A bold affirmation of JLS’s arrival as a pop force.
Ian Wade 2010
JLS… Aston Merrygold! Marvin Humes! Jonathan ‘JB’ Gill! Oritsé Williams! In 2008 they were the runners-up on The X Factor, but since then the foursome seem to have become the most successful band out of the whole enterprise. Since their second place they’ve sold a million and a half copies of last year’s debut album, scored three number ones and collected a host of awards and fans in the process.
Having won over the naysayers, the band are now proper big news. Suitably, the stops have been pulled out for this follow-up album, with an assortment of producers who’ve previously created pop gold with the likes of Rihanna, the Black Eyed Peas and Ne-Yo on hand to dispense magic. Subsequently, there’s barely any bland filler present – none of the fare that some similarly presented bands make an entire career out of.
By the time this album is on shelves, its second single Love You More should have given the quartet their fourth chart-topper, and quite right too. It’s a tune that catches you unawares at first, but within a fortnight it’s inescapable. Eyes Wide Shut is tailor-made for a raft of poppers o’clock remixes, and something for the onstage rave pyrotechnics to out-perform the screaming to when the band plays it live. Other high points include Superhero – which appears to have a mini tribute to Crystal Castles thing going on – and the title-track itself. The only officially not brilliant moment comes with opener and summer hit The Club Is Alive, which is as ropey as a song about clubbing based on The Sound of Music can only be. Sorry boys.
Said blip aside, Outta This World is a bold affirmation of JLS’s arrival as a pop force. In a cut-throat world where new gangs of exquisite pop boys creep about on every corner, this lot has transcended their beginnings, avoided the Butlins and reality TV circuits and leapt into the major league as proper pop stars. Hurrah!