Friday, January 31, 2014

St. Vincent - Digital Witness

St. Vincent's self-titled fourth album, if you don't count the David Byrne collaboration, comes out on February 25 (24 in the UK) and today we see the release of a music video for the album's second single, "Digital Witness".  Directed by Chino Moya, the video features a stoic yet cartoonish Annie Clark set against a variety of backdrops that one might find common in a Wes Anderson film.  Her newly grey hairdo is in full force as well, instantly transforming almost every frame into a serious contender for an alternate album cover.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Kylie Minogue Announces Kiss Me Once - Listen To The Single "Into The Blue"

Remember way back in early 2013 when Kylie shook the pop world a bit and signed with Roc Nation?  Sometimes I like to imagine Kylie and Jay-Z discussing her career plans over a drink or two, when Beyoncé randomly decides to drop by.  That must be how it works.  Anyways, 2013 was pretty light on the new Kylie album side of things, besides the random "Skirt".  But the new year brings good news: Kylie is releasing her twelfth album Kiss Me Once on March 17.

Kiss Me Once has an interesting track listing, to say the least.  Writing credits include Sia, Pharrell, and Enrique Iglesias, with the latter of the three actually being featured on "Beautiful".  Standout song titles include "Sexercize" and "Les Sex", and just look at that pouty artwork.

The lead single is "Into The Blue" and it's been out for a couple days now.  Produced by Mike Del Rio (???), it actually took a while to grow on me.  This single didn't seem to have that immediate "wow" factor like "Timebomb" did in 2012.  After a few more plays I've labeled it a slight "jam" of some sort, but it leans on the predictable side.

You can pre-order Kiss Me Once here and check out both the album track listing and lyric video for "Into The Blue" below.

Kiss Me Once
  1. Into The Blue
  2. Million Miles
  3. I Was Gonna Cancel
  4. Sexy Love
  5. Sexercize
  6. Feels So Good
  7. If Only
  8. Les Sex
  9. Kiss Me Once
  10. Beautiful (With Enrique Iglesias)
  11. Fine 
 Special Edition Bonus Tracks
  1. Mr. President
  2. Sleeping With The Enemy 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Lana Del Rey - Once Upon A Dream

Lana Del Rey is slowly becoming a master of cinematic music.  Last year's "Young And Beautiful" was probably featured in about half of The Great Gatsby's significant scenes, or at least it felt that way, and now Lana is singing the theme song to Disney's dark fairy tale story Maleficent.  According to the internet, Angelina Jolie specifically chose her to sing the Sleeping Beauty classic, "Once Upon A Dream".  It's dark, dreary, and extra Lana-y.  The new trailer featuring the song premiered during the Grammys and it managed to get me interested in the film, so I think it's working.

"Once Upon A Dream" is available to download for free on Google Play or you can watch the trailer below.  Maleficent is in theatres on May 30.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Lorde & Beyoncé Win The Grammys

Last night's Grammy festivities seemed even longer than usual.  There were so many random performances that involved two or more artists colliding in ways that no one ever asked for.  I sat through Robin Thicke and Chicago performing a medley of songs ending with "Blurred Lines" because sometimes life isn't fair, but that's a post for another day.  Even though Daft Punk won Album Of The Year, the real winners were Queen Bee and Queen B.

Lorde performed a strange slowed down version of "Royals" and won two major awards, Pop Solo Performance and Song Of The Year.  She looked especially hipster goth chic, but sported a slightly more tame mass of hair compared to her usual mane.  I think it's safe to say that Lorde's reign won't let up anytime soon and she deserves the recognition so much.

But let's just talk about Beyoncé and Jay-Z opening the show with "Drunk In Love".  She did that weird music video dance.  She had the wet beach hair.  She even added more surfborts to the song!  From the lighting to the camera direction, the production was fantastic.  The only flaw was some lazy censorship by CBS, which resulted in a few full lines being muted.  This is how you perform at the Grammys.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Stream Dum Dum Girls' Too True

I'm not sorry for the overflow of Dum Dum Girls posts as of late.  I'm just so pumped for this record and NPR is currently streaming the entire album over on their site.  I've just listened to it and this album is definitely continuing Dee Dee's recent eighties pop-rock adventure while also sounding distinctively "Dum Dum Girls".  There's a nice balance between the polished shine and the band's usual rock tinge.  It's produced by Richard Gottehrer and Sune Rose Wagner (The Raveonettes!!!), so there's another reason to love it.  If you enjoyed "Rimbaud Eyes" or "Lost Boys And Girls Club" to any extent, then check out Too True.  The album's street date is January 28 and it's arriving via Sub Pop.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Paloma Faith - Can't Rely On You

Paloma Faith's new single "Can't Rely On You" came out a few days ago and I'll just go ahead and say it now.  Blurred Lines.  Yes, it was produced by Pharrell and it's painfully obvious.  The opening beat is strikingly similar to his creeper anthem with Robin Thicke.  The comparison fades away a bit once Paloma's vocals come in and the lyrics are vastly different, but it's still a rather unfortunate similarity.  I love Paloma and her generally wacky style, she's one of the great belt-it-out vocalists of recent times, but "Can't Rely On You" is a mixed bag.  Maybe if I listen to it enough, the "Blurred Lines" factor will be washed away.  I blame Pharrell and his "errbody get up" background noises.

Paloma Faith's third album, A Perfect Contradiction, is scheduled for March 3.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Rufus Wainwright - Me And Liza

It appears Rufus Wainwright has reached the "greatest hits" period of his career.  He's releasing a compilation album, titled Vibrate: The Best Of Rufus Wainwright, on March 3.  There's going to be the standard eighteen track edition and a deluxe double-disc collection with plenty of extra rarities.  Both versions will include the newly recorded song "Me And Liza", which is serving as something of a lead single and extra buying incentive.  It's a very Rufus track as far as expectations go, with dramatically soaring vocals and a chorus that could've been included on 2012's Out Of The Game.  It's slightly adult contemporary at first listen, but the melody will sneak into your subconscious after a little while.

Rufus is supporting the album release by going on a "Best Of" tour.  You can find the complete list of dates and cities hereVibrate will be out on March 3, via Universal.  You can pre-order the album here.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Dum Dum Girls - Rimbaud Eyes

Too True is officially one of my most anticipated albums of the year.  The lead single was fantastic and now "Rimbaud Eyes" seals the deal.  It's just all so eighties, and without sounding like some imitation act.  Think along the lines of Pat Benatar, A Flock Of Seagulls, and The Bangles.  That stuff is seriously my jam, don't even get me started, so this single is a winner.  Bravo, Dum Dum Girls.

Too True is out on January 28, via Sub Pop.

Alex Ebert & Jared Leto Win At The Golden Globes

So who watched the Golden Globes last night?  I managed to make it through the entire show, with special thanks to Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's hosting duties for keeping it away from that boring "award show" territory.  There were actually quite a few pleasant surprises in the winners this year.  It wasn't the usual Clooney and Streep show.

Alex Ebert, of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Ima Robot, and Alexander fame, won the "Best Original Score" award for his work on the Robert Redford fronted All Is Lost.  My cable box decided to momentarily break just before the category was announced, so I only managed to see Ebert walking off the stage as I shouted "That's Edward Sharpe!".  I still can't believe he actually won over Hans Zimmer or John Williams.  Everything about that is amazing.

Part time actor and 30 Seconds To Mars frontman Jared Leto also won, taking the "Best Supporting Actor" award for his role in Dallas Buyers Club.  I'm ashamed to say I still haven't seen the film and it sits at the top of my must-see list, but holy upsets Batman!  He beat Michael Fassbender and Bradley Cooper!  That makes two underdog musicians who managed to topple the big industry names.

Congrats to Golden Globe winners, Alex Ebert and Jared Leto!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Neon Trees - Sleeping With A Friend

Neon Trees have announced a new record and simultaneously released the album's lead single for good measure.  Pop Psychology is their third full-length release and will see the light of day on April 22.  "Sleeping With A Friend" is our first taste of the band's new material.  Can we just take a moment to acknowledge how fantastic their last album was?  I feel like it gets overlooked most of the time, aside from the massively overplayed "Everybody Talks", while Picture Show was really a pretty amazing evolution from their debut.

"Sleeping With A Friend" has a few moments of M83-like grandeur, in terms of nostalgic and cinematic production.  There's a slight connection between the two bands, and it may be reaching a bit, but Anthony Gonzalez produced The Killers recent single "Shot At The Night" and Neon Trees opened for The Killers back in the day.  The more you know!  Tyler Glenn told Rolling Stone that Peter Gabriel is responsible for this sound, saying "Sonically speaking it's our biggest-sounding song to date.  That is probably because I was listening to a lot of Peter Gabriel's So record.  Those pop songs of his are so huge and great.".

"Sleeping With A Friend" is out now on iTunes or you can stream it below.  Pop Psychology is due on April 22.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Ellie Goulding - Goodness Gracious

Ellie Goulding has a weird relationship with the US.  "Lights" took so long to climb the Hot 100 that it actually set records and while that song was the sixth single from her debut album in other countries, it was really the only single released in the US.  The same goes for her second album and its reissue, Halcyon Days.  A slew of the tracks have received the single treatment elsewhere, while "Burn" remains the only one to see major success on mainstream US radio.  With that known, "Goodness Gracious" could unfortunately go widely unnoticed in the States.  At least we have a beautifully neon video to make up for it.  It's a bit of a "we own the night let's party" video, but its bright style and the fact that it legitimately looks fun makes it so much better.  Watch "Goodness Gracious" below...

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Trust - Rescue, Mister

There is a new Trust song on the internet at this very moment.  This is not a drill, please remain calm during this emergency situation.  "Rescue, Mister" is the first single from Trust's upcoming album, Joyland, which has already been described as "an eruption of guts, eels, and joy".   That's definitely one of the most fascinating album taglines I've ever read.  Robert Alfons, the mastermind behind this Trust behemoth, sure does know how to craft a sinister track.  I'm already completely obsessed with Joyland and there's still another two months until it comes out.  Listen to "Rescue, Mister" below and look for the full album on March 4, via Arts & Crafts.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Ke$ha - Dirty Love

It's pretty much common pop knowledge that Ke$ha is tangled in some kind of label trap.  Her fans have started a petition to free her of Dr. Luke's creative control and Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips voiced his disappointment with the situation after their collaborative Lip$ha record was cancelled.  We also can't forget Ke$ha's now deleted tweets where she claimed that she was forced to sing her hit single, "Die Young".  Less than fantastic single sales only make the situation even more complicated.  The label could claim that the numbers are a result of her failure to cooperate, while Ke$ha could argue that it's the perfect reason to be released from her contract.  What happens when the pop star no longer wants to be a pop star?

It was somewhat surprising to see a the release of a new music video from her Warrior album, as promotion pretty much fell through after "Crazy Kids" fizzled out.  The video for "Dirty Love" drops Iggy Pop's dated-upon-release verse and features a new solo verse, along with some stripped down production.  Directed by Ke$ha with a seemingly low budget, it's probably her best video since "Blow".  And as much as I love Iggy, this new version of the track is way more rock than the original duet.

Check out the video for "Dirty Love" below and if you never gave it a listen, head this way for the full Warrior record.  Although buying that may just help her label, so maybe tour tickets are the way to go.