New Pop on the Block

Firefox AK – Once I Was Like You (Audio)
Swedish female electro-popper Firefox AK is a bit like Norwegian favourite Bertine Zetlitz, but her songs often have something of a melancholy side to them, and therefore she’s never made anything quite level with the likes of Ah-Ah, Fake Your Beauty or 500, for me. This new single is quite engaging, simple with nice electro sounds and delicately contemplative vocals, and it has grown on me with each listen. Perhaps with a few more I’ll be a big fan, but so far I prefer her duets with Tiger Lou (Winter Rose) and Hello Saferide (Long Lost Penpal – this is especially excellent). If this style of music is your top thing, as I know it is for many of my readers, then Firefox AK has a back-catalogue definitely worth delving into if you’re not already familiar.
80% Poptastic!

Kings Have Long Arms ft. Candie Payne – Big Umbrella (Video)
For some reason, despite her working with Mark Ronson, and having a similar style to the now hugely popular Duffy, Candie never quite made it big when she arrived on the music scene last year. Maybe now, in the wake of Duffy’s success, she’ll get a little further with this sweet and very authentic 60s pastiche, which I’m sure will go down very well with Radio 2 types. However, if she didn’t get anywhere with her ace single One More Chance (unless you count #122 in the charts as a success), maybe it’s just not meant to be for Candie Payne. Maybe it was the relation to one of The Zutons that put people off…
66% Poptastic!

Alanis Morrissette – Underneath (Video)
The original Kelly/Avril/P!nk is back to claim her title as Queen of Pop-Angst. I can’t say I like this as much as Thank You or Ironic, but it’s alright I suppose. Apparently she worked with Guy Sigsworth (the man from Frou Frou) on this comeback attempt, and pictures like this suggest she’s aiming for rather more mainstream appeal, but I can’t say it’s a big departure from what she’s done before. She could have gone a little more electro vocoder-ish (like the Frou Frou/Imogen Heap sound), but then that sound has been done now and maybe there isn’t any point in it being taken up by a major artist. If Guy could create another Blow My Mind (amazing Robyn album track), then I’d be more than interested. This is just a bit uninspiring.
52% Poptastic!

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