This week’s new single releases – 21 April (part 2)
Part two of this week’s single reviews from Phil Lickley. See part one here.
Lethal Bizzle feat. Wiley – ‘They Got It Wrong’
The latest single from Lethal Bizzle mixes up the chiptune-style popularised by Labrinth with a series of speedy rap verses including one by guest artist Wiley, and an uncredited chorus. It’s listenable as a track and is better than their recent efforts thanks to the better produced musical backing, but elsewhere it’s pretty generic to what we’ve heard from both these artists recently.
Little Mix feat. Missy Elliot – ‘How Ya Doin’?’
Lifting the chorus from a ‘Curiosity Killed The Cat’ track and the music from a song by ‘Fat Larry’s Band’, this latest tune from Little Mix isn’t the most original thing ever. That said it has plenty of attitude and catchiness and builds on the samples to become a strong pop tune. The return of Missy Elliot after a period of quietness doesn’t quite gel with the rest of the song but is as fun as Elliot’s best work. A sunny, pop hit with plenty of girl power.
Loveable Rogues – ‘What A Night’
The band’s debut single coming hot on the heels of a controversial Britain’s Got Talent appearance and it’s a sunny ska-heavy ‘Reel Big Fish’-hit. A bit like Madness crossed with Rizzle Kicks, it’s a fun, uptempo number with cheeky attitude though it lacks a killer hook to really make it massive – though the chorus almost gets there, but the amusing lyrics and production style carry it through.
Nicky Romero & Nervo – ‘Like Home’
‘Like Home’, like several songs this week, is a listenable track, in this case a club hit, but doesn’t really do anything we’ve not heard many times before. If you’re a fan of the genre or their work so far there’s something to enjoy but there is a certain staleness to the tune – like a poor man’s ‘We Found Love’, though the vocals do offer a little more than the average entry in this genre.
Psy – ‘Gentleman’
Psy’s follow-up to the global smash ‘Gangnam Style’ was never going to live up to the frenzy that that track generated. In many ways he’s trying to re-tread old ground here with an attempt at a new dance move and hook. Arguably the music in the chorus is better than GS though it’s hampered by an ‘ooh, did he just swear’ vocal line. It manages to remain catchy, however it drags on too long at the end. If you liked his previous single then you’ll find elements in this to enjoy and it lands firmly in the usual earworm territory, but it’s a sub-par re-hash of the style that made him, suggesting he should have stayed as a western one-hit wonder.
Rod Stewart – ‘It’s Over’
Rod Stewart returns with new original material after his years of covering the American songbook. His voice is as familiar as ever but it suits this touching, well-written song that also works well musically. It’s not a particularly groundbreaking song but it works well as an emotionally-charged ballad.
Taylor Swift – ‘22’
No matter what you think about Swift she, or at least her production team, have an ear for a catchy pop tune and ‘22’ is no different. It has a singable chorus and a toe-tapping beat, as well as lyrics that her contemporaries will relate to. Filled with hooks, it’s a summer-ready song which mixtures country and pop pretty successfully.
Texas – ‘The Conversation’
The titular lead single from their first new album in eight years, ‘The Conversation’ is a track that drives forward with Spiteri’s friendly, spirited vocals. It might not have the energy of some of their bigger hits like ‘Summer Son’ but the track rolls on well and is a welcome return for the band, replacing the high blasts of their familiar songs with something quieter but more content.
Tunde Baiyewu – Diamond in A Rock
The second single from the latest solo album from the Lighthouse Family singer features his familiar sounding voice and is a gentle, calming track but equally doesn’t make a massive impact as you listen to it, feeling more like musical moving wallpaper. Lacking the magic of his bigger group hits, it’s a reflective listen but nothing incredible.