Saturday, November 15, 2014

Songs you may have missed: A Lorde (and S Club) special

So it was back to work this week after a very generous (although partly-unpaid) 12 weeks' paternity leave. I won't say it was easy to leave the kids behind but on balance my wife has the harder job.

Anyway, the cogs of the music industry machine continue to turn despite my domestic arrangements. Here's a round-up of the songs I heard this week and couldn't find time to write up. NB: They're basically all by Lorde.

1) Lorde - Yellow Flicker Beat (Kanye West Remix)

2) Charli XCX ft Simon Le Bon - Kingdom
This one's from Lorde's hand-picked soundtrack to The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1.

Charli talked about it to Pitchfork earlier this week, using the following words: "I worked with Rostam [Batmanglij] on that song. We went to the Miley Cyrus show in LA and got really wasted. Then we went back to his house and I sat on top of his piano, and we wrote Kingdom. We sung it into his phone.

"I remember thinking in the morning, 'Ugh, this is going to be the worst thing ever,' but it was really good. So when Ella [Lorde] reached out to me about the soundtrack, I decided to send her that song even though it’s really different than my usual shit. She was really complimentary about it."

So there you go.

3) Lorde - Don't Tell 'Em (Radio 1 Live Lounge cover)

4) S Club 7 - Greatest Hits medley (from Children In Need)
A greatest hits medley featuring four songs isn't really worthy of the title but it's interesting to see what S Club look like in their mid-to-late 30s.

Paul Cattermole is the highlight, dancing like a drunk uncle at a David Brent lookalike competest.

5) Nicole Scherzinger - Run

6) Lion Babe - Jump Hi (ft Childish Gambino)
Possibly R&B's best-kept secret, Lion Babe have been on the Discopop radar since 2012. They've been quiet for a while but this song, the title track to a forthcoming EP, suggests they're getting their ducks in a row for a major push 2015.

Sample watch: The chorus uses a vocal hook from Nina Simone's interpretation of Mr Bojangles.

7) Ariana Grande - All My Love (ft Major Lazer)
Also from the Hunger Games soundtrack. A total racket, but in the good way.

8) Calvin Harris - Outside (ft Ellie Goulding)
Do you think Calvin regrets giving all his best material to Rita Ora?

9) Taylor Swift - Shake It Off (Tesher remix)
This is magnificent - reframing Taylor's pop hit as a dark and dirty club hit. If Lorde had written Shake It Off, it would have sounded like this.

Sample-watch: The backing track is based around the intro to Justin Timberlake's What Goes Around (Comes Around).

10) One Bit - Won't Hold Back
Superlative sunset grooves from Radio One's "Most Played New Act of 2014". For fans of Disclosure and Holy Ghost!

11) Fergie - LA Love
Featuring cameos from Hilary Swank, Chelsea Handler and Ryan Seacrest. Hardly Liberian Girl, is it?

12) Chvrches vs Bleachers - You Can Go Your Own Way
Featuring the worst live sound mix you have ever heard in your life, this is nonetheless a brilliant cover version. Lauren's vivacious vocals really bring a new dimension to Fleetwood Mac's kiss-off classic.

And that, readers, is that. Happy listening!

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