Slim Loris: A Swedish Band Trying to Find Happiness in the Mundane

Slim Loris? What's the first thing that comes to mind? Perhaps you might think of a tall lanky guy with long hair who is a real country boy, wears cowboy boots, and likes to sing about it. The last thing that might come to mind is that Slim Loris is really a mispronunciation of the nocturnal primate -- slender loris -- native to India and Sri Lanka. Once this is all figured out, you might wonder why the Swedish band, Slim Loris, whose members do not have any one named Slim or Loris, would want to choose this name for their troupe. For one of the members, the answer is very simple. It had a nice ring to it.

But at this point, you might want to know what exactly a slender loris looks like. And you might do a Google search and find that this small creature's head is dominated by two large brown eyes and a nose with a heart-shaped knob. The slender loris moves slowly, lives in trees, and eats insects. Occasionally, the slender loris soothes itself by washing with its own urine. The animal doesn't respond to stimuli with any great enthusiasm. But, a lot of people like this primate and have created a possible extinction problem for the species. What maybe the most profound impression about this night creature is that the slender loris appears to be detached. And the aloofness might be where the connection between slender loris, the animal, and Slim Loris, the band, might be noticed.

After spending some time with the group, you might find yourself liking the Stockholm band, Slim Loris. But, first you'll have to deal with songs focused on the Swedish melancholy. And again, the connection between the gloomy lyrics and the country's state of affairs might read like another dichotomy. Sweden is a peaceful place with a highly developed economy and ranks high as a competitive country. It has also done more than its share in solving environmental concerns compared to other developed nations. So why so sad? Maybe it's because they have only five hours of daylight in the winter and twenty in the summer. Or maybe, a country without economic problems and the cleanest air on the globe can become fertile ground for internal malaise.

After the band had spent six months in snow, pitch darkness and extreme cold, they put out a new album, entitled Future Echoes and Past Replays. They say the inspiration for the lyrics came from gray and mundane everyday thoughts. The music was arranged to use everything from acoustic guitars, fiddles, banjos, and even baking trays to get the sounds they were after. The sound is a Scandinavian version of Americana. And in Sweden the sound is nicknamed Scandicana. The track "Head on the Floor" is the lead singer's, Mattias Cederstam, life in a song. He says, "It's about being able to find some happiness in everyday boredom...." Most of the other tracks take on the same message. However, the songs do have some light at the end of the tunnel. For the lyrics indicate that someone will be there to help find the happiness buried under the ennui. They admit that Swedes are a bit special in the head. Perhaps like the sad, vulnerable nocturnal primate with the large brown eyes -- slender loris.

You can download Slim Loris' new album Future Echoes and Past Replays on BandCamp.