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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa

Rating: 7.5/10 ?


September 27, 2010
If you only heard the singles you'd be convinced Robyn was the author of the greatest pop record this side of Lady Gaga (and for what it's worth she consistently out-writes and -performs Gaga, who is now apparently the go-to reference for synthesized pop); however, this is only half the story.

Robyn returned this year with two new EPs with an alleged third one on the way and while the construction of each flatters the contents, taken as a whole, they're wildly uneven. The stronger of the two is Body Talk Pt. 1, with three of ten best singles of the 2010 in "Fembot," "Dancing on My Own" and "Cry When You Get Older" (a prom theme waiting to happen if I've ever heard one) in its brief eight-song running. If you're like me, "Dancehall Queen" makes four by improving on No Doubt's Rock Steady.

Body Talk Pt.2 has the better take on "Hang With Me" (the first installment featured a flowery "acoustic" version), and a handful of industrial-strength, floor-ready tracks like "In My Eyes" and "Love Kills," replete with glassy ice-queen hooks. However, it's not nearly as fun as Pt. 1's highs and the hooks seem much less important than the beats. Robyn's savvy enough to mix the two preferences, but Robyn without a strong hook is like Tom Brady without quality wide-receivers: still worth running out there, but with less in the way of results..

Where these sets stumble is in the "experimental" aspects. "We Dance to the Beat," which will sound ridiculous (to be fair it's probably intended to be a bit silly) to most listeners, and inspire at least a few "why is this thing 4:38 long?" type eye-rolls ("we dance to the beat of your brain not evolving fast enough?" is that really a lyric?) doesn't need to be on an acetate, let alone a finished product. Not to mention supposedly empowering tracks like "Don't Fucking Tell Me What to Do" which is neither empowering, nor particularly shocking for its f-bomb dropping title.

There's plenty here to love, and Robyn's chosen format of loosely constructed EPs is surprisingly flattering to this set, improving on the scatological qualities of her 2005 Robyn through sheer packaging. And the fact that you can hear "Dancing on My Own" on the radio now is a victory for a shamefully ignored 90s castoff. Show Robyn some love-she deserves better than one-hit-wonder tag she's been saddled with, and she's finally getting it.

Reviewed by Cory Tendering
No biographical information is currently available.

See other reviews by Cory Tendering

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