It’s crazy to think that Norwegian pop darling ANNIE released her breakout LP Anniemal almost a decade ago. With the help of mega-jam “Heartbeat” and a wave of ace singles, it cemented Anne Lilia Berge Strand as an angelic and instantly trusted voice in an increasingly crowded field of female-voiced electro-pop. The 2009 follow-up, Don’t Stop, was a spectacular effort worthy of a five year wait (the Stone Roses she is not), and on the glitzy sophomore record’s standout, “Songs Remind Me Of You”, Annie teamed up with British songwriter and producer Richard X, who was also behind a couple of the gems on Anniemal, like “Chewing Gum” and “Me Plus One.”
Clearly, this relationship works, as today Annie unleashed her new single off an upcoming August 5 record dubbed The A&R EP — which stands for Annie & Richard, obvi — and the first offering, “Back Together,” is a top-shelf dance-pop cruiser.
No wonder — it was produced by Richard X and written by British pop sensation Little Boots. Excuse me while I go pass out.
Unsurprisingly, then, “Back Together” is a shimmering post-disco anthem that somehow sounds like both Annie and Little Boots (be still my heart). It’s also a notable step up from the darker one-off single (for her, anyway) released earlier this year, the ode-to-’90s-rave-culture, “Tube Stops And Lonely Hearts.” That track won’t be featured on The A&R EP (see track listing below), but no matter; if “Back Together” is any indication, we’re in for another round of smart and sharp modern dance-pop from one of its defining voices.