Album: Margaret Berger – “Pretty Scary Silver Fairy” (2006)

People have careers outside Eurovision, as you can imagine. While some of its performers have had long careers, and others even kick off long careers as a result of it, there is a huge spectrum inbetween. Margaret rose to fame on Norway’s “Idol” show, where she reached 2nd place in the 2004 series. It spawned an album “Chameleon”, and two years later, this album “Pretty Scary Silver Fairy”.

margaret berger pretty scary silver fairyPursuing other interests in the media world after this, her entry for the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest “I feed you my love” was a magnificent comeback, and heralds a third album “Chastisement” due out soon. I was very excited to see her name appear in the running for Norwegian Eurovision re-selection event “Norsk Melodi Grand Prix”, as I had long loved her single “Samantha”, so I think now the dust has settled in Malmö, it’s time to take a look at its parent album.

07 Silver Fairy – Sleek and beat-driven, this is an intriguing opening track, with old-fashioned-sounding effects on her vocals. It’s a surprisingly hip-hop slant for the album, I hadn’t really expected. I guess it’s a Scandinavian thing, I’ve heard Robyn doing similar things. It’s cool though, a nice hook on the chorus.

07 Seek I’ll hide – More big beats, but that electro influence is a bit more prominent. I know she’s got a great voice though, why is she covering it up so much? It’s a cute chorus, even if I think it’s more about giving attitude than anything. It paints a picture of a ballsy but seductive woman getting her flirt on.

09 Will you remember me tomorrow? – Now THIS is more my thing. It’s almost incredible it’s the same artist, and the commercial potential is a lot more pronounced. Not straying from the sound of the album though, it’s still a gorgeous little pop love song about the first rush of love. Really gorgeous and perfect for summer. The note of doubt in the lyrics doesn’t poop the party, it’s very uplifting.

10 Samantha – This is the one that kicked it all off. LOVE this, from that pulsating electro rhythm at the start to the sparse middle-eight where it nearly stops altogether, this is awesome. Her vocals are a bit downbeat, fits the chords lovely. There’s just so much going on here in the production, I love it.

08 I’m gonna stay after summer – What does that backing track remind me of? Gah… it’s driving me crazy. Anyway Margaret’s loved-up again and after doubting if the object of her affection is even going to remember her tomorrow, she’s taking the lead more now; she wants this relationship to go the distance. Sweet vocals and a chilled out track.

07 Get physical – More beepy electro moments to get down and dirty to. Reminds me a bit of Kylie’s “Body Language” album somehow, I feel like it’s going for the same message, and those dirty little basslines are familiar. Margaret is a chameleon indeed, she seems to step from doubtful and lovestruck to loved-up to siren with each new song!

08 Naive (16) – Another quick change and there’s a tale of heartbreak to tell, or the tale of a heart breaking. She doesn’t sound too cut up about it though, choosing instead to brush it off and chalk it up to experience. Very casual, there’s not really any sting in the tail, it’s just some guy messing her around, no need to get upset about it. That’s the vibe I’m getting anyway.

08 Robot song – I think Robyn fans will really like this album, I think that’s helped me get into this album in any case. If anything, they both seem to have a penchant for a bit of machine loving. Is that distorted vocal the robot? It seems to be doing the trick though, she’s certainly pouring her heart out in the chorus. I love those little electro riffs every so often, but it doesn’t sound like this is a relationship that’s going to last – but maybe in another life.

07 Pretty things in life – Love that creepy little intro. To be honest I’m not getting much out of this one until the chorus kicks up a gear. One of the more commercial moments of the album but I never quite find my feet on this one. The verses are just a bit too nondescript for me to really get excited. Maybe I just need it loud in the car or something.

07 Have you never ever – Closing off, an almost acapella intro starts out like it’s going to be some dubstep track. But no, thank goodness. Again it’s not quite clicking with me. I love the beat dropping out for the first bit of the chorus, but it’s just not quite popping for me. Actually that middle-eight is really nice, even if lyrically it’s not really doing much for me. When that clanging distorted piano kicks in though, lovely!

Well, it might not QUITE have clicked with me, but there’s certainly a few pretty awesome songs on there – doesn’t that make it worth it? Either way, it sounds like she’s moving on to a much more ballsy big sound with “I feel you my love” so I’m very excited to hear what we might get from her in 2013.

Keepers for the iPod: Will you remember me tomorrow?, Samantha, I’m gonna stay after summer, Naive (16), Robot Song


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Filed under Albums, Eurovision, Malmö 2013, Music, Reviews

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