Hear Me Out Before You Shut Me Out

Would Be “Higher” If Not For Unnecessary Support

Taio Cruz is distributed by Island Records

I’m not the biggest fan of pop music. I think most of the lyrics in pop songs are stupid, the melodies are all the same, and they really get annoying. I can rant and rave all day about how the quality of music has reached a decline in the past years. For those who can’t really comprehend the latest trend, club music has taken over the radio. All the songs are about getting drunk and going to clubs, which is why college people love this stuff. Electric synthesizers playing the same notes over and over in the background while a bunch of people rap incoherent nonsense in front of them is the craze nowadays.

However, there are some pop songs that do get to me, and Taio Cruz’s latest single “Higher” is one of them.

Why do I enjoy this song? One word: energy. “Higher” just releases a large amount of good energy that even when sitting down makes you dance. Taio Cruz sings this song with a lot of energy, and you can tell the amount that he puts into this song. Sure, it’s sounds a lot like an Usher song, but it sounds like a good Usher song in all the right ways. It’s a very fun, catchy, has a good beat, and more importantly, it’s not stupid. Okay, let me rephrase that: Taio Cruz is not stupid.

The song really is about how a song is making Cruz break out cool dance moves, and how he’s enjoying himself while he’s dancing. Simple enough, really. Taio’s lyrics really are harmless and don’t really have any elements that are stupid.

I rephrased myself because there are two versions of the song released: One with Travie McCoy of “Gym Class Heroes” fame, and the other with pop star Kylie Minogue, and…well let’s just say I wish Taio was “dancing like he was the only one”. Travie McCoy raps in the beginning and the bridge of the song, and some of the lyrics he makes are just stupid. “Now, I’ve never been one to dance, but we’ve got something going on in my pants”? Classy, Travie. Really classy. The last thing any one wants to hear at a club is how horny a guy is at that moment. I don’t care how you may mean it; it came out the wrong way. “You play Kelly, I’ll be O-Zone”. I don’t know why he said that. What correlation exists between Kelly (I’m guessing Clarkson) and the guys that Gary Brolsma made famous (Numa Numa, anyone?) is beyond me. In fact, I don’t know why he would want to be the next Numa Numa guy.

The one with Kylie is no better nor is it worse. It has Kylie and Taio singing back and forth, and there’s no rapping. What bothers me is her vibratto voice. I just don’t really care for it. Taio’s voice is smoother and lighter; Kylie’s is deeper and more nasal and takes away from the feel of the song. They sing together at the end, and you can somehow tell the difference between the two and listen for yourself.

The music video is simple without being too crazy. it just has Taio and Kylie riding around a parking lot in nice cars with four girls coming out of nowhere dancing. I’m guessing it’s for sex appeal? I personally can’t complain about it because there really is nothing to complain about it. The chemistry between Kylie and Taio was pretty good even though they could have been closer together when dancing. The director reshot the video with Travie, and the editing was very sloppy. There were scenes that just jumped to each other after a second, and the video fell out of place.

That being said, I prefer the version with Kylie because there aren’t any stupid lyrics, and mostly no one takes the attention away from the song. I know Travie was trying to add to the song, but I just feel like he’s taking the spotlight from Taio for a second. I may not like Kylie’s voice, but at least she’s continuing the song. I would rather Taio sing this one by himself.

In short: “Higher” is a fun song with a good beat and melody. It makes you want to dance, it’s not that annoying, and if you Took Travie McCoy and Kylie Minogue out of the equation would be a much better song. This is one of those songs that would have been much better hadn’t it been for one unnecessary part of the formula. Even though I don’t believe Taio has made himself memorable just yet and still needs to find his own distinct voice, the song isn’t bad and he may have a healthy career after this until the audience has a change in taste. Until then, feel free to get higher off the ground.

Final Rating: 3/4 – Like it

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