Friday, June 17, 2011

Single Reviews 19/06/11

Welcome to the Single Reviews, in which we invite anyone who doesn’t like our opinions to go and count they money, get they game up, and get they own swagger. Ain’t no place for swagger jaggers all up in here, yo. Get on the floor, haterz, cos we got it in check. God bless Cher Lloyd: she really is the gift that keeps on giving.

With the Splendabots essentially dead in the water, The Saturdays duller than shite, and Girls Aloud still on that so-called ‘break’, perhaps Parade are the replacement girl group Britain is crying out for. The pert playground sassiness of Perfume is all good fun, if lacking in oomph somewhat. They’ve definitely got something you can’t quite put your finger on; but they’re also missing something else you can’t quite put your finger on. Not exactly constructive, is it?

But at the very least, Parade have trumped Soundgirl as the country’s next girlband hope. Don’t Know Why, in spite of the gentle bounce and swaying Caribbean inflection, relies heavily on its sizeable sample of Carly Simon’s Why, all but drowning out any of the playful attitude displayed on the trio’s debut I’m The Fool. And while it’s a passable example of genial pop filler, it sadly further demonstrates that Xenomania’s spell as producers du jour came to an end about seven years ago.

After their second album was such a monumental flop, it’s perhaps surprising to see Hard-Fi make a return this week via the equally-surprising Good For Nothing. It’s almost a shame that they’ve produced a song quite so impressive, as that title is just crying out for ridicule. Alas, no such luck – the verses march along modestly, luring you in prior to the instant grip of the burly chorus, all aided by parps of brass and a lot less of the gobby conceit they once peddled. Who saw that coming?!

And the surprises just keep coming, this time courtesy of a particularly bizarre incident which sees Owl City crowned our Single of the Week. The cutesy levels have been lowered significantly on Alligator Sky, which helps things massively, as does the sharp yet fitting contribution from Shawn Chrystopher. Let’s just be clear, though: for the record, it’s still about as twee as an Enid Blyton anthology. But a little sunshine never hurt anyone, eh? [insert clunky reference to skin cancer here]

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