Friday, 5 February 2010

2001 Blue: Too Close

A cover version of a 1998 hit for American R&B act Next, their original single was a bottle of sauce concerning the lads slow dancing with a woman, wondering "if she could tell I'm hard right now" and if she can "feel a little poke coming through" set to a generic yet suitably grinding rhythm that played out like an eighties Prince B side. Brit boy band Blue switch the red light for white and re-classify the tune from an 18 to a PG by lightening it with a major key change and toning down the more overt hard on references in the lyrics to sell it to a younger fanbase. Or, as is more likely, not to offend their folks, though they can't resist putting a shout out for the song's parent album at the intro which happens to be 'All Rise'. Shameless plugging or knowing in-joke? I don't think it matters - 'Too Close' as a song is a dull affair regardless (there are nine people credited as writing it. Nine!). The Carry On innuendo of the original is trowelled on too po-faced to be humorous while Blue's take smacks of a copycat act in thrall to the American boy band template and too content to lazily put on someone else's clothes, albeit a set modified to suit the audience rather than the people actually wearing them - that So Solid Crew single seems a lifetime away already.

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