I’d heard lots of good things about Ronika, but the music I’d heard was not strong enough for me to jump on the bandwagon quite yet. It all changed, however, when I heard one track on her MySpace called System Error. It just clicks as a pop song in a way that the other songs don’t as it’s well constructed from start to finish, whereas the other tracks have strong, poptastic sections mixed in with weaker parts which distract from their potential brilliance. Forget Yourself is a particular example of this – it starts brilliantly then gets gradually less interesting, and even when the chorus comes back in it sounds nowhere near as exciting as it did when it welcomed us to the song. There’s definite potential for poptasticness here but I’ll need a few more songs like System Error before I’m fully on board, as it’s the only track where I feel she has fully thrown herself at being a popstar. We don’t accept any half-heartedness in pop!
Poptasticness: 70% Hit potential: 35%
Listen to MNEK’s new single If Truth Be Told on its own and you could imagine a cheesy Swedish pop boy like Eric Saade or Danny singing it. It would be a huge hit for them too as it’s really strong slightly R&B pop. However, MNEK is not a fake-tanned blonde Swedish heartthrob – he’s an overweight teenage trendster from London. I know this all sounds very shallow, but in the pop world the artist and the music come as one package, so the connection between the two is more important than in any other genre. Just from the fact that MNEK’s voice has been computerised out of recognition on this single, it’s clear that this is a case of trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. As a writer and producer he’s already working with some of my absolute favourite behind the scenes types (Brian Higgins, Miranda Cooper, Anu Pillai etc) and he has a credit on The Saturdays’ All Fired Up. He’s clearly hugely talented, but he needs to create music that fits his persona or write for artists who suit his songs a little more than he does.
Poptasticness: 74% Hit potential: 37%