Monday, August 4, 2014

An Artist Retrospective: Dancing with Florrie for 4 years

Endless Florries!!!!
It's time to talk about one of biggest talents in the world right now, Ms. Florence Arnold. Now that doesn't exactly have the ring of a mega popstar with legendary status so she'd prefer it if you called Florrie. A pop prodigy in every sense of the word, Florrie is one of those extremely rare singers whose songs never sound like anything else out there, yet work so ridiculously well. Since 2010, Florrie has released a steady stream of content that could have easily made for an excellent debut album. However, her start was actually in 2008 when she successfully auditioned to be the in-house drummer for pop production maestros Xenomania. Good move Flo Flo!

Xenomania's track record speaks for itself and Florrie quickly joined the ranks of its genius songwriters; notable achievements include playing the drums on Girls Aloud's "The Promise" and writing Mini Viva's "One Touch." With a little push from head writer Brian Higgins (who basically made Cher's "Believe"), Florrie started her own music career and a choir of angels approved of that decision. It was around this time that I found the Fred Falke remix of her second single "Call 911" and was immediately hooked. Back in her early days, Florrie's signature appeared to be a fast-paced heavenly vocal atop an electronic production that was both futuristic and retro, which basically meant it was amazing.

After some further digging around on her website, it became clear Florrie was interested more in her fans than a record deal and released many remixes and her Introduction EP for free download. Highlights on remixes include the Fred Falke Club Mix of "Panic Attack" and Billa's No Love Lost Remix of "Fascinate Me" (it's dubstep without being annoying!). You could even get her debut single "You Wanna Start Something" which has to be the best debut Xenomania single since the Aloud started.

With each EP released since Florrie started, she hasn't failed to create each track with its own identity and the uniqueness of her songs make you come back for more more more. The high-speed jungle soundtrack "Call Of The Wild" shows Florrie's perfect understanding of the essential pop hook while the drums on  "Give Me Your Love" has to be one of the best additions in percussion history. With Xenomania focusing all their power into Florrie as an artist, it's no surprise that songs like "Summer Nights" and the Aloud-esque power electroballad "Left Too Late" brought Florrie to the forefront of the underground music scene back in the day.

Her songs eventually brought her fame in more than just music. If you couldn't tell, Florrie is rather gorgeous and subsequently became a model for various brands. This led to her lovely Nina L'Elixer ad where she covered Blondie's "Sunday Girl." But as all good popstars do, Florrie didn't take a break and started to craft her second EP, 2011's magnificent Experiments. The new EP saw Florrie work with Xenomania and Fred Falke once again but also fellow young geniuses like MNEK and old pros like Miranda Cooper. Every track on the EP is flawless but its second single was what we in the pop blogging biz call "a GAMECHANGER!"

"I Took A Little Something" was the brightest, breeziest song released in the past decade and the video collaboration with Dolce & Gabbana shows Florrie acting cute and coy, just reveling in her glory. You need to really listen to the 7 minute Fred Falke Mix to understand its true majesty but nonetheless, Florrie cemented her spot as one of my fave popstars and also took 2011's best song title with this diamond of music.

The fun was nearly over however, as her 3rd EP Late would be her last independent release as she finally cinched a major label record deal. But she still brought the goods with much harder hitting music that still told epic stories of Florrie's escapades. Songs like "Shot You Down" and "To The End" which was written with Annie!!!!, show Florrie's sound evolving into something much more grandiose but we can count on her to make us dance as "Every Inch" clearly does to this day.

Her latest Sirens EP also showed a shift in music. Released earlier this year on Sony Records, the songs still had Florrie's unpredictably throughout their structure but the new pop hooks were like audible cocaine and would not leave your system for weeks at a time. One listen to "Free Falling" will make it very clear what I'm talking about as Florrie sings the verse, sing the verse, sing the verse. She EVEN does it in reverse, in reverse, in reverse! Though the EP only has 3 new songs, they continue Florrie's perfect track record and her mythical and long-awaited debut album is supposedly out before the end of the year! We received the first taste of that when Florrie released her first major label single "Little White Lies" earlier in the summer and finally announced herself as the pop savior that we all needed. Follow her on Youtube to keep updated on this exciting development! In a post-Aloudian world, Florrie is the brightest hope for an amazing pop future and I have full confidence in her as not everyone can be my favorite popstar!

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