It’s the porno mag question that stops you in your tracks. How will Jedward, this year’s bona fide pop sensation, deal with the ‘your mum threw away your best porno mag’ line in their cover of the Beastie Boys’ (You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party!)? Yes, that’s right. The Beastie Boys. If Jedward’s debut (and let’s face, quite probably only) album does anything, it takes a pretty eclectic look at the history of music. Over the course of it’s tracks, they tackle the work of Queen, Reel II Reel, Blink 182, M, Vanilla Ice, Ray Parker Jr and The Undertones amongst others. Again…yes. The Undertones.
So Planet Jedward has to be awful, right? Well…..it’s certainly not the greatest pop album you’ll hear this year but it certainly isn’t the worst. None of this has much to do with the twins themselves, whose contribution has been left low in the mix bar the odd grating bit of dialogue. Where the record stands or falls is on the choice of material. The more novelty stuff, most of it garnered from their X Factor days, is pretty naff too yet in amongst the ‘Ghostbusters’ and ‘I Like To Move It’ type numbers there are some half decent pop covers.
Blink 182 fans may huff and puff at the inclusion of ‘All The Small Things’ but this is virtually a note for note version of the original, which was always a great song. The Beastie Boys track is good fun, there’s a really good version of Bow Wow Wow’s ‘I Want Candy’ and any chance to hear ‘Jump’ by Kriss Kross is always welcome. They make a balls of ‘Teenage Kicks’ for sure but the album finishes on a surprisingly strong note with M’s ‘Pop Muzik’. There’s been a lot of talk about that very genre on this site in the past few days, maybe too much talk, and an organised rallying to defend perceived slurs on certain artists but there are more thrills to be had in one minute of this album than in some bands’ entire careers. Jedward have made an album and the world hasn’t stopped spinning. Do we love it? Of course not. Do we hate it? Not at all. Will we listen to it again? Probably when our kids play it on repeat. Will we mind? Nah.