Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Bet you're missin' my voice on those records you own

One of the most charming pop songs to come from a British singer recently was Keisha Buchanan's "Under Control," a leak from the former Sugababes singer's recording sessions with songwriter Alex James (of Alexandra Burke's "Bad Boys" and the Backstreet Boys' "Masquerade") and David Gamson (the former Scritti Politti member). Despite production that initially sounds more demo-y than you might hope, its poppy, upbeat core is instantly appealing--appealing enough that, before you know it, you've played "Under Control" several times and can't understand how you ever found it fuzzy or underproduced. It's situated somewhere near the Sugababes' "Push The Button" and Groove Armada and Mutya's "Song 4 Mutya," though with fewer dance influences. There's an effortless, summery vibe to the song that seemed to indicate Keisha had, confidently and with understatement, found a musical sweet spot without any of the struggle that so often characterizes early solo careers.

Gimmie Pressure by poppostergirl

"Gimmie Pressure," written with Alex Cantrall (JoJo's "Leave (Get Out)"), isn't as innocently poppy or warm as "Under Control." It feels more aggressive and boastful, as well as a little more urban--it even switches over to a skittery grime beat for its fadeout. All that said, it's not hard or edgy in the way much pop-R&B is nowadays; there are no slicing synths or icy minimalist dance beats. The lyrics may seek to announce Keisha's queen bee status, but the song itself doesn't make enough of a statement to work as a smart solo debut single. Still, when taken with "Under Control," it does nothing to dissuade interest in the return of one of the UK's most distinctive voices.

Keisha Buchanan currently has no solo releases to purchase, but you can buy her earlier work with the Sugababes here (physical) or here (digital).


Paul said...

it's almost tragic that i haven't heard Under Control before now despite being aware of it. It's also tragic that i haven't spent much time considering solo suga career options... Hurry up key no dollar sign ha, i'm ready for you to take the UK pop scene by storm...s

Poster Girl said...

I never would have guessed she'd be the ex-Sugababe we might look to, but "Under Control" does hint at something promising. I hope she keeps going in that direction or at least at that level of quality.