A couple months on from my declaration that Hadise‘s Fast Life was probably my favorite pop album of the year, I stand by what I said – Fast Life is a fab album!
Kicking things off right is Hadise’s Eurovision entry, “Dum Tek Tek.” Turkish rhythms and western beats combine to make a melting pot of fabulousness, with male choral “hey!”s coming in towards the end to heighten the excitement. What a shame this didn’t win the prize! “Fast Life,” the second single from the album, features lyrics about being busy, busy, busy, and unable to find love. It’s less energetic than “Dum Tek Tek,” but that doesn’t detract from the electro-tinged pop proceedings. Love the line “on my high heels, try walking a mile on these”!
The next track, “Supernatural Love,” has a nice bridge (“and it’s burning…”) and ultra-catchy hook – “I don’t even have to ask-ask-ask, will this love last-last-last?” Fast-paced and fun, this is one you’ll want to play over again. “Long Distance Relationships” is that rare kind of song that is at once both melancholy and danceable. The high-pitched atmospheric synths that come in at 1:35 and the background vocals that enter at 2:08 really add depth to the sound.
My favorite track of the album (tied with “On Top,” which comes later), “Here” is a song about moving on. Beautiful strings and guitar work soar above grungy beats and buzzing synths, and Hadise’s lightly soulful voice sounds perfect for delivering lines like “being sad made me strong.” A great song – in fact, the title of her 2009 Turkish album is taken from this song: Kahraman, the Turkish version of “Hero.” Coming up next is “Married Man,” the only song on the album that doesn’t really go anywhere (but sounds awesome anyway). Hadise sounds fierce as she advises us to “never mess with a married man.” I particularly like the high note Hadise hits in the middle of the song, and the back-up vocals that warn “don’t do it, girl!”
Funky and ferocious – that’s “On Top”! The lyrics are fantastic, with lines like “once my army hits your shores, you’ll wish you could end this war” highlighting how Hadise is the head bitch in charge! The groovy bass intertwines with zippy synths, making this a perfect funk-electro hybrid. The moral of the story? “You better not mess with Hadise!” The next song, “Obsession,” has such a great chorus – it’s just good old-fashioned pop. The middle eight distorts the vocal, “tossing and turning,” so that it sounds like it’s doing just that – tossing and turning! Nice touch.
Turkish-flavored like “Dum Tek Tek,” “Double Life” has got another killer of a chorus. It’s not that it’s big or anything, it’s just the perfect blend of great lyrics and great music. I love the “I gotta be with you” ad libs and the flute-y sounding instrumental flourishes – cool stuff! The cute “First Steps” is musically kind of like electro-doo wop, but without “doo wop”s. The “running around” middle eight is heavenly!
The final song on Fast Life, “I’ll Try Not To Cry” ends the album on a high note. Big beats, sweeping synths, and expressive vocals from Hadise convey the sadness and need for strength in a breakup. Love her big vocalizations towards the close of the track. It’s a nice conclusion to a fun pop experience!