Saturday, April 16, 2022

Album Reviews: Ella Henderson, Rex Orange County, and Charli XCX

Everything I Didn't Say by Ella Henderson

I had never heard of Ella Henderson.  She appeared on the X-Factor Britain back in 2012 and put out her first solo album in 2014.  So it's been a while to get to her sophomore effort.  It's a pretty consistent album and not bad.  My only problem with the album is it is way too long at 16 tracks.  Would have been much better at 10 to 12.  In fact it feels like they were done putting the album together at track 9 and then decided to just toss on the rest of the tracks they had recorded onto the end.  I'd say it's a good summer album for a road trip.  

WHO CARES? by Rex Orange County

This is Rex Orange County's 4th album since 2015.  I'd never heard of him before but I really enjoyed this album.  He has a very interesting lyrical voice and has on this album the best love song I've heard this year in "One In a Million."  I really like this line

Waking up and hanging out at home with you
You don't ever do no wrong to me
I wish that I could just say the same
But it's okay, I'm trying to do
Whatever it takes to believe
That I'm enough and hope you agree

There is something about his lyrical voice I really enjoy.  It's very open and honest it seems and I like the way he looks at things.  This would be a good clean the house album except for all the F bombs he drops.  It has a nice  laid back quality to the music and his voice that works quite well together.  

Crash by Charli XCX

I'm a big Charli XCX fan as you can probably tell if you read the HP.  Normally she is very experimental with her music and melodies, but not on this album.  It's an interesting album when I first listened to it I was struck by how every song sounded like a throw back to something different.  All electronic dance influences mostly from the 80's and 90's I would say.  Also how every song is very straightforwardly constructed.  Her experimentation seems to have been put in check for the whole of the album.  It works.  There isn't a bad track on the album and it's a very solid electronic/dance/pop album.  It has the best single I've heard all year in "Constant Repeat."

In fact "Constant Repeat" is a great example of why I like Charli XCX.  It has a great beat, great melody, and really smart lyrics.  A classic dance tune and one that I get stuck repeating over and over again.  Too much bad language to make this a family clean the house album but a great workout album or for taking walks.