Velvet & Linda Bengtzing - Victorious
Swedish pop/dance artist Velvet and fellow Melodifestivalen veteran Linda Bengtzing teamed up this year to record Victorious for the purpose of sending to the yearly Swedish Eurovision song selection show. An incredibly typical Schalger dance/pop song complete with a key change, it would have easily been a huge radio hit and a big chart hit in Sweden. A massive chorus with both women's vocals complement each other brilliantly, it's the second great pop duet Linda's done in the last few months, the other being Not That Kinda Girl with Kim Lian. It's a real shame that Christer Bjorkman didn't put this into the semis because although I'm loving a lot of the songs this year, it's really lacking in both girl power and Schlager-pop, both of which this song oozes. It hasn't got a full single release but has instead been featured on the new Rix FM compilation album, giving fans of the artists the chance to hear the rejected track. But seriously, was Hippare Hoppare REALLY chosen over this? Madness.
Cascada - Pyromania
German dance trio Cascada have had shocking longevity in the industry, now entering what is their sixth year of worldwide success. Fresh from their UK chart topping single and top ten album of the same name, Evacuate The Dancefloor (which was followed by the super-flops Dangerous and Fever, but we'll forget those ever happened), Natalie, Yanou and Manian are back with another GaGa influenced dancefloor stormer, Pyromania. Where Evacuate The Dancefloor owes a huge debt to Just Dance, this is essentially Cascada's sequel to Poker Face. Not that this is a bad thing of course, if you're going to borrow sounds you might as well borrow them from the best in the business - which at the moment is easily Lady GaGa. The vocals are spot on as usual, Natalie in my opinion being one of the most underrated vocalists around - she has an incredibly strong and distinctive voice which lends itself to the usual dance sound, this new RedOne sound that they've adopted so successfully and even ballads, where she sounds gorgeous. An incredibly repetitive song, Pyromania sticks in your head instantly and once again Cascada should have a huge worldwide hit on their hands with this.
Staygold feat Spank Rock, Lady Tigra and Damien Adore - Backseat
It really is about time I covered this song, seeing as it's been at the top of my 'chart' for the past couple of weeks. Swedish duo Staygold have teamed up with fellow Swede Salem Al Fakir (under the alias Damien Adore) along with US rappers Spank Rock and Lady Tigra, and the result is arguably the most infectious song of 2010 so far. 'Damien' puts on his best Mika falsetto over an irresistible 80's inspired Prince-like electro groove which sounds incredibly fresh yet classic at the same time. The cameo rap from Spank Rock and vocal segment from Lady Tigra only add to the magic of the song, coming in at the perfect time to prevent the song from becoming repetitive. And just when you think it's all over, a stunning electro breakdown closes the track out in the best 80's throwback I can recall since Groove Armada's 2007 anthem Song 4 Mutya. Definitely one to listen to - highly recommended.