Album Review : Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 2 - England Swings - The BEST music from the UK
 
Robyn is fulfilling her promise of releasing three albums this year. The second one, "Body Talk Part 2" has just come out, and it's a continuation of the synth-blasted power pop sound that she pioneered. Admittedly, she's cheating a little bit. The albums could be classified as "mini", since they're only eight songs or so each. The quality of the music, however, cannot be denied. She's also continued the pattern of the last album by having seven strong synth-based tunes, and one acoustic number at the end. With "Part 1", that song was "Hang With Me", which is revealed in its fully-formed version on this album, and has been the first single. The song is classic Robyn, ranking up there with her best. The synths grumble and burble, the beat is a straight trance 1-2, and the vocals hit the sweet spot. There are tons of people using this kind of synth backgrounding nowadays, from Katy Perry to Alexandra Burke, but they don't quite get it. There's an organic quality to the synthesizers used in Robyn's songs that makes them sound ALIVE. She and her producers really understand how to wring the utmost emotion from the instrument. Robyn explains this herself at the beginning of "Include Me Out" with the spoken words "It is really very simple. Just a simple pulse repleated at a regular interval". It's never really that simple, though. In this song, the pulse she's referring swoops and dives, multiplies and growls. Robyn's lyric-writing skills come to the forefront in "We Dance To the Beat". Ostensibly a robo-trance rhythm, she brings in interesting words : "We dance to the beat of silent mutation/We dance to the beat of your brain not evolving fast enough". Each new line is thoughtful and creative. "Criminal Intent" is all spooky and sliding, but also adorable. We've got a male voice intoning "Somebody alert the authorities/She got criminal intent", while Robyn slips in and out, using several filtered voices. We've got a guest star on the next-to-last track, and guess who it is! C'mon, take a guess.That's right! Snoop Dogg. Where doesn't he turn up nowadays? Obscenely hilarious, it's a conquer-the-world pop song with one of the best raps Snoop has done recently. "Even the Vatican knows not to f--- with me", Robyn breezes. The acoustic track is "Indestructible", and the accompaniment this time is a string quartet. Admittedly, it gets a bit monotonous after a listen or two, but it will be fascinating to see her turn it into a monster pop song on Part 3. I'll go so far as to say that Robyn is one of the best innovators and writers in the pop music nowadays. This album is nearly all strengths, and I can't wait to see what she'll do next. 




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