more dates as I would go and see them again in a heartbeat, but alas, no such chance this time around. If you happen to have the chance to catch them on their remaining tour dates in Europe, don't pass it up, they're as good, if not better live than on the LP. If not, there's always a next time!