Psy – Gangnam Style
Hooray, they let me do Mostly Pop again! I warn you – I like not a single song this month. Don’t blame me. If you want a nicer Mostly Pop, I advise you to go out there and make some great music – really you only have yourself to blame.
This, I mean, pff. It’s one of those mad Eurovision songs that you know won’t win but you’re just glad isn’t another fucking ballad from Eastern Europe. It’s got a hook, a dance routine, a flashy video. You know this already, though, what are you reading me for? It’s a meme, it’s been everywhere, there are more tribute videos to it on YouTube than [subs insert amusingly prolific YouTube video type, pls]. It may be that I’ve missed a subtlety to all this, but I doubt it.
One day, the internet will do this to us, you know. We’re sitting here all smug, enjoying the meme, laughing at the whacky foreign pop and before you know it, all of South East Asia will be laughing at us for, oh, I dunno, The Cheeky Girls. On the one hand you’d have to concede that it would be a fair target for laughter. On the other, you’d feel a bit miffed that the world had taken an obvious novelty song and that’s the one they choose to represent us. Oh, the rest of the world! We didn’t mean it! We’re still cool!
One Direction – Live While We’re Young
Oh, god, spoke too soon. WE ARE NOT COOL.
So, the extravagantly-coiffed band of bouncing pricks we call One Direction are back again. I feel like every time I return to MostlyPop these idiots are around, farting up the charts peddling yet another song that doesn’t really do a great deal with a slim musico-facial repertoire.
I almost admire this one, though, for the obvious oldie-trolling of its opening chords. Whereas What Makes You Beautiful mauled Summer Loving, this one will have mums and (especially) dads sitting up when it comes on and asking, in tones of terrified awe ‘Why do I know that? Is that Should I Stay or Should I Go? IS IT THE FUCKING CLASH?’ Yes. Yes, it is The Clash. As I believe Louis Walsh once said: pop music repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce. So it’s The Clash put through the Cowell sausage factory and made to jump up and down like it’s having a good time woop let’s all go glamping! Jesus. Glamping.
Anyway, this is literally nothing more than Another One Direction Tune, so if you like One Direction you are duty-bound to like this. If you don’t like One Direction, sorry. Don’t play the video above.
Mika ft Pharrell Williams – Celebrate
Hi from the mid-noughties! I’m having a great time. Mika and Pharrell Williams, both of whom are super-relevant and have careers right now, have just collaborated on a song. It’s called Celebrate! Don’t tell anyone, but I think they’ve missed the point of the Kool and the Gang original. Still, it’s nice that Pharrell is changing his sound to something a bit less recognisable and interesting. It’s nice that Mika is… somehow not dead in a stranglewank incident, I guess. No-one needs that.
The song is some sort of mid-tempo compromise between Pharrell’s minimalism and Mika’s Queen tribute act, unsatisfactory in all senses. At least if it had sounded like one or the other it would have been something. As it is, it’s just a song. Filling time between now and the inevitable moment of our death. Thanks, Mika and Pharrell. That’s really depressing.
It could be worse, I suppose. Imagine if that bloke out of Black Eyed Peas had collaborated with The Script! I mean, hah! Huh, that would be… Man, that would be terrible.
Dappy – Good Intentions
Freshly-varnished* and with a bizarre tonsure, Dappy is still attempting to foist a solo career on us. Terrifyingly, he seems to be succeeding. He’s not exactly the most gifted performer out there. He has anti-charisma. He appears to have been involved in a teleporter accident with a rodent. He wasn’t even the most talented in N-Dubz, which is saying something. And yet here he is – this single is, as I type, just outside the top ten. His last single, Rockstar, got to number two. TWO! With its Brian May cameo and Eminem-circa-8-Mile video stylings.
So, how’s Good Intentions? It comes, I should warn you, from an album called Bad Intentions. See what he did there? This is genius-level shit we’re dealing with here. Anyway, it’s another song which might as well have been performed by Lee Ryan off of Blue. You know the bloke in One Direction who looks like Nat from Iconicles? Of course you don’t, you have no idea who I’m on about. Hold on.
Yeah, this guy. I bet you five New English Pounds that in four years this guy will be singing the songs Dappy is being given now. Assuming you don’t listen to the words. Go on, have a listen. ‘I apologise for my liver’. He apologises for his liver? For and on behalf of my internal organs, I profess bafflement. Is he making a tour of his body? Next song – ‘I apologise for my lungs. They did this.’ Actually, I could accept that apology with good grace.
Tinchy Stryder – Help Me
Help you? HELP YOU?
There have been a lot of great rappers come out of London in the past few years. Dizzee. Wiley. Wretch. Chipmunk**. Tinie. Sheeran. Sadly, the one with the biggest career (who isn’t Dizzee), seems to be Tinchy Stryder – this is despite (or maybe because of) a spectacularly bland delivery and completely unfounded belief in his own myth (Star in the hood, indeed).
This is somehow piggybacking on the rebuilding of New Orleans following Katrina. How does a chap from Newham tap into the desperation, hope, anguish, rejection, desolation felt by an entire community following a catastrophe that levelled a city? Well, he gets people to wear his t-shirt and looks a bit sad, of course. I’m just amazed he didn’t bring Dappy along.
Paloma Faith – Never Tear Us Apart
Odd, I thought this song was longer. Especially as it’s OH CHRIST ONE OF THOSE FUCKING MIMSY COVER VERSIONS ON EVERY FUCKING SEPIA-TONED ADVERT FOR oh hey this is a John Lewis advert never mind.
*486 on the colour chart: Wenge
**Sorry. ‘Chip’. Because sounding like a piece of deep-fried potato is way cool.