New No Doubt Track: A Confused Diplo Genre Mash-Up? — LISTEN

Reggae licks, ska percussion, dub beats, and a very mellow pop song chorus: what isn’t going on in the new No Doubt song?

Gwen Stefani and Co. debuted their second single, “Push and Shove” off their hotly-anticipated new album of the same name has a few people scratching their heads. The Diplo-produced tune premiered today on Ryan Seacrest‘s radio show today and seems to be an aural journey through his favorite genres at the moment. And is it successful? Well, we’re not so sure. The tune weaves in and out of the bands ska-roots with tinges of reggae, dub, and an almost slow-motion version of pop in the chorus. Hey, listen: sometimes mash-ups work…but this might not be one of those times. Growing up and evolving your sound doesn’t meant you have to come across as grasping for relevancy by stockpiling on a bunch of musical trends. All that does it make you look like a dad in an Ed Hardy t-shirt.

The most baffling part of the tune is definitely the chorus, which drags the song from its bouncy origins to a place that can only be described as almost, well, gothic. The Huffington Post described it as having an Evanaescence-like quality, and we can’t say they’re all that far off base here. (And no, it’s not a compliment.) Which is a shame because No Doubt was a staple for punchy girl-power-infused punks growing up in the early nineties. Has adulthood mellowed out No Doubt’s groove to the point of nonexistence? The jury’s still out, but these last two singles are nothing if not slightly grim.

Want to judge for yourself? Check out the tune below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes


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