Alan Walker, K-391 and Sofia Carson feat. CORSAK – Different World

“Oh joy! Politics! Exactly what we need today!”

Tim: We’ll lay off Christmas for a bit, so I can bring you some NEWS: three years after Faded first came along, Alan’s finally getting on with releasing an album this Friday; it’s about half and half new music’s what we’ve already heard (and weirdly, it’s missing some of his better stuff), but here’s the title track. And hey, it’s got a political message!

Tom: Oh joy! Politics! Exactly what we need today!

Tim: The world’s gone to pot, we can rescue it if we hurry. I’d say that’s a big if, but hey, let’s go with the optimism because the alternative is just hoping that asteroid comes along fairly soon and, well, happiest time of the year and all that.

Tom: And “we’ve got time” isn’t a great message? “We’ve only just got enough time”, sure, but “we’ve got time” implies, screw it, throw another oil-soaked seagull on the barbie.

Er, anyway, let’s… let’s maybe just talk about the music.

Tim: More pop than dance this time, but that’s no big problem because it’s still a great track. There’s maybe less of your typical Alan sound, but apparently ten people (or, if you recall the gubbins about K-391, nine people and one innovative headset) were involved in putting this together, so it’s almost a wonder it holds together as well as it does.

Tom: This really is designed by committee, isn’t it? There’s no distinguishing feature to it: it feels a bit slow, a bit monotonous, a bit… dull. I actually thought it was over when it went into the middle eight, because I thought I’d been listening for a lot longer than two minutes.

When the best bit in your track is the middle eight, that’s not a good sign.

Tim: Strong (if tired and naive) lyrics, good melody throughout and production that is, to surprise, fully on point. I’m in.

1 thought on “Alan Walker, K-391 and Sofia Carson feat. CORSAK – Different World”

  1. Hmm.

    I like the melody and the lyrics well enough; think it could be a lot more compelling in a different, more acoustic or ballad-y style that allows for a bit more expression from the singer.

    Disagree generally with Tom’s comment (though not necessarily with respect to this song). Generally speaking, people whose sensibilities are tuned to Western music like to have a point in the piece – regardless of genre – where it peaks, that the rest of the music builds up to or leads you down from. In songs from popular genres that use a variation of (V)VCVCB(V)C structure, that peak usually comes at some point in the final chorus. But since that final chorus is a reiteration of a theme you already know, the contrast (and, if the song is written well, harmonic tension) of the bridge plays a big role in the buildup to that peak.

    Given that, plus the fact that the bridge is most likely to stand out from the rest of the song because it’s usually the one thing which isn’t repeated in any way, it’s certainly not unreasonable for the best part of a song to be the bridge. I mean, just to pull an example out of my head, Last Train to London (ELO) and that’s despite its bridge being solely instrumental. (The difference, I think, is that Last Train isn’t being saved by its bridge as the entire song is great.)

    Again, I hope someone is getting something out of me using 20 years of musical training to critique pop music we already knew was not all that great.

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