Now Playing – twice every week, a roundtable of our writers will give their views on some of the recently-released new tracks. It’s as simple as that! If you want to tell us what you think of the song, feel free to leave a comment below.
Track: ‘Pyramids’ by Frank Ocean
Average grade: 4.1
Richard: Kinda like the Pyramids in Egypt this song is big, and (lyrically speaking) utterly pointless. Why then do I absolutely love it? Is it the Stevie Wonder-esque breakdown a minute and a half in? Or the R Kelly get-my-grind-on-croon halfway through? Perhaps, there is so much going on, and if this is anything to go by Ocean’s Channel Orange will be one of the stand-out albums of 2012. 9/10
Kenny: Can’t say that I really see the point of this tune. It’s ten minutes of meandering vocals and lightweight beats probably in a love song vein. Maybe it’s a lifestyle thing but it did nothing for me so 1/10.
Tom: ’Pyramids’ has already got itself a reputation, being both 10 mins long and partly about a fantasy mix of Ancient Egypt and Old Testament. Then it leaps forward a couple of thousand years to a modern strip club called Pyramids. It is definitely an ambitious song, but the sound lacks depth. There’s a tinny feel to the ’80s synth swirl, and to Frank’s delicate voice. The desert fantasy also turns out to a thin veil that fails to obscure a massive dollop of pure rap cliche: women are strippers, men are pimps, hotel suites are expensive. Songs this long need something new to offer. 4/10
Craig: I am glad that hip-hop has embraced some more ‘out there’ electronic beats. It’s led to some more interesting songs and collaborations one wouldn’t expect. That being said, this ten-minute snoozefest is not even close to interesting. Sexy lady problems, money problems, champagne, etc… I was at least hoping this song would be about real pyramids and not some club when I saw the title. 2/10
Stuart: Featuring the most incomprehensible lyrics since Simon Le Bon penned ‘The Reflex’, Frank Ocean’s latest is a myriad of a fish supper wrapped in foreign newspaper – if that’s not too odd an idea to embrace.The middle bit sounds a little like ‘The Red Weed’ portion of Jeff Wayne’s execrable concept album ‘War of the Worlds’ but that aside it’s a pleasant enough hip-hop-electro-funk crossover piece. Sure, occasionally the lyrics lapse into generic gangsta shtick and the fuzz guitar code feels like a afterthunk bolt-on but overall it’s an enjoyable listen if you happen to be supping on a Gibson martini on a balmy summer evening…which I am. 7/10
Linda: No. 1/10
Stef: Gosh, I don’t know. The thing is, some elements are really nice. But there is a bit of epic for epic’s sake in there. That outro could’ve been thrown out, and it also could’ve been two songs. And, aside from its length, there is nothing really epic going out. Some bits are highly listenable though. 5/10