Friday, 30 September 2016

ELLE EXXE – ALBUM REVIEW

Elle Exxe – Love Fuelled Hate 
Elle Exxe - Love Fuelled Hate


Release Date: 7th October 2016

There’s hype, there’s hyperbole and then there’s superhype. Scottish star in the making Elle Exxe fits in to that latter category but, I think you’ll agree, it’s deserved. I mean, how many fresh pop stars start their debut album with the sound of a Frenchman (I think) muttering uncomfortably close in to a microphone? Well Elle Exxe does on ‘Your Love…’ which segues in to the stomping pop rouser ‘Lately’ full of brattish attitude, slinky guitars and the kind of chorus that works in a ball gown as much as it does in jeans and a vest. On ‘Lost in L.A.’ our heroine uses that Shampoo-esque stomp of a beat and semi-robotic vocal to counterpoint those choppy, snarling guitars to create something akin to Sleigh Bells which is a very, very good thing. By the time ‘Home with You’ rolls around with its more laid back vibe, you are left in no doubt that Elle Exxe not only means business but has the chops to back it up with an album already brimming with great pop tunes.

Album Launch Show
The slick, multi-tracked vocals on ‘I Do’ are reminiscent of Lady Gaga or Rhianna in terms of production values but the bravery of hanging the whole song on her vocal ability with very sparse instrumentation is admirable to say the least. ‘Sick’ is a smart, sassy piece of indie-pop while ‘White Lies’ has a slightly more sparse, 80s pop ballad vibe but with 21st century beats. ‘…Your Hate’ continues the mumbling from the opening track before the Lady Hawke-esque ‘Lie to Me’ kicks in with its dancing synth notes and Elle Exxe letting her voice flex its muscles with confidence and a little swagger. The dramatic synth and beats intro to ‘The Hammer’ mixed with the affected vocal style reminds me a little of Cameo’s classic ‘Word Up’ but soon enough this tune becomes a huge 80s inspired indie-dance anthem with perfect hand-clappable rhythms going on. The attitude continues on ‘W.T.F.’ as Elle and her posse chant “Who the fuck do you think you are?” at anyone who gets in their way or tries it on without an invitation. Be warned.


In to the home straight and ‘Hating On You’ is the girl power anthem that the likes of Girls Aloud would kill for as a comeback tune but far too grown up for the likes of Little Mix (Katy Perry might just be able to carry it off but it’s got too much snarl for the likes of Meghan Trainor). ‘Shoot’ is sumptuous in its bile driven fury as Elle Exxe nearly raps the verses before singing “Your jealousy won’t bring me down” in the chorus. Closing track ‘Understand’ shows the artist off under a more delicate light as the scattered, processed vocals are akin to Ellie Goulding but the beats that carry the tune are far more industrial, not letting up on the energy until the very end of this 14 track beast. So, that’s a whole album of original material coupled with one hell of a voice and enough imagination and innovation to keep the listener’s attention for 14 whole tracks. Not bad for a first effort, that second album is going to be a bit of a challenge though. Never mind that though, Elle Exxe is surely about to break through so get on board now and get to a show before she’s touring arenas and killing it at awards ceremonies.


Live Dates:

3rd October – Zandari 2016, Seoul
6th October – Unknown Venue, Seoul
7th October – Mu:Con 2016, Seoul
12th October – Album Launch @ 229 Venue, London

27th October – Troxy, London

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