International Video Challenge

Representing Sweden: Ludwig Bell – Kärlek Slutar Alltid Med Bråk
Maybe it’s just because I have great memories of Sweden but I love the sound of Swedish and especially in indie-pop. For some reason I find that Swedish suits indie-pop better than pure pop, and most of my favourite Swedish language songs (such as Små Små Steg and En Vän Med En Bil) tend to be of the kooky, jangly variety. Kärlek Slutar Alltid Med Bråk (which I think means “love always ends with a fight”) is a quintessential piece of Swedish indie-pop, so if you aren’t familiar with the genre it’s a good place to start. If you don’t like this, there won’t be much point in persevering, but if you do enjoy it then a whole new world of adorable, incomprehensible Swedish indie-pop awaits!

Representing Germany: Annemie – Animal Instinct
20 year old German poppet Annemarie Eilfeld made her name when she reached the top 3 of German talent show DSDS in 2008, despite being labelled a “super-bitch”! This description certainly peaked my interest, and although Animal Instinct doesn’t quite display the sassily obnoxious sound I hoped the “super-bitch” label would entail, it still has a great energy and I think a lot of my readers will enjoy it. Annemarie was also part of a rather interesting group called LaMie, whose sound was a mixture of metal and electro-pop. Quite unique! As I said regarding Sarah Connor last week, German pop has been pretty rubbish of late, so I’ll be keeping an eye on Annemie in the hope she’ll re-awaken the poptasticness in her country-folk.

Representing Canada: Down With Webster – Woah Is Me
The trends of American rap music seem to be changing and I’m not very pleased. I fear the era of hip-hop being bearable and at times (mostly involving Flo Rida) almost poptastic is over. For the past few years hip-hop artists have looked to electro-pop for inspiration, but now the times are changing and it seems like the new trend is to blend rock with rap. 3OH!3 have been at it a while and B.O.B’s collaboration with Hayley from Paramore was a huge hit. This is an unhappy situation already but even worse now it’s led to Woah Is Me, which sounds a bit like you’d expect a duet between Eminem and Linkin Park i.e. the most embarrassing sides of rap and rock. The lyrics would be hilarious if I wasn’t so concerned that a lot of people will actually think they’re witty and cool. Very worrying! But they do get an extra globe for the jaunty Scissor Sisters-esque backing music.

Representing France: Be Wiz’U – Le Monde Avec Toi
Back in 2008 I wrote about a French equivalent of S Club 8 called Kidtonik and Be Wiz’U are quite similar but I had to share this video as it’s so adorable and I think the single is actually a really good summery dance-pop song. The music is quite like what S Club 8 used to do (the sound of their second album but the childishness of their first) and their energy and enthusiasm is infectious. I really think more popstars should put as much effort into their dance routines as Be Wiz’U. The performance part of their music video does look like something their parents made at home, but the main theme of it is a bulldog zipping around on a skateboard with multi-coloured musical notes flying out of its bum! Now that’s got you interested, hasn’t it?

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