Damn [[Beyoncé Knowles|Beyoncé]], just when I think I’m over you, you draw me back in. After slating Single Ladies, and sleeping through Halo (which I didn’t consider review-worthy), Beyoncé’s new single Sweet Dreams has given me hope yet again.
Musically, Beyoncé puts in the sassy vocal performance that has become her trademark, but the song itself is quite atmospheric. Well, as R&B tunes go. Sweet Dreams is ruled by a murky, sliding bassline, which gives the song a dark quality. OK, the intro’s very hammy with a distorted guitar joining in a music box lullaby. Mercifully, that bit disappears before the verse kicks in.
The choruses are my favourite part – with a repeated cry to “turn the lights on” and Beyoncé breaking into a frantic “My guilty pleasure, I ain’t goin’ nowhere…” It’s almost a chorus in two parts, which I love.
The video is by turns brilliant and disappointing. Beyoncé reprises the two-backing-dancers format from Single Ladies, but most of the action takes place in a strange desert dreamscape. This is brilliant. Unfortunately, this is balanced by Beyoncé farting about in one of her metallic stage costumes in which she looks frankly hideous. The golden hair in particular is stomach turning, especially when she looks so glamorous in the rest of the video.
But we won’t hold that against her, will we? Sweet Dreams is – for me – the strongest Beyoncé single out of the last three she’s released. A stunning return to form.