New La Roux, video-free legends, genre confusion, and bleeps

by MV


Let’s kick off with a bit of audio-only action from two pop scene stalwarts who it’s still very much OK to love. First up, WHY on earth is there no video for what is surely Saint Etienne’s most pop single in years. I guess it’s the same reason their latest best of has been repeatedly delayed (I wrote at length about it months ago) and that people ignore Tales from Turnpike House. Yes, it’s because the world is WRONG. All of it, all of you. Anyway, there’s also some more Xenomania-assisted tuneage from them Pet Shop Boys, for your video-free enjoyment. I’ve only given it a couple of “spins” but it’s ticking the boxes so far. It’s quite camp and silly. What, really?

On with the show below, kicked off by that La Roux vid I was waiting for last week…

La Roux – In For The Kill
Honestly, what else is there to add?. Little, clearly. Little. But isn’t this all very wonderful? Suspend thy cynicism, for La Roux is driving a car with a haircut and doing some shrill wailing over a song that sounds like Quicksand x10. Didn’t like Quicksand? Nothing to see here, then. But you’re wrong, clearly. WRONG.

Kyla – Do You Mind
I think I’m a little bit behind on this one, and I don’t know which of these spurious new pop genres it belongs to. Anyway, I missed it when it first showed up but I’m loving it now. It’s sweet, in the way that Lykke Li’s vocals are sweet, but much more straightforwardly sexy and pop. Excellent stuff.

Friendly Fires – Skeleton Boy
Not one of my standouts, initially, on the solidly great Friendly Fires debut, it nontheless works pretty wonderfully as a single. Of course, it’s really just an excuse for them to lark around in skeleton suits, but who are we to complain. There’s something special, a lightness, a looseness, about Friendly Fires that raises them a step above other “alt”-types “kinda doing pop.” Then, it’s probably just the fact that they write ace choruses.

Marina and the Diamonds – Obsessions
Another very talented almost-pop lady to worry about, then. Marina’s quirkier than some of the others out there, an old school “arty” musician who happens to make things that come out sounding a bit pop. This track’s a clever little worm, starting out like it might be on a bit of a downer and then growing into something altogether more carefree, bouncy and batty and charming. I like.

Royksopp – Happy Up Here
Well, just for the record, because it’s not exactly a new one… this latest Royksopp’s a proper little charmer, innit? No worries that it’s basically a jigged-about-a-bit Eple. Well, no worries at all actually because that’s essentially what we really want from them. Oh yes. Bleep-doop-de-deep. (Obviously this remix remains my Favourite Royksopp Thing, though.)

More next week or as and when I feel like it.