Erik Hassle - Pieces
With supporting tours with the likes of Little Boots and Mika under his belt, Sweden's Erik Hassle has both feet firmly in the pop camp - heck, he even looks like Scandanavia's answer to La Roux with his huge ginger hair. Following big success back home, the UK gets a slightly re-jigged version of the record (originally titled Hassle). Recent single, 'Hurtful' is easily the standout on this radio-friendly collection, full of big choruses and shiny 80s synths. That's not to say the rest of it is bad - he's got a good formula and sticks to it, his strong vocals bringing punch to the soaring choruses in the likes of 'Standing Where You Left Me' - an obvious choice for a next single. The only real low point is "Don't Bring Flowers", with its odd, downbeat lyrics and "Don't bring flowers after I'm dead / Save your givings for the living instead" chorus. When he leaves the synth formula behind for the pretty, acoustic album closer 'Amelia', he shows a different side that he might do well to explore further.