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The Story of The Knife
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The second single from the album “Marble House” was a song that featured Swedish electro singer Jay-Jay Johanson, who wrote his part of the song. A very chilling electro ballad. In May 2006 The Knife inked a licence deal with Mute in the US and during the year all three of their albums were released. The “Hannah Med H”-soundtrack hasn’t been released there yet. At this time The Knife also released their third single “We Share Our Mother’s Health” in Sweden, with a release in Europe a few months later.

The Knife returned to touring in the summer playing on some festivals in Europe, for example Öya in Norway, Arvika in Sweden (their first outdoor performance), Sonar in Spain and Pukkelpop in Belgium. In September the last single from “Silent Shout” was released, “Like a Pen”, it was released in Europe and the US in October. There was one third and final part of the “Silent Shout: An Audiovisual Experience”-tour done in October and early November where they visited Europe once more and also made four concerts in the US (two in New York and two in California) before going back to home.

When 2006 had ended and it was time to summarize it nearly all the big magazines in both Sweden and the rest of the world’s music critics and magazines mentioned The Knife and their “Silent Shout”-CD. The Internet based music website Pitchfork Media even had The Knife as the number one best album of 2006.

During the 2006 Swedish Grammy awards in January 2007, The Knife had six nominees (album, artist, composer, music-DVD, producer and pop group) and won all of them. Thus setting a new record in Grammy prizes won in one year. They did not attend the award show, but instead sent video messages that featured various people, for example two older women in one and a young boy with a distorted face in another. This show that was seen by a large number of people made many, who never had heard of them, interested in their music which made the “Silent Shout”-CD return to the charts the next week, then totalling the album’s time on the chart to 24 weeks.

Later in the beginning of 2007 it was made official that The Knife would provide financial help to the CD-mastering of a project involving female prisoners in the Swedish city of Ystad who were working on releasing a single.

Their UK label and Mute in the US issued a re-released “Silent Shout” in a deluxe package in 2007. It featured the original album, the DVD “Silent Shout: An Audiovisual Experience” and a live-CD version of the DVD-show in Gothenburg.

During 2008 the duo has worked on alone on different collaborations. Karin provided vocals to a song with Belgian band dEUS. Olof made a instrumental song for the Swedish radio show Ström i P2's musical project "Music for alien civilasations". Olof's track was called "Al Jazeera".

2009 was the debut of Karin's solo project Fever Ray, along with an opera that The Knife wrote music and libretto for. It was named "Tomorrow in a Year", and was released in 2010. Fever Ray's self-titled record got high on many critics' 'Best of'-list for 2009. The Fever Ray-project also did many sold-out shows throughout Europe and the US.

In 2013 The Knife were back with their most massive work up to date, "Shaking the Habitual" was out-of-this-world and the colourful live performances that followed through sold-out venues all over Europe. They will perform in North America in 2014.

The Knife is a very special duo that does what they please with their music. By making music on their own label and then licensing the music to a selected few labels around the world (right now Brille in the U.K., Mute in the US, V2/Coop in Europe and etc etc in Australia), they make their music how they want and when they want to do it without having to answer to anyone else but themselves.

Craig McLean was right when he wrote: The Knife don’t do anything by half, and they don’t do anything twice. Compromise is the enemy, repetition a cop-out. What has the future in store for The Knife? Nobody knows. But they themselves.


written by Craig McLean    Interview done by Christoffer Kittel   by Arye Dworken  

Darling magazine #59/03  written by Therese Svensson

Sydsvenskan 27th March 2006
 written by Jonas Grönlund

All photos used by permission from The Knife and Rabid records. Photos taken by Elin Berge.