Tobias Fröberg Biography
U pon exiting education, he still made music wait. Froberg earned a better living from writing for books, magazines and newspapers, working for two years as a columnist for Scandinavia’s largest newspaper, Aftonbladet. He told friends that should he interview Ingmar Bergman and Neil Young his work in magazines would be done and he would then and only then focus solely on music. Fate works in strange and mysterious ways, especially in Sweden. Bergman agreed to a series of rare interviews with Froberg for a book about the filmmaker’s life on Gotland. The day of the final interview, Froberg went to Stockholm to see Neil Young perform, spying two living legends on the same day. Froberg didn’t interview Neil Young, but close enough for horseshoes was close enough for Froberg. He packed his studio equipment and in the summer of 2003 went to his parents’ summer cottage to begin his new life. One of Froberg’s best friends, producer Linus Larsson (Nicolai Dunger, Mercury Rev, Ed Harcourt) asked to play drums and failed to alert his parents that he would be on sabbatical with young Tobias. The police were called to find the young truant. No one was harmed. In the end, one of the songs from the sessions ended up on Froberg’s first album, “Elisabeth Wherever She Is,” which was nominated for a 2004 Swedish Indie Grammy. Froberg has made it look easy. He toured with friends and fellow deserving talents Jose Gonzalez, Teitur, who plays piano and background vocals on “For Elisabeth Wherever You Are”, and Ane Brun, who duets on “Love and Misery,” which can also be found on Brun’s aptly-titled platinum selling “Duets” album. Larsson co-produced and co-played the instruments throughout “Somewhere in the City.”
W hile “sounds like Nick Drake” has come to represent just about anyone who doesn’t sound like Megadeth. it wouldn’t be unusual if you heard the stirrings of Paul Simon, Tim Hardin, Nina Simone or even Ron Sexsmith in the works of Tobias Froberg. Former Creation Records, now Poptones music guru Alan McGee dubbed Tobias in a moment of rare understatement, “the next Scandinavian Superstar.” W hether it’s the haunting duet recorded in Froberg’s apartment, “Love and Misery” with Ane Brun, where the gentlest of notes and the simplest of phrases join together to cast a mesmerizing, forlorn spell or the Simon & Garfunkel harmony-led melody of “God’s Highway,” it’s no wonder the critical accolades keep streaming in. The album is strewn with treasures, some obvious, some hidden. There’s the shimmering slapback vocal delay of “The Features of a Human Face,” the way Froberg’s voice shakes as he sings “I know the words you want to hear / But I don’t know what to say.” There’s the unapologetic romanticism of “Oh My Love (Here She Comes Again)” accompanied by Froberg’s mini-moog and the disarming optimism of “Thank You.” It’s an album of great contemplation. Listen and hear if you agree. For more information please contact Matthew Libman at Cheap Lullaby Records.