This is the latest I’ve ever been with my Single of the Week review. I guess it’s because in recent weeks I’ve been less than floored by the picks, and I have actively started dreading having to listen to them. That changes for the better with this week’s offering, “Night Like This” by LP (nee Laura Pergolizzi), who has previously been known more as a songwriter, having co-written songs with Christina Aguilera (“Beautiful People” from the Burlesque soundtrack) and Rihanna (“Cheers (Drink to That)” from Loud ). I will readily admit that I turned on the ‘pod prepared to be a hater again, and while I listened with a skeptical ear and was not wowed at first, repeat listens to the track have found it growing on me. LP’s voice is really something. I can’t decide who best to compare her to. She has the inflection of Cyndi Lauper, the vocal acrobatics of Tori Amos or Dolores O’Riordan, the wispily powerful delivery of Kate Bush– but ultimately sounds like none of these. The song itself is beautiful, haunted with the promise of new love, effortlessly sexy, and both slow-dance-worthy and eminently hummable. I really like it. I was sleepy and a little cranky when I first listened to it, and it relaxed me enough to find my namaste, but I found it in my drowsy state a little forgettable. I think it was me. Definitely me. Because in an alert state, I’m really enjoying it and have listened to it about four times while writing this review.
LP has been a music festival staple for years, appearing at South by Southwest, Lollapalooza, and Bonnaroo, and previously released two critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful albums, 2001’s Heart-Shaped Scar (God, I love that title!) and 2004’s Suburban Sprawl and Alcohol. Her music has also been featured on the TeenNick show “South of Nowhere” (“Wasted”) and MTV’s “The Hills” (“Damage is Done”) as well as an advertising campaign by Citibank (“Into the Wild”). Perhaps now the recognition she is due will follow– she doesn’t deserve to be the industry’s best-kept secret. It’s happened for other Single of the Week artists– Rixton’s “Me and My Broken Heart” is now climbing the summer charts, I hear American Authors on the radio all the time, and the Orwells have been featured in Entertainment Weekly as an act on the rise (and Dave Letterman’s newest fave band). I called it then. I gave great reviews to all these bands (Rixton warranted my first-ever A+ grade), and I’m calling this one too. It’s awesome. (As I finish a fifth listen, I’ll close this review.) The SeriouslyFluffy Final Grade: A