Saturday, March 29, 2008

Astrid Swan - Sea/e Life  

With the brilliance of the output of their Scandinavian neighbours, it has always seemed something of a non-sequitur that Finland hasn't produced much good pop music. The only Finnish song I regularly listen to is Lover Lover Lover by . This means I'm very pleased to find a Finnish singer I can get on board with. Although she is no Robyn or Margaret Berger in the stakes of Scandi-pop divas, she has a lovely voice and some equally lovely songs. She's better filed next to Marit Bergman than September, but I love the music of the former just as much as the latter. Astrid has gained some recognition for her cover of When You Were Young by The Killers and she also does a great Can't Get You Out Of My Head. Sea/e Life is a great track, especially when it builds up towards the end, but I recommend that you go on her MySpace, the first 2 tracks are even better, just sadly not available for free download as Sea/e Life is. I'm looking forward to hearing in full her 2 albums, amusingly titled Poverina (her debut, just out in the US) and Spartan Picnic (her new CD in Finland).

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Taio Cruz - I'll Never Love Again  

With a top 5 single and an album out this week, Taio Cruz is the man of the moment, and I'm definitely onboard the bandwagon. His album is brilliant and you can read my full review on Dirrrty Pop. I chose to post this track because it's quite different to Come On Girl, a slow song but its clever intricacies and earworm repetition mean that his story of almost releasing Umbrella now makes perfect sense. But its not just Umbrella that this track harks back to - also Cry Me A River, Let Me Love You and all the other great r'n'b-pop ballad-but-nots of the past few years. As a bonus I've uploaded Fly Away, another track which showcases how versatile Taio's album is, all in one song, as it's got an anthemic chorus with synths, eh-ehs, handclaps, falsetto and even a guitar solo. OK, the latter is nothing to boast about, but it's not long and proves that guitars do not necessarily have to cause boringness.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Electric Valentine - A Night With You  

Over the past year or so my e-mail inbox has been filled with a higher and higher percentage of e-mails from bands or their management/PR companies trying to get me to write about them on my blogs. At first I gave most of the bands a chance, unless they were obviously total rockists, but nowadays such an e-mail will be lucky if it even gets opened. Today I must have been feeling particularly generous, as I opened my e-mail from Electric Valentine and clicked on their MySpace link, and thank goodness I did, because their songs are all fantastic! My favourite was their feisty yet heartfelt new single, A Night With You, and by great luck this was the track that the group have sent me to post here. If you liked the almost-popular band The Modern from a few years ago, you'll certainly like Electric Valentine. There are also strong similarities to Stefy and Dragonette, but better than anything either of them did, except for Dragonette's early work. I don't think there's a large market for this type of pop music, but I personally love it and think most of you will feel the same. Electric Valentine are definitely one of the best unknown bands I've heard in a long time and I wish them very much success!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Gisela - Casanova  

Now here's a song that actually has made it into Eurovision, although how fitting it is to be representing Andorra is quite debatable: The singer found fame on Spain's equivalent to Pop Idol, and it sounds like a Swedish version of Steps. This is no reason for complaint, however, as Andorra have submitted what in my opinion is the joint (with Perelli of course) best entry for Eurovision 2008, at least of those I've heard so far, which is far from the majority, what with there being 43 and my research only beginning today. This song sounds like how we imagine a typical Eurovision song to be, but actually when you think about it, it's far from typical of Eurovision entries these days, considering the lack of tribal drumming and the use of the English language. This is a great pop song, but what with the huge number of entries this year, chances are not great for anyone, so I won't get my hopes up too much.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

BWO - Lay Your Love On Me  

It may have only come 3rd in tonight's Melodifestivalen final (hardly a failure when competing against 31 of the best Swedish pop acts, with the winner also being brilliant) but I think this is the best thing BWO have done since their second album. I enjoyed their third, released last year with Save My Pride and Give Me The Night being the highlights, but in comparison to the electro-pop of their debut and the pure-pop of its follow-up, Fabricator was undeniably weak. Now they've returned to their original sound, with a song that fits best alongside such classics as Conquering America and Voodoo Magic. Alexander Bard may have failed yet again on his zillionth attempt to appear on the Eurovision stage, but he won't be sad next week when this track soars into the top 10 of the Swedish charts. My favourite group's career is back on track, and I'm extremely pleased!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Gavin DeGraw - In Love With A Girl  

Sorry for my recent absence, but I'm back with the exciting return of one of my favourite singers. I know he is disliked by many of my readers, presumably the same who look on Maroon 5 with disdain, but as usual I don't care at all. It's with artists like Gavin where I really feel proud of myself for sticking to my guns, as he continues to make songs that I at least think are excellent. This new single is typical of his style, mid-tempo and very catchy with a great feel-good vibe, perfect to sing along to. I'm really looking forward to buying his new album in May, which (much like Maroon 5) has kept the fans waiting for a very long time, since his debut was out in 2003.

Powered by Blogger