This week’s tracks
Carly Rae Jepsen Party for One
Joyous news for the galaxy’s Carly Chaplains, Jep Cats and, er, Rae Stans: as the prophecies have foretold, the high empress of insubordinate glosspop has returned and we must all accept that CRJ is essentially a sci-fi author now, as she has written a song about someone not wanting to go out with her. Wild implausibilities aside, the result is a whip-crack banger that manages to be a bit sadface while still megaphoning the importance of enthusiastic physical self-care.
Clean Bandit ft Marina and Luis Fonsi Baby
Cambridge’s prefects of polite electronica will never shake the image of party hosts who insist that you use coasters, so thank goodness they have some help from the magnificent Marina (from … and the Diamonds) and Despacito Romeo Luis Fonsi for this tale of regretfully parried seduction. With its light Latin guitars and soft trumpets, it cha-chachas right up to the line of late-night Ceefax muzak but proves pretty impossible to resist.
Poppy ft Grimes Play Destroy
Lots to unpack in Poppy’s latest, where the YouTube star ropes in Grimes for a bewildering hopscotch between juddering sludge-thrash and celestial anime yachtpop. Is Play Destroy’s bifurcated structure supposed to symbolise how young minds get pre-gendered by insidious cultural messaging (metal and Action Men for boys, pop and My Little Pony for girls)? Maybe. Does it sound like Spaceman by Babylon Zoo? Definitely.
Having worked and toured with louche shapeshifter Blood Orange, BEA1991 continues her own experiments in sonic necromancy, dropping some sky-scraping, multi-phased vocals over an artful chunk of fridge-y funk. Despite this obvious fondness for mutated production techniques, BEA1991 is still smart enough to embrace the raw power of singing along with a keyboard solo.
Slipknot All Out Life
Finally, the good stuff (if by “good” you mean “placing a large saucepan over your head and banging it repeatedly with a spoon”). Slipknot have been living every night as if it’s Purge Night since 1995, but their first new track in ages seems weirdly concerned with not remaining relevant in an age of mayfly attention spans. “Old does not mean dead!” roars Corey Taylor, before literally reading out a manifesto to that effect. Whatever, gramps.