"Siberia," Lights

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

I don't know what's gotten into me, but I've been listening to a lot more dancey electro-pop type music lately. What's more, I've been enjoying it! To me, there is something very otherworldly and "international" about this kind of music -- like it's some sort of exotic underground secret the United States has not discovered yet.

source: iamlights.com

The latest find is LIGHTS, whose first album "The Listening" I've held onto for some time but never really paid much attention to. Lights (née Valerie Poxleitner in 1987, Ontario, Canada) falls into the "young female songwriter" category I find myself so fascinated by. According to her Wikipedia page, she wrote her first song on the guitar at age 11, and by 2006, was hired as a writer for Sony/ATV Music Publishing, not unlike the musical trajectory Taylor Swift took. That's probably where the similarities end between the two ingenues.

Lights' debut album is a bright and infectious album chock full of insightful lyrics, and well worth the listen. (I would list out all my favorites, but I'd be listing more than half the album. But "Saviour," "Ice" and "Second Go" are all very good.) For "The Listening," Lights won a number of Canadian awards, including Best New Artist at the 2009 Juno Awards.

source: iamlights.com
"Siberia," in comparison, is simultaneously much more dance-infused and mainstream. Despite being an altogether catchier album, few of the songs are as memorable as the songs from her previous effort. To my unrefined ears, Lights teeters on the edge of sounding like Britney Spears (circa 2003-present) on "Siberia." The sound is particularly Britney-esque on "Where The Fence Is Low," "Banner,"  "Suspension."

Which would mean "The Listening" Lights sounds something akin to a dreamy Britney Spears circa 1998-2002 -- a fair assessment, though at times she also sounds a little '80s Madonna, a little 2000s Gwen Stefani with the baby voice of Vanessa Carlton and Hilary Duff's love child. I'm sure I've just completely minimized her "sound" to pop singers she wants nothing to do with.

Still, Lights' "Siberia" is better than most of the dreck currently playing on American pop radio (particularly the one Britney Spears song they won't stop playing once an hour. The one that sounds like all the other songs Britney's recorded since she made her comeback ... perhaps I've mistaken and they've been playing different songs and I just can't tell the difference). But maybe it's just because she's Canadian.

Check out: "Toes," "Timing is Everything," "Cactus in the Valley," "And Counting" on Spotify

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  1. Hi Maxine, I listen to LIGHTS too and I like her music so much, I think she and her music have something special :). I'm trying to find more electro-pop music in the style of LIGHTS but I don't find anything. Could you suggest me some artists or songs of that style? Thanks.
    I like your blog ;)

    Sorry if I wrote something wrong, I don't have a very high level of English.

    1. Your English is fine! I don't typically listen to much electro-pop music, so I don't know how much help I'll be to you. Some that come to mind for me are Ellie Goulding, maybe Meg & Dia. I hope that helps a little bit? :) Thanks so much for reading my blog!

    2. Thx, I'll start listening to these singers!

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