Dizzee Rascal, Shayne Ward, Nicki Minaj: this week’s new tracks rated and slated

In the Guide single reviews, no one is safe, especially that dollop of musical beige Shayne Ward


Dizzee Rascal Feat Giggs
Nutcrackerz (Dirtee Stank)

As grime samples go, nicking the bells from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite must be the most audacious. Diz has used its timeless plinking and plonking to craft a paean to, as he puts it, “back in the day before bloggers and tweeters … before they knew I was a genius”. More specifically, it’s a love letter to the time before Bow and Peckham – his and Giggs’s old stomping grounds – were gentrified by beard barbers and sourdough pizza joints. That Tchaikovsky got beats for days, fam.

Shayne Ward
My Heart Would Take You Back (PledgeMusic)

What do we know about Shayne Ward? Well, we know that he won The X Factor in 2005, that he never does his shirts up above the nipple, and that he buzz-cuts his whole head at grade two. People must like these things because a decade after his debut he still commands a decent fanbase who have crowd-funded his new album, Closer. He knows what the public wants. In this case, it’s a flavourless Flump of a single, like being buffed gently to death by the tepid sponge of inconsequence. Yay, consumerism.

Nicki Minaj
The Night Is Still Young (Young Money/Cash Money/Republic)

In which Nicki dishes out modern philosophy in Autotune. This is the ultimate deep-think disguised as a repugnant trashy and euphoric ballad about shagging strangers. “I never worry, life is a journey, I just wanna enjoy the ride,” she hoots, possibly channelling the sagacity of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s observation that, “The person who has lived the most is not the one with the most years but the one with the richest experiences.” She ruminates on the transience of modern romance, too: “If he sexy, he planking on me.” It’s almost worth hand-embroidering and sticking on your wall.

Turning Back Around (Ministry of Sound)

Well, thank goodness for Hertfordshire’s David Rhodes. It’s about time we heard an introspective white guy from the home counties singing something earnest and emotional about feelings. Turning Back Around revolves around the Bay/Hozier/Odell axis of emo, with lots of quiet blubbery bits interrupted by giant, euphoric crescendos that are destined to soundtrack a montage of sporting achievements on ITV2 at some point in the next 12 months.

Summer Camp
Bad Love (Moshi Moshi)

The title track from Elizabeth Sankey and Jeremy Warmsley’s impending third album finds them sounding more like forgotten French hipsters the Teenagers than ever before. While Sankey reminisces about a soured love affair, husband Warmsley (presumably comfortable that it isn’t a critique of their marriage) cranks out a woozy likeness to the Drive OST being piped through an 8-bit games console. Kitsch, catchy and great.


JJ Dunning

The GuardianTramp

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