This week has seen a remarkable stream of successful singles, however some of them have proven to be more of a disappointing flop. In this week’s review, Music Editor Amy Pollock picks apart the best from the worst, including the latest from Troye Sivan, Busted and Clean Bandit.
‘Heaven’ by Troye Sivan ft Betty Who
After worldwide speculation of what the Australian sensation’s next single would be, when word got out that resident radio stations were blessing Aussie listeners with the beautiful song that is ‘Heaven’, the debate was finally settled once the official audio was added to Troye Sivan’s YouTube on the hush – sending fans into a complete and utter frenzy.
From the first listen, ‘Heaven’ is undoubtedly a very captivating and easy song to listen to. The more you listen to it (and trust me, it’s a song you’ll want on loop), the more you fall deeper and deeper in love with it. Troye and Betty Who’s gentle and perfectly matched vocals shine with blissful effortlessness, and with this song also featuring appropriately balanced and timed synth and drum beats, this makes ‘Heaven’ a very strong contender for the charts.
Not only that, the message behind ‘Heaven’ is quite powerful and complex. It refers to the pop star’s battle to reconcile his religion and homosexuality, with the lyrics stating: “Without losing a piece of me, how do I get to heaven? Without changing a part of me, how do I get to heaven?” Which, when I first focused on the lyrics, made me feel a little heartbroken but contradictorily, full of love at the same time.
I give a well-deserved 4.5/5.
‘Rockabye’ by Clean Bandit ft Sean Paul and Anne-Marie
I must say, when I first listened to ‘Rockabye’ – it almost made me jump by how fast Sean Paul literally storms into the song. Obviously it is not a song that requires a build-up, but I almost got the impression that with these three huge artists all wanting a spot to shine – it all feels a bit rushed, busy and clumpy – particularly at the beginning.
Anne-Marie’s vocals are on point throughout the whole song, which is well worth noting. The lyrics also give a respectful shout out to all single mothers wanting to make a better life for their children – something that isn’t often sung about when it comes to dance songs, but is a nice, appreciated change.
However, I do feel like Clean Bandit have built up such a high profile with hits such as ‘Rather Be’, ‘Real Love’ and dare I say it – but even ‘Tears’ I felt was much better than this. The song also felt like it had lost a great trait that Clean Bandit pride themselves on – their unique and strong instrumental influence on dance music. ‘Rockabye’ just seems especially clubby, a route which I hope they don’t delve too far into and end up sounding like everything else out there.
I’ll give it a mediocre 2.5/5, as I wasn’t too impressed after comparing it to the bar that Clean Bandit have already set so high for themselves.
‘Easy’ by Busted
If there’s one thing I’m going to just blurt out about this song – is that it is so traditional Busted and dare I say it, verging on those good ole ‘3am’ days. Something that retro Busted fans may appreciate.
‘Easy’ is actually quite a lovely, simple song, and could definitely be the long-awaited, heart-breaking hit that we were waiting to be added to Busted’s list of tear-jerkers including the obvious ‘Sleeping With the Light On’ and ‘Who’s David?’ tracks.
James Bourne’s voice in this song reminds a lot of Alex Gadkarth’s (the lead singer from All Time Low), something I hope he isn’t exaggerating purposefully to make Busted more relevant, however it does make a great contradiction to Charlie Simpson’s signature husky voice. Transitioning from James’ voice to Charlie’s makes this song way more interesting than it otherwise would sound if it was a solo song. Matt’s voice is an ideal meet-in-the-middle between the others, with the small doses of each singer’s voice making Busted the great, diverse band that they are.
I’m going to rate it 4/5 purely for it being a more honest-sounding Busted song, especially when comparing ‘Easy’ to the try-hard comeback song ‘Coming Home’ they released which unsurprisingly backfired after sounding so unbelievably alien for Busted.
If you want to listen to some of the other songs that were out this week, you can on our Editor’s Extended Mix right here: