With the release of Dance Love Pop, Agnes Carlsson emerged as a very important person in pop. Agnes is of course the winner of Swedish Pop Idol but the last twelve months she has taken total control and released high voltage pop that has managed prick up the attention of those abroad as well as going down a storm in her native Sweden. Agnes, like Rosanna, might have originated from tightly constructed fields of pop however come 2009 both purveyors of pop are producing highly distinct pop music that has the potentiality to go international. They're both emerging as great female pop song writers and its great to sit back and listen to the process. The current sound of Agnes includes sweeping melodies, over the top strings which are always layered with soaring soul vocals. Agnes brings together the best of early Whitney, ABBA, Kylie, Prince and of course a sense of her own style. This girl produces pop that can't really be recorded any other pop acts out there. She is doing her own thing. She is a pop pioneer. Thankfully, its a sense of pop that is so musical Dance Love Pop could easily be a successful show on Broadway. Its that camp. You only have to listen to Release Me to realize this. Its simply so "out there", equipped with her amazing amounts of discopop dust Agnes has ultimately blasted the baggage of her Pop Idol history & taken to the central stage. So much so, she has started writing for other pop acts. So, enough with the superlatives! With the impending release of Release Me in the UK, Dontstopthepop interviewed the pop queen that is Agnes Carlsson...
I think this might your first UK interview! Hehe. Despite this fact, are you aware that since Release Me and On And On you have a growing fanbase in the UK?
I know! Us UK fans love the new album!
Indeed this reflects a community in the UK that follows Swedish pop (after the success of Robyn, September and Velvet) Whats the plan with Release Me in the UK?
Ah, cool! The second I heard the song I was like “yes!-Agnes must release Release me!”. Demanding its release to whoever would read it! Haha! A dream! Its quite an amazing song. Whats its history and how did it come to be?
The album is a dance/disco album with uptempo songs. I had an idea and me and my producer worked on the song and developed it - and it came to be Release Me. My first thought about the song - I had a picture in my head - you are on a dance floor - the only thing you have in mind is yourself and the music - you don't think about today or tomorrow..It's a nice mix in the song. At the same time it's an up tempo dance song - but the lyrics have a meaning and a deeper though.
How did you come to pick that song?
Anders Hansson who produced my album Dance Love Pop also wrote this one. So it felt pretty obvious that me and him did this together.
Does its success mean the album “Dance Love Pop” is wrapped up and you’re onto recording a parent album for Love Love Love? Or will we see future singles from Dance Love Pop? Perhaps a re-release edition?
Dance Love Pop is a great party album! But quite a change of speed from your first two albums. Why the change?
I wanted to do something new and different. It felt kind of natural and fun to move on and to make disco music - always wanted to do that so it was a dream that came true (smiles)
I love so many of your songs from the first two albums. Baby I want You Gone sounds like your tapping into your inner En Vogue while Kick Back Relax is a perfect summer song. Do you look back at your older records and feel proud? They are great pop works (in my books!).
Of course I'm proud of everything I've done (smiles)
But, this album is far more emotional however. Its like you have come out from one particular spotlight and actually directing your own path now. Release Me is very much symbolic of that change? Its like, you have completely taken control of your music and profile. I think its brilliant.
It must have been quite nerve-wracking. Leaving the big previous record company to create something that could have potentially failed. You’ve pulled a Robyn in many ways. You should be so proud of yourself!
Well it was a very obvious decision for me. When I first met the new Record Company, Roxy Recordings, it felt good and we got a good connection/feeling from the first start. And we wanted the same thing!
You see, I think a lot of assumptions are caste aside when one realizes that you actually wrote four very big songs on Dance Love Pop. How was that important you?
Taking that step in the creative process?
Yes, I've developed a lot. And in the future, after all work with this album I shall start write more songs..
Through my record company.
He certainly knows his pop! When you’re writing with him, what provides you both the greatest inspiration?
We give each other inspiration and we work very well together.
The subject of the song Big Blue Wall is very interesting. How much of ‘you’ do you let yourself be heard on the album? Are there moments when you think “oh this is bit too dark-not for the album”.
How much for you is music therapy? I ask this question to a number of songwriters. Some say writing music is so important while others say simply by listening to a good pop song allows them to feel okay. What are your thoughts on this?
With this album I wanted to have a "feel good" album - as you say - listening to good pop song that you feel okay with. But as I said in my previous answer - I think my music will become more and more personal..
What artists have influenced you?
This album is one big modern disco album. Was that your intention?
Slightly related to this, if you could pick one song that wasn’t released as a single from your albums which would it be?
Don't know but I think Love Me Senseless maybe - to do a radio edit .....
Now, I read that Love Love Love was actually a duet with you and Marie Serneholt? Is that true?
No it was only a rumor...
Well, Agnes thank you so much for doing this! Dance Love Pop was the poptastic album of the year! Are you prepared for the international adoration hehe
I'm sooo glad that things start to happen abroad (smiles). And, I'm starting to prepare (smiles)