La Roux’s Elly Jackson has one of those voices you either love or you hate. Or, in my case, are confused about. The often shrilly nature of her warbling is either an incredibly unique or truly horrifying trait. And whilst I’m not 100% sure of which team I bat for (one minute I love “In For The Kill” and the next I want to pierce my eardrums with an ice-pick so I never have to hear anything ever again), the evidence on this (unimaginatively self-titled) debut is clear – in the Pop realm of things, La Roux mean business. But is just ‘meaning business’ going to be enough to herald this as the triumphant pop recording so many have labelled it as?
“In For The Kill” opens the long player complete with its KASIO-101 stylings, before launching into album highlight “Tigerlily.” There’s no shrilly-vocal action here; it’s just a straight-up, bona-fide, classic pop song, complete with a brilliant chorus, great lyrics (“I can see you burning with desire for a kiss” / “I don’t like the taste of demorality”) and an ace nod to the talky-bit from Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” at the 2 minute, 18 second mark. Future single?
The records other truly spectacular moment comes in the form of “Colourless Colour” (in which Jackson sings about “early 90’s décor”), whose instrumental breakdown at the 2 minute 30 mark is one of the most exciting sequences of constructed musical notes to come out of pop in a very long time.
Use and abuse in the game of love gets coverage through the cute “I’m Not Your Toy” (with lyrics such as “You don’t want me, you just like the attention”), “As If By Magic” sounds like a lost Sophie Ellis-Bextor recording (this is a great thing), “Reflections are protection” serves as a jolty pop stomper, and the records first single, “Quicksand”, still remains one of last years absolute greats. Interestingly, current single “Bulletproof” seems to give off a sense of it being a song with everything (including the kitchen sink) thrown into the production process. Sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn’t. It’s not entirely evident it has worked for “Bulletproof” and, some would say, the Jury is still very much out on the outcome.
There are some truly awful moments on the album though, particularly dreary ballad “Cover My Eyes.” Although the lyrics are great, the song as a whole package just takes the mood of the record down about 20 notches, and serves as a glaring filler-moment, one which adds unnecessary boredom in between killer-moments such as “I’m Not Your Toy” and “As If By Magic.”
NME recently claimed that this album was “the final word in the synth-pop generation.” People all over the place are heralding La Roux as some crazy outstanding saviours of pop. Yes; the album is good, but is it the latest provider of pop salvation? Not exactly, no.
For those keeping score, at this point; Little Boots = 01, La Roux = 00.
COMPETITION! Thanks to Universal Music Australia, I have 1 (one) copy of La Roux’s self-titled debut to give away. You MUST be a resident of Australia (sorry International readers) to win this prize. Simply email me with your name, address, telephone number and the funniest joke you know before Friday, July 17 5:00PM EST. The person with the best joke will win. The person with the worst may actually get something too.
Oh look; it’s a Bang Gang Deejays Megamix of sorts. Tracklisting.
Oh dear. It looks like my cousins have been at my Van She poster with the crayons again.
And now for a band that barely gets a mention round these parts. For those of you here for the MP3 and nothing else, I’ll spare you the mechanics. It’s the new G.L.O.V.E.S. remix of the next single “Changes,” and the download is completely free and Very Legal Indeed (thanks Modular!) regardless of the fact that it has actually been uploaded to Sendspace. I’ve no idea when the single is coming out anymore (one of the boys told me a while ago it was to be the end of August, but it seems that release date has since gone tits up,) but I’m guessing this remix will be apart of the digital bundle once ‘it’s out there.’ Anyway, you can enjoy the glovey goodness here.
And now for the actual post… Obviously I’m kidding about my cousins and their crayons! But the gorg picture fronting todays entry is actually the amazing artwork for posters promoting the Album Launch Tour the boys are currently on across the country… Minus the “V – It’s Still Amazing” part though. Though, on that note, their debut album “V” is actually Still Amazing, is still a 10/10 record and is still the best of the year. Girls Aloud = You Better Deliver The Goods if you plan on beating The She. But as much as I ADORE the cover art for the new album to pieces, don’t you think the above picture would have also been a FUCKING BRILLIANT cover as well? Very dishy gazing going on there. Can we have a vinyl edition, perhaps?
Those of you with websites are probably aware of some of the ridiculously hilarious things people will type into a search engine which, in turn, somehow leads them to your blog. Interestingly, this week as I was glancing through my StatCounter, an alarming search in relation to Van She popped up as a referring site: “are any of van she gay?”
Whoever you are out there in search-engine-land, I regret to inform you that Van She are NOT of a homosexual inclination. SAD BUT TRUE. Apologies if this has caused you any discomfort or upset. If pain persists, please see your doctor. Did you know that Sam Sparro is A Gay? So is Darren Hayes. They are not in Van She though.
There were some hilarious searches in relation to Ladyhawke and also Madonna which are actually quite X-rated and even a bit too much for ME to post, but they gave me a chuckle nonetheless.
On another note, there is a really good interview with Van She’s Nicky in todays Herald Sun HIT lift out, which was written by the ace Cyclone Wehner. There’s also another rather good interview with Nick written by Greg Barila that is online now if you’re interested; a great read.
I saw the boys play two weeks ago in my hometown (which was actually quite a lovely and intimate show; a change of pace from the larger venues I’ve seen them in of late,) and am seeing them put on the same show in Melbourne tomorrow night. And by “the same show” I actually mean “the proper version of the show with all the lights, whiz-bang digital screens and a proper stage,” as opposed to the show from two weeks ago which certainly had its restrictions due to the size of the venue. If you’re at all interested you can view pictures from the hometown show here.
And that’s the end of today’s story.
SO. After all of that, what have we learnt?
* Free Remixes Are Good.
* Search Engines Can Be Funny.
* “V” Is Still Amazing.
* Tour Poster Artwork Can Sometimes Be More Appealing Than Album Artwork.
* Van She are NOT Gay.
* Sam Sparro and Darren Hayes ARE.
Thank you for your time.