Wednesday, October 15, 2008
2008: Single Reviews
Fall Out Boy - "I Don't Care"
This song is incredibly catchy, although like every other new song - the chorus gets a little repetitive by the end of the songs. Typical - but great - Fall Out Boy lyrics add some punch. It's truly unfortunate that Fall Out Boy are such sub-par live performers, as their studio recordings are so good. It's hard to predict how this song will perform on the charts [the only stat I could find was that it has hit #35 on the Canadian Hot 100] - but does it even matter? Their rabid fans will eat it up immediately, and they're probably guaranteed a #1 album debut when the album is released Dec. 16. It was pushed back from the original Nov. 4/Election Day release due to an esoteric statement from Pete Wentz....I'm sure their fans are angry about it. "These friends, they don't love you/They just love the hotel suites now"...this song is either a commentary on a specific individual or the state of Hollywood starlets in general. "I don't care what you think/as long as it's about me/The best of us can find happiness in misery" sings Patrick Stump, in what could easily be the egotist's anthem for a generation.
David Archuleta - "Crush"
This song seems to have already hit its peak with a week at #2, probably largely due to digital sales. Aren't all chart positions largely due to digital sales these days anyway? Archuleta has crafted a sweet ballad that could easily find a home on Radio Disney and the Adult Contemporary type charts. It appeals to both pre-teen and teen listeners, and probably also moms (who loved Clay Aiken!) "Is it real or just another crush?" Archuleta sings with such earnestness we have to believe him. It's a cute - but bland - song that comes off as a little generic, and the equally generic video won't help much either. But Archuleta is adorable and he will likely do well in the future with his debut album.
David Cook - "Light On"
This song is co-written by Chris Cornell of Soundgarden and Audioslave fame. I think this is a good first single for Cook, although it is very Daughtry-esque. Cook has a great voice and will most likely go on to be a great success, particularly if he writes his own music or lyrics. He could also translate that into writing for other artists which is usually lucrative. "Try to leave a light on when I’m gone/Something I rely on to get home/One I can feel at night," sings Cook. However, having watched Cook the entire season on American Idol, from the auditions to the finale, I feel he could have done more with a first single. It could have been a little bolder, a little more daring..."Light On" is playing it safe by sticking to the "Home"/"What About Now/"Feels Like Tonight" type song made so popular by Daughtry lately. Speaking of Daughtry, I think he has released 5 singles off that album!! Pretty unusual for an act these days, unless you are Rihanna. Then there is not a week that goes by without a single of yours in the Top 10.
T.I. - "Whatever You Like"
"Stacks on deck/Patron no ice/We could pop bottles all night/And baby you could have whatever you like", raps T.I. in his typical well-enunciated (comparatively) style. The song is basically an ode to giving a girl whatever she wants, whether it involves private jets around the world or Patron with no ice or "stacks on deck"...whatever that means. Hey, sounds good to me. It's catchy and vaguely features female background vocals during the chorus. Bottom line, it's probably one of T.I.'s best songs.
The song has already hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, and set a record for largest jump to number one in one week (from #71 to #1)...a record he later broke a few weeks later with his single "Live Your Life" (featuring OF COURSE Rihanna) which jumped from #80 to #1. (Britney broke the record this week with a jump from #96-1.) I think these large jumps are completely influenced by digital sales (most people like to buy the song on Itunes the week it is released obviously...the week prior the chart standings were based solely on airplay, then the next week airplay + digital sales = huge jump in chart position.
"Whatever You Like" by T.I. is not to be confused with "Whatever U Like" (a song by the lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls featuring T.I.) or the recent Weird Al parody of the song, also titled "Whatever You Like". Just a warning.