Icona Pop, "This Is..."
Icona Pop, "This Is..." (courtesy photo)
As is the case with non-American acts breaking out in the states, Icona Pop has actually been around for a minute. Caroline Hjelt and Aino Jawo joined forces in Sweden back in 2009, but didn't crash American shores until late 2012.

"I Love It" grabbed us by the balls, shouting "I! DON'T! CARE!," and damn did we love it. In a super aggro move, This is... Icona Pop opens with "I Love It." Way to set the bar high for the remaining tracks. Then again, it's 2013 and this is music for an audience that's unlikely to listen to an album straight through, in order.

Someone might, for instance, skip through to “Girlfriend,” Icona Pop's July single. that manages to reach up to that "I Love It" bar.  The thump and na-na-na-na's are instantly irresistible and borrowing 2Pac's "Me and My Girlfriend" for the chorus (or maybe you recognize the line from Jay-Z and Beyonce's "'03 Bonnie and Clyde") was a big risk that paid off. Hjelt and Jawo turned "All I need in this life of sin / Is me and my girlfriend" from something dark into girl power.

Icona Pop doesn't really have a soft or slow side (and that's just fine). When they do pump the breaks, the result is a track like“Just Another Night” -- a steadying-thumping ballad that's powerful enough to hold its own among crowd-pleasing party anthems like "Ready For The Weekend" or "We Got The World."

If they're going to open with "I Love It," Hjelt and Jawo had better close this sucker on something as aggressively fun.


"Then We Kissed" is a gleeful mic drop. "THEN! WE! KISS!" is going to be the party chant that replaces "I! DON'T! CARE!" And who cares if it's a similar trick, we'll love it.