Lighthouse Sweden
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Lighthouse Sweden

Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Duo Americana Rock





LIGHTHOUSE Moody Maracas (CD)*****

A Swedish duo, Lighthouse has plenty of Scandinavian angst, while the mood, accents and sound are solid Americana with elements of ’70s rock. Take the strong opener, “Passing Me By” on a crumbling relationship. It could almost step off Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” as golden soprano Linda Brandemark trades lines back and forth with gritty-toned Mats Brandemark
They’ve got a knack for hooks. Take the fusion of optimism and sad wisdom of “The darkness hides behind the sun. It’s up to you,” that could well fit Marianne Faithfull. The finale, “Memories,” shows that (like big Mac did on side 1 of the “Rumours” LP) they know how to ease a collection down to its close. And when a single line on “As Good as It Gets” goes from Barcelona to New Hampshire, we realize how global rock has become. - Bruce Sylvester


Linda (vocals and acoustic guitar) and Mats Brandemark (vocals, acoustic, and electric guitar) are both veterans of the music scene. Linda has released four solo albums under the last name Malmstrom and Mats has been a member of three bands during his career. They have now formed a duo named Lighthouse and have just released their self-titled debut album.

What is interesting about the duo is they are Swedish but produce a very American sound that straddles the line between Americana and rock & roll.

While they are a duo, they produce a full band sound. A number of instruments and artists move in and out of their music but the constant is multi-instrumentalist Johan von Feilitzen, who fills in a lot of the gaps.

Despite their country of birth, they are in many ways American songwriters. The lyrics tell stories of their thoughts, philosophy, and experiences. The music is both melodic and well-constructed.

They wisely mix up the tempos and the styles. “Passing Me By” moves in a country direction due to Martin Hogvall’s lap steel guitar. “Struck By Lightning” travels in a different direction with some strings and a sax as accompaniment. “Queen Of Hearts” is an enchanting tale whose lyrics would fit a beer hall.

Lighthouse has released a sophisticated and enjoyable debut album. One can only hope it will lead to more of the same in the future. - David Bowling


If you listened to the self-titled debut recording from Lighthouse with no prior knowledge of the band and without consulting the liner notes, you would almost swear that you were listening to a great new Americana band, probably from the heartland of America. However, Lighthouse is actually a collaboration between Mats and Linda Brandemark, two of Sweden’s finest roots artists.

Lighthouse offers 11 outstanding tracks that mix pop, rock, and Americana seamlessly. Among the standouts are “Passing Me By,” which benefits greatly the shared lead vocals of the Brandemarks, and from Martin Högvall’s lap steel guitar, the lovely “Darkness (Hides Behind the Sun),” the “road” song “No U-Turn,” and the melancholy “Queen of Hearts.”

The Brandemarks are both excellent vocalists and sound great together. Musicians include Johan von Feilitzen (electric guitar, keyboards, drums, backing vocals), Rolf Viberg (bass), Marc Gransten (bass), Dirk Reidstra (tenor sax), Gunnar Hofverberg (mandolin), Magnus Larsson (lap steel), Pelle Henricsson (drums), Peter Lindberg (pedal steel), and Thomas Ohlsson (drums). They really capture the essence of this style of music.

Lighthouse is as good an album of roots and Americana music as I’ve heard this year. Even though the performers live thousands of miles away, they have a firmer grasp of the genre as many of the artists from the country of its origin. - Graham Clarke - Published: September, 2014


And finally for today, we’re off to Sweden, to listen to an Americana duo. You know it makes sense. Although this is the debut album from Lighthouse, the folks concerned – Mats & Linda Brandemark – have plenty of form.

They’ve been involved in outfits like Big Road and Red Valley Band, but this release sees them trying to straddle the worlds of country and contemporary pop, with an Americana swing. And some of it works very well.

When they whip out the mandolins, lap steel, banjo and pedal steel, and get their twang on, then it’s an enjoyable listen. And there are some good songs in there as well. The best of them include ‘Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)’ and ‘Queen of Hearts’, and with some excellent vocals and musical performances, this might be the one to get them some well deserved attention. - Stuart Hamilton - Published: September 4, 2014


“Americans from Sweden …”

Linda (vocals, acoustic guitar) and her husband Mats Brandemark (vocals, acoustic & electric guitar) are from Uppsala, SE. Both are music veterans. Linda writes songs and released on her own four albums. Mats already played in three bands. Currently, they form the duo “Lighthouse”. Linda Brandemark (born: Malmström) writes songs and has been performing since the early 90s. Her music is a mix of folk, country and pop. In 1998 she released her first album “First Attempt”. Her fourth album “Shine On” was released on her own label in 2008: Moody Maraccas. Linda studied music in Canada, toured with a jazz choir, with a Kurdish folk band and has performed in Sweden, France, Germany and Canada. Besides her solo work Linda also occurs with the band “Mama Earth” (2002: “One Mother, One Earth”) and as a trio with the “Dragon Dolls”, with whom she released two EPs. Mats Brandemark already toured extensively in Sweden and recorded a few albums with “Big Road”, “Mobben” and “Fools & Friends”. Mats also toured in the USA, the Netherlands and Germany. Linda’s & Mats collaboration started in 2003, when they re-wrote a song to show at Katalin in Uppsala, where they both performed. Them as duo by singing the song “Steal Him Away” (written by Linda), it was clear that their voices fit perfectly together. In 2004 Linda and Mats begin in Sweden as a duo act and toured in Germany. In 2010 came the idea to start a joint band. The arrival of two children was making a debut album delayed. In 2014 “Lighthouse” played their first shows and they released a self-titled debut album in April.

Their sound balances on a line between Americana and R & R. Album tracks: 1 “Passing Me By” – 2 “As Good As It Gets” – 3 “Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)” – 4 “Stuck By Lightning” – 5 “No U-Turn” – 6 “Queen Of Hearts “- 7″ Inside Out “- 8″ Take Me Back “- 9″ Got To Run Free “- 10″ Love Ride “- 11″ Memories “- All songs written by Linda Brandemark, Mats Brandemark & Gunnar Hofverberg. A long line of artists collaborated on the album, which revolves around the essential sound and ideas of the duo. The constant that holds everything together and the musical gaps supplements is multi-instrumentalist and friend Johan von Feilitzen. The album features eleven tracks all written by Linda and Mats with Gunnar Hofverberg. They mix very smart tempos and styles, making the whole remain very entertaining and varied. On the tracks they sing both solo and together and it is clear that they can get.

The first opener “Passing Me By” is the first of the country colored tracks that steel guitar from Martin Högvall and the vocals of Linda the right sound meekrijgen by the rag. Cool 2 “As Good As It Gets” rocks rigid and sturdy, and let us know the voice of Mats and guitar Feilitzen. 3 “Darkness (Hides Behind The Sun)” and 7 “Inside Out” are poppy, but also melodically by the vocal harmonies of both. With 4 “Stuck By Lightning” and 8 “Take Me Back” neighborhoods Linda and Mats from what we could hear before. Dirk Riedstra on sax and Johan von Feilitzen (string) here are their partners in this emerging mood. In 6 “Queen Of Hearts” Linda brings an enchanting ballad. 9 “Got To Run Free” for Linda a vocal country escapade while Mats solo himself on guitar. We finish with 10 “Loveride” and 11 “Memories”. 10 “Love Ride” is a solid rocking Americana (Where have you been, lover boy?) while the real valve 11 “Memories” is the only song where Feilitzen is not heard on electric guitar. Tobias Bergström here is the guitarist, Peter Lindberg plays pedal steel, mandolin by Gunnar Hofverberg.

Linda, yes Linda Linda is country … Memories, (delicious) memories! With philosophising stories about experiences and moods brings “Lighthouse” on their debut a collection of melodic and well-constructed music. Even though both from Sweden, their music and songwriting sounds American. The self-titled debut of “Lighthouse” is an enjoyable and varied album that makes you look forward to a sequel. - Eric Schuurmans - Published: September 1, 2014


Lighthouse (2014)

Silence in the City (unreleased - will release Fall/Winter 2016)



Lighthouse is the story of the Doctor and the Drifter, Mats and Linda, who met, married and made music.  If you listen for it, there’s a sense of longing, perhaps because the music was made so far away from the place that inspired it. Their songs would be good companions to anyone travelling the roads meandering through the rolling hills of Tennessee, passing the quiet towns and silent cities at night. And then onwards…

This band from Sweden creates a dynamic blend between Classic Americana and Contemporary Rock. Since the release of their debut album in April 2014, all eleven tracks on the album have been played on the radio in Europe, North America and/or Australia! The album has also been celebrated by plenty of music critics and bloggers around the world.

 Critical Commentary on Lighthouse’s Debut Album:

Lighthouse is as good an album of roots and Americana music as I’ve heard this year.” (Blues Bytes, USA)  

The record does not contain a single weak track, so listening to the music created by the Brandemark couple it is an uninterrupted pleasure.” (Rootsy, SWE)

 “The duo’s blend of foot-stomping Americana, country music and melancholy pop will make your mouth water.” (Joyzine, SWE)  

They've got a knack for hooks.” (The Rocker, UK)


Band Members