Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

MS MR – Think of You

Points deducted for not being a Mister Mister tribute act, or a Whigfield cover.

Katherine St Asaph: Secondhand Rapture was a disappointment of the saddest kind: a debut album that reveals a band only had five good songs. “Think of You” is the fifth: heartbreak blunted by distance (so it works with Lizzy Plapinger’s diffident voice) and edging into acceptance, carried out by industrial percussion and hesitant hooks. As singles go, it’s rather small, but sometimes you take the small victories you get.

Patrick St. Michel: MS MR were one of those names that pop up all the time within music-fan spheres. They were a name that just kept popping up at SXSW this year, and I swear I see their name on a festival line-up every week. Despite that, I’ve never listened to a MS MR song until “Think Of You” and… well, I guess being the recipient of hype has never been easier. This is boring post-Adele pop that tries desperately to be edgy (they said “shit,” how wild!) when it’s ultimately just lifeless. Props to the PR department, but work on the MS MR material first.

Anthony Easton: I love when the nostalgia goes full meta — how she sings “down, down, down,” reinforced by those bleak drum fills, and the yearning for a lost lover,  a lover who has done serious damage —  all tied into a perfect new wave package.

Daniel Montesinos-Donaghy: The blog for Neon Gold Records has kept an eye and ear on pop music since 2008, pointing many in the direction of acts like Ellie Goulding and the Temper Trap before the mainstream caught up to them. Their M.O. centered around well-crafted, slightly left-of-centre pop music, exactly what MS MR supply. One would imagine as such, seeing that vocalist Lizzy Plapinger runs Neon Gold. At the same time, “Think of You” appears too much like the acts Neon Gold covered, coming across too politely to flesh out a personality of its own. There’s a rumble of torment flashing through the verses but it passes by, scrolled past as easily as a blog post.

Alfred Soto: The vocals flirt with distance, except diffidence isn’t exactly distance: to feel diffident is to still engage with the human mess. The synths help too.

Brad Shoup: Starts with poor mixing (the word “high” was either awkwardly inserted, or there’s a blip inserted behind the word) and ends up awfully literal. Which makes me think this could’ve made a decent freestyle tune.

John Seroff: This one was a grower. While I’m still a bit distrustful of “Think of You”‘s synthesis of late eighties protogrrrl-power and contemporary post-feminist angst, the restraint from the singer and discreet lack of fifth gear bombast from the production make this comfortably palatable for a surprisingly long haul. That may not sound like much but given some of the turkeys we’ve been dealing with for the past week, it’s appreciated. Important caveat: I can’t honestly say I’m likely to re-listen now that it’s out of my to-do pile.

Edward Okulicz: The verses are promising with the marching drums and a melody that’s pleasingly not oversold or ruined by trying to sing it like Adele even though it is Adele-ish, but the chorus is flat and featureless. No, using “shit” doesn’t count as a feature.

Will Adams: The comparison may be trite, but a song like “Think of You” deserves a grandeur more suited to Florence Welch. It almost sounds like a demo, featuring kernels of something great but lacking polish. The flat synth bass, the stunted melody and the empty bridge show the holes in what could have been.

Reader average: [6.33] (3 votes)

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One Response to “MS MR – Think of You”

  1. I’ve seen a lot of criticism directed towards MS MR’s album, but honestly I really like it. I haven’t paid much attention to the lyrics or anything, but I just find the whole thing really catchy and fun to play. I like the girl’s voice and really love the production. I even love the “Salty Sweet” song that everyone trashes. To me, it’s an album that sounds good playing in the background.

    Also, love “Think of You.” One of my faves for sure.