I'm hoping to get in a little bit of Christmas blogging this year, but I can't be sure I can do much, as I have to take it easy right now. But I didn't want to miss the chance to tell you about Last.fm's campaign to get a decent song to the top of the UK charts this Christmas. Understandably, they are fed up with the fun being zapped from the long-standing tradition of the Christmas No. 1, with it now being dominated by the Simon Cowell & Co empire of TV talent shows.

Fortunately, Last.fm users have voted for a very deserving band. Lucky Soul are the best pop band around at the moment. They make stunning, heartfelt romantic pop songs full of a zillion hooks, with melodies that soar and swoop in all the right places. I can't get enough of their album The Great Unwanted, as well as the B-sides I bought from Emusic. Hooray for bands that are filled with so much pop genius that B-sides are not merely for lesser leftovers, but for equally brilliant creations!

Guitarist and songwriter Andrew Laidlaw does a superlative job crafting his songs around the best qualities of 60s pop. It's never kitsch or overtly retro, instead tapping into the innocence, passion and general swooniness 60s soul and girl group music evokes.

And then there's frontwoman Ali Howard... and that voice. It's been described as bringing to mind both the Cardigans' Nina Persson and the soulfulness of 60s divas like Ronnie Spector. Her voice is definitely sweet-toned like the former, but with a resonance that is fuller than most indie pop singers. Top this all off with a breathy fragility and a kittenish playfulness, and you have Ali's distinctive voice. It seems rarer and rarer lately that voices emerge which have such a signature, recognisable sound.

The music is rather Cardigans-esque, too, in that the songs are immaculately carved pieces of crisp, immediate pop. But then add in the 60s elements, and you get pure heaven!

Click here and for 40p, you can pre-order a digital copy of their single, 'Lips Are Unhappy', released December 17. You also get an exclusive bonus song, their cover of 70s British glam rockers Mud's song, 'Lonely This Christmas'.

I honestly don't know if orders from outside the UK count toward the charts, but my uneducated guess is that they would. Even if not, you still get two amazing songs for 40p (about 80c US). Plus, they're generously donating all profits to War Child.

I'd love to hear from you if you do buy the single. Let me know by leaving a comment.

The promo video for 'Lips Are Unhappy':

Lucky Soul perform 'Lips Are Unhappy' at a Last.fm rooftop gig:

Stream both songs below:

  1. Lips Are Unhappy (Radio Edit)
  2. Lonely This Christmas

A word about recent comments:

I was just checking comments via my blogging panel and found comments that, for some totally unknown reason, I didn't get notified were here, so couldn't approve them. I'll have to check further and see if there are more I didn't know about. Sorry about that, but just know I wasn't ignoring you or deliberately not approving them.

A huge thanks to all those who've left some really heartwarming comments lately! :)

Comments (2)

  • José Pablo  
    wow i've visited your blog many times!! but well... thaks to you now I'm addicted to Zouzou and I've not been able to get the cd! I'm in Mexico and I'm 16 so you can imagine... well I don't know if Santa exists but I don't know if maybe you could upload here her album or only a few songs well it would be amazing P: thank you!! greetings and merry christmas!!!
  • Albert  
    Hallo! Do you know where I can find an .mp3 or .wmv or .mid of Nina Persson's song for a film soundtrack? I don't know the name of the song. It was for a film where some people move into a home in France. I don't remember the film name. In the song, at the end, Nina Persson sings I think "c’est la vie" or "c’est finis". I cannot find the song, can you tell me please? Thank you! Have a beautiful day. Albert.

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