[10] Sugababes, ‘Freak Like Me’

Freak Like Me

A cover of a mash-up. Of all the lazy, half-arsed singles… Good though innit? Sugababes were flunking hard after the diminishing chart positions of a host of sterling singles from their debut, then Siobhan Donaghy’s “I’m just popping out for a bit” act and the final indignity of having to co-opt a failed Atomic Kitten – but 80s geek Richard X slouched in to rescue them, and how. ‘Freak Like Me’ wrings some sexiness from the sullen minxes and its pummelling production keeps it young, fresh and new.

Junior says:
“I know this song so I don’t have to say anything about it.” I’m getting the feeling Jukebox Junior is reaching a natural hiatus. Perhaps in nine songs’ time. On the upside, Junior confessed to being a bit of a fan of the Sugababes’ career-changer.

Best bit: The second wiggly Star Trekky sound effect leading to full-force bass blast.

[9] Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, ‘Souvenir’

Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark

As the wistfully melancholic synth refrain chimed in, Junior rushed over and gave me a hug. That’s what OMD can do.

See also: Atomic Kitten’s ‘Whole Again’, obviously.

My obsession:

[19] Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, ‘Electricity’

This is exactly the kind of tinky-tonk Casiotone tripe that gave electronic music a bad name from the moment it began to enslave the charts. Isn’t it wonderful?

“I don’t want it” said Junior.

Well, there you go. On the contrary, I do want it, a bit. It’s the sort of high concept stuff OMD specialised in as they ran the gamut from “our one source of energy, the ultimate discovery” to Joan of Arc to the atomic bomb, accompanied by tinny synths and tupperware beats. It’s what music was made for.

And it’s topical – as the economy crumbles into little bits around our ears, Andy McClusky gargles about “the final source of energy, solar electricity…”, pointing the way to a brighter, less oily future. Way to go, big man. Shame about Atomic Kitten.