Saturday, February 24th, 2018

Let’s Eat Grandma – Hot Pink

Personally I’d rather eat Aunt Marie, but you do you.


Jonathan Bradley: There are a lot of delightful moments in “Hot Pink,” any of which could alone make for the kind of skewed pop hook that draws you back for a repeat listen: quirk that occupies that off-kilter space between something completely recognizable and incomprehensibly alien. There are aching, prom-dance synths; bratty posturing in lyrics like “I’m only seventeen … kill me now/I’m such a drama queen”; the incongruous and unaccountable one-sided phone call that arrives in the bridge; the discordant clangs that enter during the mecha-stomp hook. (On the other hand, the off-key chorus bray of “HOT PENK” would not be welcome anywhere.) But, stuck together in sequence, these ideas lose their ability to surprise and begin to irritate: lacking any apparent order, the incongruity becomes arbitrary. With no discernible intent to the arrangement, it eventually abandons even the thrill of chaos. 

Tim de Reuse: Aurally frustrating; through the chorus, the vocals form a hollow, feathery layer that strain to make an impact through the clattering, stilted percussion that pound away overhead.  It’s “experimental pop,” I guess, but the structure is as straightforwardly build-drop-build-drop as your garden variety trop-house banger; the sound design is the only distinctive thing going on, and I’d be reluctant to say that it works on any level past initial surprise.

Claire Biddles: I know Let’s Eat Grandma and SOPHIE are both super trendy and ~the future of pop~ etc but I cannot stand little girl singing voices and this completely puts my teeth on edge. The big drops feel gratuitous rather than exciting. Good song title though.

Micha Cavaseno: Despite being a massive skeptic in all things SOPHIE while appreciating her production aplomb because I refuse to be captivated by someone who is essentially an IDM producer who vapes, I am a HUGE Let’s Eat Grandma enthusiast. I, Gemini was a really promising blend of early The xx, Cocorosie and Kitty in a way that made adolescent melancholy sound fantastical and otherworldly, and now the duo appear to have gone from midlands village to First Year at University in The Big City. The girls and their production team (both SOPHIE and apparently an uncredited Faris Badwan) turn their melancholy dreaming into a frantic plunge of tension and firing neurons, which admittedly feels a bit too post-PC for me to not worry about a sophomore misfire, but holds enough of their initial unfiltered brilliance that I’m expecting a lot to continue to be delivered.

Hannah Jocelyn: I don’t know who the A&R coordinators for Let’s Eat Grandma and SOPHIE are, but whoever teamed them up is a genius. SOPHIE stays just short of fully absorbing Let’s Eat Grandma into the PC Music sound, allowing them shine through even as they’re surrounded by the metallic snares that define her production work. Both came fully formed with aesthetics, SOPHIE with those snares and later, those cheekbones, and Let’s Eat Grandma with their tendency to sing-speak in unison and their nearly identical appearances. Yet I had some minor problems with both of them; my issue with “It’s Okay To Cry” was that it was gorgeous but never felt lucid, and my issue with Let’s Eat Grandma was similar, even if they’re a bit more down-to-earth. “Hot Pink” is harsher than anything Let’s Eat Grandma did previously (deliberate mix futzing aside), if not quite as harsh as SOPHIE’s extravagant “Ponyboy”, but they bring out the best in each other with this collaboration. There’s definitely weirdness and drugginess, but enough humanity to warrant further listens once the novelty wears off.

Stephen Eisermann: I wasn’t surprised to see SOPHIE was involved in this track’s production because… well, it’s a clusterfuck. I want to root for the track’s apparent message (embracing the misconceptions of masculinity/femininity), but it’s hard to root for something that you don’t understand and this just doesn’t make sense/work for me — it’s noisy, sung poorly, and mashed together with weird lyrics.

Alfred Soto: This Norfolk duo had me on with their name; all they had do was play something vaguely scabrous. Thanks to SOPHIE beats that scratch as abruptly as The Knife’s, “Hot Pink” gives the women the space to create space. “”Bite my tongue/now that’s your cue to bring me down,” they spit, and the violence feels like a kiss.

Katherine St Asaph: Precocious, formerly shoegaze-indebted kids release a beloved album then, in the thunk of a drop, become Sophie’s latest protegees: the best trolling I’ve seen all year. Except that from band name on down to singles “Deep Six Textbook,” “Eat Shiitake Mushrooms,” Let’s Eat Grandma reveled in kidlike, cartoonish immaturity, so sassy pop immaturity isn’t too drastic a step. Particularly not when the result is Kristy Thirsk’s “What If I” party-crashed, the duo sounding like AlunaGeorge if you replaced George with a member of Shampoo. Sophie still can’t resist adding the same tinny synths toward the end, but I guess that’s a calling card or whatever.

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12 Responses to “Let’s Eat Grandma – Hot Pink”

  1. Also THIS CLOSE from Me and Claire doing a Freaky Friday with the 8 & 2 scores, what a strange week.

  2. misread the subhead as Anne-Marie and was like :O

  3. “misread the subhead” my new band name

  4. Misread in the subhead
    (Misread in the head!)

  5. maxwell: sophie is a trans woman and (cf stereogum’s article when it’s okay to cry was released) takes she/her pronouns. they/them is misgendering.

  6. The theys are referring to the girls in Let’s Eat Grandma.

  7. Oh no wait I see it, sorry for that.

  8. Corrected now.

  9. the “hot pink” part in the chorus isn’t off-key at all though?

  10. quite a feat to release a song called “hot pink” that sounds like industrial grey

  11. ¯\_(?)_/¯ There’s not much of a key for it to be in.

    “Discordant” then. “Tuneless.” “Highly unpleasant.”

  12. Oh, our comments system doesn’t like shruggie guy :(