“This Is…Icona Pop,” Album Review

Picture from http://www.spin.com

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard Icona Pop’s “I Love It” once or twice or twenty thousand times. The catchy electro-pop single was first released in 2012 and began it’s steady climb up the charts, eventually peaking at number 1 and was featured everywhere, from TV shows to advertisements. With appearances at summer music festivals, such as Lollapalooza and a North American world tour, the Swedish duo seemed to be everywhere. With this is “This Is…Icona Pop,” their international debut, after a string of singles and EPs, Icona Pop sets out to answer the question on everyone’s mind: “What will they do after ‘I Love It’?”

“This Is…Icona Pop” opens up with their big hit, as if to get it out of the way. “I Love It” is quickly followed with similar electro-pop sing-a-longs “All Night,” “We Got The World,” “Ready for the Weekend” and “Girlfriend.” Most of these songs had been released before, either on EPs or as singles and have probably been on rotation on many “party playlists” for a few weeks now.  The first half of the album is filled with upbeat, pure pop anthems. Sure, Icona Pop isn’t breaking any lyrical ground here, most, if not all, of their songs are about partying, partying with boys, partying with friends and generally not caring, but any of these songs could easily chart the same way “I Love It” did.

The second half of the album features the “new” material and while keeping up with the theme and sound of the album, isn’t as memorable as the previous set of songs.  The ballad-y “Just Another Night,” which is also one of the few songs in which Caroline Hjlet and Aino Jawo have solo vocals, is followed by “On A Roll” and it’s an odd arrangement to have the slower song about heartbreak smack in the middle of all of  songs about “living it up.”

It’s almost as if “This Is…Icona Pop” is the soundtrack of a night out, starting out with promise and excitement, peaking and later slowing down as the party starts to wind down and people start going home.

While not one of the stronger albums of 2013- it’s little repetitive and at times, dumb, “This Is…Icona Pop” has a couple of radio-ready singles and party songs that will replace “I Love It” and keep the Swedish duo from fading into one-hit wonder obscurity.