Rex Orange County – the Orange is apparently pronounced with a soft G, like the start of orangutang – is a pop singer from Hampshire, England, who rose to fame following a collaboration with Tyler, The Creator on his hit album Flower Boy. And I know that sounds like an odd pairing, a rapper from California and a pop singer from Colin Firth’s hometown.
WHO CARES? is Rex’s third solo album; the singer recorded it with Dutch musician Benny Sings in just under a fortnight in Amsterdam, and it sounds like it. It is an album that sounds like very little care was taken with it. The beats are bland, straight-forward. The strings are completely overcooked, often distracting from the song in which they feature.
Lyrically, this is a completely risk free endeavour, the pathos on display recycled from a million other pop songs. ‘Girl, if you want it / There’s no good reason not to love if you want it,’ he sings on “If You Want It”. ‘7 AM, I’m wakin’ up / Guess that I shoulda kept the curtains shut / I’m gonna be a better man someday,’ he sings on “7AM”. Ugh.
Worse than all of this, WHO CARES? is boring. In a world when pop music is enjoying an explosion in popularity and creativity, this might be its worst sin of all.
CLTM (Chris Listens To Music) is my attempt to listen to a new album every day; you can follow my efforts on Instagram here (and send recommendations), and if you like what I’m doing, support my efforts by shouting me a cuppa at Buy Me A Coffee.