Ace of Base - The Sign

Music Box is still the #1 album, but the #2 album is by R. Kelly, someone I'm going to stay away from, so we'll slide down to the #3 album, The Sign by the Swedish band Ace of Base. According to my scrobbling history, before today I had listened to Ace of Base exactly two times, probably as part of an algorithmic mix on a streaming service. I definitely remember hearing a few of these songs on the radio when this album came out and was popular, but I can't say I could remember the last time I heard it on the radio. Clearly, they're not my favorite band.

But luckily for them, my tastes, and perhaps American radio, the world has different tastes and they are the third most popular Swedish band in history, and have sold many millions of records. Don't worry about them.

Ace of Base is basically pure pop music, which isn't a bad thing. Their music is entertaining and enjoyable in the way pop music should be. It's obviously very synthesized, the horns in the beginning of "All That She Wants" are unambiguously fake. But that's the appeal of pop, right? Music that's tight, clean, and keeps the surprises to a minimum. Pop should be very danceable. The biggest hit off the record (in the United States), the eponymous "The Sign" fits this bill with a catchy driving beat. Many of the songs on this album were on their first album "Happy Nation" which did not make an impression in the US. This includes the title track of that album "Happy Nation" that didn't chart at all in the US. Curiously, "Happy Nation" appears to have a recent (relative) surge in plays according to, but the other songs off this album remain more popular overall.

My summary is that this music is not my favorite, but it's not bad. Now that I've been reminded of it, maybe when I'm in the mood for some pop, I'll think of them. We'll see!