Saturday, 10 March 2012

The 2kDozen 500: #96 - Emeli Sande, "Our Version of Events"

Fundamental mistrust of this - despite/because of the funky haircut and the monochrome promo shoots. I heard her sing and talk about herself during the cringe festival that is Fearne Cotton's Radio One show and it screamed AUTHENTICITY of the fake corporate variety. All about the voice. The voice that swoops and trills and belts and says NOTHING.

But I'm trying to push myself out of the creche, leap the rail and escape the indie boy ghetto.Simon Cowell said last year she was his favourite current songwriter. Enough of a challenge for me.

Opening track "Heaven" has a funky drummer beat and Nellee Hooper strings and that seems about it. "My Kind of Love" has nothing to add to the world of love: "Don't ever question if my heart beats only for you/It beats only for you." Maybe I'll listen back on this in decades to come and feel the emotion. I hear shouting and manufactured self-pity.

Dislike leads to self-examination as usual. Why does this annoy me so much? Why can't I believe what she's written, what she's singing? "Mountains" are for climbing; a "Clown" is sad inside and her "life is a circus". Where is the thinking? And at least the dumb music I like is having fun or stirring bowels or spitting teeth: the pitch of this music is asking me to think and feel about her life, her message. And there is no twist of originality in the music either. So where is the songwriting?

"If I had more than my ambition/I'd have time for please/I'll have time for thank you/As soon as I win." Perhaps it's about being on X-Factor.

"Daddy" is more Bond orchestral pop. "Suitcase" is about someone leaving. "Breaking the Law" is vocal and guitar - and has the image of breaking in to cheer someone up. I'm not sure where she's going with that metaphor. What law would she need to break? "Next to Me" breaks off another couple of chunks of soap - doors that close, skies that are grey. I give up.

"Hope" is a super pompous prayer to the superego about seeing each other as humans "because don't we all bleed the same", calling on the ghost of Dr King to "see we still have a dream" and scaling the heights of Sting's "I hope the Russians love their children too" in terms of self-aggrandisement and downright twattery. "I just hope I'm not the only one": the only person that hopes for an end to child soldiery? Reaching for Stevie Wonder (keyboard choice especially telling) and coming up Chris de Burgh.

Rating: A Pig's Ear out of A Pig's Ear

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