Singles Reviews Diary 10 – 12th April 2010

I’m back with next week’s Singles Reviews Diary. Sorry, its a bit late. My life is pretty stressful and busy at the moment as I’ve already said above.

Singles Reviews Diary 10 – 12th April 2010:

01. AFI: Beautiful Thieves
American rock bands appear to be all making comebacks at the same time. Much like recent offerings from 30 Seconds To Mars and Coheed & Cambria, this is a serviceable rock tune that should keep their fans happy. The song itself is nothing new, it has soft verses and a big growly chorus. Heard it all before. 3 STARS

02. Ash: Dare To Dream
Another decent but hardly groundbreaking tune from Ash’s A-Z Series. So so difficult to listen to it anywhere on the Internet without buying it first. Which just goes to show the lack of promotion surrounding this band. 2.5 STARS

03. Bananarama: Love Don’t Live Here
Reformed pop duo Bananarama are back with this string heavy dance number. I’m not a Bananarama fan but I honestly can’t see this doing well. It sounds like it belongs in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest or an ABBA song without the great pop hooks. 2 STARS

04. Cascada: Pyromania
Cascada make two types of music. Either Hi-NRG Eurotrash or GaGa aping dance pop tracks. After scoring their biggest hit last Summer by ripping of Lady GaGa’s Just Dancewith Evacuate The Dancefloor, the group haven’t been so lucky since. Follow-up singles have been the stale Eurotrash we’ve come to expect from Cascada and they have flopped spectacularly. Are people getting tired of Cascada? Well, they are clearly trying to remain current by ripping of GaGa again, this time her mega successful singlePoker Face. And honestly, Pyromania is a complete and utter rehash of Poker Face, its got RedOne style beats, dark lyrical undertones and stuttering hooks sang by an anonymous robotic male voice. “Pyro-pyro-pyro-mania-muh-muh-muh!” Hmmm sounds familliar? However, I prefer Cascada when they’re ripping of GaGa instead of producing their usual tunes. 2.5 STARS

05. Christina Aguilera: Not Myself Tonight
Christina is back!!! And while the lead single from her much anticipated forthcoming album Bionic isn’t as innovative as she’d lead you to believe, its definitely a strong return for the pop princess. With this song, Xtina takes your average club track, adds a bit of alternative edge that was found on Britney’s Blackout and throws her ear-shattering vocals over the track, making this sound fresh and appealing. One of the best house-R&B tracks I’ve heard in a while anyway. 4 STARS

06. Darwin Deez: Radar Detector
Can’t believe I nearly passed up the chance to review this. This is a fantastic, bouncy pop rock song that has got me thinking about Summer. It does get annoying towards the end when he repeats “You are a radar detector” over and over again but its still one of the best tracks I’ve heard this week. I’m hoping the unknown Darwin gets lots of exposure with track. The official video even has a load of school kids miming along to the song. That’s sure to make a lot of people go “AWWWW!” 4.5 STARS

07. Eliza Doolittle: Skinny Genes
Yet another ‘quirky’ pop singer. This 1960s sounding number is a grower, has a whistling hook. It’s a pleasant number but not very different from what Rox or the Noisettes are doing at the moment. 3 STARS

08. Fatboy Slim featuring Lazy Rich: Weapon Of Choice 2010
Lazy Rich adds a modern touch to the 2001 Fatboy Slim classic. Yawn! This business of modernising songs by throwing a few stale house beats over them doesn’t slide well with me at all. It just seems like a way for DJs to cash in on an already well know song. At least he’s introducing the song to a whole new generation, I guess. I’ll enjoy this when I’m drunk. 2.5 STARS

09. Frank Turner: Isabel
I’m actually surprised by how much I like this one. Amongst crashing guitars and melodic pianos, Frank Turner professes his love for a girl named Isabel. I think like the understated quality to the song. Very good. 4 STARS

10. Futureheads: Heartbeat Song
A short yet sweet post punk track with a big catchy chorus and plenty of energy. Like this a lot. Its been a while since we’ve had a singalong indie track so its welcome with me. A strong comeback single from forthcoming album The Chaos4 STARS

11. HonoRebel featuring Pitbull and Jump Smokers: Now You See It (Shake That Ass)
The hook of this song is “Baby shake that ass for me!” Yep, enough said. This will probably be a huge hit in the clubs but basically sounds like everything else Pitbull puts his name to…CRAP! 1 STAR

12. Jay-Z featuring Swiss Beatz: On To The Next One
It mightn’t be as memorable as Run This Town or Empire State Of Mind but the fifth single from Jigga’s The Blueprint III proves to be hypnotic and dark in material. Sure the constant repetition of the song’s title in the background can get a bit irritating after a while but Jay-Z, despite being in his 40s, is showing all why he’s the biggest rapper in the game with another strong single in his catalogue. 4 STARS

13. Kate Nash: Do-Wah-Doo
Much like Scouting For Girls, it looks like Kate Nash will impress me with her lead single and then irritate me to death with her follow-ups. This is a really strong comeback for Miss Nash though. I think many people have forgotten about her and this is perfect for showing the World that she’s back! Amongst surf guitars and pounding piano melodies, Kate Nash sings about that two faced cow she hates. You have to love that ba-da-ba hook too. The final word of the song ensures that the song ends with a bang instead of a whimper. 4 STARS

14. Katherine Jenkins: Fear Of Falling
Katherine Jenkins is back with the fourth single from her successful album Believe. This is typical classical music but softer sounding than her previous offerings from the album, almost sound like it belongs on a Disney soundtrack. 3 STARS

15. Lostprophets: For He’s A Jolly Good Felon
Lostprophets release my favourite song from their album The Betrayed. This is an infectious arena rocker with plenty of strong hooks. It also has a bit of an American sound which should see it perform well internationally if it gets the right promotion. Which I doubt. 🙁 5 STARS

16. Platnum: Emotionally Tired
Manchester bassline trio Platnum scored a huge #1 hit back in February 2008 with their infectious collaboration with HtwoO What’s It Gonna Be and followed it up nine months later with the equally infectious LoveShy (Thinking About You). Yet no album has come about yet and a year and a half later, they have a new single which is presumably the third single from the album. Anyways, this lacks the strong catchiness of their previous singles, it’s dull and may suggest that Platnum will grate on ones nerves with repeat exposure. I vaguely remember What’s It Gonna Be getting on my nerves actually. This song is, to quote M.I.A., Ibiza music. 1 STARS

17. Professor Green featuring Ed Drewett: I Need You Tonight
Well, isn’t this a witty little number? While the INXS sample does overpower Professor Green cocky rapping and Drewett’s Calvin Harris-esque vocals, it is also the most ear catching part of it. This is light and harmless fluff that’s perfect for the dancefloor. It’s also likeable unlike the light and harmless fluff, of say, Pitbull. The song is still even bearable when Prof. Green talks about how he’s a pimp and how women throw themselves at him really! Good stuff. 3.5 STARS

18. Selena Gomez & The Scene: Naturally
I really think Disney are getting better at making music for people over the age of six. The BFF of Demi Lovato, Selena Gomez mightn’t have the vocal chops of Demi Lovato but Naturally is actually a fairly decent electro pop rock tune. Gomez and her band aren’t breaking any new ground on the teen pop tune but compare this to the Lizzie Maguires and Mandy Moores of yesteryear, things are looking up. 3 STARS

19. The Temper Trap: Science Of Fear
After their soothing and melodic sleeper hit Sweet Disposition, Aussie rockers The Temper Trap are back with a more heavier offering than their aforementioned hit single. It’s a functional enough indie rock track with swooping strings and some experimentation but at over 6 minutes long, it lacks the radio appeal of Sweet Disposition3.5 STARS

20. The Unconventionals: Top Of The World
The Unconventionals are a six piece group that made the Final 12 in Series 3 of The X-Factor and were eliminated in the first live show. They’re a decent group of singers with some lovely harmonising but only cheesy pop fans will like this cheery yet dated mid-tempo. 1.5 STARS

21. Wale featuring Gucci Mane and Weensey: Pretty Girls
If you thought Wale was a boring hip popper after hearing his Lady GaGa assisted hit Chillin’ back in August, then you’ll be surprised to hear that he really shakes things up on his second single. There’s a strong hook sang by Weensey of go-go band Backyard Band and the song itself has a funky rhythm although I doubt poor Wale will crossover again. There are better songs on his rather good rap record Attention: Deficit but this is one of the more radio friendly. 3.5 STARS

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