Following on from the release of her highly-praised Coucheron collaboration ‘Beats Me Up’ at the start of the year, her first piece of new material since her widely-praised 2020 debut album ‘Nude’, the Norwegian singer/songwriter PONETTE returns to preview Part I of her upcoming album, scheduled for release in 2023, with the vibrant new single ‘Fake My Feelings’ ft. the Norwegian singer, Torine.
‘Fake My Feelings’ captures more of her rich and joyful alt-pop energy, and is a wonderfully warm and effervescent listen. Chippy and chirpy, this rhythmic confection opens-out wide like a silk parachute of floating expectations. The tones are pastel velvet and yielding-squeezable… though the attitude of the song is euphonious aspiration.
Ponette is one of the more compelling names emerging from the Scandinavian pop scene of late, with her broad and transcendent voice layered above a soaring production throughout.
Ponette (AKA Helene Svaland Johansen) learned early on that it was necessary to fit in and not make a fuss about anything while growing up in a small, quiet village in the south of Norway where everyone was careful about how they portrayed themselves.
Being also the middle child in a family where the two remaining siblings were seriously ill and/or physically handicapped, she spent her childhood trying to please everyone and not taking up any unnecessary space.
Ponette has spent her whole adult life trying to push herself and battle that way of being, despite the fact that it is still a large part of who she is and, ultimately, how her mind functions. Music allows her to freely express herself and, at times, has literally saved her life. This prolonged conflict has certainly had an impact on Ponette’s music in every way.
Ponette was strongly affected as a child by powerful female pop icons such as the Spice Girls and Britney Spears, from whom she drew inspiration. Her current favourites include Lorde, Robyn, Tove Lo, Florence + The Machine, Uffie, Veronica Maggio, and Flume.
Ponette has delivered a dark, catchy, pop sound that has earned plaudits from the world’s finest tastemakers over the last two years, with a handful of highly praised releases.
Ponette have since become a well respected name in the Scandinavian indie-pop scene, with recent releases through Toothfairy and Seeking Blue – the label closely associated with MrSuicideSheep (one of YouTube’s largest music channels), and shows at prominent Norwegian festivals such as By:Larm, Slottsfjell, and KlubbØya.
the attitude of the song is euphonious aspiration…RAW RAMP
The 2020 t.A.T.u cover of ‘All The Things She Said’ gained more than 3 million streams across Spotify and YouTube, as well as being synced to the French version of ‘SKAM’ and being highlighted by another YouTube giant, Cloudkid. Her album debut ‘Nude’ (2020) gained massive attention in the blogosphere, with the single ‘Losing Me’ being highlighted by Norway’s biggest radio station NRK P3 – naming it “an insanely beautiful song” when recapping the best releases of the year. Recently Ponette released a collaboration with Dutch electronic artist DROELOE, gaining more than 1 million streams in just four months.
Now Ponette is ready with a new EP, and kickstarted the rollout on 27th of January with the single ‘Beats Me Up’ featuring former Grammy-nominated producer Coucheron, which got listed on national radio NRK P3 and support from tastemakers like EARMILK, Mr Suicide Sheep, Acid Stag and Riptide to name a few.
‘Fake My Feelings’ is out now with Part I of her album set to drop later in 2023, both via Toothfairy.
Photos by Ingrid Slettemoen