Blimey, this pop malarkey is exhausting isn’t it! Trying to keep up with what is new, fresh and exciting can be tricky – so here is a collection of newly released songs and videos all in one handy place. You’ll surely and hopefully find something to you liking…
Sheryl Crow – ‘Easy’
Firstly, the legendary and supremely divine Sheryl Crow has returned! After twenty successful years with A&M Records, Sheryl has recently signed with Warner Music Nashville and is currently readying her first record for the label which Sheryl is referring to as her “country debut”. The ‘new’ musical direction is unsurprising in the sense that recent albums and collaborations have shown dalliances with the genre, so it seemed natural for Sheryl to fully embrace this sound.
‘Easy’ is the first single to be taken from Sheryl’s as-yet untitled forthcoming eighth studio album, which will serve as the follow-up from 2010′s superb ’100 Miles From Memphis’. The track itself is another luxurious feel good, sun soaked gem where Sheryl’s effortless vocal exudes warmth and life. Lyrically, it is also in the same vein as previous lead singles ‘Summer Day’ and ‘Love Is Free’ as it explores the simpler sides of life and much like the previous singles, it is hypnotic in delivering a catchy hook that proves unforgettable following a few listens – resistance is futile here! ‘Easy’ was produced by veteran tunesmith Richard Bennett. The song is currently available to download from the US iTunes store.
Ciara – ‘Body Party’
Chanteuse extraordinaire Ciara is currently readying her fifth studio album, ‘One Woman Army’ which has a projected release date of June and will be her first for new label Epic, which sees Ciara reunite with LA Reid who drove her initial success at LaFace Records. The forthcoming album will serve as the follow-up to 2010′s, mighty and impressive ‘Basic Instinct’.
Ciara has thus far released two tracks from the record in the shape of confessional, sultry, mid-tempo ‘Sorry’ and the uptempo 90′s inspired beats of the Rodney Jerkins produced ‘Got Me Good’. This week, ‘Body Party’ arrives as the third release and it is a wonderful sultry slow-jam that utilises the synthesiser to create a throwback sound inspired by the likes of Prince or Janet Jackson. The track samples 90′s classic ‘My Boo‘ by Ghost Town DJ’s. Lyrically, the bedroom talk of the track is seductive and playful as Ciara teases “the things I wanna do to you, my body’s calling you. I’m havin’ so much fun with you, now it’s just me on you. Your body’s my party, let’s get it started.” Smooth and gorgeous with a hint of nostalgia – lovely!
Dragonette – ‘Run Run Run’
‘Run Run Run’ is the opening track on Dragonette’s fabulously magnificent third album ‘Bodyparts’, an album which is so brilliant, it featured prominently in the countdown of the best album of 2012. Arriving as the third official single from the album, ‘Run Run Run’ is exquisite - Martina delivers a spirited vocal performance that shimmers against the deliciously heady, intoxicating synth driven ethereal beats – utterly sublime.
The video, which premiered yesterday is a glorious romp – it is presented in reverse and offers a disorientating look at city life as Martina stumbles and scales the dark city streets in the scenes which were filmed across several different countries. ‘Run Run Run’ proves why Martina is THE ultimate front woman…
Dragonette will play two UK shows later this month in London on 28th March and Brighton on 29th March. Ticket and venue details can be found here.
Dawn Richard – ‘Bum Bum’
Dawn’s recent album ‘Goldenheart‘ is absolutely essential, phenomenally brilliant piece of work. The prolific work rate between Dawn and producer Druski is such that there is a slew of tracks that are leftover and she has been keen to share them of late. Last week, Dawn presented ‘Love On The Rocks‘, whilst this week she offers ‘Bum Bum’, which is a fun upbeat track that references ‘Bam Bam’ by Sister Nancy. The track is a sonic clash of styles and sounds that all travel at a hundred miles per hour in diverging directions – the ferocious handclaps and tribal, reggae drums coupled with the tongue-in-cheek lyrics that are almost spat out as they are delivered make for a thrilling ride.
Kelly Rowland – Kisses Down Low
Kelly’s reinvention from dancefloor diva to supreme sex goddess is complete as she unleashes ‘Kisses Down Low’ as the second track from her highly anticipated fourth studio album, no longer titled Year Of The Woman but ‘Talk A Good Game’ instead, and is expected later this year.
Following the seductive and steamy singles ‘Motivation’ and ‘Ice’, ‘Kisses Down Low’ follows a similar vein. Kelly’s smooth vocal glides and smolders, whilst lyrically, the sexual tones tease and playfully hint and suggest at how and why the kisses are appreciated down below so much. It’s a steamy affair, further compounded by the bright and lighthearted video. The clip sees Kelly revisit and update an array of looks she has previously presented, somewhat brazenly she gestures as to where she likes the kisses in case you hadn’t worked it out from the lyrics – amazingness!
Bright Light Bright Light – ‘In Your Care’
Last month, we mentioned seeing the beyond incredible Bright Light Bright Light debut a new, the completely gorgeous track ‘In Your Care‘ as he opened for the wondrous Nerina Pallot. Since then, by way of thanks to celebrate achieving 10,000 followers on SoundCloud, Rod premiered the piano demo version of ‘In Your Care’ – prepare to swoon, become emotional and weak at the knees – utterly captivating and enchanting.
Iggy Azalea- Work
For those not in the know, Iggy Azalea is a twenty-two year old, rising hip-hop star who hails from Australia. Notably, in 2012 she became the first female and first non-American to feature on the cover of prominent hip-hop magazine XXL and since releasing ‘Glory’, a free EP, Iggy has been working on her debut album ‘The New Classic’, which is due for release later this year after she recently inked a deal with Mercury Records.
The first official single from the album is ‘Work’, which is a heartfelt tale that references the sacrifices and struggles made in order to achieve success and happiness. The video was shot and directed by Jonas & Francois and it features an almighty positive payback, so keep watching until the end of the clip…
AlunaGeorge – ‘Attracting Flies’
Since being nominated for the Critics Choice Award at The BRIT’s and finishing second on the BBC Sound Of 2013 poll, AlunaGeorge have cleverly positioned themselves with various lines of attacks. Rather than pushing an album out immediately to coincide with the initial flurry of interest, they have opted for the long game, which has seen them play a series of intimate gigs, release a couple of buzz singles and feature on the Disclosure track ‘White Noise’, which reached number 2 on the UK Singles Chart upon it’s release in February.
The pair have a while to go until they release their debut album ‘Body Music’ in June/July and until then, their latest single ‘Attracting Flies’ serves as the first official release from the record. The song is an attractive prospect because of the lyrically imaginative way they have in criticising a lying lover which is aided by Aluna’s sweet vocal which deceptively masks the underlying bitterness “little grey fairy tales and little white lies, everything you exhale is attracting flies.”
The video itself is an entertaining retelling of classic fairy tale characters set in a modern, urban environment – look out for the likes of Goldilocks, Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel amongst others.
Taylor Swift – ’22′
Once, very recently we walked past Taylor Swift in a corridor – she was very beautiful and very nice – she shyly but confidently said ‘Hi’ – it was surreal. Anyway, at the end of 2012, Taylor Swift’s fourth studio album ‘Red’ finished as the second biggest selling album worldwide, which is an amazing achievement given that the record was only available for NINE weeks of that year!
Her latest single ’22′ is the third to be released from the album and is again a Max Martin and Shellbeck co-write, which gives Taylor her poppiest and most upbeat track to date. The joyous lyrics reflect a carefree and spirited abandon of the usual torment and frustrations presented in the two previous singles taken from the album. The video continues this playful note and features Taylor’s genuine real life friends.
Empire Of The Sun – ‘Discovery’
Below is a teaser marking the return of sheer excellence. Empire Of The Sun will deliver a new album entitled ‘Ice On The Dune’ sometime in June. The slow burning, drip feed details format regarding the project has begun with this JJ Abrams directed trailer marking the first acknowledgement of their return. Eeeeeeek!
That’s it, you’re up to date – well, for at least minutes anyway!
The seemingly very lovely Taylor Swift releases her new single single ‘Mine’ this week here in the UK. The track is a bittersweet tale of finding ‘the one’ rather than facing the pain, goodbyes and heartbreak associated with the end of a relationship.
The song has a big giant sing-a-long chorus and the whole thing is well crafted and well executed – meaning it shows off all of Taylor’s superb skills and abilities not only as a singer but also as a fine songwriter and all round gifted musician.
‘Mine’ is the first track to be taken from her third studio album ‘Speak Now’ which is available from 25th October here in the UK.
Taylor has announced three live dates here in the UK to promote the new album. Tickets go on general sale at 9am from Thursday 21st October and will be available from all the usual official outlets. Dates and venues include:
Tuesday 22nd March 2011 – LG Arena, Birmingham
Tuesday 29th March 2011 – MEN Arena, Manchester
Wednesday 30th March 2011 – O2 Arena, London
‘Half Of My Heart’ is John Mayer’s third very fantastic single release from the album ‘Battle Studies’ and features vocals Taylor Swift although unfortunately she does not appear in the video, which is a bit of a bummer really if were honest! However, the single is still great and is pencilled in for a release on 7th June.
Taylor Swift releases the millionth single from her hugely successful album ‘Fearless’ this week… this time, the title track is unleashed. The greatest thing about it is the wonderful video which is an homage to her fans and to her band, crew etc who have been on the road for many months now.
The 52nd Grammy Awards took place at The Staples Centre, Los Angeles last night. The big award winner of the night was Beyoncé, who broke the record for the most awards won in a single year by a solo female performer. Taylor Swift took home four awards. The Black Eyed Peas, Jay-Z and Kings Of Leon all picked up three trophies, while Lady GaGa and Eminem won two.
Performances came from Lady GaGa who duetted with Elton John, Taylor Swift collaborated with Stevie Nicks. Beyoncé, Green Day, Maxwell amongst others also did a turn but the performance of the night goes to Pink for her acrobatic showstopper ‘Glitter In The Air’ - stunning!
Here are some highlights out of the 109 prizes awarded…
Record Of The Year: Kings Of Leon – Use Somebody
Album Of The Year: Taylor Swift – Fearless
Song Of The Year: Beyonce – Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)
Best Female Pop Vocal Performance: Beyonce – Halo
Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: Jason Mraz – Make It Mine
Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals: Black Eyed Peas – I Gotta Feeling
Best Pop Vocal Album: Black Eyed Peas – The END
Best Pop Collaboration: Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat – Lucky
Best Dance Recording: Lady GaGa – Poker Face
Best Electronic/Dance Album: Lady GaGa – The Fame
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Michael Bublé - Michael Bublé Meets Madison Square Garden
Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals: Kings Of Leon – Use Somebody
Best Rock Song: Kings Of Leon – Use Somebody
Best Rock Album: Green Day – 21st Century Breakdown
Best R&B Song: Beyonce – Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)
Best Contemporary R&B Album: Beyonce – I Am… Sasha Fierce
Best Urban/Alternative Performance: India.Arie & Dobet Gnahore – Pearls
Best Rap Solo Performance: Jay-Z – D.O.A. (Death Of Auto-Tune)
Best Rap Performance By A Duo Or Group: Eminem, Dr Dre and 50 Cent – Crack A Bottle
Best Rap Song: Jay-Z, Rihanna and Kanye West – Run This Town
Best Rap Album: Eminem – Relapse
Best Country Album: Taylor Swift – Fearless
Best Country Collaboration: Carrie Underwood & Randy Travis - I Told You So
You can visit the official Grammy website to see all of the winners, videos and pictures by clicking here.
Taylor Swift re-releases her album ‘Fearless’ to become ‘Fearless – Platinum Edition’ this week, it features six additional tracks… five new songs and an acoustic version of a track already on the original album. Here in the UK Taylor will release a new single ‘Fifteen’ on Monday 23rd November.
The VMA’s took place in New York last night and the tributes, stage invasions and blood have hit the headlines rather than the winners of a ‘Moonman’ trophy! The main winners were: GaGa, Beyoncé and Green Day who each took home 3 statues.
The winners then almost seems irrlevant after all the stage antics…
Video Of The Year: Beyoncé – ‘Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)’
Best Female Video: Taylor Swift – ‘You Belong With Me’
Best Male Video: T.I. feat. Rihanna – ‘Live Your Life’
Best New Artist: Lady GaGa – ‘Poker Face’
Best Hip-Hop Video: Eminem – ‘We Made You’
Best Pop Video: Britney Spears – ‘Womanizer’
Best Rock Video: Green Day – ’21 Guns’
Breakthrough Video: Matt and Kim – ‘Lessons Learned’
Best Art Direction: Lady GaGa – ‘Paparazzi’
Best Choreography: Beyoncé – ‘Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)’
Best Cinematography: Green Day – ’21 Guns’
Best Direction: Green Day – ’21 Guns’
Best Editing: Beyoncé – ‘Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)’
Best Special Effects: Lady GaGa – ‘Paparazzi’
Congratulations to Britney and Beyoncé for your awards! Best performance of the night goes to Pink!. The entire show can be seen across Europe on MTV from today and at 9pm here in the UK.
Taylor Swift officially releases our favourite Taylor Swift song here in the UK today! YAY! ‘You Belong To Me’ is a fun, cutesy uptempo track with a video that is a LOT of fun too… Taylor looks stunning throughout and look out for her as the ‘other’ girl in the video!