Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Fresh blood in Swedish music! Recently you could notice name of Lucas Nord in mixes packs of Urban Cone and Rasmus Faber and now Urban Cone guys provide their vocals for Lucas' debut single "Let Us Stay Young" and even take part in his music video.
"Let Us Stay Young" is dark electronic dance-track in a vein of Adrian Lux's tracks crawling with Urban Cone's mystic vocals to dynamic blossoming choruses following fresh trend of Swedish club-music.
QX's schlager-issue is one of the most exciting warming up Melodifestivalen events gathering participants of upcoming season in some absolutely amazing photo shootings every year. It's Schlagerprofilerna Ken Olausson and Ronny Larsson who are responsible for this great celebration with photographer Christian Hagward and they tried to tease us completely unbearably this year what has turned to the series of traditionally awesome images and unexpected transformations.
So today you can download this fantastic set with loads of interesting interviews here but what is even more amazing for non-Swedish speaking schlager-fans now you can read it in English! Schlagerfiasko has translated schlager-part of magazine and now you don't need to spend hours with Google Translate like I used to few years ago.
So if you want to know:
- If Charlotte Perrelli finds "Hero" or "The Girl" her stronger entry.
- If Timoteij are going to use instruments again.
- What was Danny fighting for with SVT negotiating about performance.
- What sort of family relations Afro-dite and Loreen have.
- How Eric Saade hasn't let Sean Banan watch Melodifestivalen last year.
- And some news about upcoming albums of Timoteij and Sonja.
...go and read it in Swedish and in English. Full set photos is featuring Danny, Ulrik Munther, Mattias Andreassen, Loreen, Molly Sandén, Charlotte Perrelli, Afro-dite, Sonja Aldén, Andreas Lundstedt, Marie Serneholt, Dead By April, Youngblood, Andreas Johnson, Timoteij, Sean Banan, Love Generation and Mimi Oh. You can see some of pics below.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Broken Door are back with a bunch of great news - band's debut album will be released on April 2nd which is not that far already and fresh single "Time For Changes" from upcoming album is out and sounds awesome!
I'd say it's the most happy, anthemic and actually the strongest Broken Door's track ever in my opinion, if you want what it's like I'd say it sounds like an amazing band's entry for Melodifestivalen, heavy beats of chorus feel like Bassflow-produced (though acording to press-release it was recorded in collaboration with producers of Bell Studio who worked before with artists like The Darkness, Backstreet Boys and Westlife). Beautiful piano intro grows through melodically slightly Star Pilotesque verse (put the beat louder and we'd call it dancey) spiced up with strings and exploses in a big beautiful chorus.
Swedish radio accepted Broken Door very well from the beginning so I can easily imagine this track as another band's big radio-hit.
Bingolotto celebrates 20 years anniversary so we've got nice music gift from TV4 gathering recent Christmas tour colleagues Elisabeth Andreassen and Marie Serneholt, Idol Robin Stjernberg with one of covers from his compilation "My Versions", Christer Sjögren with Eurovision-classic "Djingis Khan" and Håkan "Nordman" Hemlin with new solo single "När Stockholm somnar in". Nice selection for the most different tastes.
Friday, January 20, 2012
But the wait is over. Markoolio's back with new Magnus Uggla-breathing single "Borta bra men hemma bäst" and party video filled with Markoolio's typical irony. You can even see Andreas Lundstedt as a featuring guest of the video. It's all about fun but really enjoyable and as I know Markoolio currently keeps working on new songs with one really good songwriter.
Also don't miss performance of new single in Nyhetsmorgon and "Värsta schlagern" with Jessica Marberger.
Thursday, January 19, 2012
Today Miike Snow guys unleash brand new single "Paddling Out" from their upcoming album "Happy To You" which is going to be released on March 26th.
We've already got the first sneak peek with the track "Devil’s Work" in the end of 2011 and comparing with it "Paddling Out" is quite more upbeat track, I'd say it's a disco in a way how you'd imagine disco being reborn by Miike Snow. However style of a new album gets some clear line and it's promising to be pretty delicious electronic work.
Wonderful Mary N'diaye is back! After that colourful pop-explosion girl has arranged in 2010 with single "Dumb Dumb" and still looking awesome video Mary was rolling in music world of Sweden (for example she was featuring singer on the latest Monty's album) but didn't present new solo-works at all.
While we expect Mary to appear in The Voice Sverige and keep our fingers crossed for her Mary premieres new song "Lions Of Teranga" which is the result of her collaboration with producers Christoffer Wikberg and Fredrik Sonefors who lately worked with artists like ELY and Coco (Love Generation's Mikaela).
"Lions Of Teranga" sounds like a big summerish sport anthem in "Waka Waka" mood covered with RedOnesque dance-sound, track has become a dedication to Mary's Senegalese fans and national football team Lions Of Teranga. Amazing gift and lovely "making of" video.
If you remember I told you about Säkert! who has decided to release her Swedish tracks in English last year. As it was planned album "Säkert! På Engelska" was released in the last day of August and "The Lakes We Skate On" ("Isarna" in the past) - utterly pleasant indie-pop song in recognizable style of Säkert! was chosen as another track to promote compilation.
Video was shot last Autumn for a week and is presented now in both languages.
Schlager-debutants keep delivering presentations of their latest material and this time it's OPA! - band that will perform song "Allting blir bra igen" written by vocalist Michael Sideridis in the 4th Melodifestivalen semifinal on 25 February in Malmö.
But here's the first sneak peek of their upcoming album - single "Himmelskt", I'm not professional in this genre to judge how high concentration of pure Greek pop we have here but I can say one thing - you're not gonna get any Sofia's Swedish pop compromises even though they sing in Swedish. It's folk, atmospheric, melodic and pleasant folk. How successful can it be in Melodifestivalen? If guys are ready give proper amount of joy like Andra generationen they have a chance. have a listen right below..
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Alex Saidac, Gravitonas, Brandur, Martin Rolinski. Line-up of fresh pop-representatives of Alexander Bard's label constantly brings excitement and high expectations so when SoFo Records has signed new duo Rob & Nino with pretty qualitative debut "Rewind" released last year we've put them under a special attention and guys didn't linger with new music.
Upcoming Rob & Nino's single "Freak" featuring Lazee is on the way and here we get the first sneek peak which is utterly catchy combination of club-music with slight Avicii-feeling and Nino's r'n'b vocals. Snippet is already quite promising so let's wait and see what will come out of it.
NEO's brand new album "Reborn" is finally out, it has taken 2 years since the album "Human Frontier" has become artist's big presentation in Sweden right after his performance at Melodifestivalen.
"Reborn" feels like natural progression of NEO's concept including previously released "Underground" and "Toxicated Love", it's dark, theatrical collection of pop with worthy dance follow-ups of "Human Frontier" ("Let Go", "Atomic", "So Touchable") fans undoubtedly will be pleased by and some big heavily electrified ballads like almost Hurts-sounding "Move On" and "Swan Song".
New single "Fighting The Dark" co-written by Gravitonas' Andreas Öhrn is something closer to the second category, it's a big electro-ballad, lacking drama but very spiritual and containing beautiful middle-eight with epic drums and choirs.
You can listen to the full version and buy "Fighting The Dark" here and to do the same with all tracks of "Reborn" here.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
For all of you who has started to think Carola is over with schlager and has completely moved to rock'n'roll-covers area we have brilliant proof she still can do schlager as good as she used to!
Another The Voice jury member Magnus Uggla has provided track "Jag Vill Ha Dig Baby" from his latest album "Innan filmen tagit slut..." produced by Peter Kvint for Niclas Kings to make remix and Carola to replace Edith Backlund's vocal part. Song has turned from pop-rock schlager in typical Magnus's manner to a light dance-schlager, Niclas can work with schlagers (Hera Björk "Je Ne Sais Quoi", Euroband "This Is My Life", Kate Ryan "Je T'Adore") and though musically it's not in style of his Eurovision works this mix pushes all the right buttons to bring up the tune to its dancey radio-friendly shelf where it belongs.
Below you can listen to both versions of this song as both are really worthy.
Mimi Oh keeps delivering new goodies related to her newest single "Säkerhetsnål" which besides fresh video presented few days ago has got new mixes and here's one of them made by club-veteran SoundFactory and though schlager-dancefloor is probably the first thing coming to your mind when you hear this name mix has turned quite electro which fits concept of original track very well, it's cold, elegant but still very dynamic. Enjoy!
Annual Idrottsgalan is back with a bunch of some top-artist who were with us during last year and seems like are going to be next year too.
We've got big voice trio of Sonja Aldén, Linda Pritchard and Anna Sahlene with "Higher & Higher", Lisa Miskovsky who sounded...hm, pretty unusual in Sting's "Fields of Gold" (but it was pretty emotional performance in memory of some Swedish sportsmen who died in 2011), Markoolio with his own song "In med bollen" and company of Lili and Susie, Hammerfall with Judas Priest's "Breaking the Law" (they're doing pretty loads of TV lately, are we gonna get them on MF soon?), Louise Hoffsten with her own old song "Let the best man win" and The Clash's "London Calling" performed by Nicke Borg who has become much more actively interacting with audience since last spring. Thanks for the tip about event to Schlagerfiasko that you absolutely must follow when ESC-season is at full speed.
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Le Kid's single "Human Behaviour" that we've got a tasty sneak peek of not so long ago is finally released on Danish iTunes and available online in full length.
As we've already heard from a snippet Le Kid turns to more tough and dynamic sound pulsing in cold neon lights and coming out on 80s dancefloor to shine in all Le Kid- fabulousness. Another cool music piece from our pop-sweethearts and I hope we'll get more later this year.
Friday, January 13, 2012
Brand new hit of Avicii is collaboration with Australian twin sisters Nervo, it's called "You’re Gonna Love Again" and it's already unleashed.
Twin sisters Nervo get songwriting fame quite fast lately, they've managed to work with artists like Kylie, David Guetta, Kesha, Nicole Scherzinger, Pixie Lott and has even taken part in work on the latest Agnes' single "Don't Go Breaking My Heart". Time has come to collaborate with Swedish club-wonder Avicii and new song has become wonderful follow-up of his anthemic works with loud trendy dance-synths and massive hit-potential.
New soundtrack-hit from Takida's Robert Pettersson and Helena Josefsson "My Own Worst Enemy" has even got a video partly (as it happens) made of movie's cut and partly of Robert and Helena singing for each other, not the most expensive looking video (both Takida and Helena had more interesting ones) but okayish and we didn't expect video at all, right? Positive thing about video is that Helena gets bigger spotlight than in vocals sharing, she deserves it.
"My Own Worst Enemy" was written by rock-artist and songwriter Måns Tristan Sohlman and produced by RamPac (Swingfly, Crashdiet).
We didn't hear a lot from Straight Frank for ages since their intriguing debut few years ago, instead Kasper Lindgren has presented new project Nordic Shine and we've started to think Straight Frank is over when they've announced release of their eponymous debut album in Germany on January 27th (which surprisingly doesn't have amazing "Mary" in tracklisting).
Work with Swedish audience still keeps going and guys has delivered new single "Monster" to popular local alternative Bandit radio and it's much more direct hit-feeling explosive post-grunge track with not that much left from Audioslave moody vibes, it's dramatic, it's expressive, it's a MONSTER!
New season of Melodifestivalen has turned mostly about well-recognizable faces of Swedish pop giving just a small quota to fresh artists and among them we've got Mimi Oh supported by Anton Hård Af Segerstad and Niclas Lundin who constantly keep working on new music for Mimi.
Great to see Mimi is one of those participants who tries to deliver some schlager pre-excitement with a sneak peek of her new music. Single "Säkerhetsnål" was released on iTunes this week and video is premiered today on SVT site. Full track has become a nice bridge between latest electropop-direction of Linda Sundblad (who has co-written this track) and Mimi's love to 80s synth-sound with very catchy and light choruses. Video is very colourful but not as Lili & Susie-feeling as "Kom Hit Och Dansa", girl goes modern but doesn't close the door for glorious 80s music past.
We do love when schlager-artists make covers of each others songs and when beautiful voices meet beautiful songs it makes the whole thing even more precious.
Webjoker Julia Alvgard that we still really like (and have started to like even more after listening to her lovely chill-out album "Strong Enough" of 2006) recently has performed cover of Salem Al Fakir's "Keep On Walking" in the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and it has turned to be so goosebumps-giving with her emotional vocal. There's no video but sound quality is very well, enjoy!
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Firefox AK who has released her wonderful album last summer and has become supportive atrist in tour with Hurts premieres second video for another track "Color The Trees" - beautiful dark song in a vein of her electropop-melancholy with slight Lykke Li mood this time.
When it comes to videos Firefox Ak usually shows the best of her, abstract images and stylish ideas implementation. This is really worthy video and really worthy track, don't miss it! Thanks for the tip to E&P blog.
Music video made for bilingual collaboration of Caroline Costa and Ulrik Munther "Je t'ai menti" (which is actually half-French cover of Ulrik's "Kill For Lies" I told about before) is finally premiered and it's a sweet and simple love story without over-tragic episodes which is natural and good for this small teen love story. And as I said before I really like how Caroline sounds in this track.
Ulrik currently prepares for Melodifestivalen-2012, he will perform song "Soldiers" in 2nd semifinal and he's one of the biggest bookies favorites to win whole contest.
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Charlotte looks just smoking hot these days! The girl is definitely ready for her fabulous return to Melodifestivalen and if you've missed this fact - her song "The Girl" is written by team behind Andreas Wijk's "Like My Style" (Fredrik Kempe and Alexander Jonsson) that I still adore. I've missed mentioning her summer performance at Lotta på Liseberg so if you've missed too, here it is.
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Sweden gets loud movie premiere of Jan Guillou's adaptation of the novel "I nationens intresse" with Mikael Persbrandt in a leading role this week. Soundtrack of the movie was delivered by not less than Takida's front man Robert Pettersson and Helena Josefsson who you absolutely should know by collaborations with Arash and Per Gessle.
"My Own Worst Enemy" is almost classic Takida-sounding track, it's dramatic, powerful, melodic and rocky without getting too underground (Takida-guys are professionals in compromises with mainstream sound that easily builds bridges between their new relesaes and radio stations). Helena's solo-part is not that big but singing with Robert she makes a proper softening of the track with her gender high vocal.
We've got 3 weeks left before melotour will start and we'll keep following all news of Melodifestivalen rehearsals and presentations like we did last year.
First of all SVT has announced rules changes:
1) After the first round of voting we'll get 5 qualifying participants without revealed semifinal winner. In a second round (where all five participants will keep votes earned in the first round and new votes added) we'll get two finalists and two participants of Second Chance (without a winner announced again).
2) Second Chance duels won't be pre-defined (like 3rd place of 2nd semifinal against 4th place of 4th semifinal) but defined by draw. Still possibility of the same semifinal participants fighting in Second Chance will be excluded.
Though I don't really care about 2nd change, 1st one is what I was missing as last two years we had 4 real candidates for the win and the rest. That was decreasing excitement twice.
Second important news are official order of performances that you can see below.
Danny gets the most respectable last spot from which Carola, Malena and Charlotte won. Other opening/closing spots usually given to favorites have gone to Loreen, Youngblood, Ulrik Munther, Charlotte Perrelli and Thomas Di Leva. Sean Banan is responsible for a funny MF-starting performance and Björn Ranelid should work for statistics "finishing semifinal doesn't mean you should qualify somewhere".
Semifinal 1: Växjö (February 4th)
1. Sean Den Förste Banan - Sean Banan
2. På väg - Abalone Dots
3. I Want To Be Chris Isaak (This Is Just The Beginning) - The Moniker
4. The Boy Can Dance - Afro-Dite
5. Mystery - Dead by April
6. Salt & Pepper - Marie Serneholt
7. Jag reser mig igen - Thorsten Flinck och Revolutionsorkestern
8. Euphoria - Loreen
Semifinal 2: Göteborg (February 11th)
1. Soldiers - Ulrik Munther
2. Baby Doll - Top Cats
3. I din himmel - Sonja Aldén
4. Aldrig aldrig - Andreas Lundstedt
5. Stormande hav - Timoteij
6. Shout It Out - David Lindgren
7. Det går för långsamt - Mimi Oh
8. Ge aldrig upp - Thomas Di Leva
Semifinal 3: Leksand (February 18th)
1. Youngblood - Youngblood
2. I mina drömmar - Maria BenHajji
3. Förlåt mig - Mattias Andréasson
4. Just A Little Bit - Love Generation
5. Sanningen - Carolina Wallin Pérez
6. Lovelight - Andreas Johnson
7. Why Am I Crying - Molly Sandén
8. Mirakel - Björn Ranelid feat. Sara Li
Semifinal 4: Malmö (February 25th)
1. The Girl - Charlotte Perrelli
2. Allting blir bra igen - OPA!
3. Land of Broken Dreams - Dynazty
4. Don?t Let Me Down - Lotta Engberg och Christer Sjögren
5. Goosebumps - Hanna Lindblad
6. Kyss mig - Axel Algmark
7. Why Start A Fire - Lisa Miskovsky
8. Amazing - Danny Saucedo
In other news Molly Sandén and Eric Saade are not together anymore so Molly's MF-song gets real fresh story.
Mimi Oh keeps teasing with behind the scenes clips of her "Säkerhetsnål" video (part 1, part 2).
Talking about preparations - many participants already rehearses their performances and you can already see that Timoteij will use the same dance gang as in 2010 (except Fredrik Olofsson)...
...Afro-dite are working with choreographer Damon Frost and seems like they won't use other dancers (but it's not clear yet!)...
...Andreas Lundstedt puts on a show with performance choreographed by Jennie Widegren ("Deja Vu", "Lucky You")...
...and Molly gets tips from Rennie Mirro about her ballad performance.
And finally check who's becoming the biggest bookies favorites (according to unibet.se in this case).
Oskar Linnros-sound has become a big trend of last two years in Swedish music and it's still very popular and beloved. As a proof we've got new Linnros-smelling tune "Du Kommer Aldrig" from new project Pavlov - duo consisting of Anders Bergman and Thomas Törnheden.
"Du Kommer Aldrig" is Pavlov's debut single, refreshing light mix of strings, wild positive tempo and Swedish soul-pop vocal manner. Song has already got to the spot of iTunes audience and Swedish radio so it feels like we've got a new hit.
Vanbot premieres new video for another track from debut album "Vanbot" - "Numb".
Song is quite well presentation of Vanbot's fragile electronic sound and soft melodics and the video looks quite artistic and atmospheric so Vanbot keeps bringing some beautiful goodies in 2012 and we're absolutely delighted by it.
Sunday, January 8, 2012
This week Sweden has got three snippets of The Voice Sverige auditions and whole 3 ex-Melodifestivalen participants that was quite interesting remembering that 3 of 4 jury members participated in Melodifestivalen and two have even won it.
First we saw Rasmus Viberg from MF-2011 singing Michael Jackson's "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)" and Emma Lewin from Caracola/Sheelah (MF-2008) with Wilson Phillips's "Hold On", both has qualified and entered Petter's camp. The one who had a less luck was Brandur (MF-2008) who hasn't managed to convince jury with Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars".
Talking about other recognizable faces - we've got ELY who hasn't qualified to The Voice and Idol Linda Varg's boyfriend who has managed. Below you can watch performances of all ex-MF artists.
Love Generation's Mikaela leaves her band, changes hair colour and dance music is the only bridge from redhead LG girl to the new solo-artist Coco.
Singer has started solo-career few months ago (becoming already a second girl to leave LG after Roshana Hoss) and it hasn't taken too long to come up with fresh release.
"Music is turning me on" has become the first sneak peak of Coco's music recorded in collaboration with Andremo and it has become a big eurodance-tune wearing 90s screaming vocals and "You Make Me Feel" vibes following one of 2011 dance-trends.
You can find another Coco's acoustic track "Break My Heart" here.
It's not really often when you can listen to singing in Russian in this show, however Pandora has apeared on TV4 today with Stacy to perform their collaboration "Why" and another solo-track "Until the hurt is gone" from the latest Pandora's album. It's pity this mini-gig was lacking some dance track but we've got nice acoustic medley of Pandora's ols hits.