So the story goes like this... At a time before MLTR were known as MLTR, they were just a regular bunch of boys taking part in a competition in their hometown in Denmark. It was a Rock competition and they were playing Pop! And since the King of Pop was their big inspiration, band leader-lead vocalist-keyboardist Jashcha Richter named his band Michael Learns to Rock. He was in a hurry to send the application form. Of course he had no clue that they were going to make it so big, so quick. And so they were stuck with the name.
Their self-titled debut album featuring their greatest hit ‘The Actor’ took MLTR to the top of the charts in Denmark, the Scandinavian countries and as far and wide as Asia. Their fourth album Paint My Love sold four million copies worldwide. The band went through some turbulence for almost nine years, and disbanded. Soren Madsen, the bassist, went on to release his solo album and the other three continued to remain MLTR till today. Their latest studio album, Scandinavia, has just been released.
One of the biggest reasons MLTR is such a big hit in Asia is their simple, easy-to-listen music and almost cheesy and unsophisticated lyrics. And with Scandinavia, they are starting to sound like the next Bollywood sensation! ‘Hanging On’ especially sounds like a typical dream sequence from a Hindi movie. You can almost imagine Priyanka Chopra in Akshay Kumar’s arms in a scene shot on the beaches of Bali with these long shots in slow motion. The lyrics are also really apt!
The title song is not a tribute to Scandinavia, but about a journey on the flight back to Copenhagen from Asia after a concert. ‘Make Me Feel’ has a more old-time MLTR feel to it. Can hear traces of the sound that made ‘Paint my Love’ and ‘The Actor’ in this song.
Other than writing their own songs, the band also composes the music. And this makes MLTR complete and self sufficient within themselves.
Bottomline: Simple, easy-to-listen music and almost cheesy and unsophisticated lyrics
Scandinavia; MLTR, Virgin Records, Rs. 395.