Claire – Broken Promise Land (Giorgio Moroder Remix) 3/5
Italian producer Moroder returns with a futuristic remix of Claire’s latest single. The remix begins with the artist’s vocals resounding over a slow, thumping beat accompanied by a distant synth and more prominent, bouncing electronic input.
The opening verse flows nicely into the first chorus, which doesn’t differ much from the build up, before breaking the song down with some robotic male vocals that cement the ultramodern nature of the piece. These robotics deny the number the chance to take off into the more upbeat number that the second verse threatens to bring on, but ensure the unique nature of the remix remains. An electro effort worthy of critical praise for the intricacies, but unlikely to make for comfortable regular home listening.
Little Mix – Salute (Troyboi Remix) 4/5
The girl group spawned from X Factor hit back with another single, and when Troyboi takes hold of it the track travels in an entirely different direction. After some early vocal harmonies from the four-piece group, an absolutely massive bassline drops in big enough to blast your face off. Good work from the producer to lay down his marker on the track and turn it from a pop number into a grimey hip-hop track early on.
After the bassline has calmed down, it’s a more standard hip-hop backing that accompanies Little Mix through the remainder of the song. The fast paced nature of the chorus works well with the instrumental work laid down by Troyboi, who manufactures a song that wouldn’t look out of place in the back catalogue of Destiny’s Child. This is one to be played on big speakers in a room with slamming acoustics.
Seinabo Say – Hard Time 2/5
Faded vocals start this off in a melodic, looping chant. The vocals soon grow in power as the introductory build up is met by a strong, repetitive backing formed through keyboard and bass. After a minute or so of what feels like build up, a smooth guitar interlude brings us back to the build up before the piece finally seems to move up a notch with around a minute left on the timer. A final hook from Seinabo Say as the end draws near allows a penultimate push off into a satisfactory and memorable ending, but it does feel as though it is too little, too late for this track.
Paloma Faith – Only Love Can Hurt Like This 2/5
The spectacular vocals of Paloma Faith play out over a subdued big band backing for the first verse of this track, which transforms into somewhat of a whiny love number as it hits the chorus. The song feels like it should be playing in a movie montage as a character who has recently wronged his true love stares out a rainy window, regretting his actions and remembering the good times he had with said romantic interest. A solid track from Paloma, but nothing new and nothing particularly encapsulating. The vocals get repetitive as the eponymous lyric continues to pop up, and this does indeed feel like more of a soundtrack song than a charting hit.
CHVRCHES – We Sink 4/5
The latest single to come from CHVRCHES recently released and highly acclaimed album The Bones of What You Believe, the backing track for We Sink would not have looked out of place if providing the soundtrack to a chase sequence in the Tron series. A futuristic, fast-moving and upbeat electro beat jangles and jives around behind cool vocals from lead vocalist Lauren Mayberry.
The backing stays strong throughout as it dips and dives into different levels of electronic elation, and the vocals on top are spread out nicely enough not to give the reader the chance to get bored of the bouncy sound. Good work from the Scottish breakthrough act.
★ RECORD OF THE WEEK ★
Oliver Heldens X Becky Hill – Gecko (Overdrive) 5/5
The day that many were dreading had arrived – Oliver Heldens has released the vocal mix of Gecko, the slamming progressive electronic track that has dominated the past year in EDM from the summer festival fields to the mountainous heights of La Folie Douce in the Alps.
The track flows with an electronic twang reminiscent of Tchami’s innovative future house genre and twerks around so unpredictably that it would seem as though no vocals could ever be introduced without compromising the unique beauty of the track. This, however, proves to be distinctly untrue.
The Voice singer and regular Rudimental feature Becky Hill was the one charged with singing on the track, and the manner in which she takes power over the build up and drops without taking away from the backing is truly impressive. Right from her entrance, Hill‘s distinctive vocals travel well as the record jumps, while also seemingly guiding the song through its various ups and downs. A great choice of vocalist by Oliver Heldens, who alongside the wonderful Becky Hill achieves what many doubted would be a possible.
Expect to hear this go into overdrive in clubs and on the radio over the next few months.