Lena Philipsson

Det Gör Ont En Stund På Natten Men Inget På Dan

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Lena Philipsson's 2004 comeback with Det Gör Ont En Stund På Natten Men Inget På Dan was nothing short of spectacular. An entertaining but inconsistent recording artist before this, she emerged from seven years in the wilderness with not only the best-selling album of her career but also her strongest by far. This is an album which proves pop records can be more than merely the sum of their singles, although the singles from this album certainly stood out as some of the best pop songs of the year. Album opener "Lena Anthem" is a fabulous statement of intent, a relentless dance track which ingeniously samples her own '80s hit "Dansa i Neon." The lyrics not only proclaim Philipsson a step ahead of her rivals, but actually dare to name them (Lisa Nilsson and Regina Lund both receive a mention), making the song not only one of the most irresistible hits of 2004, but also one of the funniest. The title track is, of course, already a bona fide classic, having topped the Swedish charts for seven weeks; it even reached the Top 5 again in an English-language version entitled "It Hurts" (which is not included on this record but can be found on the 2004 Eurovision Song Contest compilation). In the classic Swedish tradition, its rollicking chorus is married to disarmingly melancholy lyrics and once heard is near-impossible to get out of your head.

The real strength of this album, however, lies in its consistency. From the breezy dance of "Låt Oss Säga Vi Var Gifta" to the power pop of "Delirium," every track has an instantly memorable hook (several, in some cases) and could have been hit singles in its own right. The big hits are all upbeat, but the ballads should not be overlooked. "På Gatan Där Jag Bor" in particular is stunning, with heartfelt lyrics worthy of ABBA's gloomiest moments. Those looking for an introduction to Philipsson's work, or to modern Swedish pop music in general, would do well to start here. There's not a weak track on this magnificent album.

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