Saturday, November 18, 2006

One time is all it takes, but I'm not counting on that break

Watchers of American Idol will be familiar with the ridiculous skits the contestants do to promote the products of the show's sponsors. They can be mildly funny, but I'd swap what our contestants film and record as a group with what the Norwegian Idol contestants do in a heartbeat. While the American Idol contestants are off covering snippets of old songs and dancing on billboards to sell a car, the Norwegian Idol contestants record and release an original song (at least, I don't think it's a cover) and music video. They aren't exactly pop masterpieces, but they can be cute and fun. This song comes from the 2005 season of Idol in Norway, the year Jorun Stiansen won.

Dreaming--this song sounds like what I expected an S Club 8 song to sound like before I'd actually heard one (though it's not a cover of the Frankie and Calvin song). Norway's Idol contestants must all be pretty young, judging from the video and the sound of their voices (though they all are drinking champagne by the end, so they can't be too young). It's very bubbly and happy--I'm tempted to say it's filled with youthful joy, but that just makes it sound staid. The horns don't work quite as well as they could--they just seem a little blah, for some reason--but overall, the song is so poppy and fun that I really can't believe it was released in 2005. Are any of them having solo success? They should get back together, rope in some producers who know they're not just making a one-off and so put in a bit more effort, and release a full album.

To buy the group album from the 2005 season of Norwegian Idol (except for this original group song, it's just like most other Idol group albums, with each contestant performing a song they did on the show), go here (digital).

Very important news update: the documentary about Gareth Gates that is supposed to help him relaunch his career may be airing Saturday, December 23, at 6:40 PM. This is an event rivalling Christmas in its significance, not so much because we will get to hear about Gareth's life, experiences in the music business, etc., but because two very important questions may be answered: 1.) what does Gareth's hair look like now?, and 2.) what does his new music sound like (questions which are of almost equal importance)? I genuinely believe Gareth has done some really top-quality pop songs (based on quality, his second album should have done infinitely better than it did) and should get to release another album. I really am curious about what his new material will sound like (and perhaps a tiny bit worried, since he seems to have taken to singing covers of classic rock songs recently...but use of guitars is no bad thing in and of itself [see "Enough Of Me" and "Face Myself"], so I'm hopeful).

Can someone please explain to me why McFly thought it was a good idea to go for Christmas number one? They have two excellent songs ("Sorry's Not Good Enough" and "Friday Night") on the single, but that's such a competitive week...and, presumably, since it's a AA side, there will be no new B-sides to encourage everyone who already has the album to go buy the single. Good luck to them and their mariachi-suit-clad (which I like to imagine is a reference to Busted's video for "Crashed The Wedding") selves, though! The album is amazing--I really will have to write about it at some point.

Next up: the song in Spanish will have to be tomorrow, or wait until at least Tuesday, because I do have something definitely planned for Monday.


Paul said...

well, i love the idea of idols recording songs - sigh didn't S Club 8 die before their peak? Tragic. But i digress - it would be harder with x factor i guess but i did think it would be fun for the final nine (3 from each category) to record separate singles and then compete to see whose did best in the charts. So the groups could record together, under 25s etc... actually that could turn out horrifically!

I look forward to gareths documentary and new music from him. Bless. And McFly - i sigh! So many acts do this now - i call it christmas cramming. Its not so much about getting high single placings its about getting great album sales thru the best sales period of the year. Last year Girls Aloud, Westlife and McFly all had 2 singles each out within 7 weeks of each other... and i told McFly to release Bubble wrap for christmas. When will popstars learn i am always right ;) Sigh

that was rather epic wasn't it!

Suki said...

Gareth's definitely coming back? Brilliant news. He was such a great pop star and then just vanished. Can't wait for the new look new sound model!

Anonymous said...

Gareth will take us all by storm. Not only has he grown even more handsome, his voice has matured, and he has worked hard to conquer his stammer. Go Gaz, you're a true star in every way!

Paul said...

ps - mcfly fall to 22 in the album chart?? I am officially divorcing the british record buying public (though to be fair All Saints tosh new album only yet fairly made number 40...hurrah) But BOO for McFly and BOO YOU british public for not buying mcfly and not voting for eton road. Curses!

Poster Girl said...

Paul, this whole cramming albums and singles in at the last minute of the year thing is not working for me--what am I going to do during the beginning and middle of next year? I'm spending so much more money during this part of the year, too! I wholeheartedly second the two boos in your second note, though! The album is amazing and I really think it is going to be a classic in the future (although some of the lines--i.e., in "Star Girl"--may prevent it from having complete maturity...but that's McFly!).

Suki, it's funny you use the phrase "great pop star"--I was just thinking that last night; he really was! There seems to be some fuzziness about what exactly is going on behind the scenes of the Gareth camp, but I think he's planning on releasing music but there's no actual official plan to do so, if that makes's been implied that he's been releasing something soon, and I think a lot of fans are expecting him to, but it's a little vague what's actually happening...the documentary is definitely coming out before Christmas, but so far all we've been told about music is that there will be "news" soon...I really hope soon means soon, though I'm glad that he's waiting past the Christmas rush.

Anonymous, I really hope you're right! I adore his music and think he makes a fabulous popstar...I definitely crave some new music from him!

atle73 said...

The songwriter/producer of "Dreaming" (David Eriksen) have actually worked with S Club 7 and was also a judge that season. If I am not totally wrong here he's also done some work on the new Anthony Callea album.
Jorunn Stiansens album sold it's expected amount of records and then she was dropped from the lable. One of the runner-ups Alejandro Fuentes had much bigger success with his album which sounds just like a David Grey album. And he's still successful taking part in a band-project along with world-Idol winner Kurt Nilsen and Espen Lind.

Khelda said...

I was at the gig and I can tell you how fantastic Gareth's new music is. Its quite rocky, the ballads also have an edge to them. Gareth sang with a live band and he played the keyboards for about half the songs. He sang 8 in all. His voice was strong and his performance was amazing, he sang with such passion, not surprising really seeing that he written the songs, they really meant something to him, and as he thanked Simon Fuller for believing in him and for allowing him to produce the album he had always dreamed of doing. I cant wait to get the album to be able to hear the songs again. I assure you, we are in for a treat.:)

Poster Girl said...

atle73, now that you mention it, I think I may have heard of that project--wasn't there an album released of some sort...covers or live or something? I had no idea that one of the people involved in that was one of these finalists! If he has worked on the new Anthony album, it's slightly ironic that it's so pop-rocky--this song is anything but that!

Khelda, that sounds fabulous--perfect, really! "The album he had always dreamed of doing"--I really can't wait to hear it! I think rocky should suit Gareth; so many artists have "gone rock" just because it seems to be the route towards commercial success, but essentially done nothing more than add in some noise that just crashes over you without allowing you to really get into the music (not that all rock is like that, but rock or pop-rock done poorly is); Gareth's always shown such a keen sense of melody that I'm not really afraid of the results of more guitar use in his music.