My reviews of some of the latest pop albums, marked in CDs out of five.
Alphabeat – Express Non-Stop (Listen)
Alphabeat may have just succeeded in making the happiest album of all time. There’s very little light and shade, the whole album is 100 miles per hour excitement and the title Express Non-Stop is pretty accurate! I’m sure many grumpy bores would hate it for that reason, but for me it’s like a dream come true. It’s hard to pick a favourite, but Mad About You was the first one I found myself singing along to and Younger Than Yesterday is another standout. Alphabeat have made the album their fans want, with complete disregard for anyone else, and I have to admire them for that.
Agnes – Veritas (Listen)
While Agnes has released some excellent singles in the past, her albums have always been a bit disappointing as the other tracks were good but nowhere near the same standard. For Veritas she has taken a new approach, going for a more electro-pop rather than dance-pop sound, and it’s had the opposite effect. While I don’t rate any of Veritas’ singles as highly as Release Me or On and On, the album is much more consistent and every track is interesting. If you’re bored waiting for the next Robyn or Tove Styrke album, Electro-Agnes will happily keep you occupied.
Kristina Maria – Tell The World (Listen)
Kristina is a Canadian pop star who hasn’t the slightest chance of international success, but every pop fan should know about her. By working with the writers and producers behind some of the biggest pop hits of the early 2000s, she’s made a timewarp album that sounds like it’s been sitting in a drawer (and some of the tracks may have been) for ten years waiting to be released. There is a fair bit of filler, but the best songs are properly brilliant. Check out Animal, FML x2, Karma, Let’s Play and Our Song Comes On for a few examples.