Canadian superstar Carly Rae Jepsen is best known for her 2012 earworm, “Call Me Maybe,” but the singer-songwriter’s pop repertoire dives much deeper than those three minutes of Bieber-endorsed, bright strings and unforgettable lyrics.
Her debut album Kiss was surprisingly strong and horribly overlooked—sure, the release offered little beyond a slew of straightforward, feel-good tracks, but Jepsen’s innate ability to pump out a radio-friendly tune is laudable (and rare). As a culture, we’re so quick to pass off anything with a pop finish as easy or inauthentic, but creating melodies and stories that can appeal to millions is a talent that should be more readily valued without a petty “guilty pleasure” preface.
Dev Hynes, of Blood Orange fame, has always recognized this importance, recently hopping on board with team Jepsen to collab on a throwback, slow groove called, “All That.” The song, which was co-produced by Ariel Rechtshaid, is a huge departure from Jepsen’s comeback single, “I Really Like You,” playing instead with a sound that (thankfully) doesn’t compromise Hynes’ signature style. His personal stamp permeates the entire track, from Jepsen’s vulnerable, self-reflective lyrics to the production’s fuzzy, dream-like quality—it’s essentially the 2015 rendering of Paula Abdul’s 1991 hit, “Rush Rush,” only way better. The song’s ending soars with epic production, which Jepsen nailed during her SNL performance last night.
We love the idea of more low-key artists working with widely known talent—that collision will always be more exciting than another Dr. Luke-produced package. The response to “All That” has been, for the most part, incredibly positive; as expected, Hynes has garnered a few critics for the collaboration, who can’t seem to piece together a sensible argument beyond the fact that Jepsen is really, really famous. Why should indie musicians like Hynes box themselves into that one world? Why must there always be such a massive divide between the two? Kudos to Hynes for shattering this dumb partition. Listen to “All That,” below: