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Track Review

If you weren't playing close attention, you could be forgiven for confusing British pop singer Jessie J for Katy Perry. After all, these two twentysomethings have quite a lot in common: jet black hair and outrageous DayGlo outfits paired with a deep affection for come-hither pouting and superficial sensuality.

Perhaps most importantly, though, both have employed the services of ubiquitous über-producers Max Martin and Dr. Luke. Result: "Domino" (the perky Brit's second charting single in the United States) sounds like Katy Perry too—sonically, structurally and lyrically.

Caroline Sullivan of London's The Guardian wrote of Jessie's debut album, Who You Are, "If any singer has the potential to be the British Katy Perry or Pink, with the accompanying millions of sales, it's her: this album brims with infectious, Americanised songs, delivered with a confidence money can't buy."

Bubblegum beats and bouncy, jangling pop-rock guitar chords provide the backdrop for Jessie J's musings about how a particular guy makes her feel. "I'm feeling sexy and free/Like glitter's raining on me," she tells us in the song's opening lines. It's not long, though, before she dispenses with the sexy glitz and spirals down into just sex. "We can do this all night," she croons in the chorus, "D‑‑n, this love is skintight/ … Rock my world until the sunlight/ … Every second is a highlight/When we touch, don't ever let me go/ … Take me down like I'm a domino."

Musical terms such as rhythm and strum get appropriated in a carnal sense, then Jessie hyperventilates a bit more: "Now I'm breathing like I'm running 'cause you're taking me there/Don't you know, you spin me out of control."

As is sadly so often the case with today's top pop divas, Jessie J completely conflates love and lust. She sugarcoats the poisonous idea that real romance equals nothing more than eternally thrilling, nonstop sex.

Note that throughout the song's video, Jessie prances saucily in various colorful—and revealing—costumes. (We see her in a leopard-print bra and other skin-baring outfits.) Her wild, theatrical makeup mimics what we've seen in recent videos from Nicki Minaj, Ke$ha, Lady Gaga … oh, and Katy Perry.

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Peaked at No. 6.

Record Label

Universal Republic




August 29, 2011

On Video

Year Published



Adam R. Holz

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