Firstly, let’s all give a big round of applause to Amy Douglas – one half of Hard Feelings (and Horse Meat Disco’s collaborator of choice) – for devising the best slashie self-descriptor ever: “singer/songwriting/rock and rolling/disco diva-ing/house-ing professional bad influence.”
Douglas’ Hard Feelings accomplice is the illustrious Joe Goddard (Hot Chip, The 2 Bears) – his surname even begins with ‘God’, ferchrissakes! – and this collaborative Dream Team’s eponymous debut contains tantalising tales of longing and forbidden love (“‘Cause this is not a movie, darlin’/ And they could never know about us…”).
Douglas’s voice is multifaceted: consistently powerful, but also interchangeably sweet, sultry or sassy – whatever’s required to best serve each song. “I’m like Supergirl/ I’m like Joan of Arc, boy…” – that you are, babe! And her lyrics draw us in more than any convo we could possibly be having in da club: “Where do you go when the happy home becomes a haunted house?/ A skeleton in every closet/ A ghost in every room/ A poisoned well in the backyard…”
Goddard’s immaculate, nuanced production is a multidimensional, percussive wonderland. We can actually imagine him smirking delightedly while adding the final flourish to standout belter Take You Down, with its down’n’dirty, hip-slinging backbeat.
Have you ached for eyeballing hot strangers across sweaty dancefloors while locked down? This transatlantic duo’s self-proclaimed “opera of sad bangers” sounds like your favourite DJ dropping back-to-back choons – and taking your limbs hostage – at the future disco of your dreams. Hard Feelings is the perfect ‘Shut up, I’m dancing!’ record.
Hard Feelings by Hard Feelings is out now via Domino.
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