Saturday, January 31, 2009

Single Reviews 02/02/09

As is the case with the tiniest hint of extreme conditions in the UK, we’ve decided to hole ourselves up in the Sloppy Dog bunker with a year’s supply of tinned food, more duvets than we know what to do with, and a refusal to set foot outside lest we be gored by a woolly mammoth. So make yourself comfortable – cos you’re probably not going anywhere anytime soon – and enjoy the Single Reviews...

The parade kicks off with Arts & Crafts, another fine effort from Red Light Company, who seem to grab our attention just a little bit more with each release. Grand riffs and robust vocals successfully add to inspired melodies, acting as a further viral advertisement for what promises to be a particularly exciting debut album. Now hurry up and release the sodding thing.

We heart Alesha Dixon round these parts, so it’ll come as little surprise to learn she’s nabbed Single of the Week. It’s a relief to know the novelty hogwash of The Boy Does Nothing was merely a head-turner to announce her arrival – the truly exquisite Breathe Slow is classy, intelligent and fresh, and with any luck, heralds the a long and productive music career from a woman more than capable of exchanging her status as a celebrity for recognition as an artist.

We’re sick to the back teeth of anything Ronson-related, be it Mark’s tiresome twiddlage and endless parps of brass cliché, or his mule-faced sister warranting headlines for precisely nothing. Which doesn’t bode well for Daniel Merriweather and his debut solo single Change, although thankfully his impressive vocals manage to carry a largely bland song.

And finally, the award for most futile sample of the century goes to Kardinal Offishall and Keri Hilson, whose dire Number 1 violently rapes The Tide Is High, although seemingly takes its lead from the Atomic Kitten cover of the Billie Piper cover as opposed to the Blondie masterpiece. Oddly though, it’s the irksome rhymes of Kardinal Offishall and the backing track which sounds like bullfrogs mating on a kettle drum that really grates.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Single Reviews 26/01/09

Yes, yes, we know. Delays, lack of updates, yadda yadda yadda. However, be assured this is all part of the immense preenfest The Sloppy Dog shall be undertaking in the coming months, so shut your whining. Also, while we’re here – fucking Ulrika Jonsson?! Seriously?!? To think there are people still shocked at the thought of a black US president – surely a washed-up tramp-bag winning Celebrity Big Brother is even less fathomable? Rant over. Single Reviews?

Our opening number comes courtesy of Pink, whose primarily-tepid Funhouse has rather proved itself to be a good little grower. While second single release Sober may not be the pick of the crop, it’s a nice reminder of Pink’s abundant dark side, which frankly required a revisit after the playground chant of So What.

Jordin Sparks temporarily suspends her campaign to be a one-woman Atomic Kitten by instead adopting the role of a female Ne*Yo. The bland R&B stammer of One Step at a Time virtually annuls any opinion you might initially form – good or bad – by its sheer nothingness. Ah well, we’re long over her triumph anyway, it’s all about David Cook these days. Or until Adam Lambert or Lenicia Young nail it, at least.

Single of the Week is bestowed upon the perpetually-brilliant Franz Ferdinand, who continue their admirable refusal to rest on their laurels with the filthy funk of Ulysses. Managing an unlikely mash-up of casual and chaotic, the gritty charms set the anticipation for third album Tonight: Franz Ferdinand a couple of notches higher.

Lastly, The Fear marks a comeback and a refreshing change in sound from Lily Allen. The ear for a killer melody is still there, albeit dressed up in a more twiddled milieu. It’s interesting to see that, on the eve of a single release, suddenly the angry blogs, the inter-celebrity skirmish and the paparazzi-courting shots start up again, because on the strength of The Fear, she’s talented enough to succeed without being a tabloid-fellating media scumwhore.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Single Reviews 12/01/09

It’s 2009! Granted, it was 2009 a week ago, but we’ve been enjoying a post-Christmas lull since then. With any luck, we’ll get off our battycreases and do something a tad more interesting with The Sloppy Dog this year, but we’re not going to make it a full-on resolution, as frankly, we don’t want to disappoint. But hey, the Single Reviews we can deliver...

This week’s – and in fact, this year’s – first single to go under the Sloppy Dog microscope is Dancing Choose, a request to don your near-titular proverbial disco footwear from TV On The Radio. A bumble bee trapped in an air conditioner provides the backing for a disciplined rap diatribe, later making way for a heavy dose of hyperactive jazz blastery. In short, we like.

While it seems fruitless to award Single of the Week to a band constantly on the lips of everyone with half an opinion, Girls Aloud more than warrant it with The Loving Kind, one of approximately three songs on Out of Control worth listening to. Particular props must go to the overdue let-up on the Nadine monopoly, as we finally get to hear the other voices – Sarah in particular – shine brightly. No doubt Coyle will be sodding off back to her candle shop with the ’ump as a result.

After the understandable success of Up, it’s unfortunately a return to the pedestrian beigefest of If This Is Love for The Saturdays. The dreary, mid-Atlantic shuffle-along Issues could have been recorded by any shrug-inducer from Fergie to O-Town, suddenly giving the Sugababes a fighting chance out of the girl group doldrums.

And lastly, Razorlight continue to fail in the ignition of any form of interest in their recent material with the limited edition release Hostage Of Love. In fairness, it’s the best thing they’ve unveiled since Somewhere Else, a simple yet effective strum-and-hum combo busting into a semi-acoustic thumper. But with Borrell’s tiresome customs hogging all focus, they’ll need something outstanding to prick up the nation’s ears. This isn’t it.
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