Hello friends! I’ve been charged with helping you find a light within the cavernous armpit of this week’s new releases. And as it’s summer, a lot of people think every song needs to sound straight outta Magaluf, either musically or lyrically. Which means there’s a lot of crap around right now. However, every cloud has a silver lining. Fasten your seat belts and we’ll find it together…
Southampton-born synth pop animateur Foxes drops a slow tempo, high power tune. It’s echoey and minimalistic to begin with, showcasing a really rather wonderful vocal delivery. As the chorus drops the song becomes far more expansive, with a pumping trip-hop beat driving forward the long synth chords. I did expect to hate this, but I’ve actually found myself really enjoying it. Lyrically it’s empowered, encouraging and mature, teamed with a sun soaked soundscape invoking images of dawn in somewhere beautifully remote. A really epic sounding track. Well done Foxes, well done.
Nile Rodgers ‘Do What You Want’
Disco legend Nile Rodgers cracks out “The Hitmaker” once again and informs us that it is in fact time to play a little disco. The track is very much what happens when vintage funky town beats get a little bit older and make a break for Ibiza, specifically Hed Kandi. This update on his classic Chic stuff still sounds dated; the kids would have loved this 10 years ago, but it’s no longer the Funky House generation – rather a ‘fat bassline’ is required. It does have an annoying whistley thing that get’s stuck in your head too. Ultimately, very throwaway but non-offensive. Expect it in any club with a light up dance floor.
Paloma Faith ‘Trouble With My Baby’
Big fan of Paloma, big fan. Sassy, kooky, unashamedly retro at present, her current album A Perfect Contradiction has spawned in my opinion one of the best singles of the year in ‘I Just Can’t Rely On You’. ‘Trouble With My Baby’ is a faster paced Hairspray-the-musical in it’s vivid pastiche, with an Aretha-style powerful vocal delivery. The song has a brilliant “dance your socks off and sing loudly into the nearest thing resembling a microphone” quality too. Another top track from a top bird on top of her game right now.
Rizzle Kicks ‘Tell Her’
Rizzle Kicks are back to charm an army of teenagers with a song about fancying girls and getting your mate to talk to them – therefore quite literally becoming teenage boys. This is probably what our Nile from two tracks back wanted to sound like. Big horns, disco guitar riffs, and a cockney vocal that sounds completely disinterested by the end of every line – I’m guessing this was intentional. Everyone else will love it and think it’s cool and cutting edge. I don’t hate it, it’s alright… Would rather be listening to Afrikan Boy for my horn fix.
The Saturdays ‘What Are You Waiting For?’
The track opens with a spacey dance beat, the auto tune gets turned up to 11, and the 5-piece begin repeating the title question in what I’ve taken as more of threat than an invitation. Lyrical integrity is sparse; rather a heavy emphasis on telling no story and not giving a shit about coherence as long you can rhyme the last word on every sentence. At one point they tell me that after I’ve had enough of the party they’ll “take it a whole level up” and how they “want to lose control”. I was hoping at this point for them to expand on this: Perhaps Motley Crue-esque tales of debauchery, maybe drinking bottles of fake-tan, crashing their Ferrari while escaping a dealer or fumble with male strippers. Alas, nothing. I hate this. Expect to find in same club as Nile Rodgers.