Pixie Lott - Turn It Up Louder
A welcome addition to the ever drab landscape of grey r 'n' b and de rigeuer robo-dance, Pixie Lott can brighten my airwaves any day of the week. Since 'Mama Do' hit the number one spot last year, every subsequent single has been at least palatable, at best damn fine. Turn it Up, approaching a million UK sales in just over a year, is sleek rather than inspired and its forays into 60s-influenced soul balladry and dance grooves are from the production line rather than divine inspiration. But, and this is surely all that matters in the world of commercial pop, the end result is immensely likeable and carried off with real brio.
'Boys and Girls', 'Cry Me Out', 'Gravity', 'Turn it Up' - all here and all as sparkly as they were when they cemented themselves to the charts. The non-single stuff varies. It falters when it slip into sub-Beyonce haunted balladry. When it picks up the pace, it crackles. 'Jack' apes Carole King's 'I Feel the Earth Move' and 'Here We Go Again' is tremendous, shimmying along on 70s disco funk beats.
With her first UK tour about to play to sell-out crowds, the suits have decided a deluxe re-issue is in order, hence Turn it Up Louder, fattened up to a whopping 21 tracks. Hey, Christmas is coming and record company execs are entitled to a little fattening too. Sensibly, nothing sensational has been wasted here and I'm not sure it's worth double-dipping unless you're a family member or really, really keen to hear Pixie's take on 'When Love Takes Over' (not bad) or a new collaboration with Jason Derulo (woeful.) Avoid too her version of Kings of Leon's 'Use Somebody' which, to my irritation, adds further zeroes to the ever-expanding bank balances of Malachi and Isaac and the other family farm-hands.
Grumbles aside, this fizzing debut is difficult to dislike and recommended for the poppette in your life - if only to save them from the likes of that Perry woman and Harry Montana, or whatever she's called these days.