Seeb x Julie Bergan – Don’t You Wanna Play?

“That was a delightful surprise, getting something novel after the second chorus.”

Tim: It’s a dance track that’s only 2:18 in length, it’s gonna be one of those frustrating ones that just has two verses, two choruses and nothing else, right?


Tom: Never mind that! What about the menacing cartoon face in the video? Julie Bergan, you have been absolutely insulted by whoever drew that cartoon, it looks like a villain from a 90s cartoon, just a disembodied head bouncing around and yelling threatening questions. It was bad enough that I actually tabbed away, just so I could give the song a fair treatment.

You’re right, though, it does at least go somewhere interesting.

Tim: That was a delightful surprise, getting something novel after the second chorus. Admittedly it was only a couple of extra vocal lines, but it’s better than nothing at all, right? I’m fairly certain that liking this track will hinge squarely on that post-chorus, because there’s a lot of squeaking and squealing there and it pretty much drowns out the rest of the song when you’re thinking back after it’s finished. I’m going in and saying I quite like it – it certainly doesn’t put me off at all, and it’s a nice standout feature.

Tom: Right! I think if you changed the timbre of that synth just a little, it’d be like nails on a chalkboard, but it just about gets away with it.

Tim: In any case, even if you don’t like it the song’s barely two minutes long, there’s hardly time to head off the dancefloor to get another drink even if you wanted to. Huh, ‘dancefloor’. I remember those. Vaguely.

Julie Bergen & Seeb – Kiss Somebody

“Wait, is that it?”

Tim: Julie’s good at pop, Seeb do good dance – a combination’s gotta be worth hearing, right?

Tim: Right. Brief, mind – seems to be quite a “in, get it done, out” vibe, which…

Tom: …let’s be honest, fits the lyrics entirely. Two minutes and 18 seconds, though, is brief in many contexts: but, hey, if you’re trying to bring in the Spotify streaming revenue, that’s the way songs are going right now.

Tim: Often I’d praise that, because no-one likes a tune that hangs around longer than it should, but here we’re onto the second verse in less than a minute, there’s no semblance of any middle eight and barely a nod to even a closing chorus, and it just leaves me feeling a bit ‘wait, is that it?’

Tom: I disagree there: I think that quiet “make out” works as a middle eight, even if it is technically part of the chorus lyrics: and there’s definitely a bigger final chorus in there. I think this song lasts just as long as it needs to: I think if it were longer, we’d both be muttering that the simplistic tune starts to grate. (It started to grate with me on the second time I played it.) But I did, at least, play it a second time.

Tim: Sure, there can be remixes, and I can always press play a second time, but this almost has a whiff of contractual obligation to it, kind of like one of them’s lost a bet. The weirdest thing is that we do get a few ‘will this do?’ tracks, but in every case it’s been the quality of the music rather than the quantity that’s suffered. Here, music’s as good as ever – there’s just very little of it.

Seeb, Highasakite – Free To Go

“I like his style, therefore I like the track.”

Tim: We’ve not featured Highasakite before; they’re a Norwegian indie pop band with dancey undertones, and their lead singer, Ingrid, is featured here, with very dancey overtones.

Tim: Decent dance track, that. Standard Seeb style, and…well, there’s not much else to be said about it, is there?

Tom: I mean, you can sing the hook from Sigma’s “Nobody To Love” over that instrumental chorus, sure, it’s basically just a standard dance track.

Tim: We can note that it does have a middle eight, though, and part of me is tempted to keep track of to how rare that’s becoming; the entirety of the rest of me, mind, is screaming that that’s an entirely pointless and tedious thing to do. But yes, it’s a Seeb track, through and through. I like his style, therefore I like the track. Others may disagree, but I guess that’s subjectivity for you, no?

Seeb, Bastille – Grip

“I find it incredibly creepy!”

Tim: I have a LOT of time for this video.

Tom: I find it incredibly creepy! It was creepy when CBBC did it, and it’s creepy now.

Tim: Maybe – I mean, sticking googly eyes on fruit and then putting them in a blender is almost as horrifying as that Pixar short that was played before The Incredibles 2, where the woman realises she’s been eating sentient dumplings, but at least the blender gets reversed each time so there’s a sort of happy ending.

Tom: Nope. Not happy with it. It’s just deeply unpleasant. Which I suspect my have coloured my view of the music, too.

Tim: Ah. Well, when I can bring myself to tear my eyes away from the video, I think it’s pretty enjoyable – standard Bastille stuff, with some standard Seeb bits thrown around here and there.

Tom: Mm. I agree that it’s very definitely a mixture of two styles — but it doesn’t work for me in the way it worked for Bastille and Marshmello. Although to be fair, that one may have just grown on me through endless radio repetition.

Tim: Well, maybe this one will as well.

Seeb x Dagny – Drink About

“Those are two names that promise a lot.”

Tom: Those are two names that promise a lot.

Tim: Question: if you’re dropping f-bombs fairly prominently in the chorus, and making no attempt to hide them, is there actually any point whatsoever in censoring them in the lyric video? Seeb has chosen to find out.

Tim: Sure, you could argue that it means you don’t have to slightly redo it if you ever wanted to put out a version with edited audio, but why not just do that to start with?

Tom: I’d say ‘money’, but honestly, it doesn’t really doesn’t take much effort by a motion graphics designer to change out one word. Although, they would be changing it in a lot of places.

Tim: It’s a pity, really, because that line could work perfectly with a ‘hell’ or a ‘damn’ or even just using a longer ‘I’ sound, but oh well, it’s done now. Nice dance track, mind, despite that, with a memorable hook and, I suppose, lyrics. Good production, good vocals – all well done, really.

Tom: Yep, it’s a competent middle-of-the-playlist dance track that does exactly what it’s supposed to. Not spectacular, but not terrible either.

Tim: Just a shame about the rudeness.

OneRepublic & Seeb – Rich Love

“Those are promising names.”

Tom: Those are promising names up there.

Tim: Seeb, the Norwegian trio known originally for making Mike Posner listenable and more recently for reworking Ed Sheeran, produced their own What Do You Love last year, which did fairly well. Now they’re up with OneRepublic, with this delight.

Tom: Delight? I mean, it’s not bad, don’t get me wrong, but delight?

Tim: I think so, and that’s largely because it has pretty much everything I want from a song. Good vocal, check. Good melody and beat behind that vocal, check, both in chorus and verse. Flipping GREAT dance breakdown after the chorus, massive check.

Tom: I must be burned out on music again, Tim, because I just don’t hear any of that. I mean, it’s good, don’t get me wrong, Seeb know what they’re doing, but it’s still just a middle-of-the-road dance track.

Tim: Ooh, big disagreement here, then. I do have one complaint about it, though: what on earth does “broke as a bottle of wine” mean? I’ve never heard it before, can’t find any examples of usage of it, and it’s quite annoying, because it spoils what it otherwise a perfectly decent narrative in the lyrics.

Tom: I… guess someone broke a bottle of wine? I mean, it’s a thing you can break. But you’re right, it’s weird.

Tim: Flip side of the lyrics, though: I love the ‘hey man, nice to meet you’ distorted vocal in the chorus, really hits the spot for me. I love most of it, in fact. Just, aargh, what does that seemingly very important line mean?

Seeb feat. Jacob Banks – What Do You Love

“This is going to be good, surely?”

Tom: I’d have skipped past it, but I recognise that name: Seeb are the Norwegian production team who turned Mike Posner’s whinefest into a big club hit. This is going to be good, surely?

Tom: Yes. Yes it is.

Tim: It is indeed.

Tom: I’m not entirely convinced by those pitch-shifted vocals, but it seems to be Seeb’s trademark and I can deal with it, because the build up into that chorus — the first of the two hooks — is just absolutely glorious.

Tim: That whole chorus is good – I wasn’t sure at first on the wisdom of repeating the same line four times, but then I realised it was all there just to drum it right in, so that come the second chorus, with the more sensible two occurrences, we could chant right along with it.

Tom: I was clapping along and dancing in my seat on the first listen. I immediately hit replay at the end. For me: this is a good track.

Tim: Track: yes. Video: unforgivable. If you’re having a video focusing on a line being drawn, moving around, it’s basically the law that at the end you pull out and show a finished picture, that you’ve cunningly been drawing all along. I realised it was probably going to be this way when it started again for the second verse, mind, and definitely when it all went 3D, but still, NAUGHTY.