«Superstar», the debut record from Norwegian art-pop outfit Mall Girl, represents an exciting new chapter for the buzzed-about band. The release follows a string of successful singles, including their 2018 track “Slay Queen,” which introduced them as an act to watch in the alt-pop arena. The chaotic year of 2020 brought a string of infectious, vibey singles, including “My Sweet Mall Girl” and the fierce “Bad Girl."
Members Iver Armand Tandsether, Hannah Veslemøy Narvesen, Eskild Myrvoll and Bethany Forseth-Reichberg were forced to get creative when the pandemic hit, sidelining best-laid plans to flesh out some songs before heading into the studio together.
"Because of COVID regulations and the four of us living in two different cities, we changed the way we worked with the songs quite radically in the months leading up to the studio recording,” Narvesen says. "We’ve always been very oriented towards the live performance of the songs, including when we compose them together in our rehearsal space. That way of working has led to some challenges when recording, as you end up listening to the songs in a different manner and might figure out you should have done everything differently."
While others put their creative endeavors on hold, Mall Girl opted to try something different. Many of the songs on «Superstar» were tracks that the band regularly performed, but they wanted to seize the opportunity to evolve their sound even more.
“We actually ended up ‘remote composing’ big parts of the album, with everyone working from their own home studio and bouncing ideas back and forth,” Narvesen explains. "This was a very welcome change of workflow for us, and it lead to us making some songs which probably wouldn’t have turned out that way had we been together in the same room."
This experimental shift in their creative process led to the creation of songs bursting with infectious hooks, hypnotizing grooves and punchy lyrics. It brings all of the edginess from their previously releases, just through a slightly different lens.
“In many ways I think we’ve kept most of the spirit in the music, just the joy of playing together while exploring different genres and breaking conventions.”
Recorded at Studio Paradiso in Oslo with longtime collaborator Marcus Forsgren, «Superstar» runs the gamut of emotions and moments of reflection on our fleeting experiences. “Feel Like Crying,” the first song Mall Girl ever wrote together, taps into the overwhelming question of where we all belong in the universe. “Machine Gun Mystery” dives into a darker realm, presenting an alter ego we all wrestle with, who thrives on power. The beautiful chaos of love is at the center of “You And I,” while “Dance Alone” highlights just how much can be said through a wave of silence.
As a whole, «Superstar» finds Mall Girl fully realized, with a fresh perspective that positions them as one of pop’s most intriguing new acts.
«Superstar» is released on Jansen Records April 29th, 2022
Bubbly Cool Drink
Feel Like Crying
Close My Eyes
Think About It
Machine Gun Mystery
See My Soul
You & I