Kerkon Virallinen Kesäbiisi 2007 -juhlagaala

Rihanna Umbrella

Having recently begun my professional English studies at the Metropolia University of Applied Sciences (formerly known as Stadia), I decided to write this entry in English.

Basically, I just want to see if I still have what it takes – after high school, almost everything I’ve written in English has involved song lyrics. (Okay, there was the story for 6Degrees and some other stuff but nevertheless, it’s always good to freshen up.)

Should someone have problems with the language, I apologize for the inconvenience. And to those who find typos or poor grammar: no one’s perfect! Having said this, let’s get to the point.

The time has come to celebrate the best songs of the past summer – the best according to Kerkko that is. All the nominees are songs I’ve been listening to during the summer months. The songs have been either published during the summer or are recently discovered oldies that have been playing on my MP3 or CD player. Also, I’ve been listening to the nominated tracks A LOT just because they’re so great.

This is the second time I’m hosting Kerkko’s Summer Song Award show. Choosing the best song(s) has been really, really hard this year: so many great tracks to pick from, and pretty much all of the nominees deserved to win.

Of course, we’ve all seen the Oscars and Grammys and EMA’s and whatnots so everyone knows there can be only one winner. However, there are so many worthy nominees that I decided to create more categories in order to show my respect (or maybe gratitude) for these songs and artists. Just so many great moments.

Without further ado, I am proud to present this year’s nominees in the following categories:

Best Rock/Pop:
Fall Out Boy: Thnks Fr Th Mmrs
Linkin Park: No More Sorrow
Disturbed: Stricken
April March: Chick Habit
Nightwish: Amaranth
Maroon 5: Makes Me Wonder

Best Hip-hop/Dance:
Kanye West feat. Daft Punk: Stronger
Infernal: Self Control
Rihanna: Umbrella

Georg Ots: Muuttuvat laulut
Elvis Presley: Almost Always True

THE Summer Song Of The Year:
All of the above are nominees


Best Rock Song of 2007

I decided on separating the rock songs from the dance songs because they’re great songs but a summer song should be lighter in tone.

Of course, that would mean that a heavy metal song wasn’t eligible to compete. We can’t have that and so, we have a category to pay homage to those rock bands.

First, let’s cover the runners-up.

The Maroon 5 song will not be given the title because Makes Me Wonder feels too… intentional: it’s meant to be a summer hit.

Then April March. The retro-style song has a great Tarantino film vibe (guess because it’s on the Death Proof soundtrack). However, after my initial enthusiasm, the song hasn’t received continuous “airplay.”

The new Nightwish song is amazing; Anette has been a true breath of fresh air, and Amaranth really restores my faith in the band. I’m not choosing this one to win because, along with the HIM album, Nightwish will be more of an autumn thing.

Onto Disturbed. I’ve been raving about this song because it’s so aggressive and gripping. However, this time that wasn’t enough, for Stricken was pitted against No More Sorrow and Thnks Fr Th Mmrs. And they’ve MADE this summer!

So, which one will be dubbed Best Rock Song? A tough choice indeed – I’ve listened to both songs hundreds of times.

The Linkin Park song is the best of the respective album as it’s loaded with such great aggression and energy. However, with a slight edge the winner this year is FALL OUT BOY. The song grips you from the get-go. On top of being highly energetic, I’ll have to give kudos for the vocal and string arrangements.

The video’s funny too, and one thing that may have tipped the scale was that I’d never heard of the band before. The thing that sealed the deal is how I’ve been listening to the song since May so the rock anthem pretty much brought the summer along with it.

Congrats to FOB!

Best Hip-hop/Dance

Not that many contenders, and actually the choice was rather easy. First, let’s deal with the “losers.”

I’ve always liked Infernal. Their songs are funny albeit naive, and the singer has a nice voice. They always seem to have some hook that attracts me. The same goes for their cover version of Laura Branigan‘s Self Control. A nice update to a classic I like. But ultimately, this is just another dance version of an 80’s pop hit, and the winning song should be something more original than just a cover.

Kanye West drew inspiration from another song I like, or in this case, love. His sampling of one of my Daft Punk favorites Harder Faster Stronger Better is well-executed and lyrics include a positive message about survival. However, the song quickly starts to get boring. Guess the guy’s more interesting as a producer than as an MC.

In the end, these nominees just don’t have what it takes to beat Rihanna‘s Umbrella. The combination of the beat, the synths, the signature “um-boe-rellaa-ee-ee-oo-oo,” and the stylish music video will be given the title of Best Hip-hop/Dance.

It’s a good idea to have Jay-Z rap in the beginning and not after the second chorus which would be more traditional. The song is pretty much riding the fashionable electropop wave, a style established last year by Timbaland and protegés Nelly Furtado and Justin Timberlake, but Umbrella is still original and cleverly produced.

Nominees for the Best Retro Song

Onto the Retro Award. Only two nominees, but a tougher choice compared to the previous category. Both songs come from movies: we have an Elvis song from Blue Hawaii and a Georg Ots song from the indie darling Aatu Returns.

Due to the fact that the former was one of my favorite flicks as a child and the latter my top superduper favorite of all time (self-involved, me?), being objective about this was really a challenge. Okay, you’re never objective when you’re choosing favorites, but you know what I mean.

Almost Always True is featured in the Blue Hawaii scene where Elvis, returning from military service, sings to his girlfriend how he’s been absolutely faithful… most of the time.

The tone is cheerful and comedic, while the lyrics are a bit macho, a tad sexist, and utterly douchy, but still very humorous. A feel-good beach song with a mixed message, to put it mildly. Brings back many fond memories, though.

Still, I must choose Muuttuvat laulut, despite how melancholic the melody is. But the lyrics are just so beautiful and the song just warms my heart as I reminisce the creative spark that drove Ville and me to make the whole action thriller. The following sample is pretty much the most poignant part of the whole song.

“Muuttuvat laulut vuosien mennen, aika pois paljonkin vie. Muuttuuko ihminen, ja mihin suuntaan voi viedä huomispäivän tie?”

Georg Ots: Muuttuvat laulut

And so it all boils down to one question…

What is Kerkko’s Official Summer Song 2007?

Well, I’ve actually given you the bases for my decision already, so… long story short: inheriting the title from last year’s winner Justin Timberlake, the winner of 2007 is: RIHANNA with UMBRELLA. Yeah!

I’ve already described the track enough so I don’t want to repeat it all over again. The choice was easy to make as the song still sounds good to me after listening to it sooo many times. Here’s the video, enjoy!

So I guess that’s it for this year’s ceremony. Congratulations to all the winners (and nominees, of course)! Thank you for a great summer and a fantastic show! This is your host Kerkko saying: GOOD NIGHT & SEE YOU AGAIN NEXT YEAR!

1 comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.