Monday, May 7th, 2018

EO – German

“Get in, loser; we’re going shopping…”


Iain Mew: British manufacturing being what it is (or isn’t), pretty much all cars are foreign cars here, so “in a foreign car” is a non-starter of a brag. That leaves the “German whip” half of the chorus, and I don’t understand why anyone would base a song around a concept to which such a strong claim was already laid so recently. “German” only works if taken in total isolation, which is about right for the charming but derivative sound too.

Joshua Minsoo Kim: The original version of “German” found teenage YouTube star EO rapping over the beat for Ramz’s “Barking,” but he claims it was an unfortunate coincidence and not one of his attempts at a song parody. It worked out in his favor as the new J Rocs production here is just as minimal but more sprightly, carrying the monotonous hook rather effectively. For as drab as he may sound, EO injects the song with a youthful charm; it’s pretty boring, but equally as unassailable.

Tim de Reuse: What makes EO’s reluctant-karaoke delivery really grate is the total lack of negative space; his dry Auto-Tune monotone fills the mix, never taking more than a half-second to breathe and abruptly ending after three minutes of no significant development. The second verse sees him up his tempo, briefly, and there’s a little bit of fun there as long as you don’t listen to what he’s saying closely enough to realize that the whole thing is a loosely-connected series of car-related stanzas that seem to have been written hastily with a rhyming dictionary in one hand.

Alfred Soto: The rinky-dink three-note bleep-bleep and EO’s hook know whereof they speak, and were they attached to fleeter and less Germanic pleasures I’d blast it out of my Japanese.

Katherine St Asaph: More evidence of the UK’s general failure at Eurovision: not submitting this.

Mark Sinker: The Normal’s “Warm Leatherette” came out 41 years ago, fully 25 before EO was even born. So it’s possible he’s never heard it. In texture and politics “German” isn’t much like the groundbreaking “Warm Leatherette”: they both claim cars are way sexy, but largely part ways on the good or bad of this. Instead of an abrupt barking deadpan hiss of satire, EO gives us something that’s all guileless wish, an easy gliding flat cyborg baritone dream of what could be if only. He sings as if he’s channeling the deluxe interiors and fittings, the feel and the smell and the tooled pleasure; as if he’s becoming them. Which is actually probably more Ballardian than Daniel Miller ever was.

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One Response to “EO – German”

  1. ‘German Whip’ probably introduced that expression to a lot of casual listeners — I like how EO reduces it further to just ‘German’, and repeats it so many times – all the things you should do ‘in a German’ – you’re left appreciating the sound and mouthfeel of the word in all new ways.