There are many things I love in this world. My family, Polaroid pictures, Givenchy boots, cheeseburgers, orchids, and '80s music: Prince and the Revolution, The Time, and Vanity 6 in particular. Therefore I inherently dislike any facsimile of aforementioned beloved things unless it's done absolutely brilliantly (a'la Purple Flip). That being said, new girl group Nikki 16 probably never stood a chance with me. Yes, they are foxy and bangin'. The one in the red has an especially impressive donk and seems flexible. Their singing voices don't make me want to kill myself. But the song is just okay and aside from a few Prince-ish guitar licks and percussive elements, it's very indistinguishable from what most other default girl groups are serving. The Cheetah Girls could have sung this joint.
Here's my thing: Why appropriate a look and a sound this iconic with nary a unique spin? Why make it so obvious the entire shtick was dreamed up before the girls were even "cast"? There's inspiration and then there's shameless swagger jacking. Electrik Red seems to be employing the former. Nikki 16 (even their name an obvious play on Prince's "Darling Nikki"), seem like they're pulling a jack move.
Assembled by Shannon "Slam" Lawrence, Director of A&R for Bad Boy Records, Nikki 16 is, according to their press release,
...a contemporary nod to a sound that once influenced and dominated an era. Catchy guitar licks and infectious melodies reminiscent of some of the biggest hits of the 80s thrusts a new generation back to the whimsical and carefree days of the infamous Studio 54.
So I suppose that means their entire gimmick is emulation in a nutshell. I declare shenanigans on not even the concept as much as the execution. This sh*t isn't going to fly. But I've been wrong before. Can this work? Are Nikki 16 the new Vanity 6? Or the new Girlicious?
(Extra points to those who understood the reference in the entry title)