Pussycat Dolls - 'Whatcha Think About That'
Now, I've got a confession: the Pussycat Dolls have never really been on my radar. Don't get me wrong, I know that they're a global phenomenon, I know that Nicole is dating Lewis Hamilton, I know that it was 'groupies' but it sounded like 'boobies' and I even watched some of 'Search for the Next Pussycat Doll', but I've never actually taken them seriously. Well, you're not meant to, are you? Because if you are, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't writhe around half naked in every video and insist on spelling everything wrong (I mean, 'Stickwitu'? Really?).
'Watcha Think About That?' feat. Missy Elliot is no exception to the above Pussycat code of conduct and it certainly has their "sound" slapped all over it (you know the one: all busy, slick and sassy), but there is one fundamental difference with this one in my book... in that, actually, it's not bad.
(Watch the video here)
From the word go, Missy grabs the song by the reins (do songs have reins?) and shouts at the world to listen up; something that's reinforced by the M.I.A inspired, almost tribal sounding bluntness of the Dolls piping up "he got to go". And yes, that's an order, not a question.
The girls then launch into wailing "baybaaaayeh" like a siren; a warning that these girls are dangerous, a force to be reckoned with. They want your attention and they're gonna get it. For a moment, I take them seriously.
Following this brilliant introduction, the song is immediately let down in two ways. First off, it's the fact that I took the opening's urgency to mean that the girls had something to say. They don't. The lyrics are pretty vague and, loosely translated, basically comprise of a little bit of "hurt your man the way he's hurting you, then tell him that he's got to go!" and a LOT of "Ha! Watcha think about that, mean man?! In YOUR face." So, err, not exactly original. Or empowering. Just a bit embarrassing, really. And as for the lyrics: "he wanna run the streets? Then you run the streets, too" - are they trying to get more women involved in atheletics?
The next disappointment is the verse, which is decidedly average and uninventive; a total filler that doesn't do anything to enhance the chorus/bridge or break up the song whatsoever, making it feel a little bit over-cluttered (a bit of a Pussycat Dolls trait, perhaps?).
Thank goodness for Missy then, who bursts through it all with her brash rap and wonderfully risqué lyrics (take note Britney, it can be done and still be radio friendly), such as "You ain't gonna get no more pussy... cat" and "Play like Katy Perry kissing on girls."
Of course, the song's greatness isn't all down to Missy Elliot alone - the Dolls certainly give it life - but it's safe to say that she does make this song just that little bit more distinctive. Well, as distinctive as a Pussycat Dolls song can be.
Download: Out now
CD Released: February 23rd
PS. Angry Ape love it, though!