Tuesday, January 5th, 2016

Mabel – My Boy My Town

Exceptional pedigree but an unexceptional score…


[Video][Website]
[4.64]

Edward Okulicz: Neneh Cherry and Cameron McVey’s daughter? Must be some mistake, because this song has more in common with the bloodless lean years at the end of trip hop’s commercial decline. You could tell me this was a Morcheeba reunion single and I would nod my head and go “that’s nice.”
[4]

Crystal Leww: “My Boy My Town” is perfectly fine to round out a coffee shop list playlist.
[3]

Maxwell Cavaseno: You know, when Neneh started out, she sang over what was mistakenly heralded as revolutionary sort of Nellee Hooper-style pop-rap crud, and it took her forever to actually get to some music that seemed challenging despite her confidence and passion. So the fact that her daughter is wasting her time making coffee-table electronic-soul isn’t too disheartening.
[4]

Alfred Soto: Neneh Cherry’s daughter has the kind of tone equally home over bleak soundscapes — a whistle over diesel fumes. She projects a winning caution on the “Let’s meet in the middle” hook. But the track also leans towards Jessie Ware-isms.
[6]

Katherine St Asaph: Feistlike title aside, this is one of those tracks where the lyric indicts the song better than any critic can.
[5]

Patrick St. Michel: This, for the most part, feels more like a really solid audition tape than a really good song. Mabel’s voice carries an airy uncertainty, but “My Boy My Town” fails to capitalize on it, the music itself doing nothing beyond teasing a throwback garage sound when it should be helping to ramp up the tension. Still, when Mabel gets the chorus and her voice ramps everything up a notch, she reveals a lot of potential just waiting for a better backdrop.
[5]

Thomas Inskeep: Atmospheric, quietly building R&B – only it builds into the ether, nowhere solid: a neutral-sum proposition.
[6]

Brad Shoup: “Let’s meet in the middle… halfway in the middle,” sings Mabel, and her track obeys her wish. Not driving hard enough to indicate conviction, not washed-out enough to imply the inaction she’s lamenting. This could’ve been a decent 2-step cut.
[4]

Alex Ostroff: A perfectly nice quiet storm track that would probably be vastly improved if Jessie Ware either sang it or wrote it. Mabel’s delivery doesn’t elevate the lyrics and the song doesn’t give her enough material to really ache.
[5]

Iain Mew: The only thing this stands out from the field in is how much the chorus resembles Liberty X.
[4]

Josh Winters: “Let’s meet in the middle / halfway in the middle,” Mabel requests, and she certainly holds up her end of the bargain, playing it safe with a lackluster topline that doesn’t go as far as she seems capable of going. The score below is me doing my part.
[5]

Reader average: [6.5] (2 votes)

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One Response to “Mabel – My Boy My Town”

  1. Good call by Maxwell. The second single a lot closer to meeting her potential: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rnFxtAcGWws