Gonna Get Thru This

The true joy in the music business is watching a track by an unknown artist leapfrog over a mountain of major-label priorities and creaky superstars to become an out-of-the-blue breakout hit.

The true joy in the music business is watching a track by an unknown artist leapfrog over a mountain of major-label priorities and creaky superstars to become an out-of-the-blue breakout hit. British newcomer Bedingfield is enjoying such success with the skittling, U.K. garage-inflected pop gem "Gonna Get Thru This," which is currently dominating top 40 and rhythm-crossover radio airwaves. The hazard of such a surprise hit single, though, is that it often pressures an artist to assemble an album at lightning speed—usually with less-than-stellar creative results. Bedingfield's full-length debut is, at best, a mixed-bag of beat-laden tracks that gives the listener a taste of the brash, funk-influenced belter he's capable of being. Unfortunately, there are also one too many moments when Bedingfield appears to be straining too hard to deliver the hit singles that should ideally follow the title track. It remains to be seen if the artist can maintain the interest he's triggered, but it's arguable that he has what it takes to be a durable artist—once he's given a chance to catch his breath and think longer than a few minutes about what his second album should be.—LF
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