13/06/2013

Hands

Little Boots
2009

I have a vague association in my mind of Little Boots with the eighties synth revivalists, and given how much I enjoyed La Roux's debut album, I dug this out. Turned out I've actually had this album for a while but somehow never listened to it before now.

Once again we have all the obvious electropop influences: nicely tinny drum samples, buzzing synth tones and glistening echoes; songs with big singalong choruses. However if you didn't know any better you would be more inclined to categorise this with contemporary pop/dance. It illustrates just how much influence the giants like Depeche Mode or The Human League have on music today, and it doesn't need a self-conscious decision to revive them. "New In Town" or "Click" could easily be Girls Aloud (although I'm fairly certain you won't find Phil Oakey guesting on one of their albums any time soon, as he does here on "Symmetry"). "Remedy" or "Stuck On Repeat" wouldn't be out of place on Eurovision (and would have won, no problem). It's all very, very polished and very, very commercial.

It's important to understand that this isn't a criticism at all. I ♥ Pop. Done well, it's my favourite kind of music by far. Hands is packed with soaring tunes, great tones, cool hooks and superb production. If it feels a little more shallow than La Roux then that's maybe due to more immediacy and a little less variety. Still great stuff though.

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