Thursday, November 12, 2009

Jag sov med hjärtat i bandage och du sov någon annanstans

I heard my first Christmas song of the season on the radio last Saturday. It must officially be that time of year again...which means a new set of popstar Christmas songs. That's good news for Paul of Fizzy Pop and just maybe good news for the rest of us, too, at least when they're as enjoyable as "I Don't Believe In Angels," the new single from Melody Club.

A duet featuring guest vocals from Anna Järvinen, "I Don't Believe In" has an organic band sound to it, but a gentle, strummy one. It's also, surprisingly, sweetly uplifting. I love the combination of Kristofer and Anna's voices together; I hadn't heard Anna's work before, but apparently she was part of the group Granada and has had a solo career for the past few years.

In a similar vein of grown-up Swedish pop is Mathias Holmgren's latest single, "Tänk om jag dör nu inatt," though it's not technically Christmas-themed.

My usual attitude is wishing Mathias, a Fame Factory contestant who spent some time as the lead singer of Barbaods after Magnus Carlsson's departure before also going solo himself, would return to schlager. He began his solo career with Melodifestival entry "Långt bortom tid och rum," pure schlager, and his first solo album, Vägen hem, was very much in that style. After that, though, he moved to a more singer-songwriter sound. "Tänk om jag dör nu inatt" isn't actually too far removed from that style, but it's done really, really well, the sort of song that sweeps you along for its rises and falls. From what I understand of the lyrics, they only further my belief that the right word for "Tänk om jag dör nu inatt" is "lovely," albeit sadly lovely. The title means "What If I Die Tonight," and the song stands as an attempt to apologize and win back a lover after a fight. What makes it even better is that the song is written by Johan Thorsell, Mathias's husband; the song stands on its own, but that extra bit of emotional context makes it even more powerful and poignant.

You can buy Melody Club and Anna Järvinen's single "I Don't Believe In Angels" here (digital) and Mathias Holmgren's single "Tänk om jag dör nu inatt" here (digital). Mathias releases an album of the same title November 18.


Paul said...

oh my god! A) I love that i am becoming embarrassingly synonymous with Christmas and B) I must get these songs!!!!!! SO EXCITING :)

Daniel said...

Mathias ett måste.

D'luv said...

Melody Club!!! Pretty song.

Mr. Will-W. said...

festive! i love bells!!! :')

Poster Girl said...

Paul, it's just one of your claims to fame! Own it :)

Daniel, with this song he certainly is.

It is pretty! In anyone else's hands I think it might become too saccharine, but they do it right.

Will, there's nothing like a good set of bells in a Christmas song.

Paula Lobos said...

Hey Poster Girl! I´m fascinated by how much you know about Swedish music! Keep up the good work! Best, Paula

Poster Girl said...

Hi Paula! Thanks for the message. It does make me stand out a bit amidst the people I know in "the real world," but it's worth the time for all the good music your country puts out. Same back to you--"Touch The Light" is a fantastic song.