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Heartbeat Radio

4.7 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

2009 release, the fifth album from the award-winning Norwegian singer/songwriter. The songs on Heartbeat Radio mix acoustic guitars and grand gestures of orchestral pop with elements of anything from '50s Jazz via '60s and '70s Brazilian Psych-Folk to state-of-the-art '80s pop masters such as Prefab Sprout, Scritti Politti and Fleetwood Mac. While it maintains the studio polish of his groundbreaking debut, Faces Down, there's also a sense of musical adventure that stems from his later work. Having written, scored, and recorded all songs for the Dan In Real Life soundtrack, as well as earned Rolling Stone "Top 50" nods, and Elvis Costello's fan-ship, Lerche is no stranger to acclaim. But the story doesn't stop there. Heartbeat Radio is Sondre Lerche's boldest and most challenging record yet.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 8, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rounder
  • ASIN: B002FU8J7E
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #99,561 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: MP3 Music
I first fell in love with this guy's sound a couple of years ago when he created the music for the movie Dan in Real Life. After walking out of the theater, I ran to Barnes and Noble and picked up a copy of the soundtrack. I listened to that album for not days, not weeks, but months...and it's still in my car for those rainy days when I need a little pick me up. His music has always provided that pick me up, and his latest album does not disappoint. It's got that same great sound - that upbeat melody and guitar that almost hums along with glee. This guy has got talent and should have a place at the top of the charts, but too few people really know who he is. This wonderful new album will be his formal introduction to the rest of the music-listening world, but until then he will be that obscure name amidst my music collection - that obscure name with a five star rating.
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Format: MP3 Music
Sondre Lerche is possibly the greatest thing to come out of Norway, ever. With boyish charms and good looks, Sondre could be described as the '5th or 6th Beatle' with his complex melodies, and simple, but effective lyrics. And don't worry, he does sing in English, but what's even more charming is what I think is his Norwegian pop culture references. Or is "Like Lazenby" just about one-time James Bond actor George Lazenby? In any case, everything he does is charming, and with Heartbeat Radio, his musical chops only get choppier/more amazing.

Highlights Include:
Heartbeat Radio
Like Lazenby
I Guess It's Going To Rain Today
Almighty Moon

The true highlight on this album and one of the best songs of 2009 comes in the form of the title track, "Heartbeat Radio." The song is simply a lyrical tour de force that all at the same time manages to be funny, catchy, profound and original. It's simply a slight at Top 40 radio stations and their ilk for playing the same thing, while ignoring the creativity, which Sondre seems to have us believe is his situation. But all the while, it almost plays off as a song about lovers in a complicated relationship, "I'd sell my soul for your adore, but I'm still not receiving you." Simply brilliant. Then the violins cap off the song so perfectly, in a song that uses it's great melody to drive the song, but upon looking back at it, it's a great work in of itself.

But don't worry, just because this contains one of the best songs of the year doesn't mean the rest of the album doesn't hold up, as so often is the case. No, Sondre takes the rest of the album as time to explore and expand is creative reach, usually done in the form of quasi-70s pop sounds, with some 60s/80s influences mixed in.
Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have always loved Sondre Lerche's music, and this album does not disappoint. Unlike his previous albums, which always seemed to fall into one particular genre (different for each... jazz for Duper Sessions, folk for Dan In Real Life, alt-pop for Two Way Monologue, etc), Heartbeat Radio somehow manages to be all over the place in style but still feel like a cohesive album. In terms of tone, I would liken it to Two Way Monologue (the album, not the song) in that most everything is fairly laid-back, intricate, and well-written, which means it takes longer to get into it, but once you do it is hard to get back out! I have had this CD in my car since I bought it (3 weeks ago) and I also listen to it on my iPod at work. It is addictive. I would list favorite tracks, but over the weeks they have all shown their merit and I can't even pare it down to top 6. The title track is the most "pop"-like, and definitely hooks you in at first, but it is the more subtle songs that bring you back for more play after play.

All in all, another fantastic album from my favorite singer-songwriter.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Along with Steely Dan and Jump, Little Children, Lerche makes some of the most sophisticated pop music I've heard. Rich in instrumentation, catchy and a bit unpredictable, Heartbeat Radio has all the elements I look for in pop. It's a shame radio has devolved in to pseudo-thuggery, auto-tune and music focused-grouped to 12-year-old girls and unimaginative soccer moms. In a better world, cuts from this album would sit alongside The Police, Peter Gabriel, Coldplay and other great pop songwriters.

This is my favorite of his albums. Phantom Punch has a few good tracks, but his other work doesn't interest me much.

For more (heavier) sophisticated pop, try "Vertigo" by Jump, Little Children.
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Format: Audio CD
Sondre Lerche is my absolute favorite artist, so when the CD came out on my 22nd birthday, you can imagine how excited I was! His music evokes wonderful emotions...usually happy, if not nostalgic about some aspect of love. I got a definite 80s feeling from the synchronizer-esque music, and the lyrics match his typical poetic-meets-urban-artist style. He's just so cute! Take a listen, because it's good for background music, and when you want to just chill out with a good CD (or iPod mix...for we youngin's) :)

Also take a look at his CD, The Duper Sessions- very jazzy, and by-far my favorite!Duper Sessions
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