Rye Rye Finally Drops "Go! Pop! Bang!"
...but has her moment in the sun passed her by?
Hey, remember Rye Rye? In case you need a refresher, she’s the adorable young Baltimorian who caught the Internet’s attention with her club hit “Shake it to the Ground” and, as a result, was scooped up for a new label headed by M.I.A.—hey, remember M.I.A.? After four years of various setbacks and sidetracks, Rye Rye has finally released her debut album, Go! Pop! Bang! and, in general, it’s exactly what her patient fans have been waiting for. For everyone else, on the other hand, it’s a little uncertain if the material was really worth the wait.
As a natural side-effect of the long lead up to this album, the various songs were recorded as much as five years ago while the Baltimore club sound was going nationwide. Not every track is quite as gritty as that style can get—“Sunshine” (below) with M.I.A. or “Hotter” are appropriately Summery—but for the most part, the album stays true to Rye Rye’s roots. “New Thing” fits in perfectly as well, but ultimately, it’s hard to feel like this wouldn’t have all been more exciting in 2008 when it was created. A few tracks like “Shake Twist Drop” do feel fresh, however, so the overall experience is on point.
On the other hand, the more modern songs aren’t an improvement—“Shake it to the Ground” may be and old song, but it’s still good. “DNA” and “Boom Boom” (below) sound like 95% of the other techno-pop that’s on the radio today, strongly making the case that modernity isn’t automatically a virtue. Also representing the 2012 Pop formula is “Crazy Bitch” with Akon, an out-of-place track that could just as easily be toned down into something for One Direction or some other boy-band you probably don’t care about. Luckily, these stumbles are few and far between so they’re fairly easy to overlook.
Go! Bang! Pop! really should have come out a few years ago since, at that time, even the few not-so-good tracks would have earned some points just for seeming forward-thinking. Truly good songs are timeless and the best ones on this album still work, but it just doesn’t have the impact it would have given the army of similar—albeit worse—artists that sprung up as a response to M.I.A.’s success. Rye Rye’s official debut is certainly better late than never, but let’s hope the follow-up comes out on time.
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