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Track Review

I suspect few fates as a musician are more ominous than the prospect of becoming a one-hit wonder. We've seen exactly such a thing happen with the likes of Dexy's Midnight Runners ("Come on Eileen"), Right Said Fred ("I'm Too Sexy"), Baha Men ("Who Let the Dogs Out"), Soft Cell ("Tainted Love"), The Knack ("My Sharona"), Norman Greenbaum ("Spirit in the Sky") and Nena ("99 Luftballoons"). And at the top of that not-quite-tall-enough mountain is A-ha, with their '80s smash "Take on Me."

Carly Rae Jepsen is determined to climb a different sort of hill.

Jepsen, of course, is the Canadian singer who took the music world by storm back in 2012 with her inescapable, infectious earworm " Call Me Maybe." Not only was it Billboard's song of the summer, it was the second biggest track of the year, selling a whopping 6.5 million units.

Jepsen's manager, Scooter Braun (who also discovered Justin Bieber), is well aware of the pressure to equal her first smash hit. He recently told Billboard, "I told her that she couldn't come out with anything unless it was on the level of 'Call Me Maybe.' And now we have a new one that is on that level."

Early buzz about "I Really Like You" suggests he may be right. That at the very least, Carly Rae Jepsen will get promoted to two-hit wonder status.

Just like "Call Me Maybe," "I Really Like You" is a flirty, flighty, frothy thing, repeating the core of the chorus—"I really, really, really, really, really, really like you"—11 times. That's 66 uses of the word really. And with one more tossed in elsewhere, the really tally really stands at 67.

If only the rest of the song was as twitterpatedly innocuous.

Never mind that Carly croons, "It's way too soon, I know this isn't love," because she seems determined to take things directly into the physical territory of love with "I want you, do you want me, do you want me too?"

It'll be easy, too, seeing as how she and a new beau are hanging out, "Late night watching television/But how'd we get in this position? ... So honey, hold my hand, you like making me wait for it/I feel like I could die walking up to the room." Later there's this capitulating detail: "Yeah, we could stay alone, you and me and this temptation/Sipping on your lips, hanging on by a thread, baby."

Carly seems to know deep down that plunging into this level of intimacy isn't the wisest idea, singing, "I really wanna stop ... but I just got a taste for it." Why is she changing her mind? You already know the answer to that question: She really, really, really, really, really, really likes this guy.

But what if, after the deed is done, it turns out that he really, really, really, really, really, really doesn't want to stick around?

Well, then all Carly Rae Jepsen will have is a really, really, really, really, really, really long list of regrets.

VIDEO UPDATE: Not even a day into its release on March 6, 2015, the music video for "I Really Like You" began gunning for the Most Viral Vid of the Year award. Equal parts meta, ridiculous, self-aware and adorable, it stars Tom Hanks—yes, that Tom Hanks—lip-synching the entire song as he makes his way to a video shoot with Carly Rae, Justin Bieber and a retinue of backup dancers. That's it, really, save for the addition of a video-only lyric that has Carly saying (and Hanks mouthing), "I need to tell you something: I'm pregnant … Just kidding!" It's a line that, unfortunately, underscores the song's sexual subtext.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

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Plot Summary

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Even without an accompanying video, this new release racked up more than 2 million YouTube spins in its first two days.

Record Label

Schoolboy Records,Interscope




March 1, 2015

On Video

Year Published



Adam R. Holz

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