Wednesday, April 18th, 2018

John Legend ft. Bloodpop – A Good Night

At least we like this more than Chrissy Teigen likes pocket Animal Crossing


Katherine St Asaph: John Legend, ever career-minded, goes directly from playing Jesus to the wedding-maestro perch just vacated by Bruno Mars: “I think I just met my wife (yeah, I said it).” The job’s done perfectly to spec: no come-ons so explicit as to make the dance with the bride’s mom awkward, will receive royalties until and past the apocalypse. Bloodpop makes a fine wedding DJ, though he gets bored two-thirds through.

William John: There’s something altogether too calculated about “A Good Night.” It seems to have been drawn up in a boardroom designed to infiltrate wedding Pinterest boards, and John Legend, a mostly unobjectionable R&B vocalist, isn’t earnest enough to overcome the sterile saplessness. Shawn Mendes’ recent single “Lost In Japan” uses similar ingredients, but while Mendes’ song evokes giddiness through its insistence on understatement, Legend’s hamfisted approach makes having a good night seem laborious. 

Alfred Soto: The proficient bloodless crooner gets an injection of Bloodpop and — presto! His bass lines and kick drums improve. When he suggests he might flash a nipple, he evokes Jeffrey Osborne; when he pledges his troth he could be doing “I Gotta Feeling,” politely, bloodlessly.

Julian Axelrod: The way this abruptly pivots from sleek I Fuck Now disco to lovestruck Crying in the Greeting Card Aisle When “All of Me” Plays in CVS balladry almost feels like parody, like an SNL sketch John Legend would appear in if he had any self-awareness. Bloodpop supplies a rubbery approximation of human fun, while Legend’s vocals are warm and rich as ever, especially on the bridge. But everything good about this song only throws its dweebiness into starker contrast. This is a prom anthem for guys who married their high school sweetheart because she kinda looks like their mom.

Thomas Inskeep: Heaven knows John Legend can sing anything and make it sound lovely, but this Bloodpop track is such generic, danceable-R&B(E)DM that even Legend’s vocals can’t save it. Doesn’t help that the lyrics are a bland collection of cliches, either.

Katie Gill: A not-so-scientific way to judge a singer’s celebrity status is to see which EDM artist they collaborate with. You’d think John Legend would be a bit closer to Calvin Harris levels of collaboration than Bloodpop levels. Still, considering that the video description gives the impression that the sole purpose of this song is to show off the capabilities of the Google Pixel 2, I don’t think things like “artistic talent” or “making a bona fide radio hit” were the main motives here. Enjoy that Google money, Mr. Legend.

Ryo Miyauchi: It’s Bloodpop who lets John Legend down, not the other way around: Evolver has better synth-funk that takes the singer out of his adult-contemporary shell. “I think I found my wife” is where he bets it all, trying his best to cash in on his corny-uncle brand. If it had a beat also ready to go all in on cheesiness, maybe it would’ve been worth it.

Stephen Eisermann: Turns out that not even John Legend’s rich, warm voice and Bloodpop’s slick production can make elevator music good — it just goes from boring to danceable boring.

Will Adams: Between Bloodpop’s bloodless funk-pop and Legend sounding like he’s yawning mid-take, “A Good Night” is the sound of a wedding band at the end of the reception, when they’re petered out but still have a half hour left. The song perks up at the end, when the uncredited female harmonies take center stage, but I don’t know, guys; my sister is getting married in two months, and I’m much more likely to suggest “Summer Nights” before this.

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