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McFly ft. Taio Cruz - 'Shine A Light'

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Fraser McAlpine | 16:50 UK time, Saturday, 6 November 2010


Hats off to anyone who wants to buck a few trends here and there. Or even give off the appearance of trend-bucking while actually fast-bucking, I'm not fussy.

Y'know, zaggers when we were expecting ziggers; lefties instead of righties. These are the kind of counter-intuitive jumpabouts which are always a good idea. Keeps us on our toes, keeps the flow of ideas from getting too stagnant, and generally shakes things up a bit.

For example: taking a unashamed pop band, who have spent most of their career thus far trying to prove that they can properly rock like the rock bands do, and introducing them to a producer and songwriter who embodies the very sound of what is going on currently in popular music, just to see if they get on. It's a great idea. Or a great idea on paper, anyway.

(Here's the video. It's got girls in it.)

Something isn't quite firing though. It's not the Taio Cruz pop sound per se. A better, more attention-grabbing song would've suited this noise rather well. It's more that neither side seems to have brought their best game to the table. There are none of those McFly melodic twists, no maudlin chords. Just one of those four-chord turnarounds and a lot of "eh".

And it's yet another recent pop song which can't seem to decide what tempo it should be. A ballad with a beating dance heart. Too fast and too slow at the same time. Beautifully sung, of course.

And that's the weird thing about expectations, because we know McFly are capable of writing astonishing tunes, and Taio has his moments too, everything points to this being brilliant, except the song itself.

Another zag successfully zigged there.

Three starsDownload: Out now

BBC Music page

(Fraser McAlpine)

#1 Hits From Another Planet says: "It's easily their best single in years and a real standout of the 2010 pop sound."


  • Comment number 1.

    I can't shake the feeling that mcfly are trying to be something they are not this song is much like party girl good if it comes on but well you wouldn't rush out to but it and taio cruz isn't known for his musical integrity or imagination but he sells so y not hire him if ur career is flagging it's an okay song but mcfly seem to b going down down down .

  • Comment number 2.

    I don't understand why they've restyled themselves to look like extras from Battlestar Galatica, it doesn't even fit their new sound.

  • Comment number 3.

    This is what I was worried out on my party girl post.
    They have to me anyway lost all their intergity and just sold out!!
    Yes Radioactive didn't sell as well as they hoped (well if you give it away for free in a well known paper) and this impacted the label they set up, but it doesnt give them the excuse to go with another record company and sell out.
    Maybe it can be agrued that, they are growing with age and hanging around different musical sources, eg The Saturdays, so are bound to be influenced by different cultures, but I cant help but feel upset, the dance beat and inclusion of Tiao Cruz make it too dancey for my personal taste and unlike party girl, no matter how hard I try I cant find myself liking this song.

    1 star but only because there is still a tiny bit of mcfly left in, which gives me hope.

  • Comment number 4.

    I can see where everyone is coming from here but I actually really like this song! It took around three listens but after that I couldn't get it out of my head, and I've been listening to it frequently ever since. I've always liked Mcfly, and at first I was really confused about this new direction, but who really blames them for trying to produce something that fits better into the mainstream music?
    I think that the boys have grown out of their older music (although it's still great), and felt the need to try something new. It was a brave decision, and I know from the success of their Supersite (their new band website) that they still have thousands of devoted (and sometimes obsessed) fans. Noone can deny that they are four very talented boys, and they always sing and play live on television unlike many singers at the moment.
    I have listened to their new album 'Above the Noise' and I think it's their best yet. Can't wait to hear more from them.

  • Comment number 5.

    Hello new and occasional users!

    If you visit here often, keep an eye on the 'Topical posts' box at the bottom of the page which tells you which threads have new posts in them. We are currently using the Jedward thread for general music discussion and gossip - join us here:


  • Comment number 6.

    My sister is addicted to mcfly and this song! Its really getting annoying - all the 'party girl woo-oo-oo' is getting me sooo(ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo) annoyed.
    **Narrows eyes** I despise Mcfly fans...
    0 Stars

  • Comment number 7.

    I quite like this song actually. It's not as thrilling as Party Girl but it's still really catchy, and still sounds very Mcfly despite the change in direction. Pretty decent.


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