Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017

Selena Gomez x Marshmello – Wolves

And here I thought YA’d moved on from werewolves to witches…


Alfred Soto: I hear nothing feral or humid or lupine about this track, and its creators should know that no traces of wolves have been found in jungles. With each track Selena Gomez backs away from “Bad Liar.”

Alex Clifton: This was going to be a glib blurb about the ridiculousness of “I’ve been running through the jungle, I’ve been running with the wolves to get to you” because wolves don’t live in jungles. Instead I ended up researching the climate of Madyha Pradish, where the wolves in the Jungle Book live, to figure out if wolves can indeed live in jungles. (Indian wolves were the only wolves I could find on an initial “can wolves live in jungles” Google search; clearly, North American wolves don’t.) Turns out Madyha Pradish is full of forests. This led to further Googling on the differences between forests versus jungles, which reveals that jungles are a type of forest, and that 6% of the earth is made of jungles with extreme biodiversity, so plausibly wolves may live in jungles if the forest is dense and tropical enough. But that’s not a guarantee, as Indian wolves can survive in deserts, and I don’t know if they prefer those over jungles. The point is, I’m so annoyed by that one line that no matter how much I like this song, I’ve ruined it for myself. Please don’t make me do this again, Selena.

Katherine St Asaph: The guitar line on the verses is drier and dustier than anything that’s got any business coming from a Disney star and a Stay-Puft bobblehead. Like most of this late-night pop melancholia, it’s just diluted xx, but then again, so are the xx lately. No one’s thought the lyrics through at all — the biome, going by wolves and mood, is clearly the Southwest, not the jungle, and if you’re going to try to rhyme “stranger” and “anger” then something, somewhere, should justify that by sounding angry. But given the unholy synthesis of “I Will Wait” and Clarissa Pinkola E(stés)DM that precedes the drop, I’m fine with what’s there instead: a vocalise pumped full of carbon dioxide, a synth expanse empty enough for any mood to dissipate in.

Tim de Reuse: The chorus’s attempt at passing off heavy breathing as a hook is enough of a turn-off, but the buildup’s awkward pivot into folk-music swing like it’s about to segue into a rendition of “She’ll Be Coming ‘Round The Mountain” just makes me crack up every damn time.

Joshua Copperman: Clearly, Ali Tamposi really likes campfire chants, and while I’m not blaming the stumbles of this song on her, the way this chorus falls in line with all the hyperlinked songs doesn’t seem like a coincidence. I love the verses and pre-chorus, but that eventual chorus is basically “It Ain’t Me” into the drop from “Alone.” Those songs are great, but they don’t go great together.

Nortey Dowuona: Bland, empty vocals from Selena, 2D guitar, flat, puffy bass, limp claps and dry trap breakdown. Marshmello doesn’t need this soft, barely abandoned Drake beat to rise.

Stephen Eisermann: Selena sounds detached and has a limited vocal range, but there’s something oddly moving in how she drags notes. It’s almost as if her lack of ability makes her more expressive, and she seems to only be getting better with time. Still, the lilt in her voice isn’t enough to carry a song, and though this sounds like an improved version of “It Aint Me,” that doesn’t mean it’s good.

Reader average: [2.5] (4 votes)

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