I have recently been reminded of my love for OK Go, which started seven years ago when I saw the video for 'Get Over It' on MTV. I fell instantly in love with a band who wrote smart-but-fun pop music with 'hey!'s and handclaps and bright colours and wordplay... Their debut album had songs about spiders and absent cats, and it all played out in a way that, for every obvious crowd pleasing guitar hook and danceable beat, was imagined in a different way from any band I'd ever listened to before. Their creativity and playful spirit pleased me. As did their hot singer. I never understood why no one else seemed to 'get' it.
Then they started dancing on treadmills and everyone started loving them as a novelty band and it all got a bit... weird. It's like when your best friend gets an awesome new haircut and cool trainers, and suddenly everyone wants to be their best friend. It's easy to drift off.
After hearing 'WTF?', my expectations for album three landed pretty low. I sort of thought they'd gone mental. But that's just because I'm an idiot who can listen to awesome songs sometimes without noticing that they're awesome. When the full album went on MySpace, I gave it a few spins and quickly fell in love with 'Needing/Getting'. And then everything else.
As someone who has never really given Prince much time or attention, I'd be lying if I said how obvious the Prince influence is. But that's what people keep saying, and they're probably right. There's a lot of singing-very-high, unusual sounds and peculiar rhythms. And even the most obvious pop hit ('White Knuckles') is far weirder than its first and second album counterparts. This time, the crowd pleasing moments seem like beautiful accidents rather than the things each song was built around. It's like they've just followed their imaginations and made a brilliant pop record that, actually, critics and musos might like too.
And just to add to my overexcitement, they've done another incredible video. If you haven't seen it, please, first go listen to the album recording of 'This Too Shall Pass' on Spotify. Then, go watch the video on YouTube. Awesome.
OK Go – This Too Shall Pass (on Spotify)
OK Go - This Too Shall Pass video (on YouTube)