Review: Georgia – Seeking Thrills
If a simple hook or singular sound are enough for you, you’ll get on well with Georgia Barnes, especially if you like a gimmick…
As this year’s viral clip of her Glastonbury performance of About Work The Dancefloor highlighted, the Londoner’s mix of strong melodies, pulsing synths and uncomplicated choruses are vastly boosted by live shows in which she performs alone, singing and drumming behind a Simmons electronic drum kit.
But are these factors – plus her undeniably appealing 80s influences – really enough to satisfy?
First single Started Out appears to use words as placeholders – “But I toughed up myself now/ Kicked down the heartache” – even if its clumsily articulated chorus proves likeably enigmatic, and, when she’s not delivering overfamiliar sentiments elsewhere, the muttered fridge poetry of, say, the rather darker slow-burner Till I Own It is little better.
Still, such things matter little when lost in music, and her second album certainly delivers powerful hooks and singular, ebullient – if unprogressive – electronic pop.
Never Let You Go offers pleasantly fluttering arpeggiated lines, and Mellow, pitched somewhere between MIA and Noga Erez, combines childlike glee and 21st century malevolence to impressive effect. Feel It, meanwhile, loosely recalls her father Neil’s work with Leftfield, The Thrill mimics the woozy weirdness of Fever Ray, and she steps away from her 909 drum machine for the twinkling, convincing Ultimate Sailor.
Only the rough-edged ‘Alternative Version’ of Never Let You Go, though, displays a deeper sense of character. Perhaps one might expect less if she weren’t signed to a world class indie, or were some Scandinavian star singing in a second language. There’s plenty to celebrate here, after all, but it would be more significant, and one might care more, if one knew more about who’s behind it.