Just a few short months ago, Robyn Miriam Carlsson dropped the first in her trilogy of Body Talk releases, raising her own personal bar for emotionally charged, perpetually energetic electro-pop. Across eight songs, just about all of them standouts, the Swedish diva showed off her skills while showing off her vulnerability, proclaiming that “Fembots have feelings too,” while claiming her crown as a “Dancehall Queen.” And whether one considers it an EP, mini-album or otherwise, it arrived as one of the most cohesive and consistently enjoyable releases of the year.
And then she dropped another one. Buoyant, ecstatic and as catchy as pop music comes in 2010, Body Talk Pt. 2 maintains the impossibly high pleasure factor of its predecessor. Offering eight more standouts, Robyn essentially lines up a series of singles. And whether or not each of these eight songs actually is a single (they’re not), they all most certainly could be. One that actually is a single, however, is “Hang With Me,” which appeared in vastly different form on the first Body Talk installment. Here, it’s not an acoustic ballad but a dancefloor anthem, with Robyn once again showing her vulnerable side, singing “Don’t fall recklessly, headlessly in love with me/ ’cause it’s gonna be/ all heartbreak, blissful and painful insanity.” Yet even if she keeps love at arm’s length, it’s delivered in as stunning a package as possible.
On the other hand, the string-laden “Indestructible” is an elegant ballad that casts aside the electronics and beats for a mesmerizing and refined close, making for a surprising peak on an album that has virtually no valleys. From the fierce opening throb of “In My Eyes” to the strobe-light flash of “Include Me Out,” the surprisingly fun Snoop Dogg appearance on “U Should Know Better” and the hypnotic disco of “Love Kills,” Body Talk Pt. 2 is a non-stop stream of enduring thrills and massive hooks.
Video: “Hang With Me”
Jeff Terich is the founder and editor of Treble. He's been writing about music for 20 years and has been published at American Songwriter, Bandcamp Daily, Reverb, Spin, Stereogum, uDiscoverMusic, VinylMePlease and some others that he's forgetting right now. He's still not tired of it.