Posts Tagged ‘the motorhomes’

Luke’s Scandinavian Pop Sampler Volume 10! (December 2009)

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

Click here to download a zipped file containing all 20 mp3 files and the front and back cover artwork.

1. The Genuine Fakes: I Don’t Want It (Five Audio Commercials EP, 2009)
Johan Bergqvist’s two solo albums have been long-time favourites here at Popsicle HQ, and his collaborative project The Genuine Fakes is producing some of the best power pop to come out of Sweden in a long time.

2. A-ha: Foot Of The Mountain (Foot Of The Mountain, 2009)
Norway’s favourite sons have announced that the tour to support this album will be their last, and they are to split up late next year. All this on the heels of their best album in almost ten years.

3. A Camp: Stronger Than Jesus (Colonia, 2009)
When Nina Persson isn’t making records with The Cardigans she can be found recording and touring under the A Camp banner with her American husband Nathan Larson (Shudder To Think) and genius Swedish producer/guitarist and Atomic Swing founder Niclas Frisk.

4. Moonbabies: Take Me to the Ballroom (Rufus Remix) (net release, 2009)
This showed up in my inbox a few months back. Japanese DJ Rufus took this sublime slice of Swedish indiepop and made it sound like Life-era Cardigans. A-B it with the original Moonbabies track…it’s amazing what this guy did with this song.

5. Annie: I know Your Girlfriend Hates Me (Don’t Stop, 2009)
Norwegian DJ/pop diva Annie’s 2004 debut Anniemal was a tongue-in-cheek bubblegum pop classic, and after some extensive record label nightmares, the follow-up album “Don’t Stop” came out independently in October.

6. John Me: Run (I Am John, 2009)
The Motorhomes were one of my favourite bands of recent years, so I kept my eye on the various members when the band split up in 2004, and I set up a myspace page for them when their website disappeared ( I certainly wasn’t expecting singer Mattias Edlund to show up this year signed to Epic Records under the moniker John Me. The album doesn’t appear to have made much of a splash, but it has some great tracks on it.

7. The Sounds: No One Sleeps When I’m Awake (Crossing The Rubicon, 2009)
The Sounds weren’t really on my radar prior to this album. I saw their name around but just wasn’t getting into much of the 80’s retro sounds of bands like them and The Killers. Then I heard this single from their last album and it blew me away. This is one of the best choruses I’ve heard in years.

8. The Men: Pack Up Your Memories (Four Good Men and True, 2010)
This just showed up last week. The Men are Southern Swedish maximum R&B purists whose authentic mid-60’s sound is honed in the studio by genius producer Christoffer Lundquist at his all-analogue Aerosol Grey Machine studio. This track is taken from their third album, due for release in February 2010.

9. Envelope: Open Window (Open Roads Lonely Trains, 2008)
I was a big fan of this Danish band’s 2001 indie debut album ‘Stay’ and I stumbled upon the follow-up earlier this year. It turns out it’s pretty much a solo venture by Copenhagen singer/songwriter Christoffer Hoyer, and this latest album has some killer tracks on it, like this one.

10. Buffalo: All I Wanna Do (single, 2009)
Anyone who follows my samplers knows that Norway’s Costar are one of my favourite bands. They were based in London for many years, but a move to Australia has found the band’s frontman and songwriter Jorgen Landhaug re-inventing himself in a couple of different musical guises, including this brand new one, which is quite excellent.

11. Atomic Swing: The Flasher (The Broken Habanas, 2006)
It blows my mind that even in the information age I can still not hear about a new album release by a favourite Swedish pop band. Case in point, I only just found out that Niclas Frisk reunited Atomic Swing three years ago and put out this phenomenal album.

12. Spencer: Screw The World Police (The Big Politician EP, 2006)
Spencer’s Regular De Luxe stands as one of the most underrated Swedish pop albums of the 90’s. I had thought they’d disappeared altogether until earlier this year when they found me on myspace and I was delighted to learn that they hadn’t split up at all. They haven’t exactly been prolific, but there’s a three track EP from three years ago which you can download for free from their website, and this is one of those tracks.

13. Peter and the Penguins: She Took Me By Surprise (How To Choose a Sweetheart, 2009)
Norway’s Peter and the Penguins have been on my radar for some time, so this full-length album release earlier this year was much anticipated. What The Men do for the sounds of London circa 1965, Peter and Co. do for the sounds of Liverpool with their Rickenbacker-fuelled Beatlesesque harmonies.

14. Per Gessle: Doesn’t Make Sense (Live in London – May, 2009)
Here’s a treat. I was in London earlier this year and caught this concert by Roxette dude Per Gessle and his band. This song from Per’s last album Party Crasher was a real highlight, especially with the mellifluous Helena Josefsson of Sandy Mouche on backing vocals and the build at the end which is just magic. The show was being recorded for broadcast on Sirius XM radio, so I stole this snippet from the broadcast for this sampler. There’s plenty more like this on Per’s new ‘Gessle Over Europe’ live album.

15. Dylan Mondegreen: We Cannot Falter (The World Spins On, 2009)
Børge Sildnes’ second album under the name Dylan Mondegreen is as delightful a ray of indiepop sunshine as his 2007 debut While I Walk You Home which holds the record as the best selling CD at my Popsicle Webshop. I dance my nine month old daughter to sleep to this album. She has impeccable taste in music, of course.

16. Citizen K: She Says (Somewhere Up North, 2009)
Citizen K is the vehicle of Swedish singer/songwriter Klas Qvist whose bio amusingly suggests he’s not sure who his father is because his Mother had brief affairs with George Harrison, Brian Jones, Syd Barrett, Keith Moon, Dennis Wilson and Frank Zappa in November 1965. In reality what we have here is a display of phenomenal song-craft which grows on you with each listen.

17. Jay-Jay Johanson: Wonder Wonders (Self-Portrait, 2009)
Jay-Jay Johanson has made some of the most interesting music to come out of Sweden for the last ten years. With his falsetto croon and trip-hop beats, he sounds like no one else. Self-Portrait is his seventh album and by far his darkest and most impenetrable work. Perfect music for grey winter days.

18. Röyksopp featuring Robyn: The Girl And The Robot (Junior, 2009)
‘Junior’ is a return to form after the mildly disappointing 2005 effort ‘The Understanding’ from this Norwegian electronica duo. The album benefits from a bunch of female guest vocalists, including The Knife’s Karin Dreijer Andersson, Lykke Li, the sublime Anneli Drecker and this track featuring the brilliant Robyn.

19. Moi Caprice: The Town & The City (The Past Is A Foreign Country, 2009)
Another of our favourite bands at Popsicle Heights is Denmark’s Moi Caprice. Their newest release is a double CD set in a fold-out digipack. Disc one is entitled ‘All We Fear Is Love’ and features 14 of their best tracks plus two new songs. Disc two is called ‘The Past Is A Foreign Country’ and features newly recorded re-workings of some of their best tracks, all of which are vastly different from the originals. A great introduction to this fascinating band.

20. Kings of Convenience: Me in You (Declaration of Dependence, 2009)
There’s something effortless about this new Kings Of Convenience album. Even on a first listen it’s like greeting an old friend. This Norwegian duo have gone back to basics, dispensing with the drums and returning to the core of their sound…two acoustic guitars and two beautiful voices singing in harmony. Perfection.

Luke’s Scandinavian Pop Sampler Volume 5! (December 2003)

Monday, December 1st, 2003

Click here to download a zipped file containing all 22 mp3 files and the front and back cover artwork.

1. Metro Jets: The Morning Show (single, 2004)
Metro Jets is the perfect pop fix for those of you who are waiting patiently for a new Beagle album. Magnus from Beagle and David from Brainpool bring you this slice of power pop perfection which is actually the theme song for Sweden’s new hit TV sitcom Hipp Hipp…did  someone mention The Rembrandts?…

2. Ola Framby: My Turn (EP, 2002)
Ola Framby was the songwriting force behind and frontman of The Girls in the early 90’s whose masterpiece “It’s Not For The Oskon” album has become a sought-after rarity among powerpop collectors. On this one-man-band solo project he flexes his considerable songwriting muscles with a set of innovative and unpredictable tunes which will  draw you back again and again.

3. Vibeke Saugestad: Velvet Revolution (Overdrive, 2003)
This Norwegian singer’s latest album “Overdrive” is a powerhouse of catchy powerpop numbers, co-written and co-produced by Beagle’s Magnus Borjeson and Brainpool’s David Birde who also play bass and guitar on the album. Also co-produced by the great Christoffer Lundqvist, it’s absolutely essential listening.

4. Johan Bergqvist: Shine (Boy Extracting Thorn, 2002)
This just came across my desk recently and blew me away. A young Swede with a knack for catchy writing that brings to mind influences such as Elliott Smith, Popsicle, and Shawn Smith. Bergvist even contributes two tunes to an upcoming Shawn Smith tribute album. Don’t know who Shawn Smith is? We need to talk!

5. Freewheel: Queen (Varandra, 2000)
It only took me three years to track down this Japanese follow-up to “Starfriend”. In all honesty it’s not as good as its predecessor, but it has a few standout tracks including this one.

6. The Mopeds: She Went Boom (Celebrate The Herring, 1998)
Possibly the Mopeds’ finest song, this was a single in Sweden and has never appeared on an album. It does show up on this excellent Japan-only Celebrate The Herring EP from 1998 though.

7. Sweet Chariots: All I Want Is What I Had (Beat Based, Song Centered, Spirit Led, 2000)
This album picks up where Popsicle left off with their 1997 release “Stand Up And Testify”. Main Popsicle dude Andreas Mattsson hooked up with longtime Popsicle producer and Atomic Swing dude Niclas Frisk to put together this very Popsicle-esque CD a couple of years back…great stuff!

8. Andreas Johnson: Glorious (Liebling, 1999)
This album was produced by Peter Kvint of Melony. It’s the kind of music  you think you’ve heard on the radio before. Lush production and lots of catchy hooks. This track was a hit in Europe.

9. Popundret: That What Makes Me Love You (Montmartre 15 40, 1996)
I got this track on a sampler a while back and it took me ages to track the album down. I don’t normally go in for a lot of Smiths-inspired jangly guitar stuff but this Skellefteå band have their pop hooks down.

10. Komeda: Nonsense (Kokomemedada, 2003)
How a new Komeda album could almost slip right past my radar is a mystery, but I just picked this one up and it’s great. Only released in Europe, this album picks up where 1998’s “What Makes It Go” left off, albeit with a more laid back and dreamy approach.

11. Rubbertribe: Above The Sun (Wound On My Neck For You, 2001)
Someone sent me CD single of the track “Daylight” from this obscure CD back in 2001. Two years later I finally have the CD in my hands and it doesn’t disappoint. There are some powerpop moments on this album, but they also have a touch of the Radioheads, in a good way, like The Motorhomes. Recommended.

12. Ray Wonder: We Got To Be Good To Each Other (A New Kind Of Love,  2000)
This should have gone on one of the previous samplers, but there was never room for it. Ray Wonder are half way between Komeda (the band that spawned them) and The Cardigans. Indeed, Nina Persson turns in a sublime guest vocal on album closer “Lid”, and Baxter’s Nina Ramsby guests on this cut.

13. Ola Framby: Coming Home (Ola Framby, 2003)
Here’s another slice of offbeat brilliance from Mr. Framby.

14. The Venue: What’s In His Head? (Mmhm!, 2002)
If ever a band were living in the 60’s, it’s beat revivalists The Venue. This album is chock full of great numbers. Roll on 1966…

15. The Motorhomes: It’s Alright (Songs For Me And My Baby, 1999)
It wasn’t until I’d OD’d on The Motorhomes more recent “Long Distance Runner” album that I even knew they’d done an earlier album. What? Another superbly produced CD of killer songs? Every bit as good as it’s follow-up…killer!

16. Vibeke Saugestad: Not On Your Life (Into The Shimmering, 2001)
While her more recent “Overdrive” is the one to get, Vibeke’s major label debut from 2001 has some great cuts on it as well.

17. The Isolation Years: It’s Golden (It’s Golden, 2003)
This little-know band from northern Sweden released this impressive debut earlier this year. It’s a tasty little psych-pop affair, and this track features the most superb theft of a Beatles lyric I’ve heard in years!

18. Ronderlin: Reflected (Wave Another Day Goodbye, 2002)
Another album I’ve played to bits over the last few months, this guitar pop affair is very reminiscent of The Leslies and Happydeadmen. Full of great pop hooks.

19. Starlet: When Sun Falls On My Feet (When Sun Falls On My Feet, 2002)
Here’s some slightly darker stuff from this band’s third album, released last year. There are some jangly guitars reminiscent of earlier R.E.M. and some nice horn arrangements. Not to be played before 2am.

20. Edson: Every Day (One Last Song About You Know What, 2003)
Another great EP from the always great Edson. I actually wanted to put the title track on here but it wouldn’t fit!

21. Doris Days: To Ulrike M. (Live In Poland, 1996)
Anyone who got into Lloyd Parker from the last sampler will want to check this out. I worked my way backwards from Lloyd Parker and found that Markus Gylling was formerly in Doris Days who released this little-known  album in 1996. It’s another slice of dark trip-pop with another great  female vocalist, Lisa Carlioth, who sounds quite a lot like Pineforest Crunch’s Asa Eklund. Great stuff. Incidentally, recorded in a studio in Sweden, and not live in Poland.

22. Magnet: The Day We Left Town (On Your Side, 2003)
Even Johanson returns with another sublime offering from earlier this year. This guy’s making waves all across Europe, but fairly predictably, nothing over here. His imagination is vast. This album is like nothing I’ve heard before. I must admit I personally prefer his previous “Quiet and Still” album which had a simpler production, but this album is immense.

Luke’s Scandinavian Pop Sampler Volume 4! (April 2003)

Tuesday, April 1st, 2003

Click here to download a zipped file containing all 22 mp3 files and the front and back cover artwork.

1. Popium: Favourite Blunders (Popium, 2001)
2. The Motorhomes: I Wanna Make You Sing (The Long Distance Runner, 2002)
3. The Pendletones: Problems (Move Along, 2002)
4. The Kooks: Rollercoaster #2 (Verbal Jujitsu, 2002)
5. Leslies: Still Can’t Believe (Leslies, 2001)
6. The Men: Baby, Don’t You Do It (The Men, 2001)
7. The Klerks: Chance (The Klerks, 2001)
8. The Confusions: The Pilot (Trampoline, 2002)
9. Magnet: Where Happiness Lives (Quiet & Still, 2000)
10. Cranbury Sauce: Mrs. Betty T. Ward (Circular Songs, 2002)
11. Moonbabies: I’m Insane But So Are You (June and Novas, 2000)
12. Eyedrop: City Moan (single, 2003)
13. Erlend Øye: Ghost Trains (Unrest, 2003)
14. Isolation Years: Talking Backward Masking Blues (Inland Traveler, 2001)
15. The Perishers: When I Fall (From Nothing To One, 2002)
16. Righteous Boy: Loved Among Friends (I Sing Because Of You, 2002)
17. Reminder: Scared (Broken Tone, 2001)
18. Popium: Silver Lining (Permanently High, 2002)
19. Ward J. Little: The One Who Got Away (Homing Tones, 1997)
20. Edson: T.G.I.F. (For Strength, 2002)
21. Måns Wieslander: Illium (Twin Piloda, 2000)
22. Lloyd Parker: Numbers (Faster, 2000)