Coming back quickly after her debut single, “21,” Flo Gallop’s newest track is just as introspective, thoughtful, and enjoyable as her last. Another great example of 21st Century pop music, “Can’t Be Friends” pins Gallop against her complicated and arguably toxic relationship in a bright and energetic pop jam. Forcing her to reanalyze her situation, Gallop comes to the obvious conclusion that they simply “can’t be friends.” Aside from its explosive beat and Gallop’s gorgeous voice, her oddly-responsible take on the situation makes it just as smart and intriguing as it is fun.
Alternating between soft and intimate guitars and blasting, echoing bass, the song divides itself very clearly between verse and chorus. The subtle storytelling verses narrate her current actions, contextualizing their relationship not through stories, but through small details in their current interactions. Focusing heavily on headphones blocking the “deafening silence,” it’s clear things aren’t comfortable between them, yet both of them continue on this lost path. The best part, as mentioned earlier, is the ownership of her participation, recognizing she’s been “seeing other men as more than friends.” Oftentimes breakup songs—or songs detailing relationships—blindly focus on the “other,” but Gallop’s admission only makes her point more valid.
The fun, dance-heavy section of the track is thus focused in the chorus. Through distant shouts and funky bass, the song is overcome with energy as we’re told “this is why we can’t be friends.” Though not as lyrical or thought-provoking as the verse, the chorus is what continues to drive the song, reinvigorating things once they get too stale. And the production, while pretty on-par with a lot of 2010s pop, is still vigorous, lively, and solid.
Gallop’s newest track, “Can’t Be Friends,” only continues her strong debut, already creating a pattern of fun-but-introspective pop songs. Though she had previously claimed she didn’t write much about herself, her recent projects signal that may be changing, and I very much look forward to what comes next!
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