Tunes on Tuesday: Eugene McGuinness, Two Door Cinema Club, Ke$ha

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Glassnote Records/Courtesy

What ever happened to innovative lyrics? British singer-songwriter Eugene McGuinness has something to say about this in his new single “Sugarplum”, where he translates the intricate workings of his imagination into urbane, melodic poetry. Ever polished and debonair, McGuinness has composed a delightfully surreal tune full of mysterious, dreamlike word sequences. The first line of the track piques the interest: “Come Sugarplum where we are bold as brass/cartwheel to our kingdom through the looking glass.” It’s an enticing appeal to Sugarplum, the central character in the song, and an enticing appeal to music fans in search of lyrically fascinating music.

Still, there is something to be said for minimalist lyricism, which can bestow a song with just as much mystique. “Sun”, the new single from Two Door Cinema Club, is a fine example. On top of a vivacious bass line and stylish guitar riffs, the lyrics paint an attractive nostalgic picture. The words are simple and succinct: “Drawn apart, New York and London/All I see now are distant drum lines.” This sort of lyrical construction lends a lovely easy-going feel to the tune.

Yet not all songs require great verbal sophistication; sometimes, it’s pure lyrical gusto that makes for an engaging listen. This is indeed Ke$ha’s forte, as demonstrated by new track “C’mon.” The shoddy and reckless singer is once again out to party, and has the lyrics to prove it. Nothing captures the party spirit better than the words “feeling like a saber-tooth tiger/sipping on a warm Budweiser.” On this track, Ke$ha makes her intentions known. And in some cases, as a songwriter, that’s all you need to do.