In a collision of sassy lyricism and colourful sounds, Stooshe finally release their long-overdue dÃ©but album. If Little Mix are the next Girls Aloud then Stooshe are the next Sugababes (the second line-up; AKA the best line-up). The difference is that these girls are a whole lot of fun, fantastically rowdy, topped off with the voices of superstar divas. It shows in the music and London With The Lights On sets them apart from the rest of the pop crowd.
They’ve been noted as being a bit edgy, but really they’re as edgy as pop has ever been. This means they’re just a bit creative with their ad libs. It’s not so much the individual songs that shine on the album, but more the trio’s flawless voices and their irreverently funny personalities; ‘My Man Music’ stands out as the main example of this. If they know what’s good for them, it will be the next single as it surges with genuine enthusiasm and has a dancefloor-filling, reggae-driven groove. This excitement carries on to ‘Kiss Chase’, making these two tracks an unstoppable pair of feel-good summer jams.
Stooshe know they’re onto a good thing with all this energetic attitude and try to keep the ball rolling with ‘Hoochie Mumma‘. It isn’t as much a song as it is an excuse to be a bit gobby. It’s got an appealing chorus but it’ll either make you giggle or annoy you intensely. Also included on the tracklist is Brit Award nominated ‘Black Heart’; undoubtedly the best song on the album. Tracks such as ‘Slip‘ and ‘Your Own Kind Of Beautiful’ feel like they have been crafted only to imitate – especially the latter. This makes for a consistent album but lacks in imagination.
It’s a case of utilising typically enjoyable sounds that work well on paper but stick to unexciting chart norms in a bid for success. ‘Round 2’ sounds Motown in a faceless Bruno Mars way, and ‘Fly Again’ sounds like it’s fallen off of Emeli SandÃ©’s album. For every good song on London With The Lights On, there’s another track trying to copy it.
On the bright side, they’ve completely disowned that cover of TLC’s ‘Waterfalls‘. A wise move since the only good that came of it was that it highlighted the girls’ knack for gorgeous harmonies. For a better example of this listen to ‘See Me Like This’.
All in all, the album is engaging from track one all the way through to – well, about track twelve, which is good going considering some of the tracks are a bit weak – not terrible though. So far, Stooshe have been taking their career single by single, which is always risky. Now we can put that to rest as London With The Lights On is here to show off all things fantastically Stooshe.
Standout Tracks: ‘Black Heart’ / ‘My Man Music’ / ‘Kiss Chase’ / ‘See Me Like This’