Are the Nights Worth It?
Eli “Paperboy” Reed mixes old James Brown-style soul and wails with modern pop. That’s the easiest way to describe it, but it’s so much more. Signed to Warner Bros. Records in 2012, this is his first major release under the label. Nights Like This features a selection of songs that never lose their energy. Whether he’s singing about the woes of being an adult in “Grown Up” or a night out on the town in the title track “Nights Like This,” Reed just pours energy and (as cheesy at it may sound) good times into his songs.
“Woo Hoo” is easily one of the standout songs on the album. Previously teased as a lyric video prior to the release of the album, it boasts one of the catchiest melodies and strangest genre twists— Reed’s vocals mixed with various siren loops and repetitive rhythms leave you feeling like someone put an EDM spin on a song from the sixties or seventies. Throw in a few called-out dance moves and you have one of those songs you’ll find yourself dancing along to.
The album is supremely upbeat and energetic even when the topic is heartbreak or leaving home. The songs about leaving also seem too happy to be the end of a relationship. “I’m never gonna write you your own song again, no / Not even once” is a catchy little melody that almost celebrates the joy of being rid of a bad relationship. The whistle in “Ain’t Worth It (Goodbye)” nonchalantly tosses aside a relationship that just isn’t worth it anymore.
All in all, there is a great mix of soul and modern pop songs on Nights Like This, and some songs have a beat that just pulls you in and doesn’t let go. Even with the catchy little ditties, Reed’s energy in each song as he sings about liking your shoes or having nights like these is worth a listen.