Robyn: Honey review – A suite of sad electro-pop gems
Konichiwa Records / Island Records
The knee-jerk reaction is that Robyn’s fourth album is a bangerless album, but where she was once armed for battle with sad electro-pop songs that took out anyone standing in her way, over the course of nine songs on Honey, the Swedish singer finds strength in her eloquent sadness.
Eyes closed, fists clenched and body swaying – that’s the correct physical reaction to a Robyn song. From the aching and urgent thud of the opening track, Missing U, to the slow release of the optimistic Ever Again, the grip loosens as we fall into the sway of songs such as Beach2K20, a tropical-lite trance song designed for a cruise ship full of retired ravers, and Send to Robyn Immediately, an ode to living in the now.
On Human Being, she reminds us that Fembots (and pop maestros) have feelings too, and as Between the Lines morphs into a coquettish 1990s house track, the chorus reminiscent of Crystal Waters’s Gypsy Woman “la da dee” refrain, she sounds at ease.
Robyn’s absence was gravely felt in the eight years since her futuristic and authoritatively sad album Body Talk but in this era of Honey, she declares that she’s “never gonna be broken-hearted again” and in a new resilience, we learn what happens when her heartache finally lifts.