I hear that your band have sold their euphoniums and bought synthesisers…
Ian Mathers: Is this the best song Mark Ronson has put out under his own name? If not, I’d love to know what is (if your answer contains a Zutons cover, we may be looking for different things from our pop music). Good synthesizers, winning vocal performances, great chorus, fine use of “Alouette”, fun/dumb video — what’s not to like?
Kat Stevens: Everyone’s favourite piece of rhyming slang pops up to the surface again like a bit of soggy bread in a washing up bowl. The relentless comb-n-paper synth line seems carefully calculated to lodge in the brain of the helpless listener (resistance levels worn down by recent vuvuzuela activity) long after the song has finished, leading to unpleasant scenes in the therapist’s chair: “So why do you have these murderous feelings, Ms Stevens?” “Perhaps if I kill everyone in sight that ver-vuh-ver-vuh sound will finally cease. ALL THINGS MUST CEASE.”
Alfred Soto: With nasal vocals as irritating as the surrounding synth damage, it’s left to Q-Tip to rhyme with his usual nimbleness. That still leaves a lot of song though.
Michaelangelo Matos: I once wrote that I’d rather listen to Q-Tip say nothing in particular than hear most people say anything. I should’ve known I was asking for proof otherwise, and here it is.
Martin Skidmore: I’d like to approve of anything with Q-Tip on it, but while he is fun and endearing, the rest seems a mess of totally unappealing elements, with the sensibility of the indie pop acts that don’t believe that good singing or sound or songs are useful in pop. I have no idea who the Business Intl. are, but I suspect I hate them.
Katherine St Asaph: I’m not sure this has the right producer. “Bang Bang Bang” wants to float, but Mark Ronson’s synths are too stiff for it to do much more than jerk from side to side. It does take off in the chorus, but that might be more MNDR than anything.
Jonathan Bogart: A little ungainly, a little too music-nerd, but that’s Ronson for you. I like its asymmetric lurch.
John Seroff: I’m not immune to its charms: the stuttering hook, the sassy and reverb-heavy lead, Tip’s game ramble over the beat, Ronson’s laudably obsessive impulse to add new instrumentation or futz with the beat every four bars. What’s crucially lacking is joyous authenticity; I’m not reminded of the club as much as I am of beer commercials, step classes and BEP-heavy mixtapes. “Bang” is a bit too game of a try.