For all that Love Is Not Pop tries to be, it manages to accomplish a hell of a lot more. The latest from sullen Swede Sarah Assbring dips its feet with pleasure in the comfortable waters of dream-pop, but there’s enough comfy groove and passionate resolve on the record that it could likely stand alone as a memorable pop record. Assbring’s voice is as charming as it is haunting; while the production exemplifies the staying power of her voice through deft use of reverb, never are the lounge-ready guitars and meandering strings overshadowed.
“Change Of Heart” stretches with a poise, but the quaint melody allows listeners to bob along with Assbring. Is it adult-pop ready? Yes. Can it hold a candle to the likes of Feist, with whom the sex appeal of Assbring’s voice holds a candle to? Maybe. You see, the aforementioned “Change Of Heart” clocks in at a solid 5 minutes; rare is the pop listener who’s got the attention span of a solid 5 minutes. What’s more, 5 minutes is the average length of each of the tracks. You never really notice the sprawl of the tracks, such as on “Heavenly Arms,” the R&B-influenced beaming little ditty. On first listen, that is. Love Is Not Pop, ironically titled record that it is, gives listeners a choice. Endure through long-ish tracks, and you’ll be seduced by Assbring’s sultry take on love, under the guise of dream-pop. But if your idea of a love song checks in a two and a half minutes and nothing more, this isn’t the record for you. Your loss; Love Is Not Pop doesn’t dare be restrained.
By Joshua Kloke[Rating: 3.5/5]