There are some great vocal acrobatics in the new Little Mix single, ‘DNA’, but vocally and as a song it’s far less about showboating than predecessor ‘Wings’, and feels less as if it’s trying to make a statement about the band, their identity and their fanbase.
Instead it’s a chunky, straightforward pop tune. There are some neat production flourishes along the way and the lyrics are more complex than, for instance, those you might find in your average Carly Rae Jepsen album track, but at its heart it is – in the very best possible sense – a normal pop song. The ‘Say You’ll Be There’ to the ‘Wannabe’ of ‘Wings’, if you will.
- The tempo is MID.
- No wait, come back, it’s really good and there are Cheiron-style slamming smashy noises.
- Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a nucleic acid containing the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known living organisms (with the exception of RNA viruses). The DNA segments carrying this genetic information are called genes. Likewise, other DNA sequences have structural purposes, or are involved in regulating the use of this genetic information. Along with RNA and proteins, DNA is one of the three major macromolecules that are essential for all known forms of life. DNA consists of two long polymers of simple units called nucleotides, with backbones made of sugars and phosphate groups joined by ester bonds. These two strands run in opposite directions to each other and are therefore anti-parallel, one backbone being 3′ (three prime) and the other 5′ (five prime). This refers to the direction the 3rd and 5th carbon on the sugar molecule is facing. Attached to each sugar is one of four types of molecules called nucleobases (informally, bases). It is the sequence of these four nucleobases along the backbone that encodes information. This information is read using the genetic code, which specifies the sequence of the amino acids within proteins. The code is read by copying stretches of DNA into the related nucleic acid RNA in a process called transcription. There’s an amazing bit in ‘DNA’ going into the chorus which sounds like a creaky door closing. Within cells, DNA is organized into long structures called chromosomes. During cell division these chromosomes are duplicated in the process of DNA replication, providing each cell its own complete set of chromosomes. Actually thinking about it maybe the creaky sound isn’t a door closing – it could be a door opening. Eukaryotic organisms (animals, plants, fungi, and protists) store most of their DNA inside the cell nucleus and some of their DNA in organelles, such as mitochondria or chloroplasts. In contrast, prokaryotes (bacteria and archaea) store their DNA only in the cytoplasm. We suppose the question of whether it’s a door opening or closing depends on how you look at life. Within the chromosomes, chromatin proteins such as histones compact and organize DNA. These compact structures guide the interactions between DNA and other proteins, helping control which parts of the DNA are transcribed.
- The song’s opening is slightly weird but wholly great. After some music box tinkling in the introduction, the song slams in with Perrie singing “does he tell you he loves you when you least expect it?”. The reason it’s weird is that she has quite a low voice and you’re probably not expecting it.
- The song mentions ‘biology’, which is a bold move but have decided to give Little Mix the green light to reference Girls Aloud.
- The chorus goes like this:
“It’s in his DNA, D-D-D-DNA
It’s in his DNA,
And he just takes my breath away, b-b-b-breathe away
I feel it every day
And that’s what makes a man, not hard to understand.
Perfect in every-way, I see it in-his-face,
Nothing more to say, it’s in his D-D-D-D-DNA.”
It’s a pretty good chorus except for the ‘nothing more to say’ line which, frankly, is just there to rhyme and fill up some space. It’s the only crap bit in the song.
- After the second chorus the song almost stops completely. Then there’s a spooky half-rapped, half-spoken bit about “it’s all about his kiss, contaminates my lips, our energy connects, it’s simple genetics, I’m the X to his Y” and so on, then that all drops out for a big choral breakdown which then gives way to some brief rave klaxons and the final run at the chorus.
- There is no mention of a future civilisation extracting Leigh-Anne’s essence of life from an insect preserved in amber, then using that DNA to populate an ill-fated theme park.
- Which is a shame.
- The song gets its first play on Monday so you can hear it then. It’s really very good.