Release Date: Nov 22, 2010
Record label: Interscope
Genre(s): Pop, Electronic, Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Dance-Pop, Euro-Pop, Club/Dance, Alternative Dance
Spectacular Swedish import Robyn continues to languish in the cult-act remainder bin, but these 15 excellently curated tracks (culled from three 2010 EPs) deserve to change that. If you missed out on electro-pop gems like ”Dancing on My Own,” consider Body Talk another chance. A Download These:Spangled single-girl anthem Dancing on My Own at amazon.comSweet ultimatum Hang With Me at amazon.com See all of this week’s reviews .
"Fembots have feelings, too." When we first heard Robyn sing those words, on a single promoting what would become a three-volume set of mini-LPs all bearing the name Body Talk, it was easy to focus on the Swedish pop singer's quirky sense of humor. But on this new full-length edition, "Fembot" also reveals itself as a compelling statement of purpose. Playing off contemporary pop's age-old diva-as-robot trope and cautioning that fellow droids who "burn out" are "ready for demolition," Robyn is a pop star who first and foremost projects a need for emotional connection.
Methinks pop stardom begets personality. It’s much easier for a singer to let the market influence her persona, shifting identities until something clicks with the audience, than it is for her to emerge from the studio, fully formed and unwavering in aesthetic. How many incarnations have Christina Aguilera or Britney Spears gone through? How long did it take for Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta to become Lady Gaga? Even Katy Perry had to bounce around in a P.O.D.
Fifteen years into her career, Robyn stands apart from most pop acts thanks to her ability to connect with listeners without the crutch of an alter ego. Her latest is the culmination of an album trilogy begun in June to enliven her creative process and produce dance music that works in a live context. The experiment worked: Body Talk is the year's best pop album.
Robyn's prolific 2010 culminated with Body Talk, the full-length album that featured songs from the Body Talk, Pt. 1 and Pt. 2 EPs, plus enough new songs to make up a third EP. Releasing that much new music within six months was a feat in and of itself, but the fact that each part of Body Talk was so consistent made the whole project even more impressive.
Robyn’s Body Talk LP is one of the year’s finest, most progressive pop albums, but it’s also something of a minor letdown as a standalone project. By culling five songs apiece from the Body Talk Pt. 1 and Body Talk Pt. 2 EPs released earlier this year and supplementing them with five new tracks, the album smacks of sloppy seconds.
It's no use cherishing expectations of Robin Carlsson: she's only going to contradict them. The final instalment in her Body Talk project, which has seen her release three albums over five months, proves the point: a collection of new material was anticipated, but Robyn provides only four new songs (five if you count a vibrant rerecording of Indestructible), interspersed among highlights from the first two albums – even Dancehall Queen, a dreadful bit of cod reggae with hints of Martika's Toy Soldiers, makes it in. You could argue that Robyn does sexy, bolshy, catchy pop so effortlessly – as evidenced again by the new tracks, especially Call Your Girlfriend – that Body Talk should have been edited into a straightforward killer pop album.
Review Summary: Smart, pulsing electro-pop from an artist with the makings of a true pop star.Does anyone remember Robyn’s first big single, released sometime in the mid 90’s, called “Do You Really Want Me”? It’s one best left to the deepest, most barren depths of the Now That’s What I Call Music! archives but it typified what she used to be: average. Under the guidance of super-producer Max Martin, Robyn was just like any of the other manufactured pop products clinging onto him for Top 40 survival and trust me when I say, the 90’s was not kind to mainstream pop. Aqua actually happened.
We all know how this review should go. By effectively combining all of the best moments of Robyn’s Body Talk trilogy, this massive full-length album should be rightly hailed for containing the most dramatic, forward-thinking pop music to come around all year, cementing the Swedish dance queen’s reputation as one of the smartest, wittiest, and exciting artists currently out there. Really, the whole thing doubles over as celebration for her extraordinary 2010, wherein after a bit of an absence from the music scene (let’s not forget her last disc—the insta-classic Robyn—initially came out in 2005) she gave us not just one but three albums of new music, scored a UK Top 10 hit with “Dancing on My Own”, and will soon be topping tons upon tons of year-end best-of lists for continuing to explore the many facets of her cathartic pop leanings.
A few months back, Robyn wowed US audiences with a knockout show at New York’s Webster Hall, drawing to a close her sell-out North American All Hearts tour. Supported by milkshake-bothering diva Kelis, the UK’s own Dan Black and electro/hip-hop quartet Far East Movement, Robyn played to an ecstatic crowd of adoring fans. Yes, it seemed as though Sweden’s beloved elfin popstrel was finally getting the mainstream recognition that has proved so elusive over the last decade, as she fought to shed all trace of the late Nineties era R&B chancer in favour of the feisty electro maven we see today.
The first genuinely exciting, no-filler, pure pop full-length album since The Fame. Garry Mulholland 2010 First, the consumer information. Diehard fans of the Swedish synth-pop veteran who have been waiting for the third part in a 2010 Body Talk trilogy may be disappointed. Body Talk contains five new tracks plus five songs from each of the previously released parts one and two; of those five new tracks, two are different versions of previously released cuts.