Posted on Monday, January 28, 2013 by Paul in Music
A slightly odd week as we ease back into the regular chart schedule. There are a couple of full scale new releases at the top, but mostly it’s album tracks that are soon to be promoted to single status, starting their climb into the top 40.
37. Little Mix – “Change Your Life”
A vague and non-specific self-affirmation song about believing in yourself and such forth, with added references to sticking together and ignoring the critics? Why, it must be randomly assembled X Factor girl band Little Mix, doing what such bands do! (And – “Become what you’ve always known”? Really?)
This doesn’t officially come out until 3 February, but they performed it on the Dancing on Ice results show on Sunday, which isn’t X Factor but will do in a pinch. It’s an average to decent song of its type, but hardly a stand out. Currently sitting at 36 on iTunes, which isn’t brilliant, but then again they haven’t even got to the point of releasing the official video yet – that’s the admittedly elaborate lyric video above.
33. Ellie Goulding – “Explosions”
A track from Goulding’s album “Halcyon” that was released to radio as a promotional single back in October, but doesn’t have a video (hence the live version above) and never got fully promoted. It’s suddenly started selling because ITV is using it as a soundtrack for their spring season drama trailer. I’m not sure “ideally suited for promoting ITV drama” is necessarily the most complimentary thing you could say about a record, but it’s a nice enough song.
32. Rita Ora – “Radioactive”
This is one of the bonus tracks from the deluxe edition of her album “ORA”, being promoted to single status shortly. The video went up on YouTube as long ago as December 10, but officially it doesn’t actually come out as a single until February, so the promotion is still be building (and as of right now, it’s in the top twenty on iTunes).
The video is slightly weird – it’s a mixture of randomly assembled sci-fi elements, and just plain pointing the camera at Rita Ora interminably. Visually, the whole thing has the vibe of an own brand Lady Gaga, though it’s also sufficiently off kilter to be somewhat memorable. And I have to admit that, after initially dismissing the song as utterly mediocre, I find it growing on me with a few listens.
24. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (featuring Wanz) – “Thrift Shop”
Macklemore is a rapper from Seattle, Ryan Lewis is his producer. They have their own indie label; this is effectively self-released. It was the final single from their album “The Heist”, which had previously been completely ignored by mainstream audiences. They’re not a comedy act. But this is a comedy record, though that’s in the sense of being a rap single that’s funny, rather than a novelty record that happens to have rap on it.
It’s exactly what the title suggests: a tribute to thrift shops through the medium of rap. Thanks to the oddball factor, but also thanks to a genuinely great hook, it suddenly took off, reached number 1 in the USA, Australia and New Zealand, and went top five in Canada, France, Denmark and Norway.
I have no idea why the British public has suddenly taken an interest in it now – it came out last August, and it was nowhere to be seen even in the midweeks. But it’s good, the video is great, and from the looks of it, it’ll be in the top ten next week.
11. Amelia Lily – “Shut Up (And Give Me Whatever You’ve Got)”
This is a bit more like it. The follow up to last year’s “You Bring Me Joy”, which made number 2 and grew on me after a while. Amelia Lily is an X Factor cast-off from a few years ago, but more to the point, she’s the current front for producers Xenomania, who were responsible for most of Girls Aloud’s best material, and have always specialised in making pop records that are just a little bit more quirky than they first appear. This is firmly in that mold. In fact, if anything, Lily’s problem is that Xenomania’s personality comes through far more distinctively than hers does; this sounds like a Girls Aloud record from a few years ago. There are worse problems to have.
Climbing from last week’s number 34, so what do I know?
And now, vigilante mallards.
1. The Bingo Players (featuring The Far East Movement) – “Get Up (Rattle)”
You thought the will.i.am single was irritating? Well, here’s the Dutch to show you what “irritating” is.
The Bingo Players are Paul Baumer and Marten Hoogstraten, and they’ve notched up a few minor hits in the Benelux countries, but have never previously charted in the UK. They came close with “Cry (Just A Little)” in 2011; it just missed the top 40, and ended up getting reworked as “I Cry” by Flo Rida. So quite the pedigree there.
This track started life two years ago as “Rattle”, an instrumental which wasn’t a particularly big hit even in its home country. The original video director took the vastly different tack of “out of focus shots of teenagers at night”, and somehow elected not to include any ducks, preferring instead to pad out the running time with blurry fireworks and swimming pools.
But Ministry of Sound have licensed the track now, and as is their wont, they have plastered an English language vocal over the top. It comes from the Far East Movement, who you may think you remember from their big hit “Like A G6”, though in fact the bit of that song you actually remember was sampled from “Booty Bounce” by Dev. Their contribution here is, well, to talk over the top of the record. Mind you, sticking a vocal on it arguably does make it less irritating…
On the album chart:
The Les Miserablessoundtrack is still at number 1.
“Let it All In” by I Am Kloot is the highest new entry at 10 (which pretty much tells you what it takes to get into the album top ten these days). They’re an indie band who’ve been around for over twelve years now; they once scraped the singles top 40 with “Over My Shoulder” in 2005.
“In a Time Lapse” by Ludovico Einaudi at number 24 – one for the Classic FM crowd.
“Adam Ant Is The Blueback Hussar In Marrying The Gunner’s Daughter” at number 25, and yes, that really is the title. It’s his first solo album in 18 years and it’s being self-released. Reviews have been generally positive.
“Signals” by Mallory Knox at 33. Mallory Knox was one of the leads in Natural Born Killers, but this bunch are a hard rock outfit.
“Start the Party” by The Blackout at 35. According to Wikipedia, “a post hardcore band from Merthyr Tydfil.” Their last album got to 27.