Friday, July 16th, 2010

Eliza Doolittle – Pack Up

Not her real name, obviously…


Doug Robertson: Like the idea of Pixie Lott but find the reality just that bit too edgy? Well, here’s a summer soundtrack as seen through the eyes of people who make cider commercials.

Martin Skidmore: I can’t begin to imagine what prompted her to pick a pseudonym like that. This sounds rather like Lily Allen doing her stuff over doowop with flourishes from music hall. I have a strong feeling I could grow to hate it, but its immense silliness and implausible bounciness appeal to me at the moment.

Anthony Easton: We have a Lily Allen, we don’t need one who cannot sing. We have an Amy Winehouse, we don’t need one whose references drop like an anvil on Wile E Coyote.

Alfred Soto: This weird amalgamation of Lily Allen and the Kirsty MacColl of “They Don’t Know” is more than okay – love the enthusiastic male vocals in the chorus – until she starts to tweet. American singers love Auto-Tune, English ones love archness.

Jonathan Bogart: When she went into the “tweet tweet tweet” bridge I laughed out loud: Oh boy, Lex is gonna hate this. Myself, I don’t hate it, and I’m not sure quite why. Maybe the assault of cute-as-a-button quirky British girls has worn me down, or maybe this one’s just more imaginative than most, with its interpolated chorus and bright Swinging London orchestration. Or hell, maybe I’m just in a good mood.

Matt Cibula: OH GOD YOU WARNED ME ABOUT THIS back when I was all psyched about the New British Retro (Noisettes, V.V., etc.) and I didn’t listen AND NOW THIS. Don’t hate any of the sounds here, and I don’t mind her trying to pull a Joss Stone (a.k.a. being the Only White Girl in the Room), but overall I don’t think I would be very happy the second time this song came on the radio, and the third would make me cut off my head with a spoon.

Michaelangelo Matos: Ronsonism is turning into trad jazz, isn’t it? There’s a galumph to this that gives the lie to its pep; paint-by-numbers quirk that’s not uncharming, which is part of its problem.

Katherine St Asaph: Runs on pure charm and whimsy, most of it from the sample that’s jarringly dropped in for Eliza to sing pirouettes around. It’s like one of those Etsy shops that take vintage doilies or whatnot, rip them up and reconstruct them into tsotchkes. The end product looks pretty, but it’d be even better if you’d left well alone.

Chuck Eddy: Girl quirkster gets predictably precious, even tweeting like a dang bird, but the more nostalgic she (and her friend, if that deep Satchmo scatter is somebody else) gets, the more she packs up her troubles in her old kit bag, the more engaging oomph she manages. When she tiptoes ’round the shit goin’ down, she even conjures the ghost of 1979 Rickie Lee Jones, when Rickie was still fun.

Mallory O’Donnell: Is this that record Corinne Bailey Rae keeps telling me to put on?

3 Responses to “Eliza Doolittle – Pack Up”

  1. I stand corrected: it actually isn’t a sample —

    You’d think if he was so great he’d get more than one line.

  2. (In the sense of “You think he’s so great, why not give him more to do?” not “So you think he’s great, but he gets only that one line — I see what you did there.”

  3. Eliza’s actually her really name, and the “Doolittle” part is apparently a childhood nickname which she’s opted to keep.

    The tweeting bit was a mis-step, but I’m with Jonathan and Martin on this. Definitely easy to hate her, though.