Body Talk Pt 1
Released By: Konichiwa / Cherrytree / Interscope / Cherrytree Radio
The last time we heard from Robyn, it was 2008. "With Every Heartbeat" went to number 1 in the UK and shortly after the album Robyn was nominated for a Grammy. Three years later, and the singer is set to release a triple album in three installments.
Body Talk Pt 1 picks up where Robyn left off, with the emphasis on those sweeping, emotional dance tracks and the biting, quirky rap-pop with which she made her name. The album's title reflects the singer's love of dance culture, having spent three years promoting her last album in clubs across the world. It also reflects her personal intrigue with the disconnect between what your body does and what your mind wants.
Opening track "Don't Fucking Tell Me What To Do" sees her sardonically running through a check-list of guilt-inducing vices- "My drinking is killing me, my smoking is killing me" against a propulsive, glitchy backbeat. Similarly, the rowdily cute "Fembot" sees Robyn projected as a cartoon character, one who raps that "Fembots have feelings too", and who suffers the blight of the hormonal desires which conflict with what her brain is telling her to do.
"Dancing On My Own" is the one which will bring a lump to your throat, and the natural successor to "With Every Heartbeat." Against an industrial techno beat, Robyn depicts a scene familiar to many: the man she loves is dancing with another woman, oblivious to her presence as she looks on. Again, it plays on the title Body Talk, because "it's the contrast between dancing, which is such a happy form of expression, and feeling heartbroken. I think those songs get to people because heartbreak is such a lonely feeling but you can share that sadness so easily with the right song." Robyn also hooked up with Diplo for the track "Dance Hall Queen," her semi-satirical homage to European mid-90s chart rave and rap acts such as Dr Alban, Technotronic, Leila K and Neneh Cherry.
Body Talk Pt 1 sees her joining forces again with Robyn collaborator, Ahlund. This is one reason why the album, though only eight songs long, takes you from techno to dancehall to acoustic ballads and nostalgic Swedish folk songs in one seamless journey, and still sounds undeniably like a Robyn record. Each song on Body Talk Pt 1 represents the many sides to this unique, thoughtful, uncompromising artist.
"Genius... she's still ruling the school." — NME