Friday, October 18, 2019

"Love in Siberia" by Laban

Song#:  2925
Date:  11/08/1986
Debut:  94
Peak:  88
Weeks:  4
Genre:  Europop

Pop Bits:  The Danish duo of Laban was made up of Ivan Pedersen and Lecia Jønsson. They got together in 1982, got signed to EMI, and released their first single that year which became a Top 10 hit in Denmark. Their self-titled debut album sold well, but their next two efforts, Laban 2 and Laban 3, were not as successful. For their fourth album, the duo would switch labels to Mega Records and release the sequentially titled Laban 4. It contained the song "Kold Som Is" (translated: "Cold As Ice"), which would become their second Top 10 in Denmark. In hopes of breaking through in other countries like the US, the duo recorded an English version of Laban 4. The album was titled Caught By Surprise and its first single was an English version of "Kold Som Is" titled "Love in Siberia." The song got a little bit of attention in the States and spent a month near the bottom of the chart. Further singles failed to chart. In 1987, the duo released their fifth album in both Danish and English as well (Laban 5 / Roulette). With its more rock-oriented feel, the album failed to do much of anything and it resulted in Laban parting ways the following year.

ReduxReview:  This is a pretty good Europop tune, but with the cool title and the fact that the duo hailed from Denmark, I was hoping for something a bit more interesting. It nearly sounded like something that Laura Branigan and her producers would have picked up in Europe and updated it for the US market (a la several of her hits and album tracks). It's a solid 80s track and perhaps if it had been promoted better via a major label, the single might have gotten higher on the chart.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  After the split, Lecia Jønsson attempted a solo career. She recorded albums in '89 and '90, but nothing much came from them. She continued on in the business mainly as a songwriter. In 2019, Jønsson wrote a tribute song to ABBA titled "ABBA We Love You Forever." It was recorded by a studio group she created called MoveOver. Jønsson sings on the song as well. Ivan Pedersen would go on to have further success with his next band called Backseat Boys (later just known as Backseat). Pedersen would serve as lead singer of the group and would co-write most of their songs. His work fronting the band earned him the Danish Grammy for Best Male Vocalist in 1996.


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