Friday, May 3, 2013

Be-bop Beyonce and five other songs you may have missed...

Is it the weekend again already? If so, it must be time for a round-up of the music I forgot to write about because I was too busy listening to Janelle Monae.

In no particular order, then, this week's guest stars are...

1) Emeli Sande - Crazy In Love
Skiddly dee-bop-a-be-bop: Emeli Sande goes all scat jazz on this Beyonce cover, and we have Baz Luhrman' Great Gatsby soundtrack to "thank" for it. Sande trades the rump-shaking sexogroove of Bey's signature song for a mischievous can-can, but it kinda works.

2) Pet Shop Boys - Axis
The Pet Shop Boys severed their ties with EMI last year after the disappointing Elysium album but, if this honking great dance track is anything to go by, the break-up did them a world of good. A furious, pulsating electro groove, Axis is either the best song Kraftwerk never released, or the incidental music from an episode of Airwolf.

3) Kelis - Jerk Ribs
Forget Solange, Kelis is the most thrillingly experimental R&B artist around. She embraced dance music two years before Rihanna and her mates started sucking up to David Guetta and Calvin Harris, but paid the price of being an early adopter (IE she got dropped by her label).

Undaunted, she's showing everyone the way again: Mixing soca, afrobeat and classic Stax soul in this rousing ode to her upbringing in Harlem. It should be a mess, but it's gloriously life-affirming. Plus, the song is a free download. YES!

4) Daughter - Get Lucky
"Cut them and they bleed cobwebs" said the NME of perma-frowning London trio Daughter. They're being a little harsh - the band's music is mopey, but ultimately uplifting. Their Live Lounge cover of Daft Punk's Get Lucky is a case in point, layering broody guitars and brushed snares over a hushed vocal from Elena Tonra. Who, it has to be said, sings it better than Pharrell.

5) The Wanted - She Walks Like Rihanna
"She can't sing, she can't dance, but who cares – she walks like Rihanna!" This is utter bollocks, of course, but you've got to admire their gumption.

6) Icona Pop - I Love It (Live on Jimmy Fallon)
I Love It may be more than a year old now, but it's currently gobbling up all the competition in the US. Icona Pop's car-crashing revenge anthem hit the Top 10 for the first time this week, and they celebrated with this syn-drum heavy performance on Jimmy Fallon.

Bizarrely, the song STILL has no UK release date, after being pushed back about three times. Presumably they're having trouble getting playlisted at a certain national radio station - which is a great shame, because this officially the best pop record of the 21st Century (and, yes, that includes Call Me Maybe).

And that's this week's pick of the crop. Any suggestions for future editions, you can always drop me a line via the email at the bottom of the page.

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