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Nicole Scherzinger - 'Poison'

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Fraser McAlpine | 11:11 UK time, Sunday, 28 November 2010

Nicole Scherzinger

There's a latin expression which fans of the old TV show The West Wing will be aware of, and it's kind of relevant here so...

It's post hoc, ergo propter hoc, which means something like "after this, therefore because of this". And it refers to the assumption people make when something happens after something else. So if there's a dramatic drop in the sales of washing machines, but a huge rush to buy chocolate, you could make a reasonable claim that there was a trend to do less washing and eat more chocolate. You could even extrapolate that people were choosing to eat less crumbly, flaky chocolate, and therefore had less need to wash their clothes after eating than they had in the past.

It would be total codswallop, but SOMEONE would believe it.

In pop music, the relationship between certain songs is a lot more complicated, and you can't go claiming that a person has directly pinched the idea for something from something else, even if the one song came after the other, not least because there are definite legal connotations to making wild claims like these.

With that in mind, I shall just say this: if you're going to use the director of Britney Spears's 'Toxic' video, and you want to make a video which uses very similar themes, it is perhaps not the best idea for your song to be called 'Poison'.

It might just make people compare the two songs in entirety, and THEN where would you be?

(Here's the video. Honestly! Same director and everything!)

Y'see, 'Toxic' enjoys the status of a modern classic of popular music. It's the kind of unbeatable perfect pop song that drastically damages anything it is compared to. You'd think a producer like RedOne would've kept Nicole an actual mile away from making a song which seeks to make that link between chemical things which are bad for you, and sexy things which are bad for you, and then illustrates this with a cartoony superhero video. Seems not.

And that just leaves us here with a song which is all stomp and huff, a dramatic bang of a thing, which seeks to drag all the bad girls to the dancefloor so they can holler their evil intentions to into the faces of nervous men. It's a song which makes the most of Nicole's unwholesome sexiness - as opposed to wholesome, you understand, I'm not saying there's anything gross about her - and has drama and fury on its side.

It is not, however, anywhere near as good as 'Toxic' by Britney Spears.

Three starsDownload: Out now

BBC Music page

(Fraser McAlpine)

The Reflective Inklings says: "The track is downright lethal and that chorus just kills with much-appreciated ferocity"

Unreality Shout says: "Without a video to associate with it, the song itself is fairly generic electropop."

Idolator says: "Since when has the Hot 100 shyed away from generic pop tunes we've heard over and over again? This one could go either way, folks."



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