First Impressions: Comparing and Contrasting Estelle's Double Dares

Monday, March 1, 2010

Double the fun, double the eclecticism. There is no telling what direction Estelle is going for on her third set, All of Me, and proof is in the mousse with two brand new tracks, "Freak" and "Lights of the City", both of which debuted over the weekend. Not that it's a bad thing because the two contrasting tracks keep things interesting, and interesting is quite an understatement concerning these new offerings. 

A glow stick occupants' dream, "Freak" is that annoying hip-hop song that I tend to feel brain cells dying whenever I do play it, yet there is endurance due to the beat, and the beat is sharp. The track is nothing short of electric as Estelle exuberantly chants and the sound of the track is crisper than other hip-pop tracks plaguing the top 40, thus it gives you a lot to crunch on. Yet, the David Guetta production reminds me of Fergie's "Fergalicious"...massively, especially when Kardinal Official comes into play. Things do get better with the interpolation of Soul II Soul's "Back To Life" in the chorus, but to me this feel like a step down for Estelle from previous works. No doubt this little puppy will be remixed up the wazoo and will be at a club near you, so get ready to burn up the floors with this one.
On the flip side, "Lights of the City" is smoother and quivers with grinding guitars and synths that emulate strings. Driving percussion and a persistent sounding Estelle keep this song on it's toes, and it's structure, in contrast to "Freak", is just as biting, yet gives a softer blow. It's not the finest cut that Estelle has done, but I'm hearing some echos of Lauryn Hill not to mention a bit of Pink somewhere wedged in. More my style, yet people may not get excited over this as akin to "Freak".
With that, All of Me, is leaning towards being quite an ambitious jaunt for Estelle, one can only wonder what is coming 'round the bend next.

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