Lisen Elwin is one of the most original singer-songwriters on the Swedish scene. Her debut album, ”Coming Home”, released in september 2004, Diva Records, received excellent reviews from the national press and established music critics. The singles ”Early Morning Sun” and ”Raincoat” have been played frequently on Swedish radio.
”Coming Home” is a mixture of slow sensual ballads sung with unique feeling, and rocking original country songs that touch your heart. Lisen Elwin is all about strong and genuine feelings with melancholy, hope and undying love. Her style is distinctly Scandinavian:
open spaces, clear skies and clean air. Her songs are woven together by a beautiful sense of melody and the vivid pictures of the lyrics. Lisen sings straight from the heart with the voice of an angel in the gutter.
Lisen's love for country music took on a new dimension when she travelled to Nashville for the first time in 2000 working with established songwriters
Lisen Elwin started touring around Europe as a seventeen year old girl with the Swedish rockband the Pushtwangers. When her Daddy told her that her voice would be good for singing country Lisen got angry. She would never have believed that one day her heart would beat for that music. After discovering Joni Mitchell and listening to all her CDs Lisen discovered her interest in singer-songwriter tradition. American artists like Neil Young, Carole King and Bob Dylan inspired her early songwriting and led her into country/folk. From listening a lot to Emmylou Harris, Patsy Cline, Jonny Cash, and also some newer artists such as Lucinda Williams and Gillian Welch she developed her own
Scandinavian alternative country style. She plays and tours regularly with her two guitarists Mats Karlsson and Christer Bergman.
Besides music Lisen has been working with homeless people and drug addicts and this winter she did a very appreciated prisonstour together with collegues in the band ”Misson Possible”. Lisen Elwin was born and raised in the center of
Stockholm in an old wooden house from the 1700 century, and she still feels like a country girl in the big city…
Reviews of “Coming Home”
Lisen Elwin has come a long way from her first steps with the Pushtwangers in the first wave of garage rock- all the way to Nashville, where she has found her ownstyle of slow, romantic country rock. It’s a city, and a style, where it’s hard to stay on the right side without being sentimental, saccarine and ingratiating, but Lisen Elwin has no problem keeping that balance. Her voice is steady and convincing in the powerful ”An Angels point of view” and in the sensational ”Early morning sun”, where she’s not far away from Lucinda Williams or Kasey Chambers. But it’s her songwriting that puts her in a higher category. The fast-moving ”Love still makes me free” twangs and would make Steve Earle proud, the duet ”Every time I reach you” will surely be handled by more established names, and the slow and sensual, ”Far away from me” is also far beyond standard...this is probably the only Swedish country album we need to care about this year.
Patrik Forshage, Nöjesguiden ( Biggest entertainment magazine)
“Country without a cowboy hat” said the press release for Lisen Elwin's debut album. I think that means that she’s far from the second rate country style where artists think it’s enough with a hat, a pair of boots and lots of spangles. With a background in the delicious and sadly ignored Swedish rock band Pushtwangers things are quite different for her now. Her love for the alternative country that is played far beyond the tourist traps gay and sticky fasades, was born on a her own trip to Nashville.” Coming Home” is a product of an artist who has found a healthy and creative approach to her favorite music style. ”Coming Home” is built of 12 high quality songs, which reveal a singer and songwriter with soul. She’s extremely hard to ignore once you’ve met her.
Björn Bostrand, Länstidningen Östersund (Daily magazine)
Recipe for a hip female pop country - cake: Four deciliter Shaw Colvin-flour, two Emmylou Harris eggs, I deciliter Lucinda Williams sugar, stir and decorate with some Joni Mitchell blueberries, and put in the oven in Nashville July temperature about 45 min. …
This is a good album and the obvious influences can perhaps be seen as small tributes. Especially Shawn Colvin seems to have made deep inprints in Lisens songwriting. Some of her songs are written together with professional songwriters in Nashville, but I think that Lisen Elwin does very good by herself as well. ”Falling Into You” with Richard Lindgren, is one of the most beautiful Swedish duet of recent years...
Erik Suss, Arbetarbladet (Daily magazine)
Lisen Elwin is an experienced singer and songwriter and now it’s time for her to debut with her own album. Her intimate and melancholy art of country music is attractive and beautiful, with songs written by herself and co-writers in Nashville.
Together with musicians such as Christer Bergman and Mats Gaffa Karlsson she has achieved a very strong debut in ”Coming Home”. …
Elwin and her musicians offer a low-key and melancholy country, far away from the cheerful country pop that is often at the top of the lists. This is an intimate, personal album with Elwin’s songs and her beautiful voice. Twelve songs with variety and real content are what you get on this beautiful debut, where Elwin shows that she definitely belongs to the genre. Both as a singer and songwriter she has great qualities and with tasteful arrangements and a band of highest class it’s an impressive debut in ”Coming Home”.
Thomas Fridholm, Mi, musikindustrin (Music magazine)
This is very good! Sensational!
Sensational because Lisen Elwin’s country is of a kind that I hardly though was made today. At least not by a Swedish debutant. It’s about ”cosmic American music” in Gram Parson’s spirit and it’s obvious that Lisen Elwin has listened a lot to Emmylou Harris. But she’s definitely not a plagiarist. Her country is strongly colored by Nordic melancholy making it very special, and at the same time you get a feeling of listening to some forgotten country classic from the beginning of the seventies.
Maybe you have already heard the single ”Early Morning Sun” on the radio. Remember that there are 11 more songs of the same high quality.
Lars Davidsson, Smålänningen (Daily magazine)
MELANCHOLY SWEDISH COUNTRY
Already when the single ”Early Morning sun” came in the beginning of the summer people reacted and began waiting for the album. Here was a debutant far from the ordinary. Now, with the arrival of the album, “Coming Home”, by the Swedish artist Lisen Elwin, there’s nothing to do but surrender to the power in her songs.
The references to this alternative country are several. Perhaps the comparison is not right but surely Elwin's art of singer/songwriting would speak to admirers of Alison Moorer or Rosanne Cash’s latest work.
With countryfiddle on some songs and steelguitar on others, it is a very tasteful band supporting these melancholy songs, which, according to Elwin, are well-suited to the Nordic mind.
Anyway there’s a link to Nashville. When Lisen visited the Mecca of country it was not to check out cowboys with broad hats. Instead she found another Nashville far from the tourists traps: a meeting point for gifted singer/songwriters. Her cooperation with some of these acquantesies is also heard on the album. But that’s not important for the listener. More important is that Sweden now has got a really good alternative country artist.
Roland Turesson, Hallandsposten (Daily magazine)
Alternative country from Sweden has in recent years been almost exclusively about tragic young men with a guitars. Lisen Elwin’s coming home is a fresh addition in a genre that has stagnated.
Twelve beautiful songs where the absolutely most important instrument is Lisen's voice. A voice that often reminds of Sara Isaksson in its calm and naturalness. …
This is a good country album, which is unbelievable considering that it is Swedish, but the competition in the country arena is perhaps harder than any other genre.
Erik Nyholm, Dalademokraten (Daily magazine)
Coming Home is for Lisen Elwin a pretty long journey from garage rock in the Pushtwangers through cover bands and her own band The Desertboys to Nashville, Tennessee. Idols like Lucinda Williams and Emmylou Harris have inspired the writing and even if Lisen has done half of the tracks together with other singer/songwriters her own work like the fine single “Early morning sun”, is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Like her idols, Lisen Elwin lands in what she calls alternative folk-country. More rock and down to the earth, far from horse jazz, but with a country vibrato and a strong dose of melancholy in the singing. And she succeeds surprisingly well.
Norrländska Socialdemokraten (Daily magazine)
We talk about country with a lot of heart and pain…it’s really good and she is on the right side all the time. She’s never pathetic or an imitator. Lisen Elwin who’s a part of the Stockholm-based network Lilith Eve, is worth a chance. She is such a sharp singer and songwriter.
Lisen Elwin belongs to the crowd of female artists with feeling and substance where the singing is in focus. Her soprano voice cuts through everything and leave nobody unmoved.
Bengt Valentinsson, Gotlandtidningar (Daily magazine)