Great Sounds Great; Bad Sounds Bad: Boycrush feat. Watercolours ‘Secrets’


Great Sounds Great; Bad Sounds Bad is a column which sees a panel of writers for The Corner review a range of local singles and grade them out of 10. Check out the song below, read through their opinions and let us know in the comments section your own thoughts and what you’d like to see reviewed next time around.

[YouTube / iTunes]

[Grade: 6.5]

Gavin Coughlan: New Zealand seems to excel at producing artists who do this sort of breezy electro pop extremely well at the moment. This particular example is from Alistair Deverick, drummer for Ruby Suns, with Watercolours offering some ethereal vocals over some pretty simple percussion. It builds nicely throughout and the electronics are quite lush and atmospheric. Electro pop is not quite my thing, but my wife overheard the song playing as I wrote this review and has been whistling it’s melody ever since, so it definitely sticks in your head. [7]

Michael Kerby: Predictably, I like the production on this. It’s fluffy. It’s pleasant. But so is the hook. Someone (Boycrush?) went to an awful lot of effort to make a wonderful backdrop only to have Watercolours come along and shrug all over it. [5]

Chloe Cairncross: This is exactly the sort of sound I have been digging for about a month now. I love it. Maybe it’s to do with my un-guilty pleasure: electronically-focused ‘80s music. I love the vibration of the relentless synth bass coursing its way up the wires of my headphones. I love the waves of electronic pulses washing over me. This is a top effort and a solid collaboration between Boycrush and Watercolours. The video is palatably artsy-fartsy but it matches the tone of the track, and is just short of being too Tumblr-esque. [9]

Luke Jacobs: This song won me over at the 2.10 mark and from there I just got lost in the feeling it was trying to craft. I don’t feel this song will be in my life forever.

If Alistair Deverick looped the moment from 2.10 till 2.20 over and over again for 3 minutes I think you would have the perfect song. But then again what do I know? [7]

Stephen Clover: Loving this is just on the tip of my tongue, as it were, but it’s staying there and won’t be budged. Sounding vaguely at times like some epic 80s tune which I can’t quite place is not helpful, either. Stuff here I really dig, but ultimately ‘Secrets’ leaves me cold. [4]

Nick Raven: The sweet synth and beats give a good first impression. This is a very fashionable sound at the moment and it feels like everyone’s pumping it out. At 2.45 its gets all jumpy and wacky which carries it along a bit. There’s no doubt this is a well produced track. I’m not familiar with either of these artists work but it’s about time I catch on I think. [7]

Hayden Currie: It has nice elements, but this track doesn’t really go anywhere, evoke much emotion, or linger in my memory once it’s gone, which is a pity because the video is good and the other side of this split 7″, ‘Soft Teeth’, is a brilliant song. [4]

Alex Angrignon: This song instantly grabbed me from the electric drumbeat with it’s two-note synth line to the simple chorus about having a secret and talking about it. ‘Secrets’ is coated in textural subtleties that really give it an atmospheric, nostalgic feeling. It’s a very straightforward song and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes simplicity can be more effective than complex arrangements and ‘Secrets’ thrives on riding that minimal line until it is drilled inside your head and you wished another song could get it out but it won’t. I like the fact that there isn’t a major change between the verse and the chorus, it keeps the song in a steady, uninterrupted flow. If there were a significant change in melody or chord structure, I feel like I would’ve been slightly let down but this is electronic minimalism at its finest. I get a real New Order-y feel from this song. Songs like ‘Ceremony’ and ‘Temptation’ do the two chord thing wonderfully and ‘Secrets’ affirms why this approach to songwriting is so timeless. Chelsea Metcalf’s music is lightyears away from the twee-folk of Teacups and it’s almost as if Watercolours is there to forcibly erase that band completely out of our memories. She is doing a fine job at that. [9]


  1. BIG FAN.

  2. I’m not sure why people think this sounds ’80s’?
    Its a modern electronic moody pop song—yes—but very 2014.

    I didn’t write a review for this as there is quite a lot of this sort of music around at the moment and, quite frankly, none of it moves me enough to write about it (apart from in the comments section lol).

    Interestingly enough, and just so you don’t think I’m a ‘H8TR’, I gave Boy Crush and Watercolours 7/10 and 8/10 respectively in previous Corner reviews.
    But I’m increasingly finding myself at odds with this type of music where you can draw lines through to Lorde and Broods et al.
    Music doesn’t have to be ‘RnB’ to have ‘soul’ is what I’m saying.

    If you are interested in making the ‘de rigour’ sound here are some tips:

    • create ‘chilled’ mid-tempo ‘electronic tune’
    • make it breezy and poppy but avoid being seen to be ‘too happy’
    • collab, collab, collab
    • preferably use guest vocals from ethereal chanteuse
    • make artsy video clip
    • pastel colours are mandatory
    • references: Wallpaper* magazine, serious-fashion-cum-art-magazine photo spreads
    • serious faces please, this is art dammit!
    • get a ‘discovery feature’ on theaudience

  3. I THINK the throbbing keyboard line underpinning the whole song is reminiscent of the 80s.

  4. Pretty blah song though. These types of things are just comfort food for the nostalgia set, no? Good for testing out the new Bluetooth speakers and discussing developments in Swedish furniture.

  5. Just bumped this from a 6.1 to 6.5 since I messed up and hadn’t posted Alex’s review. Sorry Alex!

  6. princesschelsea says:

    this song is excellent 9.35/10

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