Fore-note: I hate gimmicks.
There are times, in all aspects of everyone’s lives, where opinions become unfair and biased because of previous experiences. It is only natural, as the human beings that we are, that a lot of our decisions are made based on peer influences and things we have already experienced. For instance, if you swore you hated a certain actor, and it just so happened this actor just appeared as the lead in your new favourite film of all time, you’d be forced to reconsider your earlier thoughts because you’ve prejudice just got the better of you.
I rarely have these moments, I’m not afraid to admit, I usually have a pretty good judgment on things… unless it’s to do with music. Which is hardly helpful. I don’t know what’s more annoying, the fact I just told you that despite being a regular music blogger here, or the fact you’re all now going to stop reading my reviews because clearly I know nothing about music. I just roll an dice and see what number comes up and then plonk some words around a rating. (By the way, you’re supposed to laugh at this, like proper LOL).
The music world is an incredibly influential area of medium. People can become very judgmental, very highly-strung and distressed, especially when one of their favourite artists is having flop singles here, there and everywhere; when unfair advantages gain certain undeserving acts unrightfully amounts of commercial success; even when someone they dislike is doing ridiculously well despite lacking much musical talent. (Yes, those three comments really were aimed at Mika, X Factor trash and Justin Bieber).
By influential I mean it can cause you to prejudge an act, like say…. Oh look! Jedward have a new single out so let’s use them as an example! Let’s see what influences Jedward’s success. ‘All The Small Things’ is a cover of the Blink 182 hit of the same name, and obviously, it’ll be compared to the original. People often overlook the fact the Jedward are pretty much uncoolest people in pop after Same Difference: they are not meant to re-create a song the same way the original artists did, that would be boring and samey. Jedward have to do it their – very marmite – fashion. But let’s also explore the fact that a lot of people hated them because of the Excrement Factor. They couldn’t sing, they could barely dance, their hair was stupid and they looked worse than a pair of deaf, dumb, chewed up Noddy puppets flailing their arms about intradependently whilst hoping to stay in time with the music, which incidentally wasn’t up to much was it? So I pray, why did they end up staying on the show for so long, whilst kicking out some of the best acts of that year?
Because they were fun. That’s why.
Jedward have never been about sense. The have never been about sensibility. You can also count these words/phrases in disregard when trying to describe Jedward: original, interesting, good singers, loveable, musical, and worthy of success on the music business. Then they went against their detractors and ended up with #2 success with their début single ‘Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby)’, which was a little bit more than just naff, but it was unashamed fun for… well, maybe not all but you can be sure anyone who had stable hormones loved the song.
See? There’s a lot of hatred piled onto them already before you even begin to look at their cover of ‘All The Small Things’ in it’s own ‘glory’.
Well, if you want to hear the song, you might as well listen to the original, because there is very little that is different and even remotely ‘Jedward’ about the newer version, except for the fact that they call each other’s names out a bit during the bridge, which is incidentally the most unbearable part because it’s then you realise you’re listening to the Jedward version, not the almost identical original. On top of that, Jedward promised us something ‘innovative and unexpected’ with their new single. They did a cover, and they did nothing innovative nor unexpected – no harmonies, no melisma, no ornamentation or anything that suggest they’ve any musical talent what-so-ever: it’s the same puppets flailing helpless over some edgy guitars to make them sound manly and grown-up.
Whilst the song poses no threats of originality to Lady GaGa and the like, the video is nothing short of hilarious, unabashed and dare I say it, GENIOUS fun. It should really be called ‘Calling All The Small Single Ladies On The Telephone To Hit Me Baby One More Time… SOS’
Paying homage to Lady GaGa, Beyoncé, Britney Spears, David Bowie, and The Jonas Brothers in the collage clip, the Irish twins dance to ‘Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)’, stand their looking goofy with some nifty, David Bowie-esque eye make-up for ‘Telephone’, steer a ship that looks like it belongs on a Year 2 display board in ‘SOS’ and get saucy (or at least, that backing dancers do) in ‘Hit Me (One More Time)’, and it really pays off. Whilst the pairs’ dancing, syncopation, and co-ordination ability hasn’t improved – I like the fact they put themselves and what they wanted to do into it, they kept in their mistakes to make it seem more natural, more honest, y’know? Not at one point during the video does it feel like their copying any of the artists they’re paying homage to.
I docked half a star for the ridiculous “J, to the E, to the D, to the WARD” they added, but otherwise, this song is pretty normal, unadulterated, summer fun. Which is what is needed these days. Hate Jedward all you like; slam them for ruining the original version, but their not meant to be liked by adults and mature teenagers, they’re for children and the odd child inside a grown-up. And if I were a parent – I’d rather have my kids listen to Jedward than a group of dodgy, drug-taking Americans who got naked in the original video.
End note #1: I still hate gimmicks. I still hate Jedward. It’s just this song is very hard not to like, especially during the summer.
End note #2: I apologise beforehand to RandomEnigma, as he is going to grill my arse now.
Rating: 4.0 STARS
Download: July 19, 2010
Featured Album: ‘Planet Jedward’