Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Check the flow--get ready with the mike, let's go!

Richard Breen, more commonly known as Abs, rose to fame as a member of UK boyband Five. After the group split up, Abs went on to release his own solo album, Abstract Theory, in 2003. Though the three singles did all right (#4, #10, and #5), the album itself entered the charts at #29, and, according to Wikipedia, disputes with his record company prevented the fourth single from ever being released. He (along with the rest of the former members except Sean) has now reformed Five. Abstract Theory doesn't quite sound like typical boyband stuff--Abs tries to bring some funkiness to songs, and his raps (as well as voice) aren't exactly what you would expect from a former boyband member. The album is far from consistent, but it does have some good songs on it.

Stop Sign--an old-school sounding fast song that's pretty fun. It was Abs's second single, but I'm starting with it because it'll kick of the proceedings with a burst of energy. It's also the only one of Abs's singles to not have a lot of female backing (or lead) vocals.

What U Got--Abs's debut single. It's mid-tempo and this sort of rocking (like back and forth, not rock and roll) feel to it. He also namechecks GQ in it.

Miss Perfect (feat. Nodesha)--a lot of people questioned Abs's ability (in both talent and charisma) to lead a whole album; he seems to have anticipated that, though, because his voice is often accompanied by significant female backing vocas or, as in the case of "Miss Perfect," is essentially a duet (or, depending on your point of view, a song by the female singer featuring Abs). This is a smoother, slicker song than either of the previous two.

7 Ways (feat. Eve)--this was to be Abs's fourth single, but it was never released. Female singer here? Yup--she even has the chorus all to herself, which she delivers in a sweet, understated way, a pleasant contrast to the feeling of ominousness or worry that underlies the song. Though the song is labeled "feat. Angel," I think the singer's real name is Eve.

Spin--Abs's version of Dead Or Alive's "You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)." It was a bonus track on the Japanese edition of his album and a B-side on the DVD single of "Miss Perfect." It's not a straight cover of the original (which it has absolutely nothing on), but more takes it as the launching point for a new song. Typical fast-speaking Abs on the verses, with a more beat-oriented transition to the familiar (though toned-down) chorus.

To buy Abstract Theory, go here (physical); to buy the single for "Miss Perfect," go here (physical).

Next up: possibly Jesse McCartney or Gregory Lemarchal, but if I'm being realistic, there's a very good chance it'll be something about Anthony Callea, because we're expecting "exciting news" on Thursday...


Robpop said...
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Robpop said...

Postergirl! I'm so jealous. This site is brilliant. Keep it up. Its weird the Abs should be the one with the solo career. Everyone all thought it would be J, Scott or Richie.


Robpop said...

Postergirl..wasnt 7 ways actually released? Heres the video:

Trixie said...


I've unintentionally ripped this post off by finishing a half written blog post of mine, but I've linked a plenty to you.

7 days is ace.

T x

Trixie said...

I obviously mean 7 ways :)

Poster Girl said...

Honestly? Thanks, Robpop! I'm completely addicted to DSTP--to borrow a phrase from IndieGirl and PopBoy, you all are totally "showing me how it's done" :) About "7 Ways"--I wasn't paying attention to music at the time, so I could be wrong, but I think it was pulled just a few weeks before it was released, so, if Wikipedia is right about the failed release being because of record company politics (but, since it's Wikipedia, who knows? :) ), maybe the video had already hit the airwaves when they decided to cancel...I think, too, they'd already made copies of the single, which had the video on it, and though stores weren't supposed to sell them, some did?

Trixie, I read your blog regularly, so it's just exciting to be linked to :) Plus, your post covers a lot of things different to mine (I should probably have known Brian Higgins produced "7 Ways," but I didn't, so it was good to learn), and is a lot more eloquent anyhow :)

Daimn said...

I'm not ashamed to say I'm a big 5ive fan so I'm excited by the reunion! lol "It's The Things You Do" is probably my favorite songs of the teen pop era.

ps I'm not sure what it is, but there is something so trashy about "You Spin Me Round" as covered by Jessica Simpson and Richard. Love it!

Poster Girl said...

The reunion is making me think I need to do some catching up on my 5ive history--though I have their first album and some of the songs on their second album (including "Keep On Moving," which is great), I haven't heard all of the second album yet...I think I may have to go get it.

I haven't heard Jessica's cover yet (I'm slacking on my new pop, I know, but somehow I never got around to listening to her whole album--I think because it was everywhere, and I just kept thinking I could do that whenever), but it is a fun song to cover :)

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well as voice) aren't exactly what you would expect from a former boyband member. The album is far from consistent, but it does have some good songs on it.