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MUSIC: ON THE BUTTON; SUGABABES ARE BACK AND THEIR HOT NEW VIDEO PROVES THEY'RE JUST AS SEXY AS EVER.

Byline: Gavin Martin

In the Sugababes' sexy new video for Push The Button, the group throw caution aside and present themselves as voracious maneaters. But sultry Keisha Buchanan reckons the clip for their new single - where the 'Babes stop just short of getting jiggy in a lift with three anonymous partners - doesn't go far enough.

"I would have loved it to be a bit more suggestive," she says. "We all did a full routine but a lot of it got cut out. There are rumours that we thought it was too raunchy, but that's crap. It was really fun to do, partly because the guys who play our partners are so not our type, and we're not their type either because they're all gay."

Keisha's boyfriend, a professional basketball player called Abe, was even on set to help her get the moves right.

"He's going, 'Come on, babe. Do the Beyonce move to the left a little more'," she smiles. "He's good like that. Very supportive."

It is 10 years since Keisha, who turns 21 next week, became a Sugababes founding member. In that time the band have suffered ups and downs but established a reputation as the girl group who will not die. They've lost a member, been dropped by one label and there were well-documented relationship difficulties between Keisha's colleagues, Mutya, 20, and Heidi, 21. Keisha admits that for a while life in the band was so intense that she suffered with depression.

"One day someone asked me what I was like," she says, "and I didn't have an answer. I thought that was sad. With depression, you can go in and out of it and not really know whether it's still there or not. Sometimes I'd find myself bursting into tears for no reason."

She says that counselling, prayer, discovering interests outside the band such as rollerblading and the support of her mother helped her recover.

"When you first come into the pop world it's like a whirlwind. Getting the balance with normality was important. When that happened I settled down."

A lot has changed for Sugababes in the last two and half years. Back then they were on the hunt for prospective boyfriends - now they are all in steady relationships. Heidi Range is dating MTV presenter Dave Berry and Mutya Buena, the group's straight-talking ghetto girl, surprised everyone, particularly her bandmates, by announcing her pregnancy while making their new album Taller In More Ways.

"I'm not going to lie," admits Keisha. "I was upset because I didn't know what was going on - she didn't even tell us personally. Mutya was going through so much at the time and ended up in hospital with all the stress."

Keisha was no doubt worried too, thinking that the group she started at the age of 11 was about to collapse.

"It wasn't like she was going, 'I really want to have a baby'," she says. "It was the last thing I thought would happen. But you have to think everything happens for a reason and now I see why her baby Thalia is here. She's made everything a lot happier and calmer between us.

"Mutya no longer comes into work with hangovers. Now we know she's going to come in on time it's made us a lot tighter and everything's brighter."

So the 'Babes have survived another potentially tricky obstacle. Not that seeing her bandmate become a mother has made Keisha broody.

"Quite the opposite," she laughs. "It's made me want to wait 10 years. Mutya doesn't get any sleep at all now."

Keisha it seems has had enough of following other people's rules, and now she suits herself. A keen sports competitor at school, she recently opted out of a personal training programme with Heidi.

"After a week, I felt like all the fun was being sucked out of it," she says. "I think it's unhealthy to be overweight, but at the same time if you were the only person stuck on the bloody Earth you wouldn't care what you looked like. It's all done to please society - nobody does it to please themselves.

"That's why I'll eat a KFC and a McDonald's in one day and I won't care about it. Frigging models are models for a reason - so they can fit into a size two. But real women are a size 10 or 12," she adds with a wink.

l Push The Button is out on Monday.

DOWN AND DIRTY

Sexy pop videos aren't exactly new and Sugababes are simply following the well- established titillating trend. Here are some other artists who have raised the heat by loosening their clothing.

MADONNA

The moody, arty, black and white promo for Justify Your Love brought S&M, bondage, rubber, lesbianism and leather out of the dungeon and onto primetime TV. Initially MTV refused to show the clip directed by Jean Baptiste Mondino, but the clamour to see Madonna seduce and get seduced by a woman while then boyfriend Tony Ward looked on won out.

GEORGE MICHAEL

Some years before his arrest for public lewdness derailed any attempts to present himself as a ladies' man, George made the foreplay-celebrating video for the now dated-sounding single I Want Your Sex. At the time, the BBC frowned upon celebrations of foreplay and the clip was banned.

KYLIE MINOGUE

Can't Get You Out Of My Head was a stroke of marketing genius but It was the image of the divine Ms M's pert little buttocks that the nation couldn't get out of out of its head. It drove Justin Timberlake to such distraction that he was forced to cop a feel when the pair duetted at the Brit Awards.

Justin and KylieBRITNEY SPEARS

When you start your career as a popette in schoolgirl's uniform, two years down the line it is necessary to show that you have grown. Taking several leaves out of the Madonna handbook, Britney got down and dirty for Slave 4 U, a salacious crawl through the jungle of tempestuous desire. She Jane? Then Kevin Federline must be must be Tarzan. Oh dear.

DESTINY'S CHILD

Beyonce, Michelle and Kelly may be well brought-up Bible-loving girls from Texas, but their concern to show that the Lord gifted them with heavenly bodies is most pressing in the video for Bootylicious. As the title suggests, this became the benchmark for any girl group who set out to shake some action on the video front. Sugababe Keisha Buchanan (and her boyfriend) were just two of those taking notes on exactly how it's done.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 23, 2005
Words:1090
Previous Article:MUSIC: NEW SINGLES.
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