Music Pick: “Boyfriend”

24 Mar

Almost 24 hours later, I find myself still gushing with glee after attending Danish pop group Alphabeat’s first ever concert in NYC last night at the intimate Santos Party House.

If you haven’t heard of Alphabeat, that’s because they’ve yet to release an album in the United States, though this didn’t affect the crowd’s ability to sing along to every lyric. In fact, the group’s lead singer himself acknowledged to the crowd that he knew everyone present had illegally obtained their songs, but that he didn’t care because they all came and paid for the concert and thats al that mattered.

Overseas, however, Alphabeat has put out two records, This Is Alphabeat and The Beat Is, and have made quite a name for themselves across Europe, with several of their singles puncturing the top 20 charts.  The six-member group boasts a powerhouse boy-girl vocal duo of Anders SG and Stine Bramsen, as well Anders B on guitar, Troels Hansen on drums, Anders R on bass, and Rasmus Nagel on keyboard.  No, your eyes do not deceive you here-there are in fact three guys in this group named Anders! It must be a popular name back in Denmark.

Alphabeat is the latest up-and-coming act of a recent musical movement called “wonky pop” (a term allegedly coined by Mika) that has lately been all the rave in Europe and is now encroaching itself upon the United States. Wonky pop is described by BBC as “quirky, catchy, and credible pop”, and has been attached to many of the latest names destined-for-stardom in music like Lady Gaga and Little Boots.

The wonky-popness of Alphabeat’s music is precisely why I find myself downright chipper even as I sit through my fifthconsecutive hour of school lecture.  Reminiscent of upbeat 80’s tracks like the B-52’s “Love Shack” and Ace of Base’s “The Sign”, Alphabeat’s music is utterly infectious, so unavoidably catchy in its bursts of pep and sunshine cheer that you just really sort of have to crack a smile and dance along. Really, there just IS no other option.

With comparisons to artists the likes of Cyndi Lauper, Alphabeat has no doubt garnered a large gay fan base and have shamelessly cozied up to this fact, sprinkling their super-gay music at pride events and gay venues far and wide. Most certainly, for every straight bro that I observed at Santos last night, there were at least ten gay men bouncing under the heart-shaped disco ball overheard.

On a side note, I am still on a quest to definitively discover whether sexuality-ambiguous Anders (the singing one) is indeed a gay man himself. I will shamelessly admit here that I may have found my greatest celebrity crush ever in this tambourine shaking cutie. In fact, I also discovered last night that I was attracted to my boyfriend in the first place because he reminded me of the singer. But, if you happen to know of any indicting evidence that swings Anders the gay way, please let me know. Please.

Though Alphabeat is certainly a gay man’s group, what I was surprised to discover most recently is that the group might also be a gay woman’s go-to group. I’ve heard through the grapevine that stunningly adorable lady vocalist Stine may not be quite a straight arrow herself, and is particularly looking for a little extra female attention.

On top of this, I then came across Alphabeat’s backstory for their single “Boyfriend”, which apparently was inspired by a Swedish film about two lesbians. Says Anders SG:

“They’re teenagers and it’s a story about them discovering love and how they feel about other girls. In school, they get teased by the other kids and then they decide, ‘F**k everyone, we’re going to do this. We don’t care what you think’.”That’s what the song’s about – not caring what other people think about your boyfriend or girlfriend.”

Who knew? Well, while you’re out listening to “Boyfriend”, also check out other catchy classics like “10,000 Nighs Of Thunder”,”The Spell”, “Go Go”, and my personal fave, “Fascination”.

Even if all the playfully neon-donning members of Alphabeat someway somehow turn out to be stick-straight, the group still remains a band worthy of our attention and support, so go ahead and bop your heads to “Boyfriend” while you continue not to care what other people think about you and your own gay object of desire.


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