“It’s so dark when you’re not around.”

“Bonfire” by Miss Li | Let’s go back to being late! This song is from last year, but then, I attribute all this to my not listening to Swedish radio (as opposed to Norwegian or Danish) often. Have to rectify that. Miss Li, aka Linda Carlsson, has been around for a while – her debut album was eleven years ago – and you’ve probably heard one of her songs on Grey’s Anatomy. So she’s that kind of singer. “Bonfire” caught my ear while travelling to a wake (yes I know), stuck in typical Manila traffic. To be honest, there’s nothing really groundbreaking about this song, but it’s a pleasant one anyway, and now that it’s our turn to have summer, it fits. [NB]

“Come on out. Don’t be another fool.”

“My Girl You Blush” by Moi Caprice | Here’s another one from the Danish, because lately I’m gravitating back to P6 Beat, perhaps in an attempt to be, err, alternative again. This one’s old, though. Twelve years old, in fact: this was released from the 2005 album You Can’t Say No Forever. But I think what attracts me to most Danish alternative is how, err, fuzzy is all sounds. I didn’t want to say “twee” but there’s a synonym I can’t protest against. Moi Caprice – they were founded in 1993, so they’re definitely veterans – may have the crunch, but this song, at least, has that dreamy element. Perhaps not as dreamy as, say, Shy Shy Shy, but you get the idea. This bounces along, but keeps half of you in dreamland. It’s discombobulating, perhaps, but the good kind. [NB]

“Before I learn how to swim, I wanna know what to expect.”

“Everybody Else Gets Wet” by Delorento | Yesterday I talked about the need to catch up, so all day yesterday I was listening to (a day-long recording of) Irish radio. This came up. It’s an unusual hook. “What are they getting to?” you think. Well, now I read the lyrics and it is a relatively inspirational song, whatever that means. It’s a nice, pleasant thought, all wrapped in a slyly funny hook. As for the band, Delorentos is, well, Irish, from Dublin, but I have not come across them before. It’s interesting how Ireland is so close to the UK and yet only a few of their acts break out across the… what’s their equivalent of “across the ditch”? [NB]

“I know sometimes everyone wants to be someone else.”

“Follow The Leader” by Foxygen | There are songs that you think is one thing but turn out to be another, but it induces a bit of whiplash if what you thought was old turns out to be new. I really thought this was the Eagles’ “One of These Nights”. But I have been out of the loop, yes, and Foxygen’s new album Hang, where this single comes off of, is powered by a full orchestra. So that’s points for me. But I can’t get the thought of this sounding like the Eagles off my head. Now, this is not a slam on either – I actually like “One of These Nights”, and hearing “Follow the Leader” progress to a non-electric Electric Light Orchestra nod was bliss. [NB]

“…yet I never see you around.”

“We Are Trouble” by Strange Hellos | This song was pretty hard to find, since a search for Strange Hellos the band always brings me to “Strange Hellos” the song. It’s not strange; it’s just annoying. But, well, the allure of the pulsing sounds of this Norwegian supergroup (whatever that means these days) is too much to resist. So, Strange Hellos. A supergroup, in the sense that its members are players in the Norwegian indie pop scene: Odd Martin Skålnes, for one, produced Aurora’s debut album, while vocalist Birgitta Alida Hole also leads Lumikide. They released this song a few months back, and yet another chance listen on NRK P13 has introduced me to this bright (considering they released this in the throngs of winter), sunny, fuzzy pop delight. And what a delight it is, although playing this in a place where the AC is pointed at your head, blasting cold air at you, doesn’t add to the atmosphere. This is best served warm, perhaps under the sun. With a beach ball. If that is your thing. [NB]