One Way Ticket to the Stars

Last spring, I spent a semester in Sweden studying at Uppsala University. It was perhaps the greatest single experience of my life, as it afforded me an opportunity to live in an interesting culture in a beautiful country known for great music and gorgeous women. Plus I didn't have to pay any tuition on it, so it was pretty much win/win from the outset. God bless you, University of Maryland.

Among of the more interesting things I got to experience there were the excellent live music nights put on by the Kalmar Student Nation. Just like any minimal paying gig bar night at any college bar, the results were somewhat mixed. In fact, while there were several decent bands, only one really got my attention in the three times I went. That band was The Grey Brigade, who opened for the atrocious Sci-Fi Skåne.

Their website lists among their influences Phil Spector, The Band, Roy Orbison, Spiritualized and David Bowie, and honestly, that's about right. Picture other large joyful pop bands like the Polyphonic Spree or Architecture in Helsinki... now picture them playing songs that don't suck. That is The Gray Brigade.

They played more songs than they have recorded when I went to see them, but honestly, everything on their self-released eponymous EP (available directly from them here) is worth a listen. Of all of them, this is probably my favorite. The lyrics even manage to avoid Swenglish awkwardness, unlike certain other Swedish bands, although they aren't anything special either. Anyway, check it out:

The Gray Brigade - One Way Ticket to the Stars

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