Sammy the Seal

“I need a little confirmation”

In music videos, vinyl on Saturday, 17 March, 2012 at 14:32


Song: Everything
Artist: Fefe Dobson
Album: Fefe Dobson

Oh, to hell with it, let the pop procession continue. I sure did blow my pop wad this week, didn’t I? Maybe I need to do something arcane and esoteric now. What was it I said just yesterday about pop song structure and dynamics, “start soft, hold the percussion on the first verse, wail out vocally before the bridge and/or solo, ramp up the intensity on the bridge, end by repeating the last line incomplete, then finally finishing it with vocals alone, etc., etc.”? Almost a perfect match. Did I forget well-placed backing harmonies? How could I! They’re the kind that are good enough that when the chorus or pre-chorus comes along, you’re not sure which part to sing, so you listen to the song a second time to do the other part as well. Catchy can sometimes mean annoying, but I’m not embarrassed to like these hooks.

I doubt many people know this one though. It was 2003, it’s possible Avril had already started posing by then. Sigh, life sure is rough for a black Canadian rocker girl. “Complicated” has a decent hook, I understand why it was popular, but I thought it sounded kinda whiny, and the chorus was way too thin, it should have been more hard and anthemic. Not that “Everything” is so deep, but has more edge, relatively speaking, and it feels more interesting and subtle, the rock aspect aside, even though it deals with similar lyrical territory. I mean, sure everything’s glossed over a bit for radio, but the guitars, especially on the bridge, have far more punch and movement to them. And, Fefe has more strength and nuance in her voice. Even something as small as 3:00, how she goes up on “way” on the pre-chorus after the bridge, or the subsequent pushes she gives to the word “time”, or how she sings harmony only on the final utterance of “this I will bring”. That final segment of the song sounds just a bit more urgent as a whole. As far as pop rock goes, this is far more memorable. It does actually rock and bounce. Hell, I still listen to it and genuinely enjoy it, so there must be something special about it.

It didn’t help that it was tied to the film The Perfect Score, a film that I’m sure almost no one saw. I think it was about some kids trying to steal the answers to the SAT or something, like a teen caper, but not sleazy. The video is a bit cheesy, how it ties into the movie and all. And I don’t like the different version of the song either. Why excise part of the end, would the extra 20-30 seconds have been so bad? Come on!

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  1. […] Girl” and “Maneater”, years later. It’s likely being Canadian (like Fefe Dobson) didn’t help. But the awkward, insecure, and brutal honesty in the lyrics are refreshingly […]

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