How did you learn to spell Mississippi? EM-EYE-CWOOKED LETTA CWOOKED LETTA . . . . Well, that's the hook from Loversucker's lead single "Mississippi." It's almost cheating, but it's also a formula that works. That formula made millions for Puff Daddy, Jermaine Dupri, and Kanye West. When a producer pulls something--a hook, a sample, a memory--from your childhood, and inserts that into their song, it'll be a hit every time. Instant nostalgia. But "Mississippi" ain't all picnics and sunny days either. The melody sounds pop-ish, while the lyrics remind listeners of a very troubling history, with long-lasting effects.
The vocals drive "Mississippi," and every other track on the EP. The vocal treatment, from an effects and mix standpoint, is flawless. Beyond the digital manipulations, the vocals are raw, evocative, soulful, and a perfect match for whatever genre of music this is.
Lovesucker is rock, soul, garage, and also very funky. It could be called "all over the place, but not." There's a consistency. It sounds whole and purposeful, but each song remains distinct. That connecting thread may be the production, or mastering, but it's most likely that lead vocal.
“Mississippi” is the class of the EP, before we discuss the subject matter or music video. Slavery remains a hot and controversial topic. Tackling this subject matter in a "pop" song is likely ill-advised. And even though it's a little Django-ish and possibly problematic, personally I'm not offended. Plus, the video's hot.
Lovesucker did something wholly novel here, and it works.