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Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

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Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Mike Senior » Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:44 am

Although on first listen I was worried that the pre-chorus (0:45) was about to rip off Katy Perry’s ‘Firework’ big style, my fears were proved groundless by the song’s nice harmonic digression from the home key of A-major into its relative minor (F#) — rather aptly underscoring the ambivalent nature of the lyric, in my view. However, I was a lot less enamoured of the A-major-seventh chords (with ‘G’ in the bass) at 1:53, 3:24, and 3:32, presumably introduced to refresh the listener’s interest in the heavily repeated ‘good girl’ hook material. Given that the harmonic bedrock of the pre-choruses and choruses everywhere else is pretty conventional (an A-F#m-E7 progression, roughly speaking, with root notes in the bass), it sounds very strange to me that the A7 chord’s characteristic tritone interval (G to C#) is resolved so weakly into F# minor, where a ‘D’ chord of some kind (perhaps D6) would feel much more logical, albeit necessitating some alteration in the pitches of the vocal lines.

Now, I realise that with harmonic issues one man’s meat can often be another man’s poison, and you could argue that this little turnaround achieves its primary purpose (ie. attracting my attention), irrespective of whether it’s satisfying from a musical perspective — but I don’t think this viewpoint really stands up to scrutiny, because there are plenty of much more arresting chords you could put in there if shock value was the be-all and end-all.
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Re: Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Mike Senior » Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:46 am

I sourced this single from Alexis Jordan's eponymous album 'Alexis Jordan'. Here's what the CD booklet had to say:

Written by Autumn Rowe, Tor Erik Hermansen, Mikkel S. Eriksen, Sandy Vee, Espen Lind, Amund Bjorklund.
Produced by Stargate and Sandy Vee.
Recorded by Mikkel S. Eriksen.
Mixed by Phil Tan.
Mastered by Tom Coyne

I had to laugh at the "you'd better have some cake" lyric at 0:28 -- not since Desree's incomparable "piece of toast" have I encountered such a random allusion to food for the sake of a rhyme scheme. And let us not forget that she only sang "you appreciate my lean body, nice shape" about seven seconds earlier. Maybe I'm just missing a bit of the latest R&B lingo...

All in all, I do find myself rather underwhelmed by this production. Yes, there's some nice harmonic stuff going on, and some interesting section contrast too, but within many of the sections everything seems very repetitive, and neither Alexis Jordan nor her melody ever seem charismatic enough to persuade me to listen through to the end. It can't help that I also find the pre-chorus ("heart-breaker", first heard at 0:45) a lot more engaging than the rather pedestrian 'good girl' chorus section, which mortally wounds the song's long-term dynamics from my perspective. Anyone else prefer that section over the chorus, or is it just me? (Or did no-one else persevere beyond that lyric?)

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Re: Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Jonnypopisical » Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:53 am

But what about the mix Mike!
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Re: Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Mixedup » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:08 pm

Jonnypopisical wrote:But what about the mix Mike!

Perhaps there's no point in commenting on that if you can't get past the arrangement. Good mix of a poor arrangement is pointless...

What did you think of the mix?
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Re: Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Jonnypopisical » Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:26 pm

Well I'm use to the Freemasons mix of the track which is very different but brilliant. So hearing the original mix for the first time was odd!

I think the mix is OK - not blinding but the production (not the same as the mix) is quirky but I I do agree it could be quite a lot better...

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Re: Alexis Jordan: 'Good Girl'

Postby Mike Senior » Thu Jun 30, 2011 10:04 am

Jonnypopisical wrote:But what about the mix Mike!

As Mixedup commented, I find it difficult to get past my reservations with the arrangement when listening to it, but putting those concerns to one side, I agree that the mix is perfectly fine -- clear, clean, and efficient in a way I always tend to associate with Phil Tan.
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