Tom: This might be the most charming f-bomb I’ve ever heard in pop music.
Tim: Oh that is nice, you’re right.
Tom: I think it’s the switch to quiet falsetto that makes it so charming. Every time Anne-Marie swears here, it sounds performative, deliberately designed to stand out and shock. But somehow, Lauv on his own manages to make the consonants sound so quiet and musical that it really fits the lyrics.
Tim: Yeah – it’s obviously rude, but comes across almost as an “I’m terribly sorry I have to use this word, but you see there’s really no other option left open to me”.
Tom: That said, the clean version, replacing the profanity with a single pinging synth, doesn’t sound that different to me.
Tim: Hmm, fair. It’s helpful that it’s there, really, because it’s an interesting highlight in a song I otherwise might skip past entirely, or certainly get bored with.
Tom: Anyway, then there’s the rest of the track: this is catchy, with the sort of minimalist production that can sound terrible if it’s not done really, really, well. Here, though? It works.
Tim: It really does.