At the risk of dismissing an entire musical genre, most contemporary R’n’B is like aural kryptonite to me. I just don’t get it. Slushy, leery, corporate, whining, saccharine and drivel are the kindest words I can summon to describe what I’ve had the misfortune to hear. But far be it for me to tar everyone with the same toilet brush. After all, Marquis Houston’s ‘Up in the Club’ has been a guilty pleasure for a few years now.
Unfortunately, this disinterest also extends to much Southern Hip Hop which, despite its huge explosion in popularity, I have been more than happy to ignore for quite some time now. With all this in mind I am almost certainly the wrong person to review new single 808 from Atlanta singer Qwote featuring rapper Plies, but fuck it.
808 is a paean to the legendary Roland TR-808 drum machine of 80’s electro fame, which is fair enough, I share his enthusiasm for the classic piece. It all starts to go wrong when it’s back dropped by an attempted reconciliation with a lost love. Imploring the DJ to play an 808 based song, which shouldn’t be hard in a club in Atlanta, Qwote’s hoping the trademark drum hits will distract her (from his singing?) and cast her mind back to happier times with him. A flaccid guest verse from rapper Plies (who I firstly and not entirely wrongly identified as Piles) attempts to inject some much needed testosterone into the record but just compounds the cornball factor.
Unlike the classic records that made the 808’s name this seems tailor made for the mp3 player, ghastly disposable ring tone music for little girls who have yet to develop breasts let alone anything resembling taste in music. Coming soon to the top deck of a bus near you!
By: Max Weldon