Skip to content

Röyksopp – Melody A.M. (2001)

July 15, 2016

NordicCountriestunesNifty Nordic logo by Sarca @ Caughtmegaming

Nordic Artist #1: Björk
Nordic Artist #2: ABBA
Nordic Artist #3: Röyksopp


[Album 468/1001]

I fear I’m losing the ability to fall in love (or utterly despise) new-to-me albums.

There are a few possible explanations, but I’m leaning towards the Normal distribution.

Cheers to Wikipedia for this Normal Distribution Graph…

Normal Distribution

…and here’s my modified graph for the 1001 Albums:

1001 Albums Distribution

I’m starting to think these percentages reflect my experience with the 1001 Albums list.

And that’s good news because…

If the graph is accurate (it’s math-y AND on the internet, how could it not be!), I’m going to have a moderately positive experience with 68% of the albums. Over two thirds of the albums from this list will be somewhere between OK and Really Good. 2 out of 3 ain’t bad indeed!

If 99.7% of the albums fit on the diagram, that means only 4 albums will be outside the diagram, presumably 2 on each side. Therefore, there will only be 2 dismal records on the list that I’d rank worse than ‘despise.’


If 99.7% of the albums fit on the diagram, there will only be 2 life-changing, food-tastes-better-after-listening records beyond the magical extreme.

Unfortunately, I’m worried I’ve already found those 2 beyond-magical records and I’ve yet to hear the 2 beyond-despicable ones!

Which means…

It’s statistically difficult for most albums to obtain a score out of that middle zone. I’m likely going to find enough redeeming in most albums to award a score of at least ‘OK’ but unlikely to be moved enough to move the score beyond ‘Really Good.’

And this is the curse (yet also nice problem) for Röyksopp & Melody A.M.220px-Royksopp_melody_am

On any given listen, I’m going to have pleasant things to say. It’s just never going to be too flattering or too insulting.

Strangely enough, that might be appropriate praise for the record, given that many of the tracks were licensed for use in adverts.

The goal of music in advertising? Be likeable, but not intrusive. Have positive associations but blend into the background.

And I reckon the Norwegian duo Röyksopp did somewhere between an OK/Good/Really Good job in attaining those goals.

From → 2000s

  1. Man, that was too much math for a Thursday night! Haha good on ya, though, Geoff. I even read the whole math thing without once hearing the voice of Charlie Brown’s teacher! Now THAT’S writing!

    I don’t know these people. But if they wrote for advertising, that’d be why. I avoid that stuff like it’s the plague that gets transmitted by watching a frickin’ strobe light. Nope nope nope.

    Well done, I’m glad you had a OK/Good/Really Good experience.

    • Haha, thanks for not zoning out during the Math-y parts Aaron!

      This one had that sort of Moby feel to it – I think every song on Moby’s 1001 album ended up getting licensed for use in ads, not sure if they’ve all been recycled here.

      Though after meeting a guy who writes jingles for ad agencies (agencies who have specifically asked him to write a song that’s eerily similar/just barely avoiding copyright infringement to artists like Led Zeppelin, Beck, etc.), I appreciate why artists end up licensing their songs.

      • Man, I would have been a terrible student in your class. High school for me was the three Bs: band, basketball, and babes. 🙂

        I will avoid this one – I dislike Moby pretty strongly. And I dislike advertisers even more! All I could think of is that pull-quote from Bill Hicks, doings stand-up, asking the crowd “is anyone here in advertising?” A couple of them were, and next he says “KILL YOURSELVES!” Haha yeah OK it’s dark humour. But man, I am not their target audience, especially when, as you point out, the best they can do is basically copy something popular but make it just different enough to avoid litigation.

      • I remember you saying math wasn’t your forte at the time – but you went on to work at a bank though, right? So you must have picked up another B (business) in there!

      • I did work in a bank, for three years. I always said that if my high school math teacher walked in and saw me there, he’d have had a heart attack.

        I don’t know if I truly picked up the B for business, or if I just learned enough to survive the job (which, contrary to what people might think) is actually a really fricking hard job!

  2. Love those graphs. Unfortunately I am just the kind of smartarse nerd who’ll point out the fundamental flaw in the logic. The 1001 book does not even remotely resemble a normal distribution (meaning a large poulation randomly distributed) but is, of course, a carefully selected data set intentionally biased towards what a large group of ‘experts’ reckon is the Excellent end of the spectrum. It is, therefore, a skewed sample biased towards successful/important/innovative/etc albums. ‘Fraid you’re gonna have to re-submit this term paper. 😉

    • Bruce, why let such trivialities as “adherence to definitions” and “accurate data” spoil a potentially good narrative!

      However – your corrections give me more hope for the future.

      The graph could be accurate then for a random sample of 1001 albums from a larger population – meaning that there will likely be 2 phenomenal records in each smaller sample, as opposed to just 2 period. Which is excellent news!

      • That’s what I concluded too, Geoff. That the skewing is towards delight rather than distaste. Gotta be a good thing, eh?

      • “why let such trivialities as “adherence to definitions” and “accurate data” spoil a potentially good narrative!”

        Dude, do you work for CNN?

      • Fortunately no!

      • Good. Otherwise, we might’ve had to ask you to leave… 😉

  3. The ‘sopp’ bit of their name always put me off this band – rightly, it would seem!

    • I’ve never thought of the 2nd syllable of a band name as being a deterrent – perhaps that’s why I haven’t fully warmed up to Pink Floyd!

  4. Also a shout-out to Sarca for yet another AWESOME pic.

  5. I agree, it’s agreeable fodder, hardly earth shattering but nice enough.

  6. Yup. Great post and I’m in agreement over this one. I haven’t listened to this an awfy lot since I got it back when … can’t even say I listened enough to be familiar with the tracks on there!

    • Much appreciated J – and the individual track names have already escaped me, it’s only been a couple weeks for me!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Nordic Countries: 4th time’s the charm! | 1001albumsin10years
  2. The Sugarcubes – Life’s Too Good (1988) | 1001albumsin10years
  3. Hanoi Rocks – Back to Mystery City (1983) | 1001albumsin10years
  4. Sigur Rós – Ágætis byrjun (1999) | 1001albumsin10years
  5. Grant Lee Buffalo – Fuzzy (1993) | 1001albumsin10years
  6. 2000-2005 | 1001albumsin10years

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: