Singles Review 2 – March 24th

The singles that arrived in the magical padded white envelope are certainly a mixed bunch of desperadoes.


The last time I did this it was as if I had been handed a pile of shit on a plate. But this week’s singles make me feel happy, maybe even joyous.

Born To TryFirst up is Delta Goodrem’s debut single “Born To Try”. When I first heard this song on Neighbours I wasn’t impressed. Delta plays Nina Tucker in the Australian soap, a beautiful yet shy young girls with a voice of gold. She happens to write songs in her spare time. Basically the song ends up becoming a Ramsey Street hit and her genius is revealed to all after much drama and many tears.

Hearing it without the cast of Neighbours twittering on in the background has forced me into a change of heart. This ballad full of crashing piano chords and soaring vocals is on a par with other great super ballads like Berlin’s “Every Breath You Take” or Seal’s“Kiss From A Rose”. The ultimate soundtrack for falling in love or for masochists who have been dumped, the end of disco number that gets the couples swaying together for one beautifully synchronised moment.

Much worse though is White Light Motorcade and their debut EP, Pooh and Pee more like. Sorry to get immature but this EP is so unbelievably awful it makes me want to listen to Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. I can’t really talk about this single much without wanting to punch a wall. All that can be said this sounds likeMatchbox 20 playing songs by the Strokes.

Linkin Park are the surprise defenders of rock’s flame after the severe blow from White Light Motorcade’s friendly fire. Like Delta and “Born To Try” I first heard “Somewhere I Belong” on MTV2 and hated it. Then again I pretty much hate everything shown on MTV2. Away from dastardly Zane Lowe and his evil music television cohorts “Somewhere I Belong” actually has something going for it. It’s a song about pain, what kind of pain or whose pain I don’t know. Pain though can hurt and “Somewhere I Belong” hurts good.

Something that sounds like it could be painful is to be “Jacknuggeted”. Luckily Manitoba has only a pastoral sweetness with which to nugget someone’s jacks. Manitoba has upped the stakes in the psychedelic pop game. The Polyphonic Spree might have an army but all Dan Snaith has is a pseudonym and a laptop. He is able to create a simple yet widescreen and layered pop fanfare that rock bands have been trying for years. “Jacknuggeted” has a real flourish that, The Flaming Lips apart, many unfortunately lack.

I Am Kloot try a low-key Badly Drawn Boy type pop thing with real instruments and a real British indie-rock attitude. Folky, lo-fi and slightly collegiate could be a way to describe “Untitled #1”, or perhaps a dull annoying wooden thud which sounds a bit like thePogues. It is so creaky it feels like a huge oak door about to fall off its’ hinges. Although to be fair the other song on the single, “Mermen” is a lot better and has an almost post-rock meets Stones Roses’ groove to it.

Uncut are as earnest as I Am Kloot, but not quite as much as the magazine with which they share their name. They deliver sophisticated drum ‘n’ bass apparently. If “Midnight” is sophisticated then I’d rather have some raw and dirty sounds viciously infiltrating my ears instead of this lulling me into a coma around the coffee table.

This is so boring and unnecessary that you might as well chuck it into the recycling bin after one listen so that the next MJ Cole orMoloko can use if for their next ‘intelligent’ slice of electronica/UK garage/trip hop which is devoid of any emotion and certain to get to number 12 in the charts.

Sam La More and Liberty X are the kind of thing that I can enjoy. Sam’s “Takin’ Hold” and the X’s “Being Nobody” are not defined by their intelligence and for that I am grateful. Sam La More is pretty throwaway stuff, but for that three or so minutes it is playing loud dancing and euphoria really do not seem out of the mindfunking question. After the song ends though I forget exactly what question I was asked.

Liberty X on the other hand have delivered another pure pop classic tune. You can’t even hear the boys sing on this, this is a good thing considering how unpleasant those twits are. “Being Nobody” is a huge triumphant pop statement. Everything about this single is perfect. It is cool, sassy and sexy and sounds like a funky alien message from the future. Most importantly though “Being Nobody” makes me smile and that’s all I can really ask of anything.

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