Released 4 February 2014 (Modular)
By: Joe DeBonis
The former Tough Alliance member, Eric Berglund has released one of the sweetest, sugary albums in recent memory and does it with as care free of an attitude as possible. The whole album has a feel of a dance party just inviting any and every one to join in to come and enjoy his music and forget any cares in the world. A combination of jovial piano sounds and synth pop noises all mashed together with Berglund’s light voice, it is music made to be fun to listen to and of course, move your body to.
There are a wide variety of sounds and musical elements added up to make Wonderland, and they include anything from strings to little pops from a synth to organ like piano. Drum machine sounds control the tempo and give off an otherworldly feel to the album with the inhuman steady beat. Of course, there are also heavy, heavy electronic influences and sounds that intersperse the entire album and this goes without saying because Berglund is a Swedish producer known for his electro pop sounds.
The lyrics are ambiguous at best, but looking for deep meaning inside pop music is usually not the wisest idea. “Whorehouse” is the lead single off this album yet all the song really talks about is “being trapped inside a whorehouse.” When it comes to music like this, focusing on how the music, the actual music without the lyrics, makes one feel is the best way to listen so in the end, no matter what the lyrics are saying, the music itself is what is the true power of this album.
Electro pop is a genre that really mixes some of the more likable kinds of music around today into a super genre that the average person will enjoy. Electronic music is only getting more and more popular and adding the lightness and catchiness of pop music to it makes it more accessible to the masses and frankly easier to listen to because at times EDM can become a little harsh or over the top. Electro pop is the perfect median that gets everyone involved and CEO does an excellent job of corralling electronic music lovers as well as people that listen to strictly Lady Gaga with his exuberant renditions of poppy electronic songs.
If nothing else, this album is the definition of what pop music has become. Pop music used to refer to “popular” music but really, the only reason it was ever popular was because of how catchy and accessible the music was to such a wide variety of people. Now though, the genre of pop has come to represent music that is catchy, upbeat and full of major chords and fast paced, easy to sing along choruses. Well, Wonderland takes into account all of these things and with a little help from a stellar production effort and some electronic and intricate additions, puts forth a sound that really is hard to dislike, at least easily.
This album isn’t really pushing too many boundaries musically, lyrically, sonically or really in any realm of the musical landscape. What it does though is further bring the two listening populaces of electronic and pop music closer together into a community of electro pop. Wonderland is a damn fun album and not a thing can take that away from it, even if at times the album comes across as nothing new.
Rating: Liked It