Dear Calvin Harris,
We need to talk. Firstly, we’re thrilled that you’ve become the world’s highest-paid DJ. That’s pretty amazing. We’re also quite grateful some proper bangers you’ve provided in the past. Cheers for those. (Also this is neither here nor there, but we’re totally here as a shoulder to cry on if you need help getting over Rita Ora.)
However, all of the above shouldn’t feel like a reason to become complacent. Sure, you’re at the forefront of the banality that is EDM right now, but is it right to rest on those laurels? Your new album sounds a little like that might be the case. Motion is a blur, to the point that it’s hard to distinguish where one song ends and another begins in the paint-by-numbers world of dance-pop.
Choruses meld into one, vocalists are used so perfunctorily that they could be disposable. The ones you should collaborate with again? Hurts, who lend a robust arm to Under Control, and of course Haim, who transcend the material to create the album highlight on Pray To God. But even we can’t forgive you for wasting the talents of Tinashe or Gwen Stefani, as both Together and Dollar Signs scream of opportunities wasted.
The rest of it could come from any Tom, Dick, or Guetta. We admit that your songs aren’t really made for our headphones, and will probably fit in perfectly at a massive Ibiza beach gig at 2am when people will make a big-fish-little-fish-cardboard-box to pretty much anything. But it’s unfair to take advantage of the semi-conscious with a fraction of your best work, and you certainly ought to give the rest of us a little more credit than that.
Sincerely, and with love,