Jenny Berggren: ‘My Story’

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Ace of Base’s former lead singer, Jenny Berggren, released her debut solo album in Sweden this week. Titled ‘My Story’, it’s certainly been long awaited by her fans, whom she started teasing with her solo music a decade ago. It was lead by this year’s two singles ‘Here I Am’ (very very good) and ‘Gotta Go’ (just good). And we were looking forward to it a lot, as we adore her voice. Plus, rumour had it that this was very much a pop affair, and not the downbeat christian music fest that a lot of her fans feared it would be. But whilst it is definitely very pop, it’s unfortunately not very good.

The album is unfortunately littered with tracks that have big potential, and great production – but that are totally let down by weak, forgettable, and uninteresting melodies. ‘Beat Of My Heart’ actually starts to grate because it’s so frustrating to hear what could be a great song, let down by a lack of tune. ’Living In A Circus’ has that wonderfully barmy circus music that always sounds great in pop songs. The production is interesting. And it’s got a very subtle but quite satisfying key change. But again – where’s the tune Jenny?! ‘Numb’ sounds like it could be a grower thanks to the gorgeous instrumentation. It’s a beat heavy ballad. And if we strain our heads a little, we can hear a melody that could perhaps one day become something enjoyable. ‘Spend This Night’ harks back to her Ace of Base days, but again, only with the production. Musically, it’s got a big chorus. The melody just doesn’t leave any impression on first listen. And ‘Natural Superstar’ doesn’t even TRY, despite having a great Bob Sinclair-esque backing track that sways between euro-dance and electro house.


The album’s highlight is the HUGE MONSTER EUROCLUB ANTHEM ‘Dying To Stay Alive’. Comparisons to Ace of Base are inescapable here, as it sounds very similar to ‘Beautiful Life’. The synth riffs are euphoric, the chorus is super catchy, and we love the lyrical message of dancing, dancing, and dancing some more – for your life! We were surprised to find that ‘Give Me The Faith’ turned out to be one of our favourites. It’s a spiritual ballad from her christian music days, very beautiful, and it sees Jenny use a higher register in her voice that apparently she reserves only for when she sings christian music! We also liked ‘Air Of Love’ a lot. It sounds like a more downbeat ‘Here I Am’ – the album’s first single, which we LOVED!

It pains us to say it, but the album is a big disappointment on first listen. However, thanks to the potential that we feel that most of the tracks have, we’ll go back to listen to it a few more times. Still though, isn’t it a bit pointless having to make an actual effort to enjoy an album?!

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