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Reviews 10/01/2004

Single reviews released 12 January 2004

By Mikey (Gillingham, Kent, UK)

Matt Darey feat. Marcella Woods - Voice Of An Angel The new single from Matt Darey the vocals are featured by Marcella Woods on 'Voice Of An Angel', its a very catchy tune which represents what is perhaps the far end of the spectrum for Marcella Woods. It is a minimal trance/techno hybrid with an awesome track that is already an anthem for cooler clubbers across the UK, and indeed, as far as happy, clubby, dance tunes go this hits the spot. 2004, has certainly began with a big bang dance explosion onto our British clublands, this is the club anthem of the month.

Liberty X - Everybody Cries A move to a more sophisticated sound for Kelli, Michelle, Kevin, Jessica and Tony on the third single to be taken from their album 'Being Somebody'. 'Everybody Cries' is an epic ballad with the vocals, from Kelli and Kevin in particular, are again spot on amid typically polished and well orchestrated backing and while songs concerning break ups and broken hearts are ten a penny, this is one of the least clichéd and more moving of its type.

2 Play feat. Raghay & Jucxi - So Confused Asian music made its mark into the music foray last year, and here a brand new act - 2 Play, release their debut single 'So Confused', collaborating with Raghay & Juxci. The team that put together Kevin Lyttle's top-selling hit 'Turn Me On' on the map, towards the end of last year. Here, they release their debut single, which is a mix of R&B with a shade of dancehall music to add to the mix, following in the footsteps of Sean Paul and Wayne Wonder, which hopefully, with intention to became a top class hit, in its own right.

Amy Studt - All I Wanna Do Amy has surpassed herself with this new song, 'All I wanna Do.' Originally a hit for Sheryl Crow, Amy has recorded a wonderful fourth single, with superbly strong vocals and a wonderfully feel good tune. Its also good to note that Sheryl Crow asked Amy Studt if she'd like to cover one of her songs... Which sounds to me more like a ploy to just promote Sheryl Crow's "The Very Best Of" album although I don't think it will be that damaging to Studt's career when she re-releases her album the week after this is released.

Beyonce - Me Myself And I Each of Beyonce's solo singles have been mellower than the one before; after the crazed-sounding 'Crazy In Love', 'Baby Boy' sounded laid back, and compared with that, 'Me Myself and I' is like a lullaby. But as well as being soulful and soothing, this song has self-empowering lyrics about leaving your cheating fella and being strong on your own, as the title suggests.

The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster - Mr Mental It's been a while since we heard anything from the 'Disaster but now Brighton's finest garage punk quintet return with the first new material since their critically-acclaimed debut album, Horse Of The Dog. Fans of Guy McKnight and co. will be pleased to hear that Mr. Mental doesn't stray too far from TEMBD's tried and tested formula as grungy guitars, angry vocals and youthful enthusiasm abound while the other new songs on the single, 6.30 and Flag Party, wet the appetite for the next album.

Franz Ferdinand - Take Me Out Surely the "hot new band for 2004", Franz Ferdinand offer us a nice slice of bouncy pop rock to take us into the New Year. "Take Me Out" starts off with that Strokes edge to it, however a minute into the song it totally changes direction into something completely unique and different. With the ingredients of sharp rhythmic guitar playing, glistening lead and puzzling lyrics, Take Me Out is a refreshing change to a lot of the new wave garage songs we hear today.

Grandaddy - I'm On Standby/Stray Dog And The Chocolate Shake Another curious gem plucked from Grandaddy's slow-burning Sumday album, 'Stray Dog is about as psychedelic as these weirdy beardys get. "With his weird cologne and magic hair," whispers Jason Lytle in a refreshingly playful manner over a finely tuned cacophony of twee synths, guitar and bell riffs. The sound is unmistakably Grandaddy, but could also double up as a possible theme tune for a grown-up version of the Magic Roundabout too.

HIM - Funeral Of Hearts Widely regarded as Finland's finest exports, HIM (His Infernal Majesty) were bred on a dark diet of The Sisters Of Mercy and The Mission, hence the Gothic imagery. However, those expecting their music to be as demonic as the artwork are in for a surprise because Funeral Of Hearts is, quite simply, a beautifully orchestrated ballad. The heady mix of frontman Ville Valo's haunting, poetic vocals against the crunching, slowed-down Black Sabbath style riffs have earned HIM countless new admirers in 2003 so expect big things from them this year.

Paul Jackson & Steve Smith - Push (Far From Here) Steve Smith, of South London dance trio Dirty Vegas fame, has teamed-up with DJ / producer Paul Jackson to make one of 2003's most successful underground releases even bigger. A new vocal mix of The Push (Far From Here), which has already sold over 8000 copies on 12" alone, finally hits record stores for the New Year, but more importantly why is it called The Push? The boring answer is that because the changes in the bass line happen not on the beat but on the push, so it pushes the beat along. Songwise it's sounds like classic Dirty Vegas, one of those mellow tribal beats, and equally serene vocals which surely make this one of the must have choons of 2004.

NG3 - Holler Like the world needs another girl band. But hang on a minute, this one boasts a former Miss Sweden so let's at least give 'em a chance eh boys? What's more the NG bit stands for Nasty Girls, which is always a turn on for impressionable young men. Songwise Holler ain't bad either, a slick mixture of Missy Elliot beats, Eminem style rapping and a sterling girl power chorus to burn your bra to. Ultimately success is dependent on how many boys end up fancying these girls - Malin, Linda, Andrea, but you've still got to admire their brand of "shock pop" which puts them closer to TLC than say The Spice Girls.

P.O.D. - Will You San Diego based band, P.O.D., have returned with a new guitarist, Jason Truby. The new sound is very different, however keeps the same recognisable edge that P.O.D. have always had. Leaving rap behind them, front man Sonny sings throughout this single, wondering, Will You? The track hits you with heavy chords, while the lyrics depict a love/desperation story. Similar to Limp Bizkit's single, Eat You Alive, the song breaks into a very soft interlude before kicking back into the mind-shattering chorus.

Stacie Orrico - I Promise She has an image to match pop's biggest stars and a voice capable of years of chart success. But Stacie Orrico is perhaps an unlikely pop princess. While Britney's a slave 4 U and Christina's sweating till her clothes come off, Stacie's message of sexual purity and spiritual fulfilment comes as something of a breath of fresh air. Her new single 'I Promise' is taken from her debut self-titled album 'Stacie Orrico'. 'I Promise', with its R n' B beats, luscious backing vocals and electronic instrumentation, has strong shades of TLC, the lyrics are strongly spiritual.

The Strokes - Reptilia So two albums under their belt and The Strokes blatantly have a rigid formula, but oh boy what a formula it is. Reptilia bears all the hallmarks of a classic New York song, chugging backbeat, throbbing bassline and laconic Julian Casablancas sounding like he's singing through a megaphone. The difference this time is the ingenious way Nick Valensi and Albert Hammond Jr's two guitars snap and interweave to produce one of the most exhilarating Strokes songs yet.

Amy Winehouse - Take The Box
David Kitt - Me & My Love When Doves Cry
Jimmy Edgar - Access Rhythm
Lowgold - Same Way
Metallica - The Unnamed Feeling EP
Mood II Swing - Can't Get Away From You

Single Release Schedule

January 19
2Pac featuring Notorious BIG - Runnin' (Dying To Live)
Bikini Atoll - Desolation Highway/Then Amplify
Contradiction - Guilty/Sweet Dreams
Easyworld - 'Til The Day (That I Die)
Empathy - Luminosity
Freeland - Supernatural Thing
Grand Transmitter - Under The Wheel EP
JC Chasez featuring Dirt McGirt - Some Girls
Junior Jack - Da Hype
Maroon 5 - Harder To Breathe
Minus - Angel In Disguise
Mr On vs. Jungle Brothers - Breathe Don't Stop
Nina Jayne - Could've Been
Primero - White Flag/Naked In The Rain
Ryan Adams - So Alive
Scissor Sisters - Comfortably Numb
Si Begg - Buss
Tatjana - Santa Maria
Tender Trap - ¿Cómo Te Llamas? (Tell Me Your Name)
The Bandits - The Warning
The Delays - Long Time Coming
The Offspring - Hit That
Zutons - Pressure Point

January 26
Azure Ray - New Resolution
Beats For Beginners - When Robots Attack
Belle & Sebastian - I'm A Cuckoo
Benny Benassi presents The Biz - No Matter What You Do
Brand Violet - Head
C & C Music Factory - Sweat
Celebrity Squares - King For A Day
Chicane featuring Bryan Adams - Don't Give Up 2004
Cinnamon - Cakes & Pies
Clarkesville - Spinning
Eberg - Plastic Lions
Emma - I'll Be There
Engerica - The Smell
Fight Club featuring Laurent Conrad - Spread Love
Five For Fighting - 100 Years
Girls Aloud - You Freak Me Out
Hannah Jones - I Am What I Am/Bridge Over Troubled Water
Incubus - Megalomaniac
Jaimeson featuring Angel Blu & CK - Take Control
Joss Stone - Fell In Love With A Boy
Kid Symphony - Hands On The Money
LMC vs. U2 - Take Me To The Clouds Above
Lorna - Papi Chulo... Te Traigo El Mmmm
Lostprophets - Last Train Home
Maupa - Helpless
Me Against Them - Soul Destroyer
Modey Lemon - Predator
NG3 - Holler
P Diddy featuring Lenny Kravitz - Show Me Your Soul
Pink - God Is A DJ
Razorlight - Stumble And Fall
Sheryl Lee Ralph - In The Evening 2004
Simple Kid - Truck On
Snow Patrol - Run
Stylus Junkies vs. UB40 - Food For Thought
Suferosa - Neon Commando
Tali - Blazin'
The Mars Volta - Roulette Dares (The Haunt Of)
The Veils - The Wild Son
Tim Deluxe - Mundaya
Tracey Brennecke - First To Know
Tube & Berger featuring Chrissie Hynde - Straight Ahead
Vinny Peculiar - Replica Shirt
Voodoo Child - Baby Monkey
Young Punx - Got Your Number

February 2
Alarm - 45rpm
Black Grass - Going Home
Blazin' Squad - Here 4 One
Blueskins - Change My Mind
Brancaccio & Aisher - It's Gonna Be... (A Lovely Day)
Brand New - Sic Transit Gloria... Glory Fades
Calvin Richardson - I've Got To Move
Clea - Stuck In The Middle
Constantines - Night Time/Any Time
Ferry Corsten - Rock Your Body Rock
Fiery Furnances - Tropical Iceland
Finley Quaye - Something To Say
Funeral For A Friend - Escape Artists Never Die
Hilary Duff - Why Not?
Jeevas - Have You Ever Seen The Rain
John Squire - Room In Brooklyn
Kings Of Leon - California Waiting
Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz - Get Low
Longview - Still
Love Inc - Into The Night
Norah Jones - Sunrise
Obie Trice - The Set-Up (You Don't Know)
Oceansize - Catalyst
Ordinary Boys - Maybe Someday
Plumb - Real
Span - Papa
Special D - Come With Me
Summer Matthews - Little Miss Perfect
The Blueskins - Change My Mind
The Distillers - The Hunger
The Fiery Furnaces - Tropical Iceland
Timbaland & Magoo featuring Missy Elliot - Cop That Disc!
UD Project - Saturday Night
Via Tania - Boltanski
Von Bondies - C'mon C'mon

February 9
Armin Van Buuren - Blue Fear/Burned With Desire
Damien Rice - Volcano
Dogs Die In Hot Cars - Man Bites Man EP
Fatman Scoop featuring The Crooklyn Clan - It Takes Scoop
Hybrid - Higher Than A Skyscraper
Ilya - Bellissimo
John Mayer - Bigger Than My Body
Katie Melua - Call Off The Search
Liars - There's Always Room On The Broom
Ohm - Forget Who We Are
Part Chimp - Bring Back The Sound
Ronan Keating - She Believes (In Me)
Sam & Mark - With A Little Help From My Friends
School Of Rock - School Of Rock
Sia - Don't Bring Me Down
So Solid Crew - So Grimey
Speedway - Can't Turn Back
Stereophonics - Movie Star
The Crystal Method - Born Too Slow
The Stands - Here She Comes Again
The Strokes - Reptilia

February 16
1000 Things - Food Chain
Alex Parks - Cry
Alfie - No Need
Bubba Sparxxx - Back In The Mudd
Busted - Who's David?
Chingy featuring Ludacris & Snoop Dogg - Holidae Inn
Crackout - This Is What We Do
Death Cab For Cutie - New Year
Deepest Blue - Give It Away
Hundred Reasons - What You Get
Junior Senior - Shake Your Coconuts
Luther Vandross - Dance With My Father
Mark Joseph - Bringing Back Those Memories
Mya - Fallen
Northern Heightz - Look At Us
Raghav - Can't Get Enough
Serge Vegas featuring Technical & Trios - Bad Girl
The Stills - Lola Stars And Stripes
Syntax - Message Bliss

February 23
Agnelli & Nelson - Hold Onto Nothing
Airbiscuit - Lately
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Six Barrel Shotgun
Blink-182 - I Miss You
Courtney Love - Mono
Delta Goodrem - Predictable
Despina Vandi - Gia
Eastern Lane - Saffron
Jamelia - Thank You
Kelly Llorenna - This Time I Know It's For Real
Lemar - Another Day
Master Blaster - Hypnotic Tango
Outkast - The Way You Move
Scott Brown - I Would Stay
Space - Suburban Rock 'N' Roll
Stellastarr* - My Coco
The Black Eyed Peas - Let's Get Retarded
The Vines - Ride
Tiffany Gayle - Do You Wanna Dance?
Velcra - Can't Stop Fighting
VS - Love You Like Mad
Westlife - Obvious

March 1
Beenie Man - Dude
Britney Spears - Toxic
DJ Casper - Cha-Cha Slide
Elton John - The Heart Of Everything
Fountains Of Wayne - Stacy's Mom
Gomez - Catch Me Up
Kelly Osbourne - Come Dig Me Out
Kylie Minogue - Red Blooded Woman
Nelly Furtado - Forca
Starsailor - Four To The Floor
The Shins - So Say I

March 8
Cypress Hill - What's Your Number
George Michael - Amazing
Holly Valance - Desire

March 15
Anastacia - Left Outside Alone
B3 - Night Fever/I.O.I.O.
Dido - Don't Leave Home
Four Tet - My Angel Rocks Back And Forth
Kraftwerk - Aéro Dynamik
Will Young - Your Game

March 22
Sugababes - In The Middle

March 29
Beyonce featuring Lil' Kim - Naughty Girl
McFly - 5 Colours In Her Hair
Pet Shop Boys - Flamboyant

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