Robyn: Robyn

B+

Robyn

Album: Robyn
Label: Interscope

The last thing you might expect of a late-'90s Swedish pop singer ("Show Me Love") re-emerging in the U.S. from her Swedish cocoon would be a sharp Euro-R&B album of two-year-old material baited with a recent British hit. But if that description sounds gimmicky, the music doesn't—whether matter-of-factly giving some dork the business in "Handle Me" (as in "you can't") or delivering one of the few genuinely funny hip-hop send-ups of recent years ("Konichiwa Bitches"), she marches to her own drummer. Not only that, the aforementioned hit, "With Every Heartbeat," features her most emotionally charged singing, not to mention an arrangement that veers from surging trance sequences to a florid string interlude, all of it working eerily well together. Still, the overall mood is light even when the lyrics get pointed—which is plenty of the time.

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