Songs, songs and more sings #84: BENEE, Stace Cadet, Jessie Ware, Jason Mraz + Girli

You need to dance your troubles away!

Yes, you do!

But don’t take my word for it – there are five artists in this post who have poured their hearts and souls into songs that not only get you off your seat and onto the dancefloor of your choice, even if it’s just in your head, but they also examine all kinds of afflictions of the human condition from romantic loss to self esteem.

You can engage your heart and mind and burn off some of that emotional energy at the same time!

“Green Honda” by BENEE

Hailing from a “really musical” New Zealand family, singer-songwriter BENEE is one artist who knows her way around a full-speed-ahead track that ticks all the pop momentum boxes both musically and lyrically.

Case in infectiously listenable point is “Green Honda”, an absolute banger of a track that lays out the vast and many sins of a spurned lover who has failed as a decent, authentic human being is just about every department.

No wallflower, BENEE pulls up in her green Honda “to tell ya that I don’t want ya”, leaving the once-romantic interest in no doubt that they are definitely off Cupid’s menu and then some.

It’s a powerful pop song with lyrical grunt and a musical intensity that makes breaking up something innately danceable, making all negative end-of-romance energy into something usefully and forward heading positive.

“Light Me Up” by Stace Cadet

One way to tell a pop track will be with you for the foreseeable future, happily haunting your playlists until near the end of time, is how often your finger hovers over the “repeat” button.

If it’s a repetitive motion that may well lead to a sizeable amount of strain injury, then you have a winner on your hands such as “Light Me Up” by Stace Cadet, an Australian record producer who knows his way around a catchy, beats-driven tune and who isn’t afraid to use it.

This wholly delicious piece of foot-moving music, his first release as a Warner Music Australia artist – he’s been active since 2016 when he released “Molly Happy” – all but demands you play it again and again.

It’s not simply that it’s got a melody and beat that will not let up, but because it’s infused with a joyously uplifting vibe that can makeover any day, no matter how lacklustre, and remind you how upbeat life can be if you give yourself over to it.

“Pearls” by Jessie Ware

English singer Jessie Ware, who was one of the stars of pandemic-produced music clips (check out the clip to “Save a Kiss”), is one of those artists who impel you to hit the dancefloor and stay there like it’s your place of residence for the rest of your life, or at least for the night, anyway.

Exhibit A is her latest track “Pearls” which urges listeners to “Shake it til the pearls fall”, an encouragement that all but presupposes an abandonment to letting go and see where that escapist mentality takes you.

All disco glitz and emotional vivacity, “Pearls”, which Pitchfork notes, is “ascendant and evangelistic disco that feels fuller than the smoky club tracks of her last album … Gliding over springy keys and cheery percussion [where] Ware trades her sinuous purrs for jubilant cries that showcase her dazzling upper range”.

It’s a glittering surrender to putting aside the cares of the world and just dancing yourself into dancing oblivion, a state of being and mind that is all but called for in a world where a thousand worries dog us every second and where stepping out of the here-and-now is good for the life-weary soul.

Plus it’s just damn good to dance, dance, dance! Simple as that …

“I Feel Like Dancing” by Jason Mraz

There are some seriously funky ’70s vibes, not to mention some daring wardrobe choices from the so-called “decade that taste forgot”, going on in Jason Mraz’s latest of lyrical wizardry, “I Feel Like Dancing”.

Musically, that’s precisely what this track will do, with the song, which People rightly dubbed “infectious and rousingly upbeat”, sporting all kinds of fun disco influences that will turn pretty every part of your home into a dancefloor.

Or god forbid, on the train! Be warned, public transport may never be the same if you’re listening to the song at the time.

Lifted off his forthcoming album, due out 23 June, fabulously titled Mystical Magical Rhythmical Radical Ride, “I Feel Like Dancing” comes complete with a video clip that really brings the music and lyrically gymnastic words to vibrantly moving life.

In the one-shot clip — directed by Taylor James and choreographed by Megan Lawson — Mraz, 45, makes his way around a variety of rooms at the Via Verde Country Club in San Dimas, California, stopping to dance with patrons and workers. The action culminates at a wedding reception, where Mraz shows off his moves before leading guests into an epic group dance routine. (People)

“Imposter Syndrome” by Girli

Girli is one of those artists whose gift for perfect pop song after superlative pop song is almost unsurpassed.

The English singer-songwriter, known to the UK tax department as Amelia Toomey, has delivered another brilliantly listenable track in “Imposter Syndrome” which delivewrs on her artistic modus operandi which When the Horn Blows neatly sums up as “powerful self-introspection [that fuels] poppy, upbeat cuts”.

Her insightful penchant for authentic emotional truthfulness in song is evidenced in the song which she says was driven by a grinding sense everyone knew she was a fake despite her best efforts to appear all that, and more.

‘I was overthinking everything, feeling like a fake, scared that I was an underachiever and that everybody knew it and was laughed behind my back about it. I kind of go through life feeling like everybody else has a guidebook, and I’m just making it up as I go and getting it wrong. This song is about wanting to run away because of that feeling and being so unsure of yourself it scares you.’ (When the Horn Blows)

We’ve all felt like we need to hide from being in a scarring emotional spotlight and Girli beautifully gives it voice in this arrestingly slice of truthful pop.


ABBA’s first album, Ring Ring, has just turned 50 and as part of a suite of celebrative gestures, which includes reissuing the singles and the long player itself in some shiny new configurations, they have released the video for the title track in glorious 4K HD!

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