LOS ANGELES (Top40 Charts/ Capitol/ EMI)
After 25 years as a world-famous act with more than 70 million albums sold, one of Sweden's top pop groups steps back into the spotlight a decade after the release of their last studio album (Room Service). Roxette's acclaimed new album, Charm School, released internationally in February, will be released digitally in the U.S. on July 26 by Capitol/EMI. On the same date, Capitol/EMI will release a new collection of Roxette's Greatest Hits on CD and digitally. Both titles will be available for album and individual song download purchase from all major digital service providers.
Charm School is a new album of 12 songs in a style that's best described as "updated classic Roxette," from the initial power pop fireworks of "Way Out" to the bittersweet closer, "Sitting On Top Of The World." Roxette's new Greatest Hits collection features 12 major chart hits and fan favorites, including "It Must Have Been Love," "The Look," "Listen To Your Heart," "Dangerous," and "Joyride," as well as two new songs from Charm School.
The chances for a new Roxette album to happen looked slim when vocalist Marie Fredriksson was diagnosed with a brain tumor in the autumn of 2002. But Marie managed to defeat the illness, and starting in 2009, the pieces gradually fell together for Charm School's creation. First, Marie and her Roxette partner, Per Gessle, were reunited onstage in Amsterdam to perform "It Must Have Been Love" and "The Look" during Per's "Party Crasher" tour. Before long, Roxette had made a full-scale comeback as headliners for the "Night of the Proms" tour in front of more than 600,000 people in Holland, Belgium and Germany.
"By then we started to think ahead and plan for the possibility of making a new album – an album that captured everything that's good about Roxette while still looking ahead," said Gessle. During the tour, the band's hotel rooms were transformed into recording studios where a string of new Roxette songs took shape.
Back home in Sweden, the work continued during the spring and autumn of 2010. Just as when the band recorded in their heyday, Per had written many songs from which to choose. The sensitive ballad "In My Own Way," for example, is a rediscovered gem from 1984, when Gessle and Fredriksson's shared dream of international recognition was yet to be realized, while the album's newest song is the infectious groove-master single "She's Got Nothing On (But The Radio)," written in the autumn of 2010.
Between those songs is everything that has made Roxette one of the world's most radio played pop groups; the clinging melodies, the passionate delivery, the humorous pop sense and the unique mix of Marie Fredriksson's and Per Gessle's voices. All wrapped up in a musical package that is unmistakably 2011.
"For me, the starting point has always been to write songs for Marie's voice," said Gessle. "She got this ability to make you believe every word she sings, and that's why she brings the stories to life. As a songwriter that's an incredible gift to be a part of."
Charm School was recorded in the south of Sweden and Stockholm with Clarence Ofwerman and Christoffer Lundqvist as producers (together with Per and Marie). The album is a magnificent return to form after ten years of trials and challenges. As Marie Fredriksson sings in one of the album's quintessential tracks, "No One Makes It On Her Own."
Roxette is currently on tour internationally, with European dates scheduled through July.