‘I try to act cool / But I’m in the same house / That I grew up in’.
Almost Owen’s blink-and-you-miss-it pop nugget is the perfect soundtrack for our troubled times. This clever song zips by in a smidgeon over two minutes, but on its way skewers contemporary mores in an economical manner, which simultaneously delivers big pop hooks yet also resonates with our sensibilities.
That lyric I’ve plucked out represents the thrust of the whole song. The lyric goes on to document the attitudes and day-to-day realities of a slice of today’s youth – a group who have had their dreams stolen, who pursue a hedonistic lifestyle without the connections, understanding or cash to realise it in the way they feel they should. Is it really all that bad? Let’s allow Almost Owen to answer: ‘Kind of sad when you think about it / So we don’t think about it’.
The lead vocal is warm, full of personality and delivered in a confident, laid-back swagger that belies the gravity of what it’s detailing. It’s reminiscent of Drake’s melodic delivery, and has enough syncopation and changes in delivery to keep things chopping along. The big boom of the beat is the ultimate homespun house party rave soundtrack, and the chant/cheer of crowd vocals swept up in the moment all undercuts the apparent laissez-faire on display.
An urban hymn to income inequality railing against the aspirational lifestyle we have rammed down our throats by the media (that we can’t help but want)? Could be…
I think this song is quite brilliant. It’s entertaining, layered, engaging, wears its empty heart on its sleeve and is all the more powerful the more you think about what you’ve just heard.