It’s been a long time since we awarded Margaret Berger the inaugural Vision Music Award for Eurovision Artist Most Likely to Succeed Commercially. Then, she was still on a high after taking Norway to fourth place at Eurovision 2013 with the head-throbbing belter that was “Feed You My Love”.
Now, despite showing some initial promise with “Human Race” and “Scream”, Margaret seems a tad lost. Her recent efforts have been more than a little underwhelming. Her last single “Apologize” was just as forgettable as its predecessor, the F.A.C.E. collaboration “Diamonds”.
Thankfully, the angelic voiced electro goddess continues undeterred, releasing “Running With Scissors” on Friday. But is she back on track?
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The song title is certainly full of intent. “Running With Scissors” suggests daring and danger with perhaps a dash of foolishness. And so it begins, with an atmospheric opening giving way to Margaret’s icy sweet vocals. Therein ends the excitement.
A knee-jerk reaction would be to question whether the singer is referring to safety scissors. Because, sonically at least, the track offers nothing new or interesting. But such a dismissive attitude would be short-sighted.
Simply put, this is Margaret’s most personal song yet. Written with Max Mostley, it has an autobiographical feel. Singing of high stakes and high hopes, the track bears more than a passing resemblance to her real life split from Universal Music and her subsequent forays as an independent artist.
“Feed the monster, feel the hunger” suggests that her time with the big players was far from rosy. Although, going it alone is just as perilous – “Dancing in blizzards, running with scissors, always fighting off these giants”.
And so we return to the question at hand — is Margaret back on track? The jury is split. On the one hand, this new artistic freedom allows Margaret to essentially give us a piece of her soul. But at the same time, one can’t help but yearn the polish and chutzpah that a big name label would bring to proceedings.
“Running With Scissors” might be superior to some of her post-Eurovision material, but it’s a long way off the thrilling delights of “Feed You My Love” or “Samantha”.
Margaret’s long promised third studio album is tentatively due to drop at some point in 2016. It will be her first since 2006’s Pretty Scary Silver Fairy.
What do you make of “Running With Scissors”? Is it a return to form for Margaret? Let us know in the comments below.
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