Wednesday, June 04, 2008

the international professionals

Original it may not be, but latest single "10,000 Nights" shameless namechecking of "Wuthering Heights" and "Safety Dance" leaves you in no doubt of the era which influenced Danish six piece Alphabeat's sound.

From the opening brilliance of "Fantastic Six" through top 2 singles "Fascination" and the aforementioned "10,000 Nights" to the great "What Is Happening?" it's a short (36 minutes) popfest of the highest order.

Sounding variously like the B52's, Roxette and assorted 80s pop acts, it's frothy and lightweight, but I absolutely love it.

Royworld's debut album is an interesting affair. The single "Dust" has tickled the lower echelons of the top 40 and had some minor airplay and is probably the pick here. Royworld have one of those sounds which is entirely derivative without you specifically being able to put your finger on exactly who they sound like.

I guess it's a bit like a cross between Captain and Buggles (if you can imagine such a thing) - some 80s influenced keyboard with some nice soaring guitarwork.

I like the sound, and "Dust" is a great record but I can't help being very slightly disappointed with this record as I feel it could have been really quite special. As it is, it's certainly worth a listen but probably not unmitigated genius.

There's not much left to say about Alanis' musical output. TO be fair, I think she has long reached the stage where she's unlikely to attract any new converts - for the rest of us it is just a case of how long we hold on.

Luckily, her albums remain of a really good standard (I am one of a minority who believes her albums have been on an upward curve since "Jagged Little Pill" (with the possible exception of the last one)). "Flavors of Entanglement" is everything you'd expect from Alanis - wordy, sharp and spiky with the added ingredient this time of it being her "break-up" record after the end of her relationship with ditzy Hollywood C-lister Ryan Reynolds. This adds some liberal swearing the mix as well as (if it were possible) making her more angry than she invariably is.

I could listen to it all day long, frankly, but I imagine Ryan won't be....

2 Discussions:

Blogger bedshaped said...

I think I'm gonna have to give in with Alphabeat and get the album. Those two singles have wormed their way into my head, good and proper. Damn that infectious pop sound of theirs!

I'm loving the new Alanis album. I agree with a lot of what you've said, but I have to disagree about her albums getting better since "Jagged Little Pill". I personally think she peaked on "Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie". Ask most previous followers and that would probably be the album they decided to fall out of love with Alanis. And like you said, I don't think this album will win over any new fans or indeed win any previous fans back.
She's an angsty bicth though, and that's what I like best about her.

11:14 PM  
Blogger LB said...

I do think I am in a minority with the Alanis thing... I think "Under Rug Swept" might be my favourite....

You think the two Alphabeat singles so far are catchy - you wait until you hear some of the rest of it!

7:59 AM  

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