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Karin Dreijer

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Karin Dreijer
Fever Ray.jpg
Dreijer performing as Fever Ray in October 2009
Background information
Birth nameKarin Elisabeth Dreijer
Also known asFever Ray
Born (1975-04-07) 7 April 1975 (age 44)
Gothenburg, Sweden
  • Singer-songwriter
  • record producer
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • keyboards
Years active1994–present
Associated acts

Karin Elisabeth Dreijer (born 7 April 1975) is a Swedish singer-songwriter and record producer. Dreijer was one half of the electronic music duo the Knife, formed with their brother Olof Dreijer. They were previously the vocalist and guitarist of the alternative rock band Honey Is Cool. Dreijer released their debut solo album under the alias Fever Ray in January 2009. Their second studio album, Plunge, under the same alias, was released in October 2017.

Dreijer's vocal style is notable for both shrill and deep tones, and also the use of multitracked vocals, with different uses of pitch-shifting technology on each track, creating an intricate and mysterious effect. Visually, they employ the use of masks, face and body paint, intricate costumes, and other theatrical elements in photo shoots, videos and live performances, during which they often perform behind a gauze screen that partially obscures the audience's view.[1]

Early life[edit]

Dreijer was born on 7 April 1975 in Gothenburg, Sweden.[2][3] They started playing guitar at the age of ten, which led them to found the band Honey Is Cool. Before pursuing a career in music, Dreijer worked as a web designer.[4] In 1998, they moved to Stockholm.[3]


The Knife[edit]

Karin and their brother Olof Dreijer formed the electronic music duo The Knife in Gothenburg in 1999.[5][6] The Knife released their eponymous debut album in 2001. The duo gained a wider international recognition following the release of "Heartbeats", the lead single of their second studio album, Deep Cuts (2003). The duo performed live for the first time in 2006, when they went on the Silent Shout Tour in support of their universally acclaimed third album of the same name (2006). In 2009, the duo were commissioned alongside Mt. Sims and Planningtorock by the Danish performance group Hotel Pro Forma to compose an opera, titled Tomorrow, in a Year, which is based on Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species.[7] In 2013, the band released their fourth and final studio album, Shaking the Habitual, to universal acclaim. The duo disbanded in November 2014, after completing the Shaking the Habitual Tour.

Solo work[edit]

While The Knife were on hiatus, Dreijer released, under the alias Fever Ray, their self-titled solo debut album. It was released digitally on 12 January 2009 and physically on 18 March 2009 through Rabid Records to universal acclaim.[8] The album was preceded by its lead single "If I Had a Heart" (2008), which was used in numerous television series, including Person of Interest, Breaking Bad and Wentworth, as well as the opening theme song for the Canadian-Irish historical drama television series Vikings.

In September 2009, Dreijer composed the soundtrack to Dirty Diaries, a collection of feminist pornographic short films. In a review of the collection, Swedish newspaper Smålandsposten described the soundtrack as appropriate for the film, though repetitive.[9]

Dreijer performed as Fever Ray at the 2010 Coachella Festival and received positive reviews.[10][11] In September of the same year, they performed at Electric Picnic in Ireland and at Bestival in England.[12][13]

Contrary to a statement from the film's director, Dreijer did not make a cameo appearance in the 2011 film Red Riding Hood. However, the soundtrack features a new track performed by Dreijer as Fever Ray, "The Wolf", as well as "Keep the Streets Empty for Me" from their debut album.[14] "The Wolf" was also featured in Ubisoft's Far Cry Primal announcement trailer, as well as during the game's final mission.

Dreijer wrote the music for the theatrical adaptation of Ingmar Bergman's 1968 horror film Hour of the Wolf, which premiered at Stockholm's Royal Dramatic Theatre on 12 March 2011.[15] One of these tracks, "No Face", appeared in demo form on the 2012 compilation album We Are the Works in Progress, organised by Blonde Redhead to benefit victims of the 2011 Japanese tsunami.[16]

In February 2016, Dreijer announced they had written and produced music for a theater play called Vahák (English: Violence), which plays on themes of colonial and homophobic violence.[17] That same month, Dreijer revealed in an interview with The Fader that they were working on solo music, though they were unsure whether it will be under the Fever Ray moniker.[18]

On 20 October 2017, Dreijer released the single "To the Moon and Back" and its accompanying music video.[19] It served as the lead single to their second studio album, Plunge, which was released on 27 October without prior announcement.[20] The album received widespread acclaim from music critics upon release and appeared on numerous year-end lists. In support of the album, Dreijer embarked on an international tour throughout 2018, with the first leg of which was held in Europe and began in February, followed by a North American leg held in May.[21] More European dates were later added from June until November.[22]

In the 2018 Swedish Grammys, Dreijer and the producers they collaborated with on Plunge won the award for "Producer of the Year".[23] Plunge was also nominated for Best European Independent Album at the IMPALA awards.[24]


In 2005, Dreijer supplied vocals on the track "What Else Is There?" by Röyksopp on the album The Understanding. The song charted highly, raising Karin's profile at an early stage of their career. They also appeared in the video for that single, but not as the vocalist, who was portrayed by the Norwegian model Marianne Schröder. In 2008, Dreijer provided vocals for the Deus song "Slow" from the band's Vantage Point album. Dreijer was featured on the tracks "This Must Be It" and "Tricky Tricky" again by Röyksopp, appearing on their 2009 album Junior. On 6 September 2019, a collaborative EP between Björk, Dreijer (credited as Fever Ray), and the Knife titled Country Creatures was released. It contains remixes of Björk's song "Feature Creatures" by Dreijer and by the Knife as well as a remix of Dreijer's "This Country" by Björk.

Personal life[edit]

Dreijer has two daughters. They largely keep their private life outside the headlines, but in 2017, they told The Guardian in an interview that they were previously married and had dropped Andersson from their name following a divorce. In the same interview, they described themself as “definitely a queer person, but [...] very gender-fluid."[3] Dreijer uses "they/them" pronouns.[25]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Details
Fever Ray
  • Released: 27 October 2017
  • Label: Rabid
  • Formats: CD, LP, digital download

Live albums[edit]

Title Details
Live in Luleå
  • Released: 30 November 2012[26]
  • Label: Rabid
  • Format: Digital download
Live at Troxy
  • Released: 2 August 2019[27]
  • Label: Rabid
  • Format: LP, digital download


As lead artist[edit]

Title Year Album
"If I Had a Heart" 2008 Fever Ray
"When I Grow Up" 2009
"Triangle Walks"
"Mercy Street" 2010 Non-album single
"To the Moon and Back" 2017 Plunge
"Wanna Sip" 2018
"IDK About You"

As featured artist[edit]

Title Year Album
"What Else Is There?"
(Röyksopp featuring Karin Dreijer)
2005 The Understanding
"This Must Be It"
(Röyksopp featuring Karin Dreijer-Andersson)
2009 Junior
"Tricky Tricky"
(Röyksopp featuring Karin Dreijer-Andersson)
2009 Junior

Guest appearances[edit]

As Karin Dreijer[edit]

Title Year Other artist(s) Album
"Let It Come Down"[28] 1996 Mazarine Street The Beast Of...
"Volksblues"[29] 1998 The Bear Quartet Personality Crisis
"Wasted"[30] 2000 Robot Fake or Real?
"Axe Man"[31] 2001 Silverbullit Citizen Bird
"Lost in the City Nights"[32] Yvonne Hit That City
"Slow"[33] 2008 Deus Vantage Point
"The Jacket" (Karin Knife Remix)[34] First Floor Power Non-album single
"No Face"[35] 2012 None We Are the Works in Progress
"Discourse My New Romance"[36] 2014 Shinedoe Illogical Directions

As Fever Ray[edit]

Title Year Album
"The Wolf"[37] 2011 Red Riding Hood: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Music videos[edit]

Title Year Director(s)
"If I Had a Heart" 2009 Andreas Nilsson[38]
"When I Grow Up" Martin de Thurah[39]
"Triangle Walks" Mikel Cee Karlsson[40]
"Seven" Johan Renck[41]
"Stranger Than Kindness" Andreas Nilsson[42]
"Keep the Streets Empty for Me" Jens Klevje and Fabian Svensson[43]
"To the Moon and Back" 2017 Martin Falck[19][44][45]
"Wanna Sip" 2018
"IDK About You"


  1. ^ Hogan, Marc (30 March 2009). "Interviews: Fever Ray". Pitchfork. Retrieved 6 April 2009.
  2. ^ "På höga klackar över mossan – Fever Ray". Ful (in Swedish) (1). 2009. Retrieved 11 January 2010.
  3. ^ a b c Cragg, Michael (18 November 2017). "Fever Ray: on pleasure, patriarchy and political revolution". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
  4. ^ "Ten Things You Never Knew About The Knife's Karin Dreijer Andersson". Clash. 12 June 2013. Retrieved 23 November 2017.
  5. ^ "Grammisregn över Göteborg" (in Swedish). Sveriges Radio. 31 January 2007. Retrieved 24 May 2014.
  6. ^ McLean, Craig (January 2006). "Biography". Archived from the original on 14 April 2010. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
  7. ^ "The Knife in Collaboration with Mt. Sims and Planningtorock – Tomorrow, In a Year". Archived from the original on 13 February 2010. Retrieved 21 February 2010.
  8. ^ "Fever Ray album out – 18/23 March". 13 January 2009. Retrieved 20 January 2009.
  9. ^ Carnmo, Camilla (4 September 2009). "Dirty Diaries". Smålandsposten (in Swedish). Archived from the original on 17 December 2009. Retrieved 23 September 2009.
  10. ^ Wappler, Margaret (17 April 2010). "Coachella 2010: Fever Ray's dark arts not as powerful when performed in a plain old music festival tent". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 April 2010.
  11. ^ Hall, David (17 April 2010). "Coachella 2010 Day 1: Fever Ray hypnotizes at Mojave, deadmau5 nails Sahara wrap-up". The Orange County Register. Archived from the original on 24 April 2010. Retrieved 19 April 2010.
  12. ^ Byrne, Niall (9 September 2010). "Electric Picnic 2010: Fever Ray, Omar Souleyman, Monotonix, Dam Funk". State Magazine. Archived from the original on 8 September 2014. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  13. ^ Relaxnews (21 February 2010). "Bestival adds The XX and Fever Ray to 2010 lineup". The Independent. Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  14. ^ "New Fever Ray music to feature in upcoming film, Red Riding Hood". 18 November 2010. Archived from the original on 23 November 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  15. ^ "'Vargtimmen, The Wolf Hour' premiere". 1 November 2010. Archived from the original on 15 March 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2011.
  16. ^ Stosuy, Brandon (29 December 2011). "Hear New Music From Fever Ray's Karin Dreijer". Pitchfork. Retrieved 13 January 2012.
  17. ^ "Karin Dreijer aka Fever Ray Previews New Music". 9 February 2016. Retrieved 9 June 2018.
  18. ^ Myers, Owen (12 February 2016). "The Knife On Silent Shout, 10 Years Later". The Fader. Retrieved 7 July 2016.
  19. ^ a b Sodomsky, Sam (20 October 2017). "Fever Ray Shares Twisted New "To the Moon and Back" Video: Watch". Pitchfork. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  20. ^ Renshaw, David (26 October 2017). "Fever Ray to release surprise album Plunge tomorrow". The Fader. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  21. ^ Williams, Holly (13 February 2018). "Fifty Shades of Fever Ray". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  22. ^ "Fever Ray". Retrieved 9 June 2018.
  23. ^ "Grammis 2018". Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  24. ^ "22 acts in the running for best European independent album". 6 March 2018. Retrieved 8 March 2018.
  25. ^ "Karin Dreijer Is The 21st Century's Sonic Shapeshifter". NPR. 26 November 2019. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  26. ^ "Fever Ray – Live in Luleå". Archived from the original on 7 July 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  27. ^ Schatz, Lake (20 June 2019). "Fever Ray announces new live album Live at the Troxy". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  28. ^ The Beast Of... (liner notes). Mazarine Street. Fine Tone Recordings. 1996. fine 001.CS1 maint: others (link)
  29. ^ Personality Crisis (liner notes). The Bear Quartet. A West Side Fabrication. 1998. WeCD 158.CS1 maint: others (link)
  30. ^ Fake or Real? (liner notes). Robot. BMG Sweden. 2000. 74321 70119 2.CS1 maint: others (link)
  31. ^ Citizen Bird (liner notes). Silverbullit. North of No South Records. 2001. NONSCD 79.CS1 maint: others (link)
  32. ^ Hit That City (liner notes). Yvonne. LED Recordings. 2001. 014 071-2.CS1 maint: others (link)
  33. ^ Vantage Point (liner notes). Deus. V2 Records. 2008. VVR1050472.CS1 maint: others (link)
  34. ^ "The Jacket (Remixes) – EP by First Floor Power". iTunes Store (SE). Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  35. ^ Raggett, Ned. "We Are the Works in Progress – Various Artists". AllMusic. Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  36. ^ "Illogical Directions: Shinedoe: MP3 Downloads". Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  37. ^ "Red Riding Hood (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) by Various Artists". iTunes Store (US). Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  38. ^ "Fever Ray 'If I Had A Heart'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 6 January 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  39. ^ "Fever Ray 'When I Grow Up'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 19 February 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  40. ^ "Fever Ray 'Triangle Walks'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 18 June 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  41. ^ "Fever Ray 'Seven'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 10 September 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  42. ^ "Fever Ray 'Stranger Than Kindness'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 22 October 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  43. ^ "Fever Ray 'Keep The Streets Empty For Me'". Fever Ray on YouTube. Google. 26 November 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  44. ^ Gordon, Arielle (23 January 2018). "Fever Ray Announces North American Tour, Releases New "Wanna Sip" Video". Spin. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  45. ^ Monroe, Jazz (16 February 2018). "Fever Ray Starts a Cult in New Video: Watch". Pitchfork. Retrieved 16 February 2018.

External links[edit]