Friday, July 20, 2012

Ellie Goulding's naked shoulders and four other songs you might have missed

A semi-regular round-up of the videos and songs I didn't get time to write about during in the last seven days. This week's stars are...

1) Ellie Goulding ft Tinie Tempah - Hanging On
Hanging On is a cover of a song by harp-tastic indie band Active Child. Ellie describes it as "the beginning of my new journey" - but she had better put on some clothes before she gets on the bus.

I jest, of course. Ellie is in the buff because her new musical direction represents what she is really like on the inside, DO YOU SEE? The track (available for free here) is genuinely beautiful, though, until Tinie Tempah comes along to ruin it by rapping nonense like: "If there's too much on my plate, then I ain't finishing my Veg". Oh, do fuck off, Tinie.

2) Two Door Cinema Club - Sleep Alone
People seem to like this, and who am I to argue? The chorus soars, the drums rattle, the guitars go 'squeee'. But really its all about the coda, which takes off like a cola bottle rocket. That's some stadium-level songwriting there. (The song is also available as a free download until 19:00 BST tonight)

The lyric video is brilliantly cheap. I mean, end titles of Crossroads cheap. It also features a bum with a light shining through it. I'm sure they had their reasons.

3) Chemical Brothers - Theme For Velodrome
The Muse single stinks - but this piece of Olympic music is utterly fantastic. Like Kraftwerk before them, The Chemical Brothers are avid cyclists and - strange though it may seem - all that syncopated, electronic dance music is a perfect fit for the sport. This will be played before every event at the Velodrome at the summer games - which could make for interesting scenes. They don't drug test the spectators, do they?

4) Nelly Furtado - Spirit Indesctructible
This is the title track of Nelly's currently-delayed new album, which I spoke to her about last month. A testament to human endeavour set to the beat of Planet Rock, it's a delightfully uplifting song. The video also has a special dance to help you learn your vowels. All that's missing now is Elmo.

5) Plan B ft Labrinth - Playing With Fire
I've been listening to the Plan B album a lot this week. Fierce, intelligent and splenetic - it's one of the best records, lyrically-speaking, of this century.

If you've seen the Ill Manors film, you'll already know some of the songs, and the characters that populate them, already - but you don't need to be familiar with the plot to make sense of the album. It has its grisly moments (the sound of someone getting stabbed is brutally graphic) but Plan B hasn't forgotten that a powerful chorus can persuade people to pay attention. Playing With Fire is a perfect example of that.

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