Calvin Harris releases his new album ‘Ready For The Weekend’ today (August 17th), already famed for his infectious yet tongue in cheek releases as well as the muster of his remixing credentials a fair bit has made of this album already. A number of lack luster reviews led to Harris having something of a public blow up on Twitter.
Yet were the somewhat caustic reviews justified? Or did Harris have a point about the reviewers all being ‘rich kids’ with jobs wangled for them by ‘rich mummies and daddies’. There’s a couple of tracks you’ll be familiar with already on this collection. The Dizzee Rascal collaboration ‘Dance Wiv Me’ still remains one of the strongest cuts and shows Harris does have a knack of bolting together some good pop moments when he puts his mind to it.
The rest of the album however presents something of a reviewer’s conundrum. You know what it’s like when you get one of those albums which divides your opinion because there is a variance in the quality of it’s components. That’s the case with ‘Ready For The Weekend’.
Harris has already proved he’s a deft touch when it comes to production, he “knows” dance music. That much is evident from the tunes on offer here, on more than one occasion he offers big chunky riffs and beats that would undeniably drag you to the dancefloor. The overall sound he offers is bang up to date and all the prerequisite bleeps and whistles are bang in the right place (particularly on tracks like ‘The Rain’ and ‘Blue’…oh and ‘I’m Not Alone’ really does shine in this department).
So what exactly is the problem with this album, well Calvin did set himself a rather high watermark the first time around. Yes, there are many producers out there who can turn out a half decent tune with some spangly production but in his case he did it with a suite of wry self depreciating lyrics. There was more than a shade of mock arrogance as well (I Invented Disco, anyone?). These were the factors that set Harris apart and moved him just a notch above his peers.
This time around however the lyrical content remains somewhat humorless and perhaps a touch flat. The narrative to these songs is very much along the lines of more traditional dance music fayre. Plenty of boy meets girls scenarios and woe begotten tales of lost love. Perhaps acceptable from anyone else but we are used to so much more from Harris.
It’s a damn shame he faltered on this one front because in so many areas the album works beautifully. His production credentials are still assured but sadly my misgivings in the lyric department make this album seem a tad incomplete. Give it a listen before you buy.