Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Try to find some more stars

While I'm engaging in pointless ways to evaluate an album, the tracklist for the Alesha album, The Alesha Show, looks pretty great. Special shout-out to track 12.

1.) Welcome To The Alesha Show
2.) Let's Get Excited
3.) Breathe Slow
4.) Cinderella Shoe
5.) The Boy Does Nothing
6.) Chasing Ghosts
7.) Play Me
8.) Hand It Over
9.) Do You Know The Way It Feels
10.) Can I Begin
11.) Italians Do It Better
12.) Ooh Baby I Like It Like That
13.) Don't Ever Let Me Go
14.) I'm Thru
15.) Mystery (hidden track)

I hope the cover is as awesome as it should be.

In other news, why on Earth did no one tell me Martin Stenmarck had recorded a new English language song? Granted, it's for charity--the Scandic Sustainability Fund, run by this hotel chain--but still, any Martin at all is always more than welcome. It's called "A Million Candles Burning" and you can stream it here or buy it from Swedish iTunes (if you're from Sweden) here (possibly the best thing about this whole project is that whoever came up with the remix name decided to call it the "Sustainable Mix." Brilliant). It's at #2 in the Swedish singles chart, but that means absolutely nothing in terms of how popular the song actually is. Maybe of more meaning is its entry into Sverige Topp 40 (which mixes albums and singles, so I really don't what it actually means either), which combines sales and TV and radio play, at #17.

I know I'll probably never get around to actually writing about it like I should, but the new Sugababes album is great. Really, it is. And I've still not written about the fantastic Ladyhawke album yet, have I? Needs to be done. Albums that I found (to steal a phrase) worthy were pretty scarce in the first half of the year, but that's been changing over the past few months luckily. So far, I think I'd put Ladyhawke, Sugababes, Kate Ryan, probably Will Young on the list, though there are a couple of albums I've only just bought/got that I'll need to properly listen to a few more times before I make a judgment call (and I may be forgetting something).

My favorite album of the year so far, though? It's never been challenged since March. I've never done a proper write-up of it and I don't think I could even come close to doing it justice if I tried, but that may not stop me from trying at some point in the next few months, if I can ever figure out how to put into words my adoration of it, how exciting I find it. It's an album I'll recommend to anyone and everyone (recommendation was in fact how I first listened to it), but, oddly enough, it's not an album I can ever envision myself listening to with someone else unless it was in the most intimate of circumstances.

What is it?

In other news, Darin and David Jassy wrote American boy band (and My Fizzy Pop post subjects) V Factory's new single "Love Struck." Listen to it here. I could be completely wrong on this, but doesn't it even sound like you can hear Darin on the backing vocals sometimes? Speaking of Darin, you can also watch a video (in Swedish) of the making of the video for "Breathing Your Love" here.

According to an interview, he's got a record contract in France now.


John said...

I won't say BEST of the year, but I will say one of the best. Love Ferras, and it's a tragedy that he hasn't broken in the U.S., even though he seemed to be off to a great start. But I could also say the same for Sam Sparro, Adele, Kylie, Robyn, etc...

Poster Girl said...

Oh gosh--Sam's album! He owes you a mini-debt because you just reminded me to go buy it (and I did); I ADORE "Black & Gold," but for some reason wasn't sure I'd love the album, but have been meaning to for the past few weeks. I'll report back!

As much as I think Ferras himself is probably a brilliant songwriter, part of me is really worried that after this album he might not have his songs "dressed up" in a way I like as much (I'm guessing the Matrix had something to do with how the Aliens & Rainbows tracks appear), even if the same core of them is there. One of the reasons I tend to hope acts I love get to stick with bigger labels--that's a HUGE generalization since you get people doing brilliant work outside majors (before and after such deals) all the time (we were just talking about Mr. Sparro, and wasn't his first EP, which had "Black & Gold," independent?), but I've also had a lot of artists I love who, after losing their major label deals, tend to go for a more lo-fi, less...polished isn't the right word, but...well, it's like there's a need to fuzzy things up when they didn't need to be--more fuzzy approach which I don't end up loving as much. And, to get back to the point, that makes me nervous about his future output, though I'm still hopeful he'll a.) get to keep his deal, and b.) keep making music I love. Because, though there are songs that, in the sequence there in, I tend to skip on this album, no other album this year has come close to getting me this excited about music.

Poster Girl said...

*in the sequence they're in, that should be.

Bas said...

it is shocking that we all know Martin released an English track (currently no 2 in the Swedish charts) and you didn't know about it! haha :p what happened?! The Sugababes new album indeed is great. It is different from their previous stuff but atleast it really is a Change (unlike their previous album), something fresh. You have to be in the mood for it though to enjoy listening it... atleast I have to

Paul said...

i saw martins song on allaboutmusic and meant to email you, but thought "oh like she WOULDN'T know about it" and shockingly apparently you didn't :P Gosh! I'm surprised :P I need to revisit Ferras - you and Dluv big upped it to me, and then i sort of forgot about it. It's currently not in my top 20 albums of the year at all... but only cos i think i only listened to it twice.

I feel like the sugababes have become westlife. Not that i think they are at all alike but because i think they are such a part of the constitution in britain now that their albums just are a fact of life rather than an event. GA still are lingering on the event side of things... does that make any sense??

Poster Girl said...

I know! How did that happen? Where have I been? ;)

I'm failing in my Swedish music duties! If you have the time, I really recommend giving the album another try; I completely stand by it and, even if you don't love the whole thing, I think there are some songs on it you'd like. No, your Sugababes comment makes perfect sense (well, I mean, I understand what you mean by it--not being in the UK I've got no idea what it's actually like there) makes a really interesting point!

Bas said...

i can not see a link / video file for Darin's behind the scenes? is that just me or ... ?

John said...

Agreed on Ferras, although I believe he's done for on the majors end of the mix. Sadly, you don't see many people getting second chances. Maybe all of the critical praise will get him a reprise, but I'm not holding my breath. As for Sam, I am listening to "21st Century Life" almost every time I go to the gym. Something about that song just makes me HAPPY!

Poster Girl said...

No, Bas, not just you! I changed it to a URL link which should work--try that.

John, I really would have expected the same re: his deal, but he did write one post in September that's kind of made me question what I expected to happen. Still, who knows.

D'luv said...

"...most intimate of circumstances"?? Poster Girl, you naughty little minx!!

Yeah, I haven't listed to Ferras in some time, but I still stand by my claim that it was the first great pop album of 2008. There haven't been too many that have followed it, either.

I feel like the era of the album is truly over, in ever sense—album quality and consumer mindset.

Poster Girl said...

Oh, gosh, I left that line in, didn't I? It was supposed to get change to something much less...ridiculously Victorian.

I've been doing so much driving recently and that's really refreshed my love for the album--what made me think of this, in fact.

Aaron said...

Sorry for rather late comment!

My top 5 for the year include Kate Ryan, Elena Paparizou, Kaskade, Will & Sneaky Sound System - Give them a listen!

Poster Girl said...

No, Aaron, you're on vacation--heck, the fact you're reading older posts at all is amazing! :D I'll definitely give the albums you recommend a try--I like a lot of Sneaky Sound System songs, but I've really not heard much of anything from this latest album. I'm not sure why--I'll have to get it!

Aaron said...

I'm back now! It was only a short holiday! - I've got a post about it on my blog!