Infused with a sophistication that is not often found in the pop genre, Paloma Faith’s A Perfect Contradiction isthe thinking woman’s dance music. It all comes together in a wonderful synthesis of utterly danceable grooves, potently soulful vocals, intriguingly varied production, and not completely banal lyrics.
Songs like “Mouth to Mouth” and “Take Me” come chock full of retro, ’70s synth and guitar sounds that, oddly, lend a certain gravitas to the music, a historical context of sorts. It’s as if Faith is channeling the spirits of Donna Summer, Anita Ward, and Gloria Gaynor all at once. “Only Love Can Hurt Like This,” “Trouble with My Baby,” and “Taste My Own Tears” reach even further back in time and style, recalling and invoking Smokey Robinson-era Motown sounds, yet, in Faith’s hands, the whole thing still feels completely contemporary. Amy Winehouse would be proud; judging by Twitter, Adele sure seems to be.
This article originally appeared in Curve.