I want to start out by saying I was really hoping for a truly lousy Single of the Week this time out, because I’ve been giving out a bunch of A’s ever since I started reviewing these, but I have been disappointed– or actually, NOT disappointed, because I think this is probably my favorite Single of the Week yet. Rixton is a Manchester, UK band fronted by Jake Roche, who has primarily been known as an actor on the other side of the pond, appearing in the soap Emmerdale. Roche was born into a showbiz family– his parents are EastEnders’ Shane Richie and singer/TV personality Colleen Nolan, both well known in their native England– but refused to coast on his parents’ more famous names, winning acting gigs without referring to them at all. Now, along with bandmates Charley Bagnall, Lewi Morgan, and Danny Wilkin, he has officially crossed over into pop star territory with Rixton, as this week’s new single can attest.
I try to steer clear of echoing the blurb on the iTunes website which accompanies the Single of the Week, but in this case a comment made in the blurb was entirely appropriate and I can’t think of a better way to express it myself– “Roche’s voice soars, with all the wide-eyed flare of an early-00’s Adam Levine chorus.” There are worse things than sounding like Adam Levine, but I can’t think of many things which are better, and it’s entirely true. If I had heard “Me and My Broken Heart” on the radio, I’d have assumed it was Maroon 5 without a second thought. That’s not a bad thing, and it doesn’t feel derivative, just remarkably similar. Like a good Maroon 5 song, this one is so catchy you’ll find yourself humming it as you go about your day, and the melody, beat and above all Roche’s delightfully throaty tenor are all evocative of Levine’s work. This is quite possibly the best Maroon 5 single that Maroon 5 never recorded. I know I thoroughly enjoyed it, and it’s going on repeat in my car as soon as I add it to my playlist, which is probably in the next few minutes, because I already want to hear it again. I can’t think of a greater compliment to pay than that, and am handing this one my very first of these: The SeriouslyFluffy Final Grade: A+