I often wondered if Norway translated well into America. It’s a silly question, I know. Do any countries translate well to other countries? Some do, and some don’t. With those odds, why even try?
To party, of course.
Norwegian pop band Casiokids definitely had the right approach when it decided to finally release its dance-tinged music into the U.S. While it wouldn’t seem strange to fans, a potential audience of listeners might find that language barrier too much to handle.
Yes, Casiokids‘ U.S. debut Topp Stemning Pa Lokal Bar is recorded in Norwegian. The album title should have clued you into that possibility. But as Rammstein and Sigur Ros have demonstrated, good music will always translate well.
Full Disclosure: I will refrain from attempting to translate the song titles or understand what the songs are truly about. While I hope to learn Norwegian some day, I’m feeling that now would not be the best time to blow through a crash language course. However, Self-Titled Magazine did attempt a couple of translations.
Much of the album does maintain a low-key vibe that plays better in a bar rather than a more rowdy club. “Verdens største land” is such a song that motivates one to dance solo by a jukebox rather than by mega surround sound (see Emily Blunt shake it in Dan In Real Life for a dance lesson).
I can’t help but come away from Casiokids thinking its sole musical mission is to make people move their bodies, move their feet, and have an overall good time. The purely instrumental “Fot i hose” and funky “En ville hest” show the band is unbounded in that quest to be catchy and memorable.
I didn’t think I could ever feel this way about anything Norway-related that wasn’t competing in the Miss Universe pageant. Hmm, I must be growing as a person.
[photos via Vinciane Verguethen (top) | Polyvinyl Record Co.]
- 1. Grønt lys i alle ledd
2. Fot i hose
3. Verdens største land
4. Finn bikkjen!
5. Min siste dag
6. En ville hest
8. Togens hule
Note: Article first published as “Music Review: Casiokids – Topp Stemning Pa Lokal Bar” on Blogcritics.org.