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Europe Issue: From Small Town to Big Sound – We Walk on Ice and their Unique East End Indie Sound

Submitted by on November 24, 2011 – 1:59 amNo Comment
photos by Ben Rowe - www.benrowephotography.com

The band, We Walk on Ice.

When We Walk on Ice start playing their captivating tight sound, it is hard to believe that only two souls are creating it.

Their unique Indie sound reminds me of at least two bands that I love: Cocteau Twins and Mazzy Star.  We Walk on Ice have a similar ethereal feel to their songs which is then punctuated by experimental jagged guitar riffs that pull you back into this plane.

It was a hot 29-degree Sunday night and I went to watch their gig at Hoxton Bar and Kitchen.  I walked into a sea of sound as Swedish singer Ida Jacobson tamed the ebb and flow on lead guitar with her high and powerful voice rising up to the ceiling. Brazilian drummer Lincoln Trevisani’s drumsticks hit down hard, with his heavy focused beats like consecutive crashing tidal waves. Strobe lights flashed across their intense faces, which were full of concentration.  The audience was mesmerised and fixated on the pair who were with us and yet seemed to co-exist in a comfortable reality where mindfulness was the law.

The band formed two and a half years ago, when, as Jacobson  jokingly said, “I enticed Lincoln into my web” to be a part of the project. From that moment they have never looked back – moving forward with a DIY spirit that is quite hard to find these days.  With 30 years of music experience between them, We Walk on Ice are a hardworking band, playing gigs at least twice a month and making music for the love, appreciation and respect of it – not just to look good. Hallelujah!

I had always wondered about the name of the band and Jacobson said: “That’s related to the lake where I am from [the town of Östersund] in winter time people hang out on the ice it is quite essential you can drive on it, bring some coffee, take a walk and sunbathe on it. It’s kind of what we do where I am from.” Jacobson composes all her own lyrics: “dark fairytales” and dreamy stories about love, life and loss.  Yet most of the inspiration comes from a nostalgic source, the lake and a very interesting tale connected to it:  “I am very influenced by water; there are loads of songs about it. Where my town is situated, there is a sea… a lake monster like in Loch Ness [her father once spotted it].  We have a song called The Beast which I wrote about the monster.”

The band does some covers, adding their own changes to songs. There is a great take on the 1961 song Runaway by Del Shannon and they reinterpret songs by groups like The Smiths. The inspiration for their sound ranges from Jacobson’s love of Hole and War Paint to them both liking Smashing Pumpkins. But then Trevisani told me something that explained the exceptionally strong, heavy beats that he inflicts upon the drums. Being the youngest in the family he was influenced by his three muso brothers, when growing up in the town of Londrina, and later by other bands he worked with in London, Trevisani said: “I used to play in a metal band so I am really into Sepultura and Slayer.” In response to the question whether this has been an influence on his drumming, Trevisani said: “I can’t shake the heaviness and it’s annoying. I really want to play it quieter but it’s just gnununnnnnnuh!” He added:  “But I also love Queen, Creedence Clearwater Revival. These days, I don’t listen to Metal as much.  Every once in a while [though] I go back and listen to some old album or some new band. Now I mostly listen to electronic stuff and because of Ida’s musical influence to 1950’s stuff.”

Last week, We Walk on Ice had their track Sea Sick played on Gary Crowley’s show on BBC London radio – see below for the video.  Early next year, they will be releasing a 7” single on vinyl which is something to look out for on the not too distant horizon.

We Walk on Ice – Sea Sick

We Walk on Ice | Myspace Music Videos
http://www.myspace.com/video/vid/107319563

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