Another week, another pill popped by Mike Posner somewhere in Ibiza. I hope and pray to the gods of the charts that Mike is not the new Beiber of this column because quite honestly I don’t think the man is quite interesting enough to talk about for two months in a row. No matter how dull he is, however, he’s gone and done it again, and today celebrates his third week at number one in the UK charts.
Perhaps it’s a testament to the UK drug laws that people seem to be quite excited by the prospect of taking a pill in Ibiza, or maybe we all just really want Avicii to think we’re cool. Perhaps people are just ready for summer, and are using this as their gateway drug which I think is a reasonable assumption. Through just the title of the song, Posner transports us to warmer climates where the drinks are more expensive and the DJs are celebrities, and all our troubles can melt away like ice cream on a beach. While Charlie and Ellie before me completely slated this track, I have to say that I quite like it. I admit that this song doesn’t necessarily deserve to be on the top spot, but I do think it’s catchy and fun to have a drunken boogy to, and I enjoy little bits like the descending run “when I finally got sober felt ten years older, but fuck it it was something to do”. I agree that the lyrics are ridiculous, but in a very self-aware way, and I am more than willing to laugh along with Mike, even if he fails to pull off the irony, as Charlie suggests. Then again, I am a huge sucker for tragic pop so really my support is more condemnation than anything else.
Elsewhere in the charts this week, Lukas Graham is still singing about the revolutionary notion of ageing at number 3, and that appalling remix of Fast Car is still idling at number seven. The newest track to appear is Craig David and Blonde’s Nothing Like This which is a terrible two weeks old. It’s a bit naff, trying to capitalise on the club music hype but failing to execute it to the level that other artists did. At number two - the highest chart position for this group - Fifth Harmony are representing a modern structure for family life in Work From Home. I’m not sure if this symbolism of working from home actually makes sense as a metaphor for sex, but someone’s obviously liking it. Personally, between this and Rihanna’s Work at number six, I’m starting to feel very guilty about not getting a job this Easter.
There was a time when pop was the genre pushing boundaries and making social commentary, which only the true nineties kids will remember. Now, thanks to technology ruining our ability to talk to each other, our parents ruining the economy and Coldplay ruining everything, there’s nothing left to sing about. I miss good pop music. We need Beyonce back; we need Britney in a jewelled bodysuit rolling around and we need Carly Rae Jepsen to re-release Run Away With Me before anyone writes any more songs. While we wait for those things, however, I suggest we focus on a song with a little more depth than what Posner is supplying. After years away working on a new album, Michael Kiwanuka is back and he’s funkier than ever. Black Man In A White World, his new single released this week, deals with the complex issues of race and belonging, drawing on blues, soul, funk and gospel influences to add to the subject matter. If you’re bored of rich white men singing about women and shoes and E, I suggest you listen to this instead.