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Sugababes - 'No Can Do'

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Fraser McAlpine | 10:35 UK time, Saturday, 20 December 2008

SugababesIn any long-term chart career, there are going to be highs and lows. There are going to be times when everything you say, every note you sing and every outfit you wear are seized upon as icons for the modern age, and then there are going to be times when you are just another pop act putting another single out, and there is nothing you can do to make people look pleased to see you.

Or, to put it another way. When you are up, you are up. And when you are down you are down. And when you are only half-way up...that's the time to complain about shoddy promotion on your album, and threaten to boycott the Brit Awards.

(Here's the video. Please do not watch if the sight of muscley men in their boxers pretending to be objects is offensive to you.)

The only solution to this situation is just to keep plugging away and ride it out. Girls Aloud hit a similar wave of public meh around the time of their cover of Tiffany's cover of Tommy James & The Shondells' 'I Think We're Alone Now', and now look at them. National treasures, don't you know.

And it's not like the Sugababes haven't weathered stormy waters before.

So, kudos to Keisha and co for sticking another single out - at an odd time of year, admittedly, but still - and making a provocative video to go with it. And a hearty backslap to whoever decided that what the band's trademark icy cool could really do with is some Philly soul warmth.

Chances are, the song won't be the all-conquering pop superbeast that it could be, but that probably has more to do with all the other stuff going on outside the band's control than whether it's a good song or not.

Mind you, the fact that I'm talking about the other stuff and not the song probably tells you something.

Bring on the Sugababes Revival...in 2010!

Three starsDownload: Out now
CD Released: December 29th

(Fraser McAlpine)


  • Comment number 1.

    I have to say that this is the only song that I've liked by the sugababes since 'Easy'. Recently I have gone through an 'Oh My God How About You Release a Decent Song'- Phase with both Girls Aloud and Sugababes. I detest pop ballad and especially pop ballad masquerading as dance floor anthems (for example: 'About You Now', 'The Promise' et al.)

    I do like both of these girl bands however and I too hope that 2009 will see a return to form for them both. However I wouldn't hold my breath, given that none of the tracks on the new Girls Aloud album seem all that, and these tracks definitely do not live up to their predecessors. I haven't heard much of the new Sugababes album, but hope it isn't a similar case!

  • Comment number 2.

    For me, it seems both the Sugababes and Girls Aloud have sacrificed good songs with catchy tunes and pleasant vocals, for big hair and dance anthems. They've lost sight of what truly makes a good girlband. This is unwise, and has proved detrimental to the Sugababes' position in pop, especially with acts like The Saturdays entering the scene with proper melodies and accomplished singing under their belts.
    Bring back the frosty pop, please.

  • Comment number 3.

    Seems strange why the Sugababes have waited until the Christmas market is over to release their single No can do on CD single on the 29th, is this a sign they have lost their confidence?

    The song is really good in my opinion, but I'm confused as to why such an established act as the Sugababes have waited for the boring week after Christmas to release their single on CD yet make the download available now.

    Is the industry trying to kill itself by making the physical product available last?


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