Thursday, December 2, 2010

Florrie - "Call of the Wild" (Single Review)

Sometimes I wonder lately how any solo female act with even moderately mainstream tendencies could possibly have the balls to peer out at the current girl-domination popular music scene and think "this seems like a great time to try and launch a career!" I mean, this isn't your run-of-the-mill freshman girls' locker room: it's a full-on Amazon battlefield out there, and unless your breasts can shoot whipped cream, machine gun pellets, or pyrotechnics, you're in for a good fight. 

Enter Florrie. At 22, the Brit has already stacked up a well versed pop resume, with credits on records by the likes of Girls Aloud, Pet Shop Boys, and the sensational Kylie Minogue as a drummer with the UK production team Xenomania. Florrie began her transition from “I’m in the band” to “I am the band” early of this year as an unsigned pop artist with the Fred Falke-produced "Call 911," making a minor splash by offering free downloads of her early solo music via her website. Since then her library of dance/pop music has grown steadily with new original tracks and numerous remixes thereof (the most popular arguably being "Come Back to Mine," to which I never really warmed), further gaining notice along the fringes of both pop and dance scenes in London to Los Angeles. (Matt once tweeted at the singer (@FlorrieMusic) suggesting - pleading would be more exact - that she throw an impromptu gig in L.A., and her reply ofOO YEAH!! THAT would be fun... X,”  nearly gave him a panic attack.) The online marketing of her new music releases, all still available for free throughout the year, has helped her gain exposure despite a distinct lack of label affiliation. 

Still choosing to be unsigned by major record labels (but why, you ask? See her blog), Florrie rounds a new corner in her career on a great note with the new Introduction EP, fronted by the fantastic lead single “Call Of The Wild.” Significantly more accessible and polished than her earlier work, "Call of the Wild" makes a killer first impression that deftly summarizes the basics about this new drumstick-slinging girl on the block underneath a solid pop-rock romp her more established peers would have gladly had on their own albums. The track's great dance hooks with their generous serving of electric guitar would likely stand on their own even without the uniquely adept lyrics, with S-heavy lines like "Satisfy me 'cause I'm falling apart;/ Synchronicity in our chemistry" that are interesting both verbally and sonically. 

"I'm a woman, not a Siren calling," Florrie coos, even though her airy coos hover tantalizingly above the chorus and the lead vocal flows between a breathy lure and a seductive alto growl so effortlessly it seems she must be both. The track's best feature is the truly badass chorus (punctuated with a few lupine howls) wherein the singer rips into her drum set like a much less frightening Peaches, although the slow build of the bridge, where Florrie's gasps and whispers, cunningly spliced throughout in a manner reminiscent of Pink, fully relay the urgency of a wild animal on the prowl, gets a most honorable mention. The blend of songwriting, production, performance and style - drummer chick meets electro-dance-pop-rock - is copacetic: synchronicity of musical chemistry.

At a time when even the best female solo acts are exploring the ethereal headspace of electronic dance, finally re-feminizing a genre that has been stubbornly (and almost counterintuitively) phallocentric since the '80s, Florrie, with "Call of the Wild," is a timely, and enticing slice of something more terrestrial, borrowing some of the more effective elements from Pink and Peaches while maintaining a mixture of hard and soft, dance and pop-rock, woman and Siren, that is uniquely hers. I look forward to hearing what comes in the future from this intriguing new act.

You can download all of Florrie's music for free on her website, or do what we did and buy the Introduction EP on iTunes to support the artist!

Additional reporting and writing by Vertigo Shtick Contributor Matt Burstyn
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