You know what? A girl’s allowed to change her mind.
Sure, Mabel might have spent the bulk of 2018 pissed at us for letting the phone ring ring while we were out partying, only to tell us not to call her up for a full year afterward, but her priorities have shifted after some time to herself – and she’s ready for romance again.
Of course, she doesn’t need a man. She just, you know…wouldn’t mind one.
“Boyfriend” is the first taste of new Mabel in 2020, although it’s been tacked onto her 2019 debut High Expectations on the streaming services, which is to say: that campaign isn’t over just yet apparently, after all.
The song was co-penned by Mabel with Camille Purcell and Steve Mac, the same songwriting team behind her previous hits, “Don’t Call Me Up” and “Mad Love” – because if it ain’t broken, don’t call anyone else up. Got it?
Accordingly, “Boyfriend” sounds vaguely similar to those pre-existing hits, but with a slightly different bounce. It’s got a familiar beat. It’s…Britney and Iggy‘s intergalactic 2015 bop “Pretty Girls”?! Astoundingly yes, that’s what comes to mind most, even down to the lyrics: “All my girls ’round the world…” The enduring impact of the song formed over caesar salads.
The message of the song is similarly self-empowering: Mabel wants that D, but by no means is it a necessity – and she makes that very clear.
“‘Cause everything I got, you know it’s all me / Even though a man ain’t something I need / I wanna boyfriend, so put it on me / I’m looking for a man who can take that heat,” she demands.
The accompanying video, directed by Isaac Rentz, finds the 24-year-old rising Main Pop Girl and her fellow baddies serving throwback looks (“all my 90s Aaliyah dreams come true ✨✨✨,” as she noted on Instagram) as they left-swipe their way through some kind of futuristic Sims-meets-Tinder digital program to generate various well-oiled IRL muscle men. Inevitably, Mabel’s only let down by the dudes and all their various shortcomings because, well…men.
“Boyfriend” is probably Mabel’s most confident, most believably Pop Star serving in video form to date – from the dancing, to the looks, to the general ‘tude – she’s really coming into her own at this point. And while the song itself may not be entirely revolutionary – she does seem to have a sort of Mabel formula down at this point – it’s still a solid addition to her growing catalog of easy, breezy earworm pop bops.
So go ahead, grab your phone and give it your best shot, boys: she might actually pick up this time around.
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