The Dirty Dozen - November, 2007
It's a singles column, not a dating agency. And it ain't fussy, much...
In the spirit of The Skinny's commitment to even-handed criticism, Michael Bublé's Lost (1star, 12 Nov) was given a fair listen, and after careful consideration, was found to beÃ‚Â… absolute guff. David Gray may be about to impose his Greatest Hits on the world, but is token single You're The World To Me (1star, 5 Nov) really necessary? A thousand times no. Another ageing crooner returns in the smoooooth form of Seal. Amazing (1star, 5 Nov) is an amazingly dull nu-soul ode to wife Heidi Klum, covered in a glut of trancey beats and acoustic guitar.
Bobby Kray's Help Me (2stars, out now - 29 Oct) is self-avowedly "skinny white-boy" reggae, but it's still to reggae what Vanilla Ice was to hip-hop. Ex-Delgado Emma Pollock's Paper and Glue (3stars, 26 Nov) is an inoffensive, piano-led number about a broken relationship – but we expect more, Ms Pollock. Jarvis Cocker's former right-hand man Richard Hawley continues his one-man reclamation of brylcreem balladeering with Serious (3stars, 5 Nov). Effortlessly executed, but so polished it almost slinks by unnoticed.
Moving from the introspective realm of the solo artist to the teeming territory of the band, we bump straight into those spiky-haired poseurs from Linkin Park. Once able to inflict a fair dosage of angst, latest single Shadow of the Day (2stars, 29 Oct) seals their fate as faceless stadium dwellers. Elliot Minor seem to want to be the new Muse. The White One is Evil (2stars, 5 Nov) is packed with ridiculously-OTT flourishes at the expense of any tune. A lot better is The National's Apartment Story (3stars, 5 Nov). Warm, layered and smouldering, it still lacks the drama of last single Mistaken For Strangers.
They may be straight outta Leeds, but The Sugars' Way To My Heart (4stars, 19 Nov) is a million miles from so-called 'New-Yorkshire': bluesy disco, girl-boy vocals and stacks of attitude. Young Knives offer more evidence of their madcap brilliance with Terra Firma (4stars, 5 Nov). God knows what a chorus of "Fake rabbit, real snake, terra firma, terra firma" actually means, but who cares when it's this infectious? Close call, but Rilo Kiley's Breakin' Up (4stars, 26 Nov) wins single of the month: irresistible, funkadelic pop from an unlikely source. With pseudo-Supremes backing, Jenny Lewis's voice has never sounded sweeter.