Popjustice’s Peter Robinson grabs the hit parade by the scruff of its neck
One of last year’s more pleasant surprises was the reinvention of formerly slightly rubbish rapper Example as a sort of post-Girls Aloud one-man pop powerhouse. His surprise for 2011 are two sassy lassies called Oh My!. He’s been working on songs with Alex and Jade and the results are already really exciting. Free download ‘Run This Town’ has some great hooks while ‘Dirty Dancer’ is a pleasingly bonkers, Patrick Swayze-themed banger, and the duo are already signed to 679 Recordings, home of Marina and Little Boots.
If absurd key changes are more your thing, you’ll be pleased that Eurovision is on the horizon and this year’s Swedish entry – ‘Popular’ by Eric Saade – is a great blast of high-octane Europop. They take the contest very seriously in Sweden, and each year run the huge Melodifestivalen competition over several weeks, starting off with 32 entries from some of the country’s biggest pop acts.
The standard is incredibly high - 23 of the Melodifestivalen entries are worth a listen, and 32 are better than Blue’s pathetic UK entry. Highlights include Le Kid’s ‘Oh My God’ and Love Generation’s ‘Dance Alone’, which is produced by Lady Gaga collaborator RedOne.
At the cooler end of the Swedish pop spectrum, Vanbot are an exciting new duo whose male member doesn’t appear in the promo material – sound the La Roux siren – and whose vocalist Ester Ideskog offers up a softer, sweeter version of Robyn’s distinctive tones. The delicious ‘Make Me, Break Me’ is a free download ahead of a full album release in a couple of months.
And finally, well, finally there’s Stooshe, a trio of south east London girls. They made a minor splash online last month when their single ‘Fuck Me’ appeared out of nowhere with the fun feel of Mutya-era Sugababes. They’re unsigned and haven’t put any more tunes online yet, but whatever they do next promises to be interesting.
Peter’s Top 5
Oh My ‘Run This Town’
Eric Saade ‘Popular’
Vanbot ‘Make Me, Break Me’
Le Kid ‘Oh My God’
Stooshe ‘Fuck Me’
This article originally appeared in the April 23rd issue of NME
Subscribe here and get NME for £1 a week, or get this week's digital issue