Tom: I remember talking, last week, about a track that sounded like Sigala. Let’s see if Sigala still sounds like Sigala.
Tim: The second time he’s teamed up with Ella Eyre, following last year’s brilliant Came Here For Love, and stylistically…
Tim: …it’s very very similar, and I have no problems with that whatsoever.
Tom: Yep. Although that is, rhythmically, a very odd, offbeat introduction and first verse. Go on, listen to it a couple of times, and then try and sing it exactly in time.
Tim: Hmm..huh, yeah, that is tricky. Both he and Galantis seem happy to share this particular sound, and, as I’ve said so many times before whenever it’s cropped up: I love that sound. Admittedly, this isn’t quite as great as previously: Ella’s vocal grates a little when there’s very little melody to actually sing in her parts of it, and as ever I’d happily take a version without any rapping.
Tom: “When you hear the haan” might be the worst rap middle eight lyric I’ve heard in a long, long time.
Tim: Stylewise, though: it’s still great.
Tom: Not the greatest message in the history of music, but there’s plenty of precedent for it.
Tim: Debut album’s about next Friday, though since 12 of the 16 songs on it having been already released as singles it’s more like an official playlist. Nonetheless, given all this I’m looking forward to the other four.
Tom: New single, new album. And in the same way as Taylor Swift made the jump from country to pop, Meghan Trainor is trying to make the jump from her doo-wop, retro style to modern pop music. And…
Tom: …she hasn’t made it.
Tom: Or, rather, she’s made it into about the early 2000s, with a song that would have worked perfectly for Britney Spears but somehow just doesn’t work in her voice.
Tim: Thing is, I know it was largely derided, but I really loved Marvin Gaye, and a lot of Meghan’s previous tracks. A shift to this style: really not for me.
Tom: Brilliant introduction. Brilliant final chorus. Brilliant message and production. But… look, can I make the obvious joke?
Tim: Go on then.
Tom: The bits where she… I’m not sure it counts as rap. The bits where she talks. I’ll be honest, I physically cringed on that first spoken line. “Nah to the ah, to the no no no”. Seriously. Someone wrote that and thought “yeah, that’ll do”. It won’t do.
Tom: Oh bloody hell, that’s an awful lyric but an amazing song.
Tim: Huh. I guess not, then. So, we’ve a video straight out of one of the more risqué episodes of Glee (I really hope those kids have had decent sex ed classes) and a song from a PG rated High School Musical.
Tom: With a bit more blatant product placement, too. Although this is one of those videos that probably isn’t suitable for kids despite being, you know, technically suitable for kids.
Tim: I happen to think it’s a very enjoyable track, though that may be because I heard it on the radio before knowing what it was. That probably says something about my predisposition to dislike some artists, actually, but we can discuss my shortcomings some other time. For the time being, well, there’s not actually much to say.
Tom: It’s lovely!
Tim: Well there’s that I suppose, and it is.
Tom: Apart from that horrible, cringeworthy lyric. The rest of it is wonderful, the composition, the performance, everything: it’s just an amazingly clunky line.
Tim: You see I don’t mind it, though that may be because the melody of the lines is just brilliant. It is very much of the no messing around variety, often pleasantly refreshing, while the music is performing the potentially daring act of slightly channelling the indicated style. All very nice, really, and I’m pleased I heard it before knowing who sang it.
Tim: Yeah. Well, I’d have gone with #awkward, but pretty much, yeah.
Tom: Now, Meghan’s track has been out for a while, but now it’s officially a Single with a Video, and there are a startling number of people pointing out the comparison.
Tim: Startling? Mate, a startling number would be none at all, and if it’s being discussed on Radio 1 (at it has been at least once, last Monday) and Olly’s track’s Wikipedia page stated for several days that “In 2015 this song was copied by Meghan Trainor in her song Dear Future Husband,” the word you’re looking for is ‘appropriate’.
Tom: Now, to be fair: it’s a standard doo-wop chord progression, and it’s even in a slightly different key from Murs. But the instrumentation is almost identical, the delivery is similar, and the lyrics even rhyme in places. It’s not just close: it’s really bloody close.
Let’s set that aside for a minute, though: because, yes, it’s a formula, but it’s a formula that definitely works. Musically, it’s lovely.
Tim: Yes. In fact, this is precisely the song that made me realise that Olly Murs could do enjoyable music.
Tom: But as for the lyrics: do I need to do anything more than shudder?
Tim: Need to? No. But to be honest I’m surprised (and happy for you) that you’re just shuddering, and not having a full-on repeat of your Finland 2013 breakdown.
Tom: I want to hate this song. I really, really, want to hate this song.
Tim: Hahaha, but you just can’t, can you?
Tom: When you’ve had one of the songs of the year — seriously, when you get to perform it at on ABC’s Rockin’ New Years’ Eve, it’s one of the songs of the year — and your first album isn’t even out yet (at least not in the UK), how on earth do you follow it up?
Tim: With an actually good one that can be properly sung to, it seems.
Tom: This is basically the same song.
Tom: The chord progression, shifted up one key, is nearly identical. The “feel” of it is the same. It even uses the word “bass” in at least two different lyrics, just to drum home the connection. Just adding a spoken bit at the start doesn’t excuse it — the record company has picked the closest possible track to follow it with.
Tim: Weeeeell, you say that, but it’s a good amount more melodic than previously, you’ve got to give it that. It doesn’t have, for me, anywhere near the same “this is how we make a cheap and somewhat novelty dance track” feel to it.
Tom: And for all those cynical reasons, I really want to hate this song. The trouble is, it’s good. It’s catchy. The middle eight is just glorious. And it’s only three minutes long, which means I keep hitting play on it. It’s… it’s a good track, Tim. I’m sorry.
Tim: It really is. Middle eight aside, if this was an artist’s debut, I’d be interested on keeping an eye on them to see what came next.