The 80s influenced pop group Liam and Me is comprised of four friends from Philadelphia who recently released debut album There’s a Difference. Another quartet, The Rifles, come to the Freshmen from across the pond with new LP (and single) The Great Escape. Also hailing from Britain is Victoria Hesketh, who performs under the monikor Little Boots as an electro-pop artist. A new rapper from the Dallas scene, Dorrough is set to drop his first album this July. Young Steff is not just a name. 20 years old now, the R & B singer was first signed to Roc-A-Fella Records by Jay-Z and Damon Dash when he was only 12 before becoming a free agent and landing at Atlantic Records.
“Ice Cream Paint Job”
Well all you commentators who wanted some hip-hop on the Freshmen have been granted your wish. (B-reel I’m looking at you kid.) And, well. Alright. Seriously. Ice cream paint job?! It’s safe to say that this AHEM double entendre is not really helping the case for me in particular. Naturally, I’m going to take a little offense. The thing is, it’s not a terrible song. I’m sure it will catch on. It might even be a summer hit while feminists everywhere roll their eyes. But it’s every rap video cliché rolled into one. Also, get those ladies another stylist. Gold lamé ANYTHING is not necessary in anyone’s life least of all as a bikini top. Nor should we be subjected to it. I know most of you will probably say that this is par for the course with hip hop but I listen to many hip hop artists who respect women and don’t feel the need to degrade them.
Liam and Me
“Say it Out Loud”
Yawn. And no. Just no. The 80s influence is way too overwhelming and the song is not good enough to stand on its own and merely film the band performing as a premiere video. It comes across as pretty lazy, both in sound and look. I understand utilizing your influences, in fact I love to be able to see a band’s influence and know where it is coming from, but this is over the top. I am not really digging this at all.
“New In This Town”
I have to admit, I don’t think Little Boots is quite as talented as everyone has made her out to be. She doesn’t have a wide vocal range but she happens to be super pretty so she gathered attention quickly. (Seriously, you would have thought she was the second-coming or something. Also, I’ve heard rumors that her live shows are subject to a ton of technical issues.) That being said, this is a really fun pop-song and a fun video to accompany. It’s one of her better tracks, her voice can sound a bit thin on occasion but here it’s nicely displayed, and overall I am sure it will do really well.
“The Great Escape”
Wwwweeeelllllll… I don’t hate it. But I don’t love it either. My first reaction was raised eyebrows and a groan as soon as that “Make a Change” sign rolled into sight. (And before you jump all over me, yes I understand it matched up with the lyrics, that doesn’t, however, improve the sentiment.) But as the video went on I found it to be tolerable. I would have liked to see quirky, more misplaced things taking place in the background that would have really surprised the viewer. People setting off fire extinguishers is just not that shocking or interesting. Unlike with Liam and Me, I wanted MORE from this band. They were playing it safe and I wanted them to get a little bit risque.
Please read what I wrote above about Dourrough’s video and also apply to this one as well. (Although the women are styled better, I’ll give you that one.) Also, someone needs to tell this kid he’s not Ne-Yo. Sorry. But he has a decent voice, he should be trying to distinguish himself more.
This week it has to be Little Boots for me. Her video is far and away the best of the bunch. Let me know what you’re thinking in the comments section below.