REVIEW: Various Artists – ‘The Sound of Swedish House’


By: Cory Glisson-Munier

Sweden has a history of introducing the world to an array of noted dance-pop artists, including Abba, Roxette, Ace of Base, Basshunter, Alcazar, and September, as well as producers like Max Martin, DenniZ Pop, and Stonebridge, so the rise of ‘Swedish House’ artists or remixers woven in and out on this new release is no surprise. By unofficial definition – any progressive, deep house, or electro-house dance musicians born in Sweden would loosely fall under this term (and not just those part of the Mafia).

Opening with a creation which circles all around your being- “m83 – Midnight City (Eric Prydz Private Remix),” this production is fused so perfectly between the retro sounds of yesterday and the current vibe of today that at times it almost brought tears to my ears. Eric, being an original member of the Swedish House Mafia, gives the compilation an extra dose of credibility at the start. The set moves seamlessly on, via the progressive artistry of Arty, Michael Woods, Deniz Koyu, Angger Dimas, and Robokids.

You have to take notice of the brilliant use of “One Eye Shut” (Steve Angello & Sebastian Ingrosso Remix) by Robbie Rivera – for those unaware, Angello & Ingrosso make up 2/3 of Swedish House Mafia – with Axwell as the missing link. This particular remix gallops along briskly with its bold lyrics – daring the listener to stand on the sidelines. Also take note of Kamisshake – Dark Beat (Dirty Funker Remix). I’m a big fan of the “Oscar G” original version this covers and this did not disappoint me – perfect for the crowds of today, with its crazy electro tinges, great synth and percussion strums, sick use of loops, and more. This release is also on the Cubrik label and features a variety of additional mixes including takes from Deadmau5, Chevy One, and others.

A variety of amazing musicians are featured on this release, including the closing, record-breaking Tim Berg (aka Avicii) and his chart smash “Bromance.”

Overall, this compilation is surprising – not everything is brand-new, but does it need it be? But I feel like something is missing. When promoting “Swedish House,” it would seem you should have fit the new ‘Swedish Queen’ Robyn somewhere in here, or maybe some collaborations with cutting-edge Swedish electronic artists like Peter, Bjorn & John, Teddybears, or Lykke Li. These are minor quibbles on what is truly a great set of tunes, though, and it belongs in the collection of any EDM lover.

Released July 2012 on Cubrik.

Disclaimer: Review copy provided by record label.