Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pop Panel - Week 7

It's been a dark couple of days with Michael Jackson's tragic death casting a long shadow over blogland. It almost feels disrespectful to be writing about anything else but I'm hoping the trashy antics of the Pop Panel will help cheer us all up. I'm really excited about our winner but I think a couple of great acts were given a rather unfair battering. Before we get into that, I'd like to thank everyone who took part in Aus-pop Week. It was a fun experiment and I hope to repeat it in the not too distant future. However, the usual suspects return this week for more mayhem. The Panel consists of:

D'Luv (US) writer of Chart Rigger
Mike author of this classy blog.
Pablo (Spain) writer of Peibols
Paul (UK) writer of Fizzy Pop
Rob (UK) writer of Don't Stop The Pop
The Prophet (AUS) writer of The Prophet

I'm excited to announce that we also have a fabulous celebrity judge! The incredibly glamorous Courtney Act has kindly agreed to be the delicate rose between our thorns and assist in the search for a worthy single of the week. In case you've been living under a rock, Courtney is the most successful drag queen in Australian Idol history and subsequently became the first contestant to score a record deal with Sony. The result, "Rub Me Wrong" (below), was a stunning top 30 hit and remains a cult classic to this very day. Courtney was kind enough to answer a few questions before getting stuck into voting.

Courtney, it's been 5 long years since "Rub Me Wrong" revolutionised pop music as we know it. What do you make of the track today? I still hear it out occasionally!
HA! I feel your tongue is firmly planted in your cheek with that one, Mike. It is a little tricky to be objective. I always thought it was a good sounding pop track. Perhaps a little too serious for me at the time. It is camp when it pops up on the Stonewall juke box, or someone says they heard it at the gym. On Saturday night at Starfuckers a girl told me she brought the single in Japan! With Japanese writing on it and all! I have to get me a copy of that!

I know you've been working on your next musical triumph for a long time. How are things progressing?
Well, I was planning on heading to London in April, but then I broke my leg skiing in Whistler so that put a hold on things. I will be in the UK in a few weeks, but only for a quick trip. I still plan on moving there next year... but alas... that is a whole year away.

I'm sure it will be worth the wait! In the meantime, you're the new Queen of Sydney nightclub Disgraceland. What can punters expect from your fabulous show?
There is always something different at Disgraceland. Every week we have a new theme and a new show. So far we have had food fights, strip poker, spin the bottle and all sorts of antics. To have such a pumping club night through the winter has been amazing. Tim Duggan and I will be over in Europe for a few weeks gathering ideas and inspiration for this summer at Disgraceland.

Enjoy your trip and thanks again for honouring the Panel with your presence!

Here are the results in order from least to most popular.

Luciana – I Like That (Video)

The UK's Queen of dance returns with another floorfiller.

Courtney: I quite like this! It has a great build up that really drives the track. It also has highs and lows, so it doesn't feel too monotonous. 4/5
D'Luv: If this were 2002 and we were in some grimy basement club in New York's East Village at 4 a.m. drinking piss-warm beer, this would sound amazing. But we're not. And it doesn't. 0/5
Mike: Luciana is obviously too classy for the riff raff on this Panel - Courtney excepted! "I Like That" is another in a long line of amazing dance anthems that have benefited from the UK diva's glorious vocals. I can't wait to hear this in a club. 4/5
Pablo: Too noisy for me. This song would go top 10 in Spain, for sure, as a tone for mobiles. Not mine, of course. 0.5/5
Paul: When the music started I didn't want to like it, as it's not my sort of song. It's the reverse of how I feel about Cascada - I really like the verses but not keen on the (practically non-existent) chorus. Can't someone talented take the verse of this and put it to the chorus of "Evacuate"? 2/5
Rob: Betty Boo wants her music back. I dislike this soulless dance track immensely. 0/5
The Prophet: Horrible. I don't even listen to much dance music but I feel like I've heard this song a billion times before. It's so "level 2 Stonewall". 0/5
Total: 10.5/35

Colton Ford – Losing My Religion (Video)

The legendary porn star takes pop to the next level with this Hi-NRG REM remake.

Courtney: I think he has said Too Much. I think the track is actually ok, but the clip ruins it a bit for me. I understand his history of being a porn star but I feel the clip could have been given 50% less and delivered 100% more. 3/5
D'Luv: Doll, you're scrapin' the barrel this week. 1/5
Mike: I love Colton's music. He's like the male Amber - only better! "Losing My Religion" was always going to be a difficult song to cover but he does a good job. And I disagree about the video. Colton should go completely X rated next time with a double penetration extravaganza. The haters are never going to give him a break, so he might as well have fun! 4/5
Pablo: Sorry, I can't stand this song. Really. I'm not going to waste my precious time listening to any version. 0/5
Paul: People have obviously paid for moulds of his cock and to see him licking cum out of another man's arse, so I can't see why they wouldn't spend their pennies on hearing him sing. I certainly won't be though. This is not very good in the slightest. It's sad when porn stars get old. Stick to being bound and gagged Colton, it makes your music so much more bearable. 1/5
Rob: Terrible. Dean Monroe (another gay porn star turned popstar) has put out a brilliant pop song recently. Original and fabulous. This is trite and contrived. I hate. And I love it too. I hate that I love it. 4/5
The Prophet: Colton's cover of Britney's brilliant hidden gem "Trouble" is a guilty and extremely shameful pleasure of mine but I cannot and will not endorse this Hi-NRG REM cover. I promise all jokes aside that I almost started CRYING from seeing this and I HAD to turn it off. It's the absolute worst thing that I have ever seen in my whole life and it's scarred me more than the time I accidentally saw somebody fisting up to their shoulder on This almost makes me hate music altogether and I REFUSE to rate this unless I can give it a MINUS SCORE. If this wins I am 100% resigning from the Pop panel. 0/5
Total: 13/35

Girls Can't Catch – Keep Your Head Up (Video)

Yet another UK girlband.

Courtney: The phenomenon of the girl group is so fascinating. I think we should start idolizing their producers and creators. It is really hard to vibe anything from the girls, even Lady Gaga, who we now know is undeniably supreme took a while to break out of the mould of manufactured pop starlet. A mould that these girls seem to fit far too well. Rather than liking the group we should follow the people behind them. Is Peter Lorraine behind these girls too? 3/5
D'Luv: Brilliant! It's like Bananarama got in a time machine and f'd their way to 2009. Sorry, Girls Aloud—it's all over. 4/5
Mike: Utterly foul. These clowns make Stonefoxx look like the Sugababes. 0/5
Pablo: Since the Spice Girls, no girlband has been as successful. Since Girls Aloud, no girlband has such a trademark sound. Sorry, no offence but it's like that. This song is so great but Girls Aloud could have made it ten times better. Fact. 4/5
Paul: Dreadful name of the band (not as bad as rape sounding No Means Yes). Dreadful song title that sounds like it came from an oral sex instruction manual. Fairly decent song that had I written this review on time would've scored much lower but has grown on me over the week. 3.5/5
Rob: When the likes of Pussycat Dolls are releasing amazing songs like "Hush Hush", girlbands really have to up the ante. A nice addition to pop world but Australian girlband Raen have been doing this sort of thing and a lot better too. 2.75/5
The Prophet: I saw this fucking shit earlier in the week. Do these nobodies actually expect some level off success with this? To be honest it's actually not THAT bad, but groups like All Saints, Spice Girls, Atomic Kitten, Girls Aloud, and the Sugababes have all set the bar so high that I expect nothing less than perfection from newcomers vying for the girl group crown. 0.5/5
Total: 15.75/35

Florence & The Machine – Rabbit Heart (Video)

One of the most hyped acts of 2009's latest attempt for chart glory.

Courtney: Meh. Didn't do much for me. I found her very hard to understand so I did not connect with the lyrics that well. 3/5
D'Luv: Tori Amos wants her pussy back. 0/5
Mike: Florence tries way too hard but underneath all the pretense and team of stylists is a great songwriter. The intro is a bit dull but when the chorus kicks in, "Rabbit Heart" turns into an unexpectedly joyous pop tune. I'm giving Flo the benefit of the doubt for the moment. 3.5/5
Pablo: What is Nicola Roberts doing in another video? It's too "Louis XVIII" for me. It goes in one ear and out the other. 1/5
Paul: It's the craziness of Kate Bush mixed with the kookiness of Bjork. At first it sort of meanders but then the brilliance of the song really kicks in and makes it quite delightful. Raise it up indeed. 4/5
Rob: Slightly too much like she's walked out of Beyond Retro (Shoreditch clothes shop) and built her entire direction from a sick weekend furiously taking notes in and around Hoxton Square. 1/5
The Prophet: Me likey. It actually sounds like music and I really like the way she uses her vocals on the chorus. 3.5/5
Total: 16/35

Cascada – Evacuate The Dancefloor (Above)

Cascada returns with a new GaGa-ized sound!

Courtney: Timely lyrics "evacuate the dance floor" and "I'm infected" with the Swine Flu hysteria sweeping the planet. It's a bit run of the mill. Nothing amazing. Having said that I am sure it contains some hypnotic subliminal message that will have me clicking and shimmying all over the dance floor in about two weeks! 3/5
D'Luv: This is just okay. At first I wanted to comment on how she's not doing anything original here, but then, that kind of defines Cascada's entire repetoire. 2/5
Mike: It's great to have Natalie back representing big boned girls around the world! The band deserves credit for not going with another cover but this is just a little too close to Lady GaGa's far superior "Just Dance" for my liking. 3/5
Pablo: I'm not sure if it's Cascada, September or Jo O'Meara. Since Cheryl re-discovered the vocoder on "Tangled Up" everybody is using it. Kind of boring. 2/5
Paul: Everyone says that this is a cheap ass version of the Lady GaGa sound. I'm not sure about that (I could go onto my boring rant about how she stole it from everyone else) but I don't like the verses of this. I do quite like the chorus though. 2/5
Rob: This is how you do it Lady GaGa! Even the rap in the middle works. 5/5
The Prophet: I hate Cascada with a passion. Someone needs to put this horse headed hot mess down at the local pound. Her Hi-NRG cheese was bad enough but now we have to listen to a Z-Grade GaGa? Why does she even want people to evacuate the dancefloor? Aren't you meant to be on it if the song is good? I don't understand! 0/5
Total: 20.5/35

Pink – Funhouse (Video)

Lesbians around the world are clamoring to get inside Pink's Funhouse.

Courtney: How can you not love Pink? She is just so fun and so real. Just listening to her unapologetic lyrics, or raspy vocals... even watching her in her clip all just feels real. She is uber cool! 4/5
D'Luv: I imagine that Pink's funhouse has had many clowns up it. 3/5
Mike: There are a handful of truly amazing songs on "Funhouse" but none of them have been singles. The title track is quite quirky for mainstream pop but it's disjointed and ultimately quite boring. 2.5/5
Pablo: I used to like P!nk when I was a woman. But now I have a penis (it was quite expensive, actually) and I'm really tired of P!nk doing the same kicking and burning things in a video. With her ex-husband. Boooooring. But the song is acceptable. 3/5
Paul: I'm so glad P!nk is on the selection of singles. I think she has had an amazing run of singles that will sound proper decent on a greatest hits collection. I love the guitar in the chorus, and I love that a song about a funhouse is so creepy and depressive. Plus she counts backwards in the chorus which has been proven by Kylie in "Light Years' to be a genius pop move. 3.5/5
Rob: Slightly unusual to be honest. I think I love it. I think the other songs on the album deserved single status over this but hey it works! 3/5
The Prophet: I'm a big fan of Pinks last two albums "Try This" and "I'm Not Dead" but I can't get into her latest. I do love this song though and it was a standout for me, not to mention the video is AMAZING. 4/5
Total: 23/35

Tommy Trash – Need Me To Stay (Video)

The Sydney DJ has set the club charts on fire with this dance anthem.

Courtney: I love Tommy. We worked together a few years ago and he has just achieved such great things. His music is cool and the clip is hot. I love the acoustic guitar riff, if has a bit of a Bob Sinclair vibe with the black male vocal. Feels cool. It is not trying too hard, it just is. And he gets an extra half a point for the hot boy in the clip! 4/5
D'Luv: Kind of interesting. I'd never buy this, though. If I heard it while driving to grandma's for sex, it might sound alright. 3/5
Mike: What is it with dance videos and semi-naked lesbians? At least Tommy is an equal opportunity perv and throws in a hot guy, for which I'm extremely grateful. As for the song, I look forward to hearing it every time I go out. Mr Trash has come up with the perfect Saturday night floorfiller. Love the Bass Kleph remix. 4.5/5
Pablo: A video with a shirtless male, showing his huge nipples is enough for me. Even if he is shaved. I know the old witch Mike doesn't let us speak about the videos anymore, but this is great. Girls electrified seems perfect to me. A little bit of hair in his chest and the video would have been a work of art. The song could perfectly fit into Dannii's career. It's her sound. I kinda like it. 5/5
Paul: I know we're not meant to comment on the video but girls in a shower? Really? Talk about lowest common denominator! It's fairly decent overall and slightly dirty ("I'm inside you") which i like, so it ranks slightly higher than if I just saw the video. 3/5
Rob: Highly unoriginal. I really can't stand this for some reason. I think Uniting Nations were doing this a few years back. Good for a few plays during the summer but pretty sloppy. 1/5
The Prophet: This isn't bad, it's still dance music but it's not cheesy and OTT, and besides the pornographic video I don't mind it. The singing is interesting. 2.75/5
Total: 23.25/35


Marina & The Diamonds – I Am Not A Robot

This is the lead single from the Welsh pop star's latest EP "The Crown Jewels". Please note that the Panel are referring to a fan made video, not the official clip (below) which only hit the net a couple of days ago.

Courtney: She has a frank Lily Allen lyrical approach. "Better to be hated than loved for what you're not", the clip is cute and witty. 3.5/5
D'Luv: Another one that would sound okay if I were eating pizza out of some stripper's thong at a church picnic, but I'd probably never pay for it. The music, that is. I'd pay for the stripper. 3/5
Mike: One of the most exciting pop songs I've heard all year. The lyrics are beautiful and Marina's voice lifts them to the next level. This is probably a bit too subtle for mainstream success but I'm now officially gagging for her album. 5/5
Pablo: erm... what? After the robot from Untouchable and the robot from Robyn, I think I have enough with robots in songs. 1/5
Paul: Love love love this. I think it's so elegant and ethereal. Beautiful lyrics too. One of my favourite songs of the year so far. 5/5
Rob: Amazing. Rich, beautiful and powerful. The sound of tomorrow is here! I love that earthy feeling to it. 5/5
The Prophet: I was about to give up on the video when I saw the pictures of the dogs with the robots. I know we aren't meant to review the video but I love it, and I also love when she says "I am not a robot", although she probably means it in some pretentious indie-pop context, but I still like it. 3/5
Total: 25.5/35


The Prophet said...

Hmm, I have many things to say.

First of all I love Courtney and how dare you not give me the spoiler that she was judging! Courtney and Clea were my faves on Idol, but Clea was the best because she sung Janet.

I didn't know Dean Monroe did a single! I'm not into popular gay porn stars because I think they're boring (unlike the fabulous straight starlets Sasha Grey and Jesse Jane who I got an autograph from!) but Dean is one of the few gay stars I like! I love when they double fuck him in Blackballed, though I love it when ANYBODY gets double fucked, including women.

How dare you people give Cuntcada anything higher than 1/5.

How dare you people give Colton Flop anything higher than minus 1 billion, and how dare Mike put a 0/5 as my rating when I said I couldn't rate it! My silence would've displayed my disgust more than that zero ever could.

I feel like I have more to say but my mind is drawing a blank.

*starts singing rub me wrong*

The Prophet said...




Paul said...

the shouting hurts my eyes :)

A worthy winner this week, though i love the cute fan made video better than the paid for one :) Great guest judge too!

The Prophet said...

You might think I'm crazy but I'm serious, it's better you know nowww, what I thought happiness was only part time bliss, you can take a bow...

Im not here to feed your insecurities

I wanted you to love me

This has become an all too familiar scene

Its not the first time Ive paid the fare

Whered you get the idea of material possession?

Thank you for the ride nowhere

And oh my meters running, so I really got to go

Its the principle of pleasure oh-oh oh oh oh

Its the pleasure principle, principle

Oh ohhhh ohhhh oh

tommie said...

Colton was robbed, but I thank for Prophet for his link tip.

tommie said...

BTW, Janet is a fat irrelevant whore.

And the word verifaction I got for this was "caning" - how appropriate...

Electroqueer said...

Luciana last?! Impossible!! How can a track that has already been chosen as Single Of The Week in DMC Update and is riding high in the Cool Cuts Chart come last?!! Speaks volumes about the panel me thinks!

Grammy nominated Richard Vission who also remixed this track is exceptionally well versed from head to toe in the electronic house scene and has chewed and spat out hot track after hot track onto the dance floor and I LIKE THAT is no exception. You'd have to be bonkers, not to adore this tune. Richard has had his hands in about every musical cookie jar, from Hillary Duff, Timbaland, U2 and Radiohead, the list ceases to amaze me and Luciana let's not forget is an Ivor Novello nominee, the UK's most prestigious music awards. She is an awesome songwriter and performer and does not deserve bottom place! Go listen again!

Paul said...

well it's all down to individual choice and taste really isn't it? Just because a song is single of the week in DMC updates and on a cool cuts chart doesn't dictate I should like it. I make my choices based on the song i listened to as I'm sure other people here do. There are many immensely popular songs and acts I don't really get, and some of them I really tried with. And there's the point - if I have to try it's not really fun. Music shouldn't be work. I did listen again - a couple of times. And still not for me. Guess i'm not a cool cuts kind of guy. And believe me - that's more than ok with me :)

Mike said...

Well, I love the Luciana song and also think she got a raw deal but this is a "Pop" Panel and dance tracks usually don't fare very well unfortunately. "Riverside" suffered a similar fate a couple of weeks ago. I'm happily surprised that Tommy did so well but I think the brilliant video made it easier to swallow.

And Prophet - Take your pills! I do think it's cool you remember Clea though. I loved her too.

D'luv said...

Alright, alright, after the imploring from Electroqueer, I decided that perhaps I was a bit hasty in my rating, and so I decided to heed to the advice of 'go listen again.'

Mike, can you change my original rating, and now subtract five from zero? Thanks!

Courtney Act, it's an honor to be in your, PRESENCE.

John said...

Where's Susan Powter when you need her, indeed!

I felt like I was listening to a Bat for Lashes/Regina Spektor mashup hearing Marina. Not sure if that's a good thing or not.

So we have electrocuted models, a Renaissance Faire, urban croquet, superhero drag, the same ol' Cascada video, and black and white nightmares. Video is officially dead.

Robpop said...

I love Courtney!!!

"I will be in the UK in a few weeks, but only for a quick trip. I still plan on moving there next year... but alas... that is a whole year away.."

Sounds fantastic! Please do some shows at the Leicester Sq Theatre.

Like D'luv I too listened to the song that retrieved such low marks. I am always prepared to keep an open mind. The issue with Luciana is she is a victim of her own sound that she has made so have girlbands like Electrocute doing Luciana better than Luciana herself these days. Dance, for me, has to groundbreaking OR ever changing. I Like That is Luciana being incredibly lazy.

There was once a b-side sung by Patsy Stone and Eddie of absolutely fabulous. It pretty much illustrated how boring this particular genre can be. And this record has fallen for every cliche in book. Yawn.

As for the winner (lets not forget that)...completely and utterly deserved.

I'm chanting as we speak.

Jay said...

Courtney Act is beyond fabulous!

The rest of you are a bunch of tasteless heathens! My The Goddess SMITE you with thunderbolts and crush you with her thunder thighs!

The Prophet said...

You're all vile pigs! Except Courtney! And jay because he has a picture of Dannii!

undisco_me said...

Luciana definately exfoliates using a cheesegrater and moisturises afterwards with vinegar - you can hear it in her fantastic, painful-sounding vocals yelping for relief. She'll never top Jellyhead - Crush had double penetration vocals nevermind Shasha Grey's (probably, mostly lucky) ass. They need to hook up and re-record Covered In Spunk as a double-functioning single and sequal to one of her movies.

Pink ripping off the Ting Tings is more boring than Dannii falling asleep whilst filming 'Ibiza Cum-Sharing Whores 5'.

I absolutely LOVE the Cascada track - the verses are disgusting, with the bass chaffing like her thighs are lubricated with liquids not seen since Tina Cousins' last visited the GUM clinic returning from Africa, but that chorus is going to unite gays and chavs on the dancefloor for the first time since You're A Superstar. Maybe if the rapper rapped 'guess who's black rapping on this track' it would have been less offensive, but Natalie's cellulite-busting vocals are her best yet.

will said...

I love these!! :')

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