An ultra-modern and super-smart meditation on the state of societal pressures, What They Want does a great job of story-telling while retaining an innate humanity.
The vocals are recorded in excellent close harmony for the most part, but the production sounds like it has cleverly avoided using studio short cuts (like time-stretching and auto-tune) to retain Cam’s vulnerability and thoughtful delivery.
‘What they want / It doesn’t exist’, proclaims our lead protagonist in slightly clipped but perfectly clear English. The character is exasperated that she is trying to keep-up-with-the-Joneses when what they want isn’t possible (and doesn’t even exist). It’s a properly mature and yet wholly accessible track that remains hooky, well-sung, and sports a seductive charm.
The confident, well-produced backing track features buzzing bass synths, swells of reverse reverb-laden pads and guitar synths that play a sequence of two-note riffs; which not only drive the track but create tension. A tension that’s heightened towards the song’s conclusion, as the lead vocal also modulates between two notes on a frustrated, ad-lib melody that underlines the piece’s central message.
As existential crises go, this is a tasty slab of Scandinavian-flavoured electro-pop with heft and emotion, wrapped up in some committed vocals and a healthy dose of intellect.