Sweden makes the best pop music, it’s a known fact. From super-producers and writers like Max Martin (Kelly Clarkson and Britney) and Rami Yacoub (One Direction) to singers like Robyn. So you’d think that the singers that come out of their reality shows were bloody ace too, right? Meet Tove Styrke, third-place on Swedish Idol in 2009 who is ready to pounce on the UK with her new single and EP; Borderline. Let’s have a listen, shall we?
Bet you weren’t expecting an electro-pop reggae mash-up, eh? Well, now that we have your attention let’s get to the point. We were lucky enough to go down and meet Tove after her shows in London earlier this month and, being the iconic interviewers we are, asked her stupid questions about food…
How are you today? Are you borderline happy or borderline sad?
How did the gigs go the last two nights?
Very well, it was a lot of fun. I’ve never here before, never played here before so it was great.
Looking on Twitter, a lot of people were saying you didn’t go any songs from your first album? Why was that? Were you just trying to focus on the EP or…?
Yeah I just wanted to try the new stuff. Later on, I’ll probably do songs from the previous record but I wanted to try these songs out.
Did they go down well?
Yes I think so. It’s a bit difficult or it’s tricky when they haven’t heard it before. Taking it immediately, they just stand there but they’re paying attention, which is fun. I think they liked it.
How come you’re releasing an EP rather than a full album. It seems not many people release EPs.
Hmmmm. Well the album’s not finished but I felt I really wanted to put something out like… now! I’m so eager!
Whenever I read stuff about you, people always compare you to Robyn or Annie. How would say you are different?
Who’s the other one?
Annie. Annie Strand.
(Nearly dies of heart attack). Sings ‘Chewing Gum’, Norweigan electro pop.
I’ll have to check her out.
Definitely! But yeah, you’re compared to Robyn and let’s say, September, a lot. How are you different?
I don’t know, I think what brings us together is that we are Scandinavian and we make pop. But I think there’s more differences than likenesses, if you do listen to the music.
Scandinavians are really good at making pop music. Why is that, how are you all so good?!
Everybody asks that! I don’t know, I really don’t know. I think its great that there’s so much good music coming from Sweden. We’ve got a lot of talented people.
Do people often confuse you with Tove Lo?
No, not confuse me. Actually she’s helped me a little bit here because people can pronounce the name now. She’s paved the way!
Would you two ever join up, and if you found three other people called Tove, would you make a supergroup: The Tove 5?
(giggles) Oh that would be great!
It’s your birthday in a few weeks, what are going to be doing for it?
I think I’m going to head home, and celebrate with friends.
How do you celebrate in Sweden?
People think that we drink so much, but we don’t. I don’t. We just… go out and have fun. But not too much!
So you’re turning 22, where do you see yourself in 5 years time? ‘Cause you’ve come a long way since 2009.
Hmmmm 5 years. I just hope that I’m able to carry on doing this, and have fun when I’m doing it.
Ok, we’re gonna move on to some silly questions now.
What’s the best thing you’ve ever bought from IKEA?
OHHHHHH! I dunno (giggles). I don’t go there often. When I do I just buy loads of small stuff, you think it doesn’t cost anything then you go to the checkout and it’s so much!
What is your favourite ABBA song?
Ummmmmm, hmmmmmmm. (Looooong pause). I liked ‘Super Trouper’ when I was a kid, and ‘The Winner Takes It All’ is beautiful.
Best sandwich filling?
And apple! It’s great. Tuna and apple together. You make a good with tuna and yoghurt and add apple. It’s great, you’ve got to try it!
Like, a whole apple?
No no! You chop it up. And add mayo!
That sounds disgusting.
No, it’s so good!
You’re just adding everything! Bit of cheese in there too or do you draw the line there?
Cheese is too much.
How would you describe your fans in three words?
Loyal. Kind. Open-minded. It feels like I can do pretty much anything and they would be like ‘yay’!
When should Rihanna put out her new album?
Now. Right now. This very second. Give it to me! I love her.
Who would win in a fight between Kylie Minogue or a lion?
I think she would like (mimes throwing) with a stiletto. There’s this crazy lady in True Blood who does that!
When I wrote this question I was thinking the exact thing! Who do you really, really want to work with? They can be alive or dead.
Well they’re both alive. Grimes and Beyonce.
At the same time?
Yeah, what an amazing thing!
Would you try and out-dance Beyonce? If Single Ladies came on would you be giving it all that (mimes the hand movements)?
No way, no way! I would be like the awkward person, making her look great.
Last, we have a playlist of just great pop songs. We want you to pick the first great song that comes to your head.
Does it have to be new?
Oh no, it can be a classic. ‘Super Trouper’ if ya like.
Ohhh, well (whips out phone), I actually have a… (totally lost in looking through her music) hmmm…. Petra! ‘Queen of the Pack’!
OK, I’ve never heard it before.
It’s great, you should check out the video. It’s so cool. Wait wait wait, I can give you another one. This one’s in Swedish, this rapper named ‘Joy’…
At this point Tove hands us her phone and we start chatting Scandipop for absolutely ages.
Thanks very much Tove, best of luck with the single and EP!
It was so nice to meet you!
Tove Styrke’s EP ‘Borderline’ is out now.