Charli XCX shines with CupcaKKe on “Lipgloss”

Charli XCX’s first attempt working with P.C. Music founder A.G. Cook and associate SOPHIE didn’t go as planned, as last year’s Vroom Vroom EP was met with (at best) a shrug. With her new mixtape, Number 1 Angel, Charli is back working with the two, and the results are worlds removed from the jumbled Vroom Vroom. The whole tape is worth a spin (“ILY2” for life) but the closing “Lipgloss” perhaps best shows the growing chemistry between SOPHIE and XCX. The production is a jubilant as P.C. Music’s best tracks – think “Hard” and “Lemonade” – but with the addition of Charli’s trademarked unbridled enthusiasm. Burgeoning Chicago rapper CupcaKKe joins in for two fitting, hyperactive verses, and she makes for a perfect match. And as the song closes, we’re reminded – despite all the flourishes – whose house we’re in: “It’s Charli, baby.”

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