Pity pop producers? They toil in near-anonymity, making songs that starlets ride to fame and fortune. That's why the most successful (the Neptunes, Kanye West) eventually step out on their own. This appears to be the mission of Miike Snow, a trio consisting of singer Andrew Wyatt and Swedish producers Bloodshy & Avant (Christian Karlsson and Pontus Winnberg), who were behind Britney Spears's 2004 hit Toxic. They've also worked for J. Lo, Madonna and - urgh - Rob Thomas.
Here, they crank out piano-heavy, downtrodden synth pop. Opener Animal is catchy and creative, utilizing horns and a playful vocal hook that will appeal to the indie crowd that gobbled up Toxic. When they slip up, it's due to stupid lyrics or mainstream tendencies (like the beginning of the first single, Burial). But they do create winning synth moments on Song For No One and In Search Of.
Top track: In Search Of
Miike Snow play the Sound Academy Sunday (August 9).