Monday, March 02, 2009

DJ, show me some sympathy

I've been meaning to write about today's song for something like a week now. Melodifestivalen and life got in the way, but, as I try to distract myself from the fact that we've now heard all of the year's Melodifestival songs, today's a good day to return to Janet Leon.

Janet joined the Swedish girl group Play after one of its members departed. In the time since the group's members went their separate ways, she's still been around the the music industry, just doing less noticeable work. She got her chance to shine again when she was chosen to participate in Made In Sweden, a Swedish TV centered on the music industry. It featured Andreas Carlsson, Anders Bagge, and Laila Bagge, all members of the Idol jury, helping several acts create albums. One of those acts was Janet, who released the mid-tempo pop-R&B song "Let Go" as her lead single earlier this year.

For me, far more exciting than "Let Go" are some of other songs on her recently released debut album (well, sort of debut album--it's eight tracks long and will be reissued with more songs later, I believe). It will come as no surprise to you that I'm drawn to up-tempo tracks like "Heartache on the Dance Floor" and "Breakaway," but there are other good songs, too (the mid-tempo electronic but string-featuring "Anyway" comes to mind). Andreas, Anders, and Laila were clearly shooting to make music with an international-friendly sound and they get it right pretty often, even if they don't necessarily create anything hugely original. "Heartache On The Dance Floor," for example, slots nicely into the post-Rihanna's "Don't Stop The Music" landscape, bearing a beat with a resemblance to that song but being totally enjoyable on its own merits. "Breakaway," possibly the strongest track on the album, doesn't have any such similar-looking foreign siblings. That makes its hard synth hits and plethora of hooks even more enjoyable, even if many of those hooks come via repetition.

To buy Janet Leon's debut solo album, Janet, go here (physical) or here (digital).

Next up: maybe an '80's-sounding Danish song, a German song I've mentioned multiple times, or a guitar-featuring Swedish song.


Paul said...

Ok look, PPg. I love Play. I am quite happy to follow their respective solo careers particularly if the songs are as enticing as Heartbreak. But you gotta cut me some slack. I don't get paid til the 5th and i already went way over my music spend budget for the month thanks to all your melodifestivalen/Erik recommendations!! There's a credit crunch on you know :P

Damian said...

I'd say "Heartache On The Dance Floor" is very-very good song! But it reminds some song too much. Can't remember which one exactly...
Well, I have to give this album listen and I'll do it.

Paul said...

PS, of course I meant Heartache. What's with my inattentiveness to detail in posts these days?!

Anonymous said...

I do like 'Heartache On The Dancefloor' but its definately missing something.
I think her songs all suffer from lack of production (sounding to demolike).

Have you heard the new Pixie song produced by RedOne yet?
Its called Here We Go Again/Wish I Was There and is amazingggggg.
Very Lady GaGa esque though its not surprising given the producer.


bob said...

hey can some1 post a link to download HeartBreaker?
i can't find it anywhere!!!
also Mad Love which is another older song by her
i'm obsessed with this girl and am dying to get all the music by her that i can :D

Poster Girl said...

Paul, don't I know it :-/ And I don't know what brought on the influx of Play member solo careers! Janet Leon's album might be one to wait on, I think; I wouldn't say you need to rush out and get it (the likely re-issue makes that even more true).

Damian, the beat in the verses really reminds me of Rihanna's "Don't Stop The Music" (and Jody's "Wind It" and other similar songs), but let me know if you pinpoint something else!

Conor, I have! I grabbed it from her MySpace pretty soon after she put it up with its original title. She's killing me--well, my all these title changes.

Bob, I don't know either of those songs, I'm sorry to say. I'll keep an eye open, though!