What's the story?
After X Factor alumni One Direction proved a bit popular with the public, the show's bigwigs took four of 2011's solo auditionees by the names of Perrie Edwards, Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson and Leigh-Anne Pinnock and shoved them in a band called Rhythmix. The aim? To bring girl power back to pop and break the telly talent show girlband curse.
Rhythmix became Little Mix, wowed the judges and audience alike with their amazing performances (Don't Let Go (Love) and E.T., anyone?), won the whole frickin' thing and released their rather incredible debut DNA. And...er...yeah. Here we are again with album number two, Salute.
How does the album pan out?
Like a bloody dream, that's how. When the girls first burst onto the scene with happy-clappy Wings, they refused to follow any trends. While everything else at the time sounded a bit like a soggy David Guetta rehash, Little Mix went for their own 90s pop sound with vocal acrobatics ahoy. And d'ya know what? Salute's no different.
This album's kept the girls' winning formula of big hair, big hooks and even bigger harmonies and kicked it all up a gear. Basically, while DNA was a bit 'This is us, are we doing it right?', Salute's more 'This is us and we're doing it SO. FRICKIN'. RIGHT.'
We'd listen to it...
Getting ready for a night out, on a night out, the day after a night out. If we wanted to use a massive cliché, we'd say something along the lines of 'it's an emotional rollercoaster' or 'it's like a bag of pick 'n' mix'. And we do feel like using a massive cliché, so there you go.
Tracks most likely to top the charts:
Oh GAHD, where do we start? The girls have taken the brave decision to release the album after just one single this time round, so there's loads of stuff on there that screams 'release me next, please.'
Salute's a massive balls-to-the-wall girl power anthem (but probably works best as a statement album intro, tbh), Little Me's a strong Change Your Life-style inspallad (inspirational ballad, innit) and About the Boy and Mr Loverboy are giving us major 90s feels.
Oh, and These Four Walls is literally the biggest girlband ballad in *forever*. Fragile vocals, haunting instrumental, lyric about an actual shower. It's EVERYTHING.
Lyrics that make us say 'AGH LITTLE MIX WE BLOODY LOVE YOU':
'Ladies all across the world, listen up, we're looking for recruits/If you're with me let me see your hands, stand up and salute/Get your killer heels, sneakers, pumps or lace up your boots/Representin' all the women, salute' from, er, Salute sets the tone for the whole album.
It's sort of like Little Mix want you to join their gang, shake haters off left, right and centre and maybe even nab yourself a fit boyband boyfriend while you're at it.
After listening to it we felt like...
Recreating the entire Move choreography with Barry from I.T.
What they say:
Alreet, we're Little Mix and we're well grown up and stuff now.
What we say:
YES YOU ARE AND WE LOVE IT.
9/10. Remember when the girls did You've Got the Love on The X Factor final with the flags and the army of dancers and it was all a bit 'WE'RE HERE'? Well Salute sort of feels like an extension of that. It manages to get the perfect balance of sassy stomper (Nothing Feels Like You, Competition) and ballad blubfest (Good Enough) and cement the girls' status as the UK's best girlband. Oh - and it's bloody perfect for the American market without being well try-hard, too.