Tim: Hooray! New season of The Apprentice starts tonight, and Robbie’s put this out as the first single from his next album to celebrate that.
Tom: Can I just say the “The Heavy Entertainment Show” is a great title for an album?
Tim: You can, and I’ll agree with you.
Tim: I say celebrate, the timing of this Prokofiev-sampling track is probably coincidental, but it’s a nice coincidence anyway. So, he’s followed in the footsteps of Georgia and Ukraine at Eurovision by choosing to have a go at Vladimir Putin – here we’re apparently getting slightly toned down lyrics, after the studio told him to back off a bit in case, I don’t know, maybe he’d end up on the FSB’s hit list. But what a great track to launch an album off, no?
Tom: See, I’m wary about this. The last time he brought out a ‘weird’ single like this, I said it was going to be a disaster, another Rudebox. But years later, Bodies is one of my favourite Robbie tracks.
Tim: I can understand the wariness – for starters, I would question the use of that sample. For me, that quickly took the focus away from the rest of the song when I recognised it and started humming it the first time I heard the song. Second time and beyond, though, I focus on the rest and it is great.
Tom: Yep. By the final chorus I’d started to hear it as a backing track rather than a sample — although I’m still annoyed that it never actually resolves. I’ve just finished reading Once Upon A Time In Russia, so this feels like a bit of a simplistic critique (Russian / discussion / concussion? Really?) but it’s still catchy.
Tim: Yeah – the rhythm, and simplistic rhymes, in those verses turns it into the sort of thing people might want to memorise as a party trick (and yes it’s a thing, next time you see me I’ll do the Wannabe rap at you); the chanting in the middle eight is something that can’t go wrong; and last but not remotely least, what a suit in that video.
Tom: It is a great suit.
Tim: All very good indeed.