April 16, 2009


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A Camp, Colonia
Nettwerk Records, April 28

Second album from the pomp-indie band fronted by Nina Persson, ex of the Cardigans, who gave us the Austin Powers-ified ’60s-candy-pop single “Carnival” and buzzy roller-rink classic “Love Fool.” Her days of airheaded brat-bubble are behind her, apparently, since she’s now on a path that’s more deeply conceptual, dare one say, and yes, you should be thinking Decembrists but in a more lighthearted, less self-serving vein. Her voice has departed Taylor Swift/Lisa Loeb territory to embrace her impending cougar-ness: if, in your radio travels, you happen upon something that sounds like a dead-bang cross between Chrissie Hynde and Shania Twain, that’d be Persson on “Stronger Than Jesus,” the most bald-faced attempt at a chart-topper on Colonia. Key to this project’s success with college drunkards is the hope that people aren’t taken aback by a chick singer who doesn’t waste a syllable posing as a glaze-eyed moonbat, wounded hater or untouchable diva, as those who are will miss some interesting modernizations of Patsy Cline (“The Weed Had Got There First”), Pretenders (“My America”, “Here Are Many Wild Animals”) and ’70s big-deal-radio (“I Signed the Line”).B — EWS