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Maylen Rusti (Norway) – Balanse (single)

Maylen Rusti finds the perfect balanse

You have to hand it to Maylen Rusti. Having spent several years out of commission from the music business while she recovered from an operation on her vocal chords she could have opted for a quieter re-entry, perhaps one hung on her debut 2014 album, but instead she chose the more dynamic one of three new and testing songs in quick succession.

We have covered two of the previous three, ‘Romeo & Julie’ and ‘Sammen med Deg’, and remarked on her unrelenting ability to find a tune and to write an unashamed electronic pop banger. Rusti by name; not rusty by nature.

In the latest release, ‘Balanse’ the balance in question seems to be a work/life one, weighing the constant, overwhelming demands of ‘content’ (tell me about it!), tasks and distractions with the need for relaxation and even quiet contemplation and discovering that it is tilted very much in favour of the former over the latter.

She says that at times she just wants to drop everything and shout. Stop the world I want to get off! Putting on her own song helps to give her a sense of perspective. Oh, how I wish my scribblings did that for me.

But despite some heavy duty lines such as ““What is the point of us doing what we do/What’s the point, what are we going to do before we die” she knows she will persevere and that perseverance will bring its rewards.

As has been the case with Maylen’s previous singles this one is another example of power ballad meets anthem, several times over. Her verses are light and airy as if representing her calmer, stabler moments while the choruses are louder but heavier and more contemplative, while never even approaching depressing.

And she’s thrown into ‘Balanse’ an almighty MOAB of a bridge, which sounds like an entire electronic orchestra and a choir of Maylens just crashed through the studio doors.

I couldn’t help but notice (and I’m sure you will too) the nods towards Highasakite, firstly in the underlying riff of the song (think ‘The Man on the Ferry’) and then later, in the thunderous semi-military percussion. When you’re channeling them, even accidentally, it’s no bad thing.

Vocally, well for all the problems she’s had, you’d never know they existed. ‘Nuff said.

I’ve listened five times to this song now and I’ll happily rate it in the top five or so that I’ve heard this year.

And with that I’m going to throw down a challenge to Maylen.

I know she’s sung previously in English, you can find examples easily enough on Spotify, and she sounds like Kate Bush.

Give it another go. Because if I’m this impressed by these songs there will be British DJs who are as well and even more so with English versions.

‘Balanse’ is out on 19th May on the Grappa label.

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