Walking down Torstrasse on a cold Wednesday night to find Schokoladen bar in Mitte, I wasn’t really sure what to expect of Johanna Amelie.
I had heard a tiny bit of her and her band’s music, and had been given second-hand information that they were from Iceland via Berlin. What did i know about Icelandic music apart from Bjork and Sigur Ros? Were they going to be another female-fronted Reykavik band, just like Of Monsters and Men?
The support was playing as we stepped inside the dark bar dominated by tones of red, with a curly-haired girl swinging her hips to a relaxed and mixed crowd.
We grabbed a beer, sat down and not long after, Johanna Amelie began to play. As a few extras tried to push into the tiny bar (which I was excited to have discovered by the way), from behind I was gently into a middle aged lady weilding a glass of hot tea with a saucer. That whole scenario sums up this gig to a tea (no pun intended); intimate, relaxed and cosy.
Johanna had an amazing voice, sounding a bit like a mix between Jewel and another female singer from the 90s whose name I couldn’t quite put my finger on. She would switch between her guitar and her Korg
effortlessly, with me finding myself having not even noticed because I was genuinely intrigued by her voice. The drummer and bass player also swapped their instruments with each other, showing you the diversity of these guys as musiciains. Unfortunately my Deutsche ist sehr schlecht, so I couldnt understand what she was saying in between songs.
The overall feel was super chill, making me wish I lived just up the road, and not a half hour ubahn ride away; I was so relaxed afterwards, and stoked I made the effort to go.