Single Review: Kelis – ‘Scream’

Interesting choice of single, because if anyone has “earned right to scream and shout”, Kelis is at the top of that list now that her latest album ‘Flesh Tone’ has been certified, what… plastic? It’s quite an achievement that she’s managed to squeeze out a third single. After ‘Acapella’ went Top 5, it “all came down” on Kelis. Her album barely scraped the Top 40 and the sterling ‘4th Of July (Fireworks)’ went underappreciated at #32. So now she’s going back to David Guetta, and hoping the French hit-maker can spin a bit of his Midas Touch on ‘Scream’.

Oh look. THERE. YOU. GO. I knew I shouldn’t have bothered telling you it was produced by David Guetta. You’re all running for cover in case it’s just another ‘I Gotta Feeling’ rehash (‘Gettin’ Over You’ and ‘Club Can’t Handle Me’ being prime suspects), because as we know, all of those three songs have been overplayed to death. I wouldn’t be surprised if a dozen babies were born humming that tune. Dum dum dum dum (lower) dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum (higher)… zzzzzz.

Come out from behind that old person and stop trying to blend in with the chess geniuses – you’re TOO COOL to not like this kind of music. You are obliged to appreciate it because deep down you are a party animal, and songs about letting go and just screaming tend to be more fun than songs about a dumb-ass rapper’s pulling power. It’s David Guetta from when he wasn’t all mainstream and pop-y. This means no Black Eyed Peas copy or goofy video appearance (thank the Lord above). It also means it’s not very commercial, sadly.

On to Kelis’ part, she sings along in that brassy whisper she’s oh so fond of nowadays to a rolling piano track. That’s the boring part. It really kicks off when your hear her repeat “It’s not enough to sing so just… SCREAM”. And that’s not exactly what she does; she doesn’t sing but she doesn’t scream either, in fact – she’s talking through the BIG music bit in a droid-like rap which is surprisingly engaging and full of multi-vitamins which are good for your ear. Exciting stuff, this non-mainstream music thing isn’t it?

But as is the norm with every David Guetta production, there is one flaw. Or two… or maybe three, but for ‘Scream’ it’s thankfully just one: it does seem a little cheap. The song appears to just revert back to the beginning once the BIG music bit is over and then run through again, with some lyric changes in the next BIGGER music bit. For me this presents no problem because I like Kelis, but others may lose interest. And of course there’s always that worry that when the BIG music bit does take over, the general reaction will be this: “WOAH WTF!? WHO IS THIS NICKI MINAJ WANNABE!?”, rather than this: “HELL YEAH! LOVIN’ THIS JAM”.

That would be annoying and highly ill-advised because Nicki Minaj has nothing on Kelis or her milkshake.

I’m also surprised at the video too. Purely because, after her rapidly declining sales, I was worried Kelis wouldn’t be able to afford to power her treadmill.

Inverted cross on the crutch hmm…? Where did that idea come from?

Aside from that, this video is very good considering, it may look low budget but I’m pretty sure all her other videos from ‘Flesh Tone’ were almost identically hypnotising yet low budget.

As an album track, this electronic riot makes complete sense. As a single, it makes about as much sense as a spherical dice. So I believe this will flop majorly for Kelis, and I also doubt it will sell many more copies of her album, but as long as you read this review, or hell even listen to the song, you’ll know that it wasn’t because it was particularly bad.

Rating: 3.5 STARS

Download: October 4, 2010 (OUT NOW)

Featured Album: ‘Flesh Tone’

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