The Swedish sister duo First Aid Kit call their records “a documentation of time.”
Johanna and Klara Söderberg are sharing their journey on their latest album, “Palomino.” They stop at the Hollywood Palladium on Tuesday, May 16.
“We don’t like to sit down and go, ‘Let’s make a concept record,’” Klara said. “It ends up being whatever the songs are that we want to write. I think ‘Palomino’ fits well in the catalog, but it also feels new to us as well. We challenged ourselves, productionwise. We had a lot of rules in the past, and this time we didn’t.”
Johanna said, however, they wanted no pedal steel guitar on this record and instead incorporated synth.
“We were open to using sounds that we would have, in the past, thought didn’t fit into our sound,” Klara added. “Anything sort of ’80s we were against. Now it was the opposite. We thought we would try everything and not have preconceived notions — except for no pedal steel.”
“Now we miss it,” Johanna chimed in with a laugh.
For the record, they worked with producer/songwriter and fellow Swede Daniel Bengston, whom Klara called an “incredibly enthusiastic person and producer.”
“I would say the process was, in one word, joyful.”
However, Johanna is quick to add, the path to making the record was not so much.
“We had a break from making music for a while,” Johanna said, referring to the pandemic. “It was a bit of a life crisis for both of us. I think that’s why it was so important that the recording process was a celebration of making music again.
“Daniel is the most enthusiastic person I’ve met in my entire life. We needed that energy. Klara was burned out. I had a kid. We needed this to be a positive experience.”
Johanna described Bengston as a “one-man band” who played on most of the songs and contributed “a million ideas” to “Palomino.”
“He really made the songs what they are,” she added. “He was such an important part of the record. We were kind of scared. For the previous records, we went to America. We needed that — to go somewhere far away. It became a sacred thing to us. This time, we didn’t know who to work with. Then we found this person who also appreciates Americana and this genre we’re in right around the corner.”
The show marks the first time First Aid Kit has been in the United States in five years. Klara said they have plenty of friends in LA, so they feel at home here.
After the U.S. jaunt, they’ll head to Europe to play festivals. The fall is up in the air.
“We want to do more shows,” Johanna said. “We’re dying to play. It’s been so fun after this long break. We feel like we’ve never appreciated it more. The American crowd is the best crowd in the world. I truly love it.”
First Aid Kit
WHEN: 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 16
WHERE: Hollywood Palladium, 6215 Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood
COST: Tickets start at $45