Thursday, 28 April 2011
Katy B - On A Mission
On A Mission is fundamentally a pop record at heart, but it's testament to Katy B's talent and ingenuity that her debut LP feels just at home on the dancefloor. It manages to span that treacherous borderline between the two, doing so in a manner that is bursting with inventive melody and songwriting verve.
The real wonder is that while this album already contains four hit singles, it feels like you could easily squeeze another three or four from it - the tracks are of such a good quality. Consistency is the name of the game here and katy knows it - there's an amazing confidence to her that buzzes around, transfusing through into you - you want to leap up and join her on the dancefloor too, 'sinking into the tune' as she sings on Katy On A Mission.
Meanwhile, Witches Brew sees the album at its most poppy with its refrain of 'come with me, I'll make you feel so good'. Empowered and forceful it blasts away any negativity and melancholy, replacing it with that singular bliss that falls over you when you're in that perfect moment of enjoying all the Good Times life has to offer. It is captured again in the relentless, pulsing buzz of Broken Record with its enchanting, hypnotic stream of layered vocals.
Easy Please Me is set to become the next single - and the track reminds me of Kylie Minogue's brief dabble into R&B; Red Blooded Woman. With an insanely catchy hook, it's this track perhaps that catches the power of Katy's vocals at their best; especially in the ad-libs in the last minute of the song.
We feel as if with each song we explore a different night out in Katy's company, a different aspect of her life. And with every chorus, every verse, we feel as if we're sharing in that story, adding it into our own lives and relating to what she tells us. For the duration of the album, she is our trusted confidant, our close friend.
You have to marvel at the sheer intricacy off the beats on offer - synths collide and fizz in the background - a hot bed of almost electric intensity that Katy wraps around her finger and directs at the listener. Her vocals are subtle, hushed, sultry - yet what really makes this album come into its own is the sheer force of personality that comes across, all wrapped up in her incredibly soulful voice.
The album comes to a chilled end with the jazzy keyboard riffs of Hard To Get, the song featuring a touching outro where Katy thanks all the people that helped contribute to the record. It could come across as cheesy, but here you feel Katy's earned the right to indulge - she has just treated us to one hell of an amazing album after all. This is summer music through and through; dripping with the radiance, jabs of brass injecting the track with a real vitality. So often albums fall flat by their end, the final track being a throwaway cut tacked on at the end - but Hard To Get ranks up there with the best of the album, a fitting finale to a stunning record.
On A Mission is available to download from iTunes now.