It’s been two years since Sophie Ellis-Bextor released Heartbreak Make Me A Dancer, the first song from Make A Scene. Since then she released Bittersweet, Not Giving Up On Love, Off And On and is now preparing a release of Starlight, the first single that will promote the album. Two years is a big period of time, the expectations for Make A Scene were high, and Sophie didn’t disappoint.
The album starts with the edgy Revolution, a frenetic electronic number that seems to increase its speed as the song progresses. Bittersweet is the second song on the album, a song that unfairly underperformed on the charts, charting only at #25. Bittersweet‘s synth and bass is amazing and the song hooks at first listen. It has an 80s vibe and the Freemasons remix make it the perfect dance floor song.
Off & On is the typical Sophie song, perhaps too harmless and it serves as the perfect contrast to the energetic Heartbreak Make Me A Dancer, which launches into a dark, electronic frenzy, a song that is as powerful as a techno club remix without actually being one. The intensity goes down again but only a bit with Not Giving Up On Love, an Ibiza sounding song that with a good vibe and an extremely catchy chorus, the synthesizer build up a definite highlight.
Can’t Fight This Feeling is the next song, which was also previously released in 2010 with Junior Caldera. The start reminds to Madonna’s famous “Hung Up” but without actually sampling Abba. It is also an energetic dance song, the rhythm at the level of the rest of the album. Starlight follows up, another Ibiza sounding song with a chill out feel about it. Sophie gives the frenetic pace of the album a rest, allowing us to tone down the dancing but inviting us to sway instead.
Under Your Touch accelerates the pace again, a song with a more real instrument sound, drums and electronic guitar mixing with the synth. Make a Scene, the song that gives the name to the album, is perhaps the most alternative sounding song amongst the ones included in the album, the beat is irregular and it combines electronic instruments with trumpets. This song and the way Sophie sings it reminds me to Robyn’s Body Talk album.
And then we reach Magic. Magic is one of the best songs, if not the best of the album (apart from Bittersweet and Heartbreak). It is catchy from second 1 and the backing vocals not only give the song a certain 80s vibe but contribute highly to the song’s appeal, making it into an epic, dance masterpiece.
After such an incredible song, Dial My Number seems really average in comparison, but still, it has an addictive hook and it’s very danceable. Homewrecker passes unnoticed, a song that seems a bit nothing after the shot of adrenaline that the album has injected us till this point. And then we reach Syncronised, which could be considered the ballad of the album, in which Sophie displays her best vocals. The melody is really lovely and it leaves a warm sensation that after all the frenzy and party from previous songs (the whole album really) there’s still a little space for our tiny hearts in love. And with it we reach the last song of the album, Cut Straight To The Heart, another slow tempo song that gifts our ears for the last time before the album comes to an end.
Sophie’s album displays some of her best work, it is strong and consistent from start to end, albeit a couple of lower tunes, it flows nicely and has a bit of everything for everyone, always on an electronic base. If dance is your preferred style, Make a Scene should please you. Electropop at its best.
Listen to: Bittersweet, Heartbreak, Can’t Fight This Feeling, Magic, Starlight, Under Your Touch, Synchronised, Not Giving Up On Love