Remember when pop was fun and full of life? Remember when it had something to say beyond “look at me,” before it was reduced to surfing the latest zeitgeist or conforming to the latest fashion? Remember when it was loaded with deftness and dexterity? Remember when melody took centre stage rather than studio tricks and gimmicks, guest celebrity rappers and auto tunning? Well, The Violet Nines certainly do and if find yourself nodding along as you read the above list then you are going to love their latest single, Dancing With Fire.

This is pop. Of course, it is, but what is so great about The Violet Nines‘ approach to making it is that they are happy to stray way beyond the pop palette when mixing the musical hues and sonic shades in their songs. Like Can We Go and Cloud 9 before it, Dancing With Fire ticks all of the boxes regarding accessibility, infectiousness, hook and heart but it is the other genres that the band happily borrow from and infuse the track with that makes it really snap, crackle and, well…pop!

The background groove is funky, the guitar licks soulful, the vibe effortlessly danceable, the mood reflective but also positive, in its own way. As before, positive pop is the name of the game.

Dancing With Fire is near-perfect pop. Pop with a sense of self and selflessness. Pop without the pretension. Pop from before the record company accountants and massed ranks of co-producers and writers took control of the industry. Even if you haven’t heard of The Violet Nines before, and if not shame on you, you still have to agree that it is one of the most gentley addictive songs  you will have heard in a very long time. Right? Quite right!

And if this is pop, although in hindsight I’m not even sure it is, that word seems not to do it enough justice, then I want in. Pop past might not have been so great of late, all artifice and image, not much style and even less substance but if this is pop present then I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

I’ve said it before but The Violet Nines are all about serving the song, not an ego in sight, just great playing, exquisite and measured songwriting and great music for as far as the eye can see! Okay, you may think that I have waxed a tad too lyrical on their behalf, but believe me, The Violet Nines are that good, check it out for yourself. And do so now!

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