Sweet Annie
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Sweet Annie

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Adult Contemporary

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Label : Independent | Year : 2008
Sub Genre: Alternative
Standout Tracks: The Sun Will Shine Again, Little Boy
Website: www.sweetanniemusic.com
EPK: www.sonicbids.com/SweetAnnie

Sweet Annie. Oh Sweet Annie... Calming melodies accompany Annie's simple yet enthralling voice that warm the heart and carry the soul with sweet tranquility.

With light flavors of Sade and Dido, Annie tears at the core of our very being with an overt essence of love and genuine emotion. Truly honeyed without passing the point of being overly saccharine, Annie blends a musical style that is at times, upbeat and poignant while managing to maintain a reassuring and consistent vibe that is sure to alleviate the trials and tribulations of our lives.

Sweet Annie has recently come out of the studio where she has been recording her debut EP which was released in February 2008. The sometimes bittersweet and melancholic songs are all originals, exploring the subjects of love, loss and life's challenges. Sweet Annie uses both programming and traditionally recorded instruments to support her haunting and emotional vocals.

Songs from the EP can currently be heard on Underworld Mix Radio, Cosmic Dimensions, Radio Electric and Banana Peel Radio. - www.catsask.com


By BRIAN DARNELL
Staff Writer

Sweet Annie is the creation of Norwegian singer/songwriter Hilde Klain. In February 2008, she released a four track demo tape of original music. Drawing on Klain’s own eclectic tastes, Sweet Annie offers a unique and refreshing approach to vocal and musical performance. I recently had the privilege of listening to it.

What struck me immediately about the short album was its obvious sincerity. Sweet Annie uses instrumentation sparingly but effectively to accentuate her beautiful, haunting vocals. The simplicity in her arrangements evoke a sense of intimacy. The listener is drawn into Klain’s circle and as a part of it, is privy to her most personal secrets. The four songs on the EP are: “Little Boy”, “The Sun Will Shine Again”, “Take Me Home” and “On and On”.

I liked the song “Little Boy” from the very first listen. It begins with a simple acoustic guitar plucking as the vocalist softly sings along and like a light rainfall, a piano accompanies. The absence of a strong percussive element never leaves the listener wanting as the use of vocals, guitar and piano create a lush atmosphere as the song builds to its climax. It is simply a beautiful track.

Likewise, “The Sun Will Shine Again” and “On and On” are spartan in their presentations. There is no conceit, the songs simply offer themselves honestly and as such are easily appreciable. “Take Me Home” is clearly a departure from the other tracks. It is much more up-tempo and includes the use of more modern musical techniques. The inclusion of non-traditional instruments, programming, and loops give it a much more electronic flair. It serves to show Klain’s versatility and her ability to blend her melancholic vocal style into songs that are more mainstream.

Sweet Annie never suffers from that over-produced, generic sound that seems so prevalent with modern music. It conveys such a sense of sweetness and lightness that is instantly soothing. Easy-listening, jazz, rock, electronica are all monikers that are appropriate.

Regardless of the label one chooses; if you enjoy beautiful, evocative, thoughtfully-written music, give Sweet Annie a try. - http://www.soundline.ca/rvw_sweetannie.html


Sweet Annie is singer/songwriter Hilde Klain. Born in Norway, much of her youth was spent singing and playing keyboards. Since then she has lived in Australia and has now settled in California. Fittingly, the imaginatively-titled ‘Sweet Annie EP’ presents both European and American influences on a concise but varied EP.

‘Little Boy’ is a fairly humdrum electronica piece and not the most arresting way to start a four-track EP. Klain even sounds slightly disinterested as she sings. Much better is another electronic offering named ‘Take Me Home’ where some relaxed, jazzy verses give way to excitable pop for the chorus. Bizarrely, Sweet Annie actually gets more interesting the more mainstream her music becomes. ‘The Sun Will Shine Again’ gives 1980’s soul a good name thanks to a heartfelt vocal and a simple, romantic piano-driven melody. There is a whiff of Eurovision about the song but then Klain is an Abba fan after all. That just leaves ‘On & On’ and it’s another decent showcase for Klain’s jazzy vocals.

Although her EP doesn’t get off to a great start, I enjoyed the music overall. Klain has a distinctive voice which features endearing hints of her Scandinavian origins. Stylistically there isn’t much that’s new but Klain does show a welcome eclecticism which offers a number of options for the direction she wants to take next.

Further Listening:
Zero 7, Shaheen - Leonard's Lair


By Dan MacIntosh

Sweet Annie, the four-song, self-titled solo EP from Norwegian singer/songwriter Hilde Klain, combines sound songwriting instincts with tasteful electronic musical elements.

If these four songs are any indication of Klain’s state of mind, she is most certainly an extremely positive person. For instance, "Little Boy" expresses empathy for an apparently suicidal male. On it she sings, "You wish you were dead." Her use of the term "little boy" may also suggest that Klain feels this male's behavior is a wee bit on the childish side. Listeners may also wonder if "The Sun Will Shine Again," the very next track, is aimed at this same boyish individual. It is a hopeful ballad, driven by piano, which acts as reminder that -- even after a seemingly endless string of rainy days -- the sun will eventually shine again. "On & On," the disc’s closer, includes the following likeminded refrain: "On and on, a new day will come." These three examples make it obvious that Klain is a glass half full kinda gal.

The oddest track on the disc is "Take Me Home," which has a beat that borders on disco. There’s also funky electric guitar part and a sonic that switches back and forth between soft verses and dance-y choruses. Yet even this dance-y one looks on the bright side of life, with grateful lines like, "Green grass underneath my feet, what a simple life."

Klain has been known to perform traditional folk songs and hymns, as well as more contemporary music. But it’s easy to imagine her singing spiritual songs; especially due to the hope saturating these four songs. Her influences include Miriam Makeeba, Joni Mitchell, and ABBA, which is an eclectic mix, indeed. But for the most part, this disc steers clear of any production adventurousness, in order to better serve the needs of its straightforward songs.

"I’m here to prove to you that all is well," is a line that particularly stands out on "The Sun Will Shine Again." It sums up Klain’s ultimate aim for this project, I believe. We all know how easy it is to get hung up on life’s dark side, and Lord knows there’s more than enough darkness to go around. Thank goodness, however, Klain is here to remind us that spring always follows winter, and that no matter how cold the winter becomes, warmer weather always arrives eventually. So whether you’re suicidal, like the character in "Little Boy," or just a little down in the dumps, Sweet Annie is almost certain to cheer you up. - indie-music.com


Sweet Annie is Norwegian singer/songwriter Hilde Klain. Not sure where the connect point between the two names is, but after listening to this four-song EP, I have to say, ‘who cares.’ A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, and Sweet Annie’s melancholy tinges vocals are sweet indeed.

Although the songs are primarily piano-based ballads, there is evident electronica and world music influences in Sweet Annie’s music. Not surprising considering Ms. Klain hails from Norway and spent considerable time in Australia prior to invading Los Angeles to pursue her songstress career.

The project opens with a meandering, acoustic guitar heavy torch song called “Little Boy,” in which Ms. Klain assumes the role of temptress or instructor in the ways of life, depending on your point of view. She seems to truly hit her stride on the gentle piano ballad, “The Sun Will Shine Again.” Treading musical ground pioneered by Karen Carpenter and Carol King, Ms. Klain’s yearning vocals make the heart swell along with the music.

Sweet Annie’s pop/electronica proclivities take center stage on “Take Me Home,” although she never lets it get out of hand. The EP closes with on an encouraging World Music note with “On & On.”

Sweet Annie displays exceptional potential on this abbreviated project making us eager for the full length followup. For more about Sweet Annie check out her website, www.sweetanniemusic.com .

Written by Mike Parker - www.buddyhollywood.com


Discography

Sweet Annie EP

Photos

Bio

From Norway, via Sydney, Australia, Sweet Annie is now a Los Angeles based solo artist whose project saw its beginnings in early 2006. With an unusual sincerity and intimacy, her debut EP is showcasing Sweet Annie’s beautiful, haunting vocals accompanied with simple, yet effectively used instrumentation.

Growing up in Norway, Sweet Annie honed her musical skills by singing in choirs, and learning to play keyboards at an early age. She had many opportunities for live performances, but did not start considering music as a career choice until she moved to Australia. “Initially, I didn’t think of pursuing music as a career, but while I was in Sydney I experienced some personal tragedies that eventually steered me back on the music path,” Sweet Annie explains. “I realized it was my first love, and decided I needed to take the plunge and just go for it”.

After this, it didn’t take long before Sweet Annie found the inspiration to start writing songs, and finally decided to move to Los Angeles to study and further develop her craft. A few years later, after having put together her live band and playing shows around the city, Sweet Annie teamed up with producer Appu Krishnan, and started working on her debut EP, which was released in early 2008. “I developed a love for jazz while living in Sydney, but also wanted to incorporate cool, electronic elements into the songs. The most important thing for me, though, was to promote the honesty behind each song, without “drowning” the songs in overpowering production,” Sweet Annie recalls. The result is a melancholic, yet sweet, downtempo collection of songs that speaks to the heart and seeks to uplift the soul.

After its release, the album has garnered considerable radioplay and web exposure. “I’m excited to start a new chapter in my career”, Sweet Annie delights, and is setting her sights on a full-length follow-up to her EP, with more live performances to support it. In the meantime, pick up a copy of her selftitled EP at cdbaby.com or iTunes.