Friday, June 19th, 2015

Shawn Mendes – Stitches

From Vine to Singles Jukebox odium in no time flat.


Jessica Doyle: Why, if the narrator’s been hurt before, is he unable to describe how this particular leavetaking is so much worse, despite having three minutes and change to do so? Why didn’t the Cliché Alarm go off after “cuts deeper than a knife,” or “moth to a flame”, or the reference to the ex-lover’s cold, cold heart? How can the chorus be both gruesomely desperate and perky? (It can’t.) And doesn’t Duncan Sheik look better and better in retrospect?

Micha Cavaseno: Recording Industry: YES! A braying, pitchier, more banal looking version of Ed Sheeran! That’s what the kids want! Me: … Y’all hate kids, don’t you? R.I.: The kids hate themselves a lot, so we don’t have to.

Thomas Inskeep: The beat from T-Swift’s “Shake It Off” + strummy guitar + teen dream squeaky-clean looks and bland vocals = from Vine “fame” to a #1 album in about a year, apparently. 

Katherine St Asaph: Shatters O-Town’s prior record, with “All or Nothing,” for most clichés in a single song. When some music-industry Shingy talks about Vine democratizing music, play him this and watch his rictus grin.

Alfred Soto: Well, that’s a first: rhyming “kisses” and “stitches” because, well, her braces cut her face? The real drama is deciding between the acoustic strums or Mendes’ thick unformed voice for most gormless detail.

Scott Mildenhall: A farrago of mangled medical metaphors, underpinned by the better and livelier end of Mendes’ music-carved-from-wood aesthetic. He seems unsure as to whether he’s on the cusp of death by jiltedness or has just grazed his knee, but either way the message is that this is raw.

Patrick St. Michel: Shawn Mendes covers up a lot of the awkward lyrics by simply adding a nice hop to the song. It’s…alright. Tough to work out an extreme opinion about an artist who seems like the parent-approved Justin Bieber.

Anthony Easton: The guitar is great here, and the voice is boyunt enough, and the message is cliched, and could stand to be a bit angier, but it is not terrible to listen to in the cool of the evening. Pleasant background music, is most likely not what Mendes is going for, especially for the disturbing final chorus.  

Mo Kim: The benefit of being sixteen like Shawn Mendes is that I can forgive him for thinking in Hot Topic catchphrases. “Your words cut deeper than a knife” is followed up by “Now I need someone to breathe me back to life,” which besides not even being the correct medical procedure for a stab victim is also stale right out of his mouth. Yet the production crackles in all the right places, and Mendes’ voice itself is winningly understated even in its strain. He’s got the sound of a pop star down: if only he had the language to match.

Edward Okulicz: Nice scratchy feel to the song, but the metaphors are closer to leaving one in stitches than otherwise conjuring the concept. I’m all for metaphors, even extended obnoxious ones, but it’s good if they fit the song.

Brad Shoup: How does he turn the chorus into a taunt? He oversells the poor-little-ragdoll imagery. Fortunately, the folk arrangement soldiers on, nimbly thumping his pity into the dirt.

Reader average: [4.59] (5 votes)

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2 Responses to “Shawn Mendes – Stitches”

  1. alas, the 6.000 weekly average I was so desperately hoping for was not meant to be


    this is a good set of blurbs, though

  2. it’s all shawn’s fault