Tuesday, June 15th, 2021

Agnes – 24 Hours

We have finally released her, released her body, from the purgatory of not being covered on TSJ.


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[7.73]

Wayne Weizhen Zhang: Sultry, sweaty, aerobic disco embellished with every little Euro-bosh flourish you could wish for. “24 hours never seemed so far away/Feels like a lifetime ago,” Agnes sings, seemingly referencing the fact that the last time we covered her was over a decade ago
[7]

William John: God, if only Lady Gaga had stumbled across something like this on her journey to Planet Chromatica.
[10]

Edward Okulicz: It must be the mid-to-late noughties again, because here’s another song that bites “Fade to Grey” while also being better than “Fade to Grey.” It also brings to mind lovely memories of Rachel Stevens’ “So Good,” only nobody’s going to accuse Agnes of being a slightly weak singer. Her performance, as if hiding in the corner of her vocal booth, is a nervous powerhouse. That spoken word bit is bizarre in a wonderful way too, though isn’t it a “Sliding Doors moment” not a “sliding door moment”?
[8]

Juana Giaimo: The song already starts so upbeat that when the chorus arrives, it falls flat. In the pre-chorus, she adds an extra beat and disco backing vocals echoing her already strong voice, all of which create expectation, but when the chorus arrives, her voice turns thinner and the melody slower. Sure, it’s good, but not the dance explosion I was expecting. 
[6]

Samson Savill de Jong: This is pretty much the perfect form of this type of song. Pumping bass, glissando-ing keys, strong singing, lyrics that’re pretty obviously written by a Swede in their second language, soaring violins, spacey distant vocals at the start, a weird spoken bridge that doesn’t really work but makes it feel “arty.” “24 Hours” doesn’t play with the tropes, it just executes them to perfection.
[8]

Dorian Sinclair: There’s a real imperiousness to Agnes’s vocal on the verse of “24 Hours” — she has a commanding presence as she lays out the stark facts of heartbreak and what comes after. It contrasts well with the airy vulnerability of her head voice on the chorus, particularly immediately post-bridge when it’s just her and the piano. The ways she shifts her register are super thoughtful, and the production post-bridge is near perfect. I just wish the pre-bridge underscoring was a little more responsive to the ways in which she uses her voice.
[7]

Katherine St Asaph: Evokes Goldfrapp (Supernature specifically), Ladytron, Robyn, “Rapture”-era Blondie briefly, and other strobe-dance luminaries, but sounds flat, emotionally detached. Maybe we should have heard the story in the moment, rather than with 24 hours’ distance.
[6]

Nortey Dowuona: The spin kicking drums knock down the door, the stalking bass and wheeling synths follow Agnes’s smooth croon as she spreads her echoes through the building, then begins to climb the stairs, the bass synths and drums clearing her opponents as Agnes continues to climb, unencumbered and getting ready to place down the satellite. As they reach the last stairs, Agnes floats over her echoes on the steps of the sweetly plucked piano, then lands on the top, placing the satellite on the roof, broadcasting… we are still here.
[10]

Will Adams: “24 Hours” draws inspiration from several space-electro hallmarks — the breathy interlude that opens the song from Donna Summer; the nod to Eurythmics in the first verse — but I mostly hear Goldfrapp in its DNA. It’s that steely angle on an otherwise standard breakup anthem that adds intrigue, as well as a narrative purpose: only in the post-chorus midway through does the pain peek through — “that was the last time I’ll ever be yours.” But it’s a brief flash, and Agnes remains determined to move forward, blasting off into space, propelled by synths and kick drums.
[8]

Scott Mildenhall: In the armour of electro revival revivalism, Agnes heads forth, fights, and steals a Gaga line so brazenly as to be surreptitious. This has gusto on all fronts — crunching, throbbing, punching, mobbing — and barely needs 24 seconds to assert that something big is happening.
[8]

Aaron Bergstrom: This is pretty much a shot-for-shot remake of last year’s mildly disappointing “Fingers Crossed,” but it’s hard to be too upset when “24 Hours” improves on the formula in almost every way: bigger, darker, faster, less likely to be mistaken for an unreleased Future Nostalgia outtake.
[7]

Reader average: [7] (7 votes)

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