This is meant as a guide to European melodic quality pop music. Since most people probably know a lot about British and Irish pop I'm not going to write much about it (Also British pop is extensively covered in the pop history elsewhere on The Best Pop Page In The World.....Ever).
I don't know everything about the European scene, but since I know about some bands worth checking out I have chosen to write about them. I will be very happy to receive input about other European bands that should be mentioned here. OK, here we go!:
There also are other pop groups of course. ABBA are already famous. Originally underrated they are about to get some acclaim. Roxette are a bit too AOR for me, but I know some pop fans like them. Of more unknown quality pop groups I want to mention Big Money. Some years ago they released an album called "Moonraker", which contained some wonderful 10cc-ish keyboard based pop.
Norway has had no internationally famous pop name since a-ha (whose "Scoundrel Days" is in itself a great pop album), but that doesn't mean we have no good pop here (just that since I'm a Norwegian I know about it). Fans of Britpop/Power pop should really check out Pogo Pops, a Bergen group that plays a melodic, guitar based pop inspired, among others, by The Beatles and XTC. In fact the whole Bergen pop scene is very interesting, with such (some of them now split:-( ) great pop bands as Chocolate Overdose, Animal Farm (Their self titled only album is more recommended than any other Norwegian pop album), Rambelins, Libido and Poor Rich Ones.
Among other great Norwegian pop groups is the now split Matchstick Sun. Also there is a band called Doopy, which is more Britpop-ish than any other Norwegian band. There also used to be a band called Fra Lippo Lippi that even almost broke through in the UK with their "Songs" album from 1985. We also had some great 60s pop groups, such as Pussycats and Difference.
The most famous melodic Danish pop group is a group called Michael Learns To Rock. They had a continental hit in 1992 with "The Actor", and have continued having hits in East Asia. Nevertheless the ultimate Danish pop group is a group called Gangway. Out of all the groups I write about here Gangway is the European group most worth checking out. They started out as some Talk Talk/The Smiths sounding outfit, then gradually became more and more synthbased with the writing of great tunes seemingly never ceasing. Singer Alan Jensen also has an impressive English (and i said English, not American!) pronounciation.
No other country has produced such an amount of worthless disco rubbish as Germany. Still this doesn't mean that there aren't some great artists. Some of the you should really give a chance although they might sound like your typical German Europap artist at first listen.
First there is Münchener Freiheit. Some of their albums are recorded in English using the name Freiheit. They make (or made?) highly melodic pop music, inspired by The Beatles and Electric Orchestra among others. Also they have some wonderful multi-voiced backing harmonies. Especially you should check out their 1987 album "Fantasy".
One of the biggest continental hits last summer was "Lemon Tree" by Fool's Garden. After originally writing them off as Euro shit I actually found of that they were a quite nice pop group, again inspired by the likes of The Beatles.
I'm sure there are other great European artists too, but I haven't heard about them.
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