Teen Spirit

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Some people just don't know when to quit. When the A-Teens came out in 2000 with an album full of remakes of ABBA songs, the quartet of photogenic young Swedes had a nice run up the charts despite having no talent and nothing original to say. If anything, the group was a testament to the lasting power of ABBA's sugary but lush pop music. If Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus' songs could withstand this butchery, they could survive anything. Now, after ravaging ABBA's archives, the group was left with nothing else to do but create their own music. This time around, instead of blatantly ripping off ABBA, they choose to imitate the trademark sound of ubiquitous Swedish pop super-producer Max Martin, who has been responsible for writing and producing hits for *N Sync, Britney Spears, and the Backstreet Boys. Most of the songs on the album are right out of the Martin handbook, complete with cookie-cutter rhythm tracks, meaningless lyrics, and lightweight, electronically enhanced harmonies. In the great tradition of musical bandwagon jumping, the A-Teens have glommed onto a trend in Latin music, pumping out bland, refried Latin efforts like "All My Love" and "For All That I Am." All in all, listening to this album makes you realize what Nirvana was singing about: nothing quite smells like Teen Spirit.

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