Most of what we post about here at Nordic Spotlight is music by Nordic artists who sing in English. Not Alibiet. The Bergen-based band’s music is almost entirely sung in Norwegian; to not compromise on singing in one’s native language is pretty damn respectable.
It helps that frontperson Maylen Rusti sounds great no matter what she’s singing. On “Dans med meg,” the lead single from Alibiet’s recent debut album, Lyset der eg bor, Rusti’s voice boasts worlds of ecstasy, confidence, and delicateness without the kind of showiness that can accompany these qualities. Over Alibiet’s early-morning synthetic bubbles and skyward, horizon-encompassing percussion, she sounds utterly entranced, even though English-language listeners won’t know most of what she’s saying.
Even though “Dans med meg” is sung in Norwegian, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the song is about a love interest. When Rusti sings the title phrase in the song’s chorus, it almost sounds like she’s saying, “Dance with me,” which is the exact translation of “Dans med meg.” It helps that, before every instance of her singing this phrase, she sings the song’s only two English words: “Baby, c’mon/Dans med meg.”
In her wondered state, Rusti’s brief slip into a second language adds up. The song and its accompanying video likewise strongly impart feelings of excitement, fascination, and tenderness. It’s only natural to let one’s guard down while in the mindset Rusti occupies, and when she sings “Baby, c’mon/Dans med meg,” she sounds more elated than at any other point during the song. Even though, in the video, she’s lying down on pavement and staring into what’s likely the nighttime sky (though interspersed, foggy shots of modestly moving traffic suggest, again, the early morning), it’s clear she’s absolutely exuberant.