Friday, January 22, 2010

In the end it's all or nothing

A few random notes (some covered earlier on Twitter):

The new song I've found most enchanting in the past few days is from Matisse, the American singer who used to be one half of Brit & Alex (of the pop-rock song "Let It Go" from Step Up 2). "Better Than Her," by Kevin Rudolf, is one of those songs that sounds musically simple and sweet, a fluffy little midtempo electronic pop song that to non-pop-friendly ears would probably seem totally generic. It's one of the few American songs to come out this year (so far) that I didn't have to work at liking and always look forward to playing again, though, so for my money, any success here would be well-deserved.

Swedish group Dyno has several new songs and song clips on MySpace. Their debut album is one to get excited about now, '80s synth-pop-rock that fills a gap that desperately needed to be filled. Another reminder: these guys, among other things, worked on the Erik Hassle album. Their songwriting skills are solidly in place.

Danish singer Nabiha's '60s-sounding debut single "Deep Sleep" was fine, but it was "The Enemy," her probable second single, that most got me interested in her album, Cracks, out February 1. The full studio version of "The Enemy" and several other new songs are streaming over on her MySpace (and clips of all the songs are on Danish iTunes). I very much recommend checking them out; producer Carl Rydén has reined in some of his dance tendencies to create a fun electronic pop sound that, though commercial, mainstream pop, brings just a bit of quirky something that feels a bit different in the case of at least half the tracks streaming there (something that I didn't really feel to be the case with "Deep Sleep"). It's not music that would fit in on U.S. radio, but its style would mesh with the UK music scene (not that that means it will).

I was thrilled that a1 made it through to the Melodi Grand Prix final in Norway this past weekend (as well as pleased that Karoline Garfjell qualified to the second chance round). They're only two songs into their post-reformation career (well, three if you count the [less good] song that starts around 50:45 here, taken from a telethon for Haiti, plus a couple more we've heard bits of in video blogs), but I'm very glad to have them back; they're making exactly the music I'd want them to be making at this point in time. I've had a post sitting as a draft saying more about "Take You Home" for ages, but if nothing else, it's certain to appear in my year end countdown (which is, um, still coming).

Linda Sundblad's new album, Manifest, is due out March 3. If it's full of songs as good as the three we've heard so far, it will be worth listening to.

After what seems like a long time away, young Swedish electronic duo Lo-Fi-Fnk will make a new song available on YouTube on February 2. You'll also be able to download it on that date if you sign up for an event on Facebook.


Mr. Will-W. said...

let me make this clear - i will never EVER get sick of hearing songs about catty girls fighting over a guy!! :')

Olivier said...

PG, did you see the supposed tracklist for Manifest? It was posted on Linda's official website some days ago here :

I really like Matisse, and very happy for Karoline. I hope she'll have the chance to release some more songs of the same sound.

Poster Girl said...

Ha! The instrumental somehow ends up making it seem...less catty? That and her vocal, just a bit, at least (as opposed to what I imagine if, say, Lindsay Lohan was singing it).

Olivier, I did (although since I hadn't checked the comments in a timely way, I'm not sure if this comment was from before or after I noticed that and tweeted about it, so in case it was before, thank you!). It's great news! That's a BIG part of why I'd like Karoline to be successful-ish in the MGP, so I hope so, too.

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