Friday, December 31, 2010

Soraya's Dreamer - Pop Trash Review

Sorry for being MIA for the past couple of weeks but this month has been a bigger bitch than Cheryl Cole at a Black Pride rally. I know it's the time of year when I should be putting together my 'best of 2010' countdowns - and they will follow in the next few days - but before all that, there's one last post I need to write. A post that's been on my mind since late September when Spanish pop goddess/musical genius Soraya dropped her 5th studio album. Even the most casual reader of this blog knows how much I worship Europe's gift to the world. I ranked her last album the equal best of 2008, I wrote her an open letter after she was brutally denied Eurovision glory for being too beautiful and talented for that fraudulent competition and I almost died when she hit me up on Twitter. Needless to say, new material from Soraya is a cause for celebration and it's high time I reviewed her latest genre defining pop masterpiece.

"Dreamer" picks up where "Sin Miedo" left off. It's an explosion of thumping dance music with a heavy sprinkling of catchy Europop to keep radio and Chueca happy. It's perhaps a little more club-centric than her last stunning opus but the only real difference is that she's chosen to sing in English - the first time since her delicious duo of 80s covers albums. The gamble appears to have paid off. "Live Your Dreams", the album's first single, has been a smash in Europe - bringing Soraya chart glory in important world markets like Poland and Ukraine. And I'm convinced the hits will continue to flow as the world falls under the spell of Spain's greatest musical export since Las Supremas de Móstoles. Here is my track by track review of "Dreamer":

Dreamer

I've already blogged about the album's catchy title track and slated second single. "Dreamer" was written by Australian Idol flop Natalie Gauci but - as far as I can tell - recorded by Soraya first. Poor, desperate Natalie obviously heard how glorious our queen's version sounded and decided to release it herself. Annoyingly, her version has become a big dance hit in Australia and now every time I'm in a club I'm tortured by it. Sometimes life just isn't fair! On the bright side, Natalie is a complete nobody - so it shouldn't impact on Soraya's release outside of Australia. "Dreamer" is a slick dance track with killer beats and a catchy chorus but I think there are much better songs on the album. Not that it matters. As soon as Soraya releases a sexy video for the song, I'm sure it will go straight to #1 in every country with a gay club!

Failing Me (Runaway)

Continuing the theme of singing amazing songs written by flop divas, "Failing Me (Runaway)" was written by British singer-songwriter Lucie Silvas. She actually had a great album called "Breathe In"... I wonder if anyone else remembers her. But I digress. This is another floorfiller with a slightly softer edge than "Dreamer". It's very pretty and reminds me of vintage Sash! It's about time someone revived early noughties trance and Soraya is just the diva to do it. I love the chorus and the song showcases her radically improved English. My only problem with the track is the unrealistic lyrical content. It's a statistically proven fact that Soraya is the most glamorous woman on earth - so who would ever cheat on her? It's like Marta Sanchez singing a song about being a 15 year old virgin.

Give You Up

Soraya really has turned her attention to the dancefloor this time around. Her collaboration with Spanish DJ/producer Juan Magan moves the stunning diva into Inna's Hi-NRG dance territory. Only with more autotune than Ke$ha and the year's least convincing rap. In other words, it's completely amazing and I love every second! It's official. Dannii has finally been replaced as the Queen of clubs!

Ticking All The Boxes

After a string of dance anthems, Soraya decides to revolutionise pop music as we know it with a trio of heavenly tunes that any world class diva would be proud to call their own. "Ticking All The Boxes" is a bit of a throwback to "Sin Miedo" - an instantly memorable chorus shines against a hot and sticky web of synths. I love the random la la las and the fact that something clearly got lost in translation. I'm not sure if this song is about doing the Sunday crossword or finding a man. And I don't give a fuck. Soraya is too fabulous for anything as boring and menial as lyrics that make sense! This is cute, catchy and captures the diva's effortless charisma perfectly.

I Got You

And the award for the best song on "Dreamer" goes to "I Got You". This is the musical equivalent of ecstasy in the 90s. You know, when it actually worked. One listen to this gloriously cheesy burst of Eurotastic synthpop will raise your serotonin to dangerously high levels and leave you smiling like The Joker after getting a blow job from Batman. I love everything about this. The fabulously retro production that sounds like something Ace Of Base released in 1997, Soraya's euphoric vocal and the Eurovision ready chorus. She should totally enter "I Got You" next year and get her revenge on the sad haters that ranked her second last! Trust me, every bitch in Europe will be saying "Lena who?"

You've Got The Music

Oh the piano intro is a nice touch. I like a bit of chillaxed Soy Soy. It makes it even more exciting when the beats start pumping. Actually, this is quite a deep dancefloor anthem. Lyrics like "You're feeling so rough inside" will speak volumes to fans as they hear this leaving the club at 10am. Soraya is so in touch with the gays! In all seriousness, this is a genuinely uplifting floorfiller about losing yourself in the music. It's been done before - 178 times by Kylie alone - but the production is polished and the diva's powerful pipes shine through. I want to hear a really cool remix.

Electric Girl

Soraya goes electro on this fun duet with Turkish pop star Bedük. It's a bit repetitive and the lyrics leave something to be desired - hearing "electric girl in an electric world" ten times in a row does get a bit annoying but it's interesting to hear Soraya experiment with different sub-genres of dance music. I don't think her future lies in this Uffie-if-she-could-sing-and-wasn't-totally-shit sound but it breaks the album up and makes the following pop explosion all the more exquisite.

Twilight

Who knew Soraya was a Twihard? This gorgeous pop tune is the 2010 equivalent of Kate Bush's "Wuthering Heights" - a cute and catchy musical adaptation of classic piece of literature! In this case, the Spanish pop deity channels Bella from Stephenie Meyer's vampire novels. Classy lyrics "before I reach immortality, I gotta know - will you stay with me?" make this an instant pop trash classic and a close second to "I Got You" as my favourite song on the album. The production is a dreamy delight and I love the pretty chorus. I just want to know if Soraya is team Edward or Jacob. I bet she has a vibrator called Mr Cullen!

Live Your Dreams

I don't know what's left to say about Soraya's stunning international smash hit "Live Your Dreams". Eminem's "Love The Way You Lie" was apparently the biggest selling single of 2010 but I think there was a mistake. Was that depressing duet a #51 smash in Belgium? Probably but it doesn't matter. This is clearly one of the biggest songs of the year (in gay bars) and even managed to be successful despite Antoine Clamaran trying to steal Soraya's thunder in the video (below). He needs to stop pretending to be David Guetta and let the real star shine! Finding a physical copy of this legendary dance anthem in a French CD store was so exciting. I love that the world is finally discovering the true queen of pop! Time to release it in Australia.

In My Blood

Soraya must really love those vampire books because the blood metaphors keep coming. This album highlight has a bit of a harder edge than songs like "I Got You" and "Twilight" but the move towards electro works a lot better this time around. The dark and atmospheric beats provide the perfect backdrop for the diva's soft vocals. I'm not sure about the male backing singer shouting "blood!" but, otherwise, it's pretty hard to fault. This is a world class pop tune - sleek, sexy and instantly catchy. Soraya really has come a long way from this!

Close To Me

The last track on my copy of the album - there are bonus remixes on iTunes - is a 7 minute dance anthem courtesy of Spanish DJ Wally Lopez. I was expecting another upbeat number but "Close To Me" is something akin to slow disco. Think Kylie's "I Believe In You" - only with Balearic beats and a sample that sounds like an out of tune violin. Some fans hate this but I think it's amazing and want to hear it while I'm drinking Vina Sol, watching the sunset at Cafe Del Mar. A brilliant close to a career making album.

10/10

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Pop Panel 3 - Week 7

Pop Panel is back for another week after a brief hiatus and it's one of the strangest installments yet. I don't think I've ever seen so many songs get full marks or zeros. This is the ultimate love it or hate it week! The winner is also a major surprise. I'm happy it won but I think the second and third place getters are considerably better. I was tempted to re-vote to rig the outcome but I'm not quite that desperate. We also have a fabulous celebrity guest helping out this week but more about her later. Here are the bitches responsible for this week's outcome:

D'Luv (US) writer of Chart Rigger and Idolator
Mike (AUS) author of this classy blog
Robpop (UK) writer of Don't Stop The Pop
The Prophet (AUS) writer of The Prophet

We were also assisted by the following guest judges:

David Lim (Aus) writer of the fabulous Feed Limmy and a budding pop star in his own right. Check out this fabulous demo. I want more!

and

Australian rock chick turned electro-pop sensation Sarah McLeod. Everyone over the age of 25 will remember Sarah as the sexy frontwoman of iconic rock band The Superjesus. Since then she's turned her hand to dance music with major success. "He Doesn't Love You" was absolutely massive in the clubs, my favourite "White Horse" charted internationally and her amazing 2010 comeback song "Double R" is currently being given major support by Tiesto on his world tour. When she's not setting dancefloors on fire, Sarah is helping keep homeless kids off the street. All the proceeds of her latest single - a stunning cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing In The Dark" - are going to a homeless charity, so pull your finger out and download it from iTunes. Check out the song and video below:

As usual the songs are rated for lowest to highest.

Millionaires - Party Like A Millionaire (Video)

American girlband/online sensation sing about... their pussies.

David: My middle finger's totally up in the air. Slags, I think we just stumbled on a new choon to strut our asses to. My pussay's totally doing the krump like you won't believe. 3/5
D'Luv: I liked "Stay The Night", but this is WAY too desperate. These whores need to shut the fuck up and get back to the nightshift at McDonald's. 0/5
Mike: Gross. Ke$ha has her moments but the new Queen of pop's tongue is always firmly in cheek while "Party Like A Millionaire" sounds like a 'how to' manual written by Paris Hilton. If she came from Bankstown. 0/5
Robpop: So this is what happened to Daphne & Celeste. Utterly shit. 0/5
Sarah McLeod: Man I thought Ke$ha was bad, this hitz a new low, great role models those ladies... Mike, you're diluting my precious antique ears. 0/5
The Prophet: Millionaires are so defining and I can't believe I missed that they had a new single out! It's not quite as excellent as their Madonna rip off "Stay the Night" but the disgusting video makes up for it! 5/5
Total: 8/30

Kat DeLuna - Party O'Clock (Video)

RedOne produced Kat's latest stunning Belgium only release.

David: I've grown old waiting for this video to drop but now that I've seen Kat's bebeh face pouting and gyrating, I don't think I want this no more. Why is she still looking like a child with grown chichis? What's with the Belgium-only release? The world needs to get in on this. 4/5
D'Luv: I remember reading an interview with RedOne last year where he said he's only producing material for people who sell records going forward. He must have either been high on K or he's tapping Kat Deluna's already cluttered ass. Not an awful song, but too bad someone with a bit more class like Smokahontas Jones isn't singing it. 2.5/5
Mike: I'm a loud and proud Kat DeLuna stan. "Push Push" is easily one of the best songs of 2010 - but this is ten kinds of tragic from the lame lyrics to embarrassing video. Talk about going from the sublime to the ridiculous. 2/5
Robpop: Torrents of epic lameness. This kind of music is starting to sound so similar now. 0/5
Sarah McLeod: I hate this song and now its stuck in my head, it’s fuckin' awful. Thanx Mike. 1/5
The Prophet: Kat is the Queen of europop and I've been whoring "Party O'Clock" since the demo first leaked. Kat DeLuna is like crack to me - I just can't get enough! 5/5
Total: 14.5/30

Johnny McGovern & Calpernia - Likin' Big Dicks (Video)

A cover of "Like A G6".

David: I cannot wait to pump this as I cruise through the straight club districts. You know them closet hungry bottoms can't help but respond to this. 5/5
D'Luv: These two are still alive? 0/5
Mike: This song is so redundant. It goes without saying that we all like monster cocks but they're not exactly in short supply. It's much harder to find something worthwhile attached to the end of the penis. 2/5
Robpop: This needs a big douche as too full of shit to function. 0/5
Sarah McLeod: It's like Right Said Fred for the new millinium, love it! 5/5
The Prophet: Finally somebody is making music I can relate to. I'm so proud to be a size queen... *sheds tear*. 5/5
Total: 17/30

Natalia Kills - Mirrors (Above)

Natalia has been dubbed the new Lady Gaga. Produced by Akon.

David: I can't wait for this vixen to step out of that "Gaga wannabe" tag so I can get a proper assessment of her style. Dark, menacing and promising - Imma keep this tab open and check back for the next video. 4/5
D'Luv: Wake me up when Lolene Ferreira Kills happens. 2/5
Mike: Natalia is fierce. I love her attitude and mini-movies but she's asking for trouble by releasing "Mirrors" as her debut. It's very similar to "Just Dance" - only without the amazing lyrics about being too drug fucked to find your keys and phone. I'm excited about her album. 3.5/5
Robpop: Synthetic shit that thinks its amazingly hip but so devoid of soul that it emerges as a massive blackhole of creativity. These songs all sound exactly the same now. Stop trying to sound like knock-off Rihanna/GaGa's and get your own sound girls. 0/5
Sarah McLeod: Lady GaGa’s running real low on inspiration these dayz... Oh wait, it's not Lady GaGa... ERROR. I hate seeing the wave of imposters in the wake of someone else’s success. It blows. Having said that if there was no Lady GaGa it wouldn’t be too bad. 3/5
The Prophet: Shits on Tranny GaGa's "Just Flop", but it probably won't become a hit because Natalia has too much class to suck Jimmy Iovine and Akon's cocks like GaGa did to get in the charts! 5/5
Total: 17.5/30

September - Resuscitate Me (Video)

Swedish pop diva returns with new single.

David: Aww. Who's upset our Swedish dance goddess? Because I'm not recognising this raccoon leaking all over the track. True talk: I love me some dance ballads but this sounds painfully dated. It's probably not her schtick but September could use with some avant garde remixers to light up this track. 2/5
D'Luv: This is alright. September has done better. But, hey — maybe with that haircut people will mistake her for Robyn and actually buy this song? 2/5
Mike: LOL at D'Luv insinuating that Robyn actually has hits. But I digress. I worship Petra and "Resuscitate Me" is the cutest thing she's put her name to since "Because I Love You". Everything about this light and fluffy Euro-pop gem pushes my buttons from the unashamedly romantic lyrics to the insidiously catchy chorus. Now how do I get me some of that love CPR? 5/5
Robpop: What do you have if you put Robyn and Booty Luv: you get this rebranded and new look September. And I fucking love it. Really needs a key change and then it would soar into the pop stratosphere. 5/5
Sarah McLeod: “I NEED LOVE CPR”??????????? Is she serious, that’s AWESOME! Ha ha ha ha! 1/5
The Prophet: September just snatch Cuntcada's wig! 5/5
Total: 20/30

Hurts - All I Want For Christmas Is New Year's Day (Video)

Uk electro band unveil the year's most depressing holiday anthem.

David: And the room falls silent. Yo, Mike, what's with the hard-on killer? In light of Mimi's depressingly saccharine Christmas album, this might just be my much-sought after antidote. 3/5
D'Luv: Wow — we actually get one scrap of class this week? Thanks! I like Hurts, though their dour schtick is wearing pretty thin at this point. Still, this perfectly sums up how effing depressing the holidays truly tend be if you're over the age of 10. 5/5
Mike: Finally a song that captures the pure misery of Christmas. Until now I had dismissed Hurts as a Pet Shop Boys tribute act but this might just convert me. 5/5
Robpop: And breathe. Finally an act and song that dares to include a melody, real vocals and interesting narrative. I love this. 4.5/5
Sarah McLeod: Wow I LOVED this band when I heard "Better Than Love" but this song is L.A.M.E, most christmas songs are though... unless they’re carols, in which case they’re RAD! 3/5
The Prophet: The only Christmas songs worth playing are Vanessa Hudgen's "Winter Wonderland" and Fiona Apple's Frosty the Snowman. All else = fail. The only thing that hurts about this Xmas tune are my fucking ears. 0/5
Total: 20.5/30

SINGLE OF THE WEEK

Kara - Jumping (Video)

Forget 2NE1 and Girls Generation, South Korea's defining girlband is here.

David: This is totally satiating my Asian persuasion but I don't know, gurls. Them stakes are raised pretty high for K-pop girl bands right now and that choreography's definitely setting them back a bit. Why wasn't I called in to coach them on the booty bounce? 3/5
D'Luv: My favorite member of Kara is the one with the huge cock. 3/5
Mike: Oh look, it's the pretty and talented version of 2NE1! Utterly stunning! 5/5
Robpop: Nice but we've heard this all before. 0.5/5
Sarah McLeod: ASIAN JAILBAIT... I felt perverted watching this clip. 5/5
The Prophet: Mike is a cunt for ignoring my stunning K-Pop suggestions of 2NE1 and Orange Caramel in favor or KARAccident, but I'm stanning for K-Pop lately so they get full marks, even if the song itself is beneath the ones I suggested! 5/5
Total: 21.5/30

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Dirty Talk With Wynter Gordon

A couple of weeks ago I turned up to a random hotel in Sydney to interview Wynter Gordon. I was an emotional wreck, running late and left the questions I had been putting together for the past few days on the train. So there I am, madly scribbling questions onto a serviette in the lobby with a pen I stole from reception, when I was ushered up to Wynter's suite. It wasn't the most auspicious of beginnings but from the moment I sat down next to the woman behind such stunning unreleased classics as "Surveillance" and "Had Enough", I knew it would be fine. Wynter was lovely, articulate and even hotter in person! We talked about her current Australian smash "Dirty Talk", dissected her multitude of leaked tracks and discussed her other career as a songwriter for hire. It was particularly interesting to hear about her involvement in J. Lo's scrapped album and her evolution from urban diva to club queen. I'm so disappointed she didn't perform in Sydney. If "Dirty Talk" keeps exploding it shouldn't be too long until she's back. If the clips from her other Australian gigs are any indication, it will be well and truly worth the wait.

Congratulations on the success of Dirty Talk! It’s been huge in the clubs over here and is now shooting up iTunes. Is it strange to be an Australian sensation almost a year after the song was released in the US?
Things take a long time to happen, I didn’t even realise it. Songs take a long time to go from the club to the mixshow to the actual radio, so I mean... I’m actually not surprised. I’m just grateful.

Do you have any plans to re-release it in the States now that it’s taking off?
Well, it’s just going to radio in the States. In America it was just released in the clubs.

I thought it had been out for a while over there.
No, it was just pretty much an internet sensation and then every club played it like it was a radio song.

Can I ask why you changed the video? I kinda liked the naughty school girl look in the original!
The first video was kinda my idea but we had such a small budget that my idea was a little bit too big! You know what happened? The label didn’t realise that it was going to be such a big song so we just did it as, you know, an internet video. It wasn’t supposed to be the huge MTV video. You know, to win awards or anything, so it was like a small budget but I had big dreams. I was like we’re gonna have smoke, there’s gonna be animals flying from the rooftops but my vision was a little bit too big for the budget, so at the end it just looked like a perfume video.

I kinda loved it to be honest with you.
The hair, the costumes! Yeah, the second video is a little bit more tame...

It’s a more artistic but I still prefer the first one.
You know what? I do too. I liked it. I think we should have mashed them up and then do two videos.

Or at least keep the first one online because I realised it’s been taken off YouTube. I’m devastated!
Maybe I should just put it back up. It’s on my page. I can put it back up. I’ll do it for you!

Thank you. How sweet! So the song has these awesome lyrics about S&M, hot wax, the back seat of your car...
Yeah!

Are guys scared of you now or are they flocking to you?
No, I mean, when I go out... the Guidos, you know the Jersey Shore club, they’re just like "do it, take your clothes off!" but most people don’t. They know it’s fun. I don’t really come across as the pole hopping slut. I wrote the song in good fun. You know, I have my naughty side when I have a boyfriend but since I’m single...

I’ll put out a call to all the hot guys I know.
I’m single and ready to mingle! No one really does anything. It’s really much more perverted old men.

That’s kinda cool... I guess!
It’s like dads times two. Like grandpas.

So you got the geriatric crowd on board?
Yeah!

That’s awesome.
If you’re in a wheelchair, you’re into me!

You mentioned on Twitter a couple of weeks ago that you heard your neighbours blasting "Dirty Talk"...
Yeah I was in my bed sick.

And I was just wondering, have you got your head around hearing your song on the radio?
You know what – it’s happened so many times now. People are just listening to it on their iPod. It doesn’t weird me out anymore. I don’t think I’ve ever been weirded out by it. It’s just surprising and happy and I always get a little excited.

It must be encouraging...
You know, I’ve never gotten into this business for the fame of it. I really genuinely just wanted to do music and not do office work. I was like anything to spare my life from, you know, an office. I just wanted to do music. That’s what I love to do and I’m just glad I got the opportunity and every time I hear it and I hear someone playing it, I know I still have a job. So it’s like – praise the lord!

You started writing songs for other people. A lot of people seem to be doing that now. Like Lady Gaga and Ke$ha started writing songs for other people before striking out on their own – is it just a foot in the door or a good way to hone your craft?
I wouldn’t say hone your craft but I mean for a lot of people it’s a foot in the door. I know that Lady gaga, she always wanted to be an entertainer. Like Ke$ha always wanted to be an entertainer and it’s pretty much, you do whatever you gotta do to get in. So I mean for me writing started it off. Honing the craft is really just doing it consistently. Writing, performing, whatever you can. Just not stopping. You kinda get better.

Speaking of songwriting, I love all of the songs you wrote for J Lo’s album, particularly “Everybody’s Girl”, which I think is a total smash.
Really?

Yeah. That seems to have been shelved. Please tell me you’re going to use those songs yourself.
Um, I’m not!

They’re so good!
I’m really upset what happened with her. I think “What Is Love” is actually my favourite she did. I feel like if she did that one song that would have been like her next big smash but unfortunately things with her label got a little dodgy.

It’s just a shame though because I remember when “Everybody’s Girl” hit the net, I thought it was her best song in ten years.
What about "What Is Love"?

That’s hot too.
I think she vocally killed that one. Cause nobody ever really hears J Lo go and I think she went with that song. She sang it.

When you write something and it doesn’t come off do you get very frustrated?
Sad. I mean artists go through the worst... I mean this whole industry is based on opinion and your life is definitely in someone else’s hands. It’s not like you get a cheque every day. It’s not a 9 to 5. There’s no security or insurance. You really do music and hope people like it and support it and your label has to support it. You know, it’s risky.

It’s funny, I was listening to a lot of your songs on my iPod on the way in here and it’s like your sound has evolved over the years. It was quite urban in the beginning and now you’ve become a club queen...
The thing is when you first come out, there’s limited people to work with. You just work with whoever’s available and I grew up in New York City, in Queens, so I worked with a lot of urban producers so writing to their music and their tracks, I got a lot of urban music. I grew up listening to a lot of alternative and pop music, all types of music, so I was never really in one genre. It was really what was available to me. The quality and things like that. And as I started to do more and more, I got to experience more and more. Meet different people, use better things.

Speaking of different people, you’ve worked with everyone – David Guetta, Freemasons. The biggest names in dance. How do you keep scoring all these A List collaborations?
I say everything happens for a reason. There was one point in time where I was – where the hell is my life going? I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. I was just recording and I didn’t know what was going on with my life and then I did the Flo (Rida) song and that got me through a period of time. You know, doing that I got to go on Jimmy Kimmel, American Idol, travel the world, do huge festivals. And then I did a mixtape and David Guetta called. It’s like – I love what you did on your mixtape. I want you on my album. And I’m not even an artist out yet. I have no album, no single and it’s just like there’s another opportunity. I think everything for me is happening in its time and reason. I have to believe that or otherwise I’ll just get a noose. End it now!

I really love your angry songs. I was getting down to Woman Scorned and Had Enough, do you find it cathartic to put all that into music? Get it all out?
Yeah. Sometimes I want to rip someone’s head off. I’m a pretty emotional person.You have to be to be an artist. I’m very passionate, so when I’m angry, I’m really angry. There’s no bringing me down.

But the you’ve also got a softer side cause a song like “I Like Your Noise”, which I think is so romantic.
I wrote that for Taylor Swift!

Really, that’s interesting.
I write songs for other people. Like I wrote “Rebel Song” for Miley Cyrus because she put that album out “Can’t Be Tamed” and when I heard the name of the album, I was like I wanna write a song for Miley and then I wrote “I Like Your Noise”... hey, how did you hear that song?

It’s online.
It is?

Sorry!
My version? Are you kidding? Wow. Alright. Can you hear Taylor Swift doing that?

Now that you say it, I totally can. You sound like her on it.
When I was writing it, I was like, I wanna write for Taylor Swift. A lot of times I think about people.

I might just mention another one of my faves – "Wonderland". Those lyrics are so smart and sexy. Is that one you might re-work for the album?
We were thinkin’ about it but there’s so many great songs. I’m proud of my music. All the songs that have leaked, I can proudly say that there’s no songs from me that suck.

How did they all get out there?
I think the same thing. Cause you just said “I Like Your Noise” is on the internet and I’m thinking... how did it happen?

Are there spies in the studio?
I don’t know. I don’t understand it. It used to make me really mad.

Is "Surrender" still going to be your second single?
It’s tentatively the second single. It’s supposed to be. The thing is there’s so many good songs, great songs that it’s kind hard to narrow it down and I really wanna show different sides of me. I don’t wannna put out another song where it doesn’t really showcase my vocals.

So it’s not gonna be another dance anthem like "Dirty Talk"?
Right.

Cause you’ve done so many different genres...
I really wanna let people see the different sides of me. So I have to be careful of what I do.

I can’t wait to hear it.
I should just go upstairs and get my laptop.

Oh fuck yeah... everything that has leaked has been amazing.
Nothing that has leaked is on the album.

I reckon you’ve got two good albums of material from the songs that have already leaked.
I have so many songs, I’ve been waiting for one song from the album to leak, it’s just been songs for other people.

So your EP is really cool and has a great cover...
I styled that!

Is it just a stop gap until your album?
My manager wanted to do that. It’s really just a compilation of all I’ve been doing. You’ve got "Believer" on there, "Toyfriend", so it was just kinda... it has one new song "Right Here" and it was pretty much this is what I’ve been up to if you haven’t heard all of them together.

It’s a nice little introduction to people who don’t know you so well.
Yeah.

One last question, why did you change your name from Diana to Wynter?
I do love my Diana. But I guess it’s just like for every artist... it’s just like my Hannah Montana.

Your alter ego?
Not an alter ego. It’s giving me a chance to just have a separate part. My music and all that on the side. People don’t recognise me on the street, so I just say I’m Diana. If you don’t know me, I wont even tell you what I do.

Thanks for your time.
Thank you!

Auburn - All About Him

Auburn has been on my radar since 2007 when she released an independent album called "Same Giirl". Her PR team at the time contacted me but I thought her music was a bit too credible for the five tragic queens that read this blog. Cut to 2010 and the charismatic singer has been snapped up by JR Rotem's Beluga Heights label. Her debut single "La La La" was a fabulous attempt to jump on Jason Derulo's urban dance bandwagon and amusingly sampled ATC's "Around The World". It eventually peaked at a very respectable #51 on Billboard's Hot 100 - an achievement that Amerie, Ciara and Tea Tea would kill for - but didn't receive the amount of attention it deserved. I hope her second single gets a better reception because it's a killer track. "All About Him" is one of those songs that gets stuck in your head from the very first listen thanks to cute lyrics about meeting guys at Starbucks and more hooks than a hardware store. I particularly love how Auburn channels the Road Runner in the chorus! The production is interesting too. JR has moved away from the heavily produced beats of "La La La" in favour of a more organic, retro vibe. I think this sound suits the diva a lot better. Fingers crossed "All About Him" takes off on radio because this is a very late contender for my best singles of 2010 countdown. I love it and can't wait for the video. Auburn is definitely a name to watch in 2011!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Mimi & The Video Of The Year!

How does she do it? Despite being 24 months pregnant and crazier than the person who gave Cassie Davis a record deal, Mariah still manages to churn out the most fabulous video of 2010 on a budget that would make Jessica Mauboy roll her eyes and say bitch, please. In case you haven't heard it yet, Mimi has released a dance remix of "Auld Lang Syne" just in time for New Year's Eve. I know what you're thinking - finally a worthy successor to J Lo's "Waiting For Tonight"! But the diva wasn't content at recording the soundtrack to a billion drunk party pashes, she also found the time to gay up the 31st of December even further by filming the amazingly cheap video extravaganza you find below. Seriously, this kills me. If I could marry a YouTube clip I would be happy to spend the rest of eternity with this. Leave it to Mimi to squeeze her extremely pregnant arse into a low cut baby doll mini-dress and preen her flowing locks like she's still on the set of "Dreamlover". Throw in the cheapest firework projection in film history, a bunch of tacky ad-libs ("Does anybody really know the words?" at 2:25 mins) and a remix sounds like it was put together by Eiffel 65 and you have an immediate trash classic. Bow down to her for she is holy!

Godtina - Worship Her!

I'm officially obsessed with Xtina again. Burlesque hasn't even been released in Australia yet but I'm already convinced it will be the movie event of 2011 and the soundtrack is almost too fabulous for words. Then there's the amazing bloated drag queen look she's been rocking at premieres around the world and her new found ability to actually get off her arse and promote shit. I've even reached the point where I can listen to "Bionic" without snickering and am seriously considering shelling out $100 for that super deluxe edition. Anyway, here's Floptina the new Queen of cabaret belting out her Golden Globe nominated, Sia co-written gem "Bound To You" at an exclusive showcase. When I see performances like this, I can't believe Christina managed to fall so far. For all her faults - and she has many - the bitch has more talent in her delicious muffin top than the rest of her contemporaries put together. With the exception of Bey and Ke$ha. Of course.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Kristine Elezaj - Warpath

If you're hungry for more Heidi Montag or gagging for Kaci Battaglia's next high brow anthem, then I have the diva for you. Kristine Elezaj is my new obsession. She has it all. Stunning natural beauty, a loyal following in the rally car racing community - I'm not making this up! - and a way with words that will leave you breathless. Take her latest aluminium selling iTunes smash "Warpath", which contains the already iconic lyric:

I saw that trick that you was with last night, she was Justin Bieber's look-a-like!

DEFINING. She also manages to rhyme 'place' with 'ass', which takes imagination and talent. But I digress. "Warpath" is the kind of Britney knock off that Emily Osment would kill for. It sounds like something from "Circus" - if that album was fun and not full of boring filler. I love Kristine's attitude and find this future trash classic genuinely fabulous. Now she just has to unveil the months in the making video clip. You can watch a 40 second preview of it here. What's with the delay? The song was released August! Oh well, I'm sure it will be worth the wait. Check out "Warpath" (below) and help a girl out by downloading her shit legally. I think I'm in love.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

KaraMel - My New Favourite Girlband

1 2 3 4 - get your undies on the floor!

Sorry it's been so long between posts but sometimes shit just happens. The prospect of catching up on everything was kind of overwhelming but then I saw this magnificent clip posted on Facebook (thanks, Joe!) and I just knew it would be perfect for my return. As far as I know, KaraMel could already be an internet sensation but I'm yet to see them get any blog loving. Which is astounding because "Underwear" is absolutely irresistible. If Ke$ha cloned herself and formed a girlband that spent all day listening to Daphne & Celeste's stunning back catalogue of hits for inspiration, I'm convinced they would something like this. KaraMel's debut is a bit naughty, unashamedly trashy and extremely fucking catchy. In other words - just how I like my pop! There's not a lot of information about this delicious duo but I think they hail from Canada and the girls are called Kara and Mel. Hence their classy band name. According to their bio they are also "getting ready to put out a debut album that will redefine the dance-pop genre". I can hardly wait! While we for KaraMel to reinvent popular music as we know it, check out their fabulous video. I love their bad dancing and the array of semi-naked men. Why isn't this a worldwide number one smash?

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Pop Panel 3 - Week 6

Pop Panel never ceases to amaze me. One week Kim Zolciak scoops the pool with a perfect score and the next a pair of critically acclaimed indie-pop darlings take the prize. At least it's never boring! I have to admit I'm kind of torn by the result. I would have loved our runner up to win. It's the second time she's almost snatched victory and I think she deserves it for having 3 great singles out this year. But then our victor is amazing and I've been playing that song on repeat for weeks. Actually, unlike the other judges, I really like most of the songs this week. Some for their so bad it's good appeal and others because they're just pretty - if not strikingly original. Oh well, you be the judge. Is this single of the week up to scratch or should the following judges get a life and get off the internet?

D'Luv (US) writer of Chart Rigger and Idolator
Mike (AUS) author of this classy blog
The Prophet (AUS) writer of The Prophet

We were also assisted by the following bloggers:

Gordon (UK) writer of the amazing Diva Incarnate. If high camp pop is your thing, then his blog is THE place to be!

and

Enric (Spain) writer of Blog petit, pero valent. He's one of my hot Spanish bitches, so you know he's defining.

and last but definitely not least we have a stunning celebrity judge!

Erika Jayne is one of the hottest dance divas on the block right now. Her first 4 singles shot to #1 on the US club chart and her new hit "One Hot Pleasure" looks set to follow suit. Erika's catchy jam perfectly straddles the pop and dance worlds. It's slick, catchy and sexy. It was also written by club King Dave Aude and my homegirl Luciana - so you know it's quality. And don't even get me started on the video (below). It contains so much fabulousness that prolonged exposure is sure to turn you gay. Despite the fact that Erika is pure sex and really turns it out. Give it a look! The song is on iTunes now. Buy it. I really hope this is her crossover hit. An Australian record label would be crazy not to jump on it. I'm so excited to have her on board!

As usual the songs are rated from lowest to highest. Here goes!

Natasha Bedingfield – Strip Me (Video)

Daniel's horse faced sister is back.

D'Luv: If Natasha spent less time working with trendy writers and producers and more time actually writing decent material like her first album, I might not have to sit here every time I hear one of her goddamn boring-ass songs and wonder why I never got to fuck her brother when he was thin and still relevant. So screw her. 1.5/5
Diva Incarnate: You've really lowered the bar with this one: the good thing about this song is that if you like it you can just buy Beyonce's "Halo" off itunes instead. -5/5
Enric: I must say that I hate her with all my heart, I hate her annoying voice, her tampon-ad songs, and her appearance on Nicki Minaj’s album. But, for the first time ever, I love her rip off of Jordin Sparks’ Battlefield. Is Ryan Tedder (producer of the track) trying to make another Halo-Already Gone thing? 5/5
Erika Jayne: Saw the video. Love the new fashion risks she’s taking. Can’t wait for the remixes! 2/5
Mike: Thanks for that charming story, Proph. I'll never be able to listen to "Unwritten" again without wanting to call the authorities. As for Natasha - she still looks like a distant relative of Phar Lap but "Halo" is my probably my favourite song of all time, so anything that rips it off this closely is ok by me. 4/5
The Prophet: I can't believe I used to love Natasha Bedingfield when I was younger. When I was an underage teenager and first moved to Sydney I made this creepy old guy who was obsessed with me buy me one of her singles. He didn't even buy me her album. He was such a freak actually, once I went to his house to play my Gamecube because I didn't have a TV yet, and he had this young teenage boy staying with him who looked like some street trash who had been kicked out of home and was sleeping with this old pervert to keep a roof over his head. I just ignored it and continued playing Resident Evil, then went home. 0/5
Total: 7.5/30

Edita – I’ve Come To Life (Video)

Winner of German X Factor’s debut single.

D'Luv: Musically, this song sounds like a knockoff of Hurts' "Wonderful Life." Vocally, it sounds like Leona Lewis getting pile-drived beneath the Brandenberg Gate, with thighs jutting out to each side like twin beacons of freedom. 1/5
Diva Incarnate: Since she's German I give this a nine! And in English I give it a 2.
Enric: A beautiful song, but it sounds so Ryan Tedder that it gets boring after the first chorus. I love seeing Sarah Connor, she perfectly fits in this blog. 3/5
Erika Jayne: Go Germany! 1/5
Mike: Back off, bitches! Edita might look like a shopgirl from Magdeburg playing dress up in an outfit Diana Ross discarded circa 1985 but she can sing and the song is lovely. I can't wait for my copy to arrive from Germany!5/5
The Prophet: Not only did Mike purposely ignored ALL my pop panel suggestions this week, but rather than use one of my epic submissions he stuck this German BITCH up instead to SPITE me because he knows I hate Germans, Germany and Mike's German heritage. This bitch is floppier than my 8 inch dildo Alejandro. ZERO! 0/5
Total: 12/30

Mariah & Patricia Carey – O Come All Ye Faithful (Video)

Mimi teams up with her mum on this Christmas carol!

D'Luv: I guess now we know where Mimi got her pipes from. And her penchant for fucking for tracks. This is so Mariah-style over the top it's getting a perfect score. 5/5
Diva Incarnate: Mariah still shrieks those tender high notes like someone's fish-hooked her vagina. Hard to tell if she is leaving a voicemail to Kanye or actually singing come-ye. Does she sing this to her 12 year old husband when he has nightmares? 2/5
Enric: Mariah (who is actually 46 months pregnant, judging by her full size) and her Opera singer-wannabe mum Patricia turn Christmas into a nightmare full of fear, screams, high notes and broken glasses. Pay special attention to the 2:03 mark and try to survive it. 2/5
Erika Jayne: Xmas is one of my favorite holidays. Mariah is the ultimate Xmas carol diva. 3/5
Mike: I feel like I've just spent 3 and a half minutes in Mimi's high kitsch rainbow coloured world where all pets wear Santa costumes and 9 inch heels are normal footwear for heavily pregnant women. It's as warm and personal as it is ridiculous and cringe-worthy. Which perfectly sums up Christmas, doesn't it? 5/5
The Prophet: I love Mariah and "I Still Believe" is one of my all time favorite songs, but nobody gives a fuck about this Christmas album or seeing her sing a duet with Mother Mimi. For this Holiday season I'm on team Auntie Susie (The Gift!) and Jessica Simpson's stunning Mariah knock-off "My Only Wish" from her festive opus "Happy Christmas" which peaked at a dizzying #123 on the Billboard Charts. 0/5
Total: 17/30

Kylie & Taio Cruz – Higher (Video)

Kylie's latest adventure is a duet with UK pop sensation Taio Cruz.

D'Luv: I hate to say it, but Kylie seems a little desperate doing this. It sounds like some anonymous dance track any studio singer from Germany could have lent vocals to, and if the 'Aphrodite' campaign needs this type of stunt to remind people that Kylie's got an album out, best just to move on. 2/5
Diva Incarnate: The most natural Kylie has looked since chilbirth. The only thing getting higher is her right eyebrow. Taio probably thought she was Lulu anyway. 3/5
Enric: Maybe I dreamed it, but I think this was meant to be on Aphrodite. Let’s hope it’s on the re-release (by the way, I wish it’s called Hermaphrodite) because it’s awesome. This is my favourite Kylie era ever. 5/5
Erika Jayne: I’ve always been a fan of Kylie – how could you not?! 3/5
Mike: I love it. Taio is on fire and this is as close to current Dannii's withered up sister has come to sounding... since "Get Outta My Way"! A shame then that Kylie is still wasting her time promoting the mega flop "Better Than Today" and a Christmas EP that no one wants when she could have a hit on her hands with this gem. 5/5
The Prophet: This gets three points for Kylie, but minus two points for Taio, leaving us with ONE. 1/5
Total: 19/30

Dyan Tai – Why Sydney? (Above)

Introducing the winner of Sydneyvision 2010 - a suburb vs suburb Australian take on Eurovision!

D'Luv: Thank God — new masturbation material. 4/5
Diva Incarnate: Sounds like a forgotten wigfield remix with that bassline. Since I love Asian lesbians I give it a 5.
Enric: I love the instrumental, sounds simple but dancey. But his voice and his extra-feminine acting, added to the cheap video and the worst clothes selection ever, makes me feel confused. I want to like it, but I can’t. 1/5
Erika Jayne: I saw his video, and love his artistic-ness with his make-up. 2/5
Mike: Fuck off, Altiyan. Australia's next music god is already here! 5/5
The Prophet: Defining! Australia's answer to Far East Movement has arrived! Dyan looks like one of those asian Twinks you see tweaking on level 1 at the Midnight Shift. 4.5/5
Total: 21.5/30

Wynter Gordon – Dirty Talk (Video)

US dance diva has an Australian hit on her hands with this sleazy tune.

D'Luv: I feel like this song has been out for at least a year, right? And didn't it have a completely different video at one point? This one's much better. Wynter's a trooper, and so I'll give her 3.5/5.
Diva Incarnate: Lukewarm trance. Not so much lyrics as reading aloud Dannii's dressing room demands. 3/5
Enric: Keri Hilson’s cheap version is still trying to top any chart. I adore one of her first songs, "Surveillance", and maybe you loved it too in 2007. "Dirty Talk" is not better, but is one of 2010 most finest tracks. 5/5
Erika Jayne: I really like this song – I can relate to the sexy lyrics. I love a dirty conversation. 4/5
Mike: My love for this gorgeous creature knows no bounds. I hope this is huge for her. She deserves it, Wyn has been on the grind since 04! 5/5
The Prophet: I've been a Wynter fan since the "Surveillance" days, but now all of a sudden that she's this new club Queen every fickle flop out there is on her clit. Wynter is MY thing and I was playing this song since the second it leaked so stay mad. 4/5
Total: 24.5/30

SINGLE OF THE WEEK

Crystal Castles – Not In Love (Video)

Features vocals of The Cure's Robert Smith.

D'Luv: I lived for The Cure when I was 13 and 14. Nice to hear that Robert Smith still has teenage boy voice all these years later, now that I'm 19. Alright, joking aside, I'm 22 and this song is a winner. 5/5
Diva Incarnate: When the pop is stark and hooky I usually cream my pants but candidly shit emo vocals rub me with more irritation than Michelle McManus's thighs. The fizzy synthesizers save it. 3/5
Enric: I know them because they messed up their performance last year in Barcelona, throwing vodka and drums to the audience. I love the ravey chorus and it’s always great to hear Robert Smith’s vocals. 4/5
Erika Jayne: I grew up listening to The Cure. I love Robert Smith! His voice is one of a kind. 4/5
Mike: A great cover a forgotten 80s gem. Sad, beautiful and haunting. 5/5
The Prophet: Finally some good music graces the FLOP panel. 5/5
Total: 26/30

Saturday, December 04, 2010

An Australian Flop Vs Soraya

I am so disgusted I can hardly type. Natalie Gauci - better known as the least successful Australian Idol winner in history - has dared to fuck with the reigning Queen of Spanish pop by covering the title track of her new album. Sure, Natalie co-wrote "Dreamer" and probably recorded it first but that's no excuse for stealing Soraya's thunder. The sad flop should be grateful that an international megastar would deign to sing her song instead of using it for herself. It's like Malena Gracia covering Maria Callas - not right! I just don't see the point of Natalie's version. Her voice was never going to match Soraya's glorious pipes and the production is cheaper than her wig in the tacky video (below). Admittedly, the remixes are good - which explains its current top 5 placing on the ARIA club chart - but why not mix the original? It's about time Australia was blessed by the Spanish angel's legendary beauty and breathtaking talent! Now instead of hearing Soraya in the club, I'll be tortured with this shit. Thanks a lot. And to think I spent $5.99 on Natalie's flop album when it made its way to the bargain bin at JB Hi-Fi! If you want a good laugh, check out the video clip that accompanies this abomination. Soraya would never approve...

Album Review: Shontelle - No Gravity

It feels like forever since my last album review. I was going to break the drought with my three-months-in-the-making academic study of Soraya's genre defining masterpiece "Dreamer" but I'm still too emotional after being tweeted by Spain's glorious gift to the universe. Next on my list was Selena Gomez & The Scene's underrated pop opus "A Year Without Rain" or my extremely overdue review of Ke$ha's already iconic "Cannibal" but I just can't get one album out of my head or off my iTunes recently played list. I've written about Shontelle before. You know - the new and improved Rihanna, best known for the year's best diva ballad "Impossible". The Barbadian beauty's sophomore album was released back in September and peaked at #81 in America before falling off the chart altogether. Which just goes to prove that there's no accounting for taste. "No Gravity" isn't the deepest musical offering of 2010 and suffers from one too many cooks production-wise, but if you're looking for a sizzling bunch of club bangers with a sprinkling of over the top balladry then Shonnie is your bitch. This is the album Rihanna would make if she removed that giant stick from her overused arsehole. It's fun, catchy and completely unpretentious. Shontelle needs to migrate to Australia where her voice and talent would be better appreciated. She could be the Marcia Hines of the new millennium! Here is my track by track review:

1. Perfect Nightmare

"No Gravity" was delayed for several months to give Shontelle the opportunity to get in the studio with Darkchild and this is a result of that collaboration. I adore the song but it has to be said that "Perfect Nightmare" owes a lot to Beyoncé's "Sweet Dreams". The lyrical content is very similar and the production isn't exactly worlds apart. But if you're going to rip something off, it might as well be something good. And I love the way Shon's exploration of the line between love and hate, passion and obsession begins as an acoustic ballad before transforming into a brooding dance anthem. Rodney Jerkins has been on fire lately and this is one of his most interesting productions. Perhaps a little too interesting. "Beautiful Nightmare" takes a couple of listens to get into, which could explain its inability to chart. It's a shame because this a truly beautiful pop song.

2. Impossible

Oh fuck, what do you say about "Impossible". To my mind, it's one of the year's most unexpected hits. The track is such a throwback to the 90s (you know, when divas could actually sing) with its soaring chorus and you done me wrong lyrics. Toni Braxton would have owned this back in the day but Shontelle shows off her own powerful pipes to stunning effect. I defy you to listen to "Impossible" without at least one power grab!

3. No Gravity

For a while this was touted as the album's second single. With good reason. "No Gravity" is an irresistible pop explosion with effortlessly uplifting lyrics and a plethora of catchy vocal hooks. There's something very European about the production, which isn't really that surprising given the long list of Swedish names in the credits. The album's title track is as cute as button. I really hope they haven't given up on this entirely. It could work wonders in Europe and Australia.

4. Take Ova (feat. Pitbull)

I've had a sick obsession with Pitbull since seeing him perform at Supafest earlier this year. His mesmerising hip thrusting turned me into a stan overnight and the prospect of my man collaborating with the pride of the Barbados left me salivating. Happily, the song lived up to my lofty expectations. Darkchild's dancehall meets Eastern European disco approach to production is fierce and the heavy beats are guaranteed to get your feet moving. There's nothing particularly deep about the lyrics (well, apart from Pit's rap about playing with his microphone - hell yes!) but this is a great party anthem that sounds radio ready for America.

5. Say Hello To Goodbye

Shontelle returns to ballad mode on "Say Hello To Goodbye", injecting some variety into the album. I don't mind this. It isn't particularly ground-breaking or original but I like the song's message and Shonnie's emotional vocal. My only criticism is the production, which sounds very dated. Producers really need to move on from Ryan Tedder increasingly boring formula of guitar based mid-tempo balladry. He spends enough time recycling that shit himself without the rest of the industry jumping on his bandwagon.

6. DJ Made Me Do It (feat. Asher Roth)

This has become something of a fan favourite but it's easily my least favourite song on the album. Co-written by Bruno Mars and produced by his team (The Smeezingtons), "DJ made Me Do It" is a fairly straightforward club banger with highly predictable lyrics that I swear I've heard a million times before. It also has a really annoying sample and features the world's most pointless rapper. The track was originally recorded by Nina Sky but rescued by Shontelle when their album was shelved. She shouldn't have bothered. "DJ Made Me Do It" is pleasant enough but it's been done before and better.

7. Love Shop

If you download only one song from "No Gravity", make it "Love Shop". This pop trash explosion pushes all my camp buttons and is already a #1 smash in my alternate universe. I love the stunningly bad lyrics - "I'll be your love shop baby tonight, I'll do all the things you like" and "my love is open from 6am to 6am, so hurry up and come inside". Subtle! My love shop couldn't handle all that business but I digress. "Love Shop" showcases Shontelle's fun side and is catchy to the point of being annoying. I have no idea who Djibril Kagni and Jordan Houyez are but Dannii needs to hire these geniuses to re-produce her domestic violence themed club classic "Love Fight". Amazing!

8. Helpless

The upbeat dance-pop continues with "Helpless". It's a fun track but pales in comparison to "Love Shop". There's just something missing that holds this back from being excellent. Perhaps its the generic production or boring lyrics. And why does Shonnie pronounce mirror as mir-woir. Girl, you're not French. Think of this as pleasant filler.

9. Kiss You Up

Written and produced by Tony Kanal (No Doubt) and Jimmy Harry, "Kiss You Up" is a sweet little ballad. The piano is a nice touch and I love the pretty lyrics. Shontelle is so versatile. She can churn out throwaway dance-pop with the best of them but also knows how to interpret something more intimate and introspective. This is missing the big hook it needed to work on radio but it's a little gem that I can't stop listening to.

10. T-Shirt (Radio Killa Mix)[feat. The-Dream]

I have no idea what Shon's stunning debut single is doing on this album. It was the crowning jewel of her fabulously titled debut ("Shontelligence") but the sexy slow jam doesn't fit on "No Gravity". I'm so pissed off that "Licky" was given the flick, while this made the cut. Sure, that stunning dance anthem boasts the least flattering video clip of 2010 but the song is amazing and sounds like a hit to me. Hopefully it will feature on the inevitable re-release!

11. Evacuate My Heart

Shontelle pulls a Kylie by wasting one of the album's best songs as a bonus track. Sure, "Evacuate My Heart" is Rihanna by the numbers but it's more fun than anything RiRi's done since "Good Girl Gone Bad" and Darkchild's seething production is club and radio ready. This would be a good single choice if Shontelle is afraid of exposing her love shop to the world. The heavy beats and catchy chorus make this a perfect conclusion to an extremely enjoyable album that never tries to be anything other than dumb fun.

7.5/10

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Resuscitate Me, September's Back!

Praise La Toya the lord! Sweden's holy princess of pop has blessed us with yet another dose musical perfection. And no, I'm not talking about that "Body Talk" troll. As far as Scandipop divas are concerned, my heart will always belong to September. You see, we go way back. I first heard "Satellites" in 2005 and spent a fortune importing it from Europe. Petra's breathtaking talent had me hooked and for a while there, she was my little secret. That all changed when "Cry For You" exploded in the UK and eventually made its way to Australia. I distinctly remember attending the single launch in King's Cross, where a bored drag queen mimed the song to a half empty room of gays. Stunning promotion! The song somehow made it all the way to #14 and I thought September might succeed where Robyn had failed - at crossing over to mainstream but it wasn't to be.

Well, almost two years later, the Swedish siren is finally back with new material. I was smitten by "Resuscitate Me" from the first moment I heard it but the recently released video clip makes me love it even more. Penned by Cutfather, Jonas Jeberg and Lucas Secon (the team behind Kylie's "Get Outta My Way"), this is a return to the irresistibly exuberant pop of "In Orbit" - complete with a killer chorus and some of the cutest lyrics of 2010. Even the video is a triumph! After looking like a 45 year old housewife on drugs in the shameful debacle otherwise known as "Can't Get Over", September is looking hot again and works it for all she's worth. Hell, she even looks good in a coma! Fingers crossed "Resuscitate Me" gets an Australian release. The nation is crying out for some real talent!

Lest We Forget

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Straight Up! - A Twink Anthem

Straight Up! first came to my attention back in April when they featured on Don't Stop The Pop. Back then Rob likened the Swedish twosome to Pay TV and Army Of Lovers - heady praise indeed! Their debut single definitely covered an arresting topic. An ode to young and pretty gays, "Twink" is a throbbing electro-pop anthem that goes where lesser acts fear to tread with stunning lyrics like "I pick a hunk I wanna fuck and then I get him drunk". Take that Adam Lambert, you soft cock! The thing is - I'd rather do Perez Hilton with the lights on than go near a hairless man-boy but I fully support the group's right to sing about whatever the fuck gets them hard. Think of this as the psycho-sexual bookend to Barb@zul's legendary bear anthem "I Don't Care"! Since April the Straight Up! boys have been busy recording new tracks and only just got around to releasing the video for "Twink". I wish I knew what to say about it. The clip (below) is a trash lover's wet dream but it also makes me want to find the nearest woman, get married and spend the rest of my life living a lie just to avoid ever watching it again. But that's me. I'm sure most of you will love it and I think the guy with the beard would be kinda hot if he stopped over-shaping his eyebrows! Don't get me wrong, I really like this band. I'll just listen to their future smash with my eyes closed. Now where's the link for that Barb@zul video again...

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Return Of Ann Lee!

Ok, so file this one under old news but I don't care. A couple of weeks ago I made an amazing discovery. Ann Lee is not dead! In fact, the iconic singer is still churning out music in Europe and even released a CD single in Germany earlier this year. I can't believe this momentous news wasn't shouted from every blog on the internet. "2 Times" is one of the defining songs of the 90s. Surely the return of Ann Lee is the musical equivalent of an acting great like Pia Zadora coming out of retirement? Where is the fanfare and mountains of hype? You should all be ashamed! So, I guess you're wondering if glamorous Ann still has the Midas touch. Well, I'm proud to report that time has not wearied her musical genius. Co-written by Whigfield (I wish I was making this up!), "2 People" sounds like it was dragged kicking and screaming from 1999. I'm guessing the stunning diva spent the past decade in a time capsule because this masterpiece could be a cut from "Dreams" - her legendary debut album. That no one bought. Ann's comeback didn't exactly set the charts on fire either but I'm glad she's back. Check out "2 People" below and order your copy from German Amazon today!

Sarah McLeod's Homeless Appeal

Aussie rock chick turned electro-pop diva Sarah McLeod has launched an initiative to help keep homeless kids off the street. From now until Christmas, Sarah will be donating ALL the proceeds from her cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing In The Dark" to Father Chris Riley's Youth Off The Streets program. For a lousy $1.69 you get an awesome song - which is currently sitting pretty at #9 on the ARIA club chart - and the satisfaction of knowing you helped a homeless kid find a bed for the night. Bargain! Watch the ex-Superjesus frontwoman talk about the campaign below. Oh and make sure you swing by her website to pick up a copy of her EP. It's a limited run of 500, so get in quick. They are individually numbered, come with a personal message and a poster. I've already ordered mine!

La Toya Conquers Spain!

While her has-been sister desperately plans a one country world tour to kickstart her flop career, the pride of the Jackson clan has been rubbing shoulders with European royalty. It must be cold there in Toy Toy's shadow, Jan! Contemporary music's finest vocalist jetted into Seville to judge a horse show and almost caused a riot with her breathtaking beauty. Spain hasn't been rocked this hard since the last time Tony Tornado got drunk and walked the streets of Chueca singing "Los Amores"! I have no idea how La Toya snagged this gig. Wearing a horse hair weave doesn't make you an equine authority but I digress. Toy's status as an international A Lister is confirmed by her attendance and the footage of her arriving at the event in full flamenco dress (below) is the most fabulous thing I've seen in 2010. La Toya looks absolutely stunning but I can't stop laughing at her elaborate poses. Someone should have thrown her some castanets to complete the look or at least taken the jug of Sangria off her until after the event! Seriously, if I wasn't sure that Spain is my spiritual homeland before this debacle - I am now 100% convinced. Watch in awe as La Toya redefines beauty, elegance and sophistication as we know it!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Pop Panel 3 - Week 5

Before I get on with this historic installment of Pop Panel, I need to get some housekeeping out of the way. From now on I'll try to post this bitchfest every Monday instead of Sunday. It seems to be easier for everyone involved. For more updates on Pop Panel - make sure you follow me on Twitter. Now for the good stuff. You might be wondering why I've chosen La Toya for this week's banner. Well, the impossible has happened. Toy Toy's perfect Pop Panel score has been equalled! To be honest, I didn't think that stunning achievement would ever be repeated - at least not until the Pope of Pop releases her next single - but one legendary diva has swept all before her and landed full marks from all 6 judges. We now have a new leader and you better bow down to this fabulous bitch! The follow bloggers helped crown the new Queen of Pop:

D'Luv (US) writer of Chart Rigger and Idolator
J-Step (AUS) music industry insider
Mike (AUS) author of this classy blog
The Prophet (AUS) writer of The Prophet

We were also assisted by the following guest judges:

Adem (AUS) writer of the iconic Adem With An E. It's great to have him back on the Pop Panel. Bitch just needs to start updating his blog again!

and

Joe (US) writer of the amazing Milk Carton Pop Stars and the foremost authority on Mexican pop divas. Neither space nor time can break our trash loving bond!

Ok, let's get cracking. As usual the songs are ranked from lowest to highest.

Timo – Like It Rough (above)

Belgian pop star jumps on gay vampire bandwagon!


Adem: Did you see the incredible YouTube comments? Poor Timo has been told by a YouTube user he apparently needs this song to be a hit so that he can get a nose job because he - otherwise - cannot afford it. Watching the clip; I really hope he doesn't touch his nose because I spent the whole thing thinking about how much I'd love to sit on it. The song itself? I wasn't paying attention, but for Timo's nose and his hot mack-on scene with Brent Corrigan at the end, I think high scores are well and truly due. 5/5
D'Luv: There's a small, almost undetectable sample from Human League's "Love Action" running throughout "Like It Rough" — which is basically the only interesting thing about the song.
Joe: I like bad pop music, but this was just bad. The horrid acting, the guy's wonky eyes. Though if I was drunk at a bar I would probably dance to it. 1/5
J-Step: My first instinct was to hate this, but it by the time it ended I wanted a physical! A nice, catchy little track, seemingly written about my bedroom preferences. 3.5/5
Mike: I probably would have been down with this tacky piece of Eurotrash if it were sung by someone even remotely attractive. 2/5
The Prophet: No. 0/5
Total: 13/30

Paramore – Playing God (Video
)

Latest single from indie-pop favourites.

Adem: It's like listening to the other songs from the first Katy Perry album. Which makes this almost entirely shit. 0/5
D'Luv: I like the video better than the song, and the song better than Hayley's vocals. But at least her entire band is totally fuckable. 2/5
Joe: This is that airplanes chick right? It's alright I guess. Not amazing. 2/5
J-Step: A decent little pop/rock track, but nowhere near as catchy or memorable as most of their stuff. And Hayley, pink and red does NOT look good together, it's time for a colour change, doll! And seeing as you're at Just Cuts, you may as well get better conditioner, 'coz you just ain't rocking the whole Ronald McDonald thing! 3/5
Mike: This is the kind of faux rock shit that could have been playing when Willow first fingered Tara in a toilet cubicle at The Bronze. And for that it gets two bonus points! 2/5
The Prophet: My fave! 5/5
Total: 14/30

Savvy – Dance With Me Now (Video)

Yet another Disney act goes electro.

Adem: New Disney acts always excite me; purely because I can hardly wait for the cocaine addiction to begin. This clip is like watching a well-produced/autotuned version of High School Musical set in the 'Peach Pit; After-dark' from 90210. Forgettable trash, but pleasant enough. 2/5
D'Luv: Well, I guess 12 years is long enough ago that slyly re-creating Backstreet Boys' "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)" video — albeit with a budget of $36 and a craft services table full of Cheetos — seems like an original concept to 13 year olds. Even the song sounds straight-up 1998. I kind of like it, though. Kind of. 3/5
Joe: A multi-ethnic Disney group? Is this The Party 2010? Only "in my dreams". Back to the song. I actually liked it. It's catchy and I think I may have to download it. 4/5
J-Step: Ace Of Base's "Don't Turn Around" meets the Pussycat Dolls' Melodie's fucking annoying (and always moving) mouth! This bitch needs another time-out and an earlier bedtime. 1/5
Mike: Well, fuck you all. I like it! I mean, she's no Selena Gomez or Ashley Tisdale but I still want to hear an album full of lifeless, age inappropriate gems from this flop in the making. 3.5/5
The Prophet: This girl's mouth is more dramatic than Jessica Simpson's. It really has a life of it's own. Why didn't the director tell her to calm it down a little? Anyway, the song is shit, so maybe Savvy should think about becoming a professional blowjob machine instead of a singer. That sweet young mouth looks mighty inviting... 1/5
Total: 14.5/30

Bruno Mars – Grenade (Video)

Follow up to #1 hit “Just The Way You Are”.

Adem: Is it wrong to generally think Bruno Mars is an alright thing? I fucking love this song - Bruno, it's like you found my letters and reach one out loud. 5/5
D'Luv: Yeah, okay. Sure. 2/5
Joe: I honestly haven't really paid much attention to this guy. Mainly because I tend to loathe anything that's currently on American radio. But it's that bad. Would I go out of my way to listen to it. Probably not. 3/5
J-Step: Oh, Jesus, pull the pin on the frikkin grenade. I'm so sick of this shit - 'so-called, sexy whinging'. Where's the fun gone, people? It's time for a new Kaci video I think! 1.5/5
Mike: You know, I really want to hate this guy. He's just a little too in touch with his emotions and I'm sure he steals his lyrics from the love letters I sent Julian McMahon in the 90s. That said, it's cute and I'd probably sing along to it after a bottle of Jack and a box of Tim Tams. 3/5
The Prophet: Cute. If you're into this kind of thing. 2.5/5
Total: 17/30

Jessie J – Do It Like A Dude (above)

This hot bitch wrote Miley’s “Party In The USA”.

Adem: JESSIE IS FIERCE. I like it when she grabs her cho-cha. It makes me think it's probably what Rihanna wanted the entire 'Rated R' campaign to look and sound like, you know, if she had any thoughts of her own I mean. 4/5
D'Luv: This is the latest broad everyone's masturbating over online. (Sorry, Sky Ferreira!) It's kind of the kitchen sink concept with the video, isn't it? The only thing that's missing is a glow in the dark thong. 2/5
Joe: I really don't want to like this. But I do. It's a little repetitive, but I didn't mind it. The video kind of gave me a headache though. I like her studded black lips. 3/5
J-Step: No, that's noice I feel! 4/5
Mike: So everyone's jumping on Jessie's wig like she's the second coming of Ann Lee but there's nothing wrong with a bit of hype. People are just connecting with her high brow lyrics and deeply spiritual message. 4/5
The Prophet: Vulgar! Only Ke$ha can get away with this garish behavior. 0/5
Total: 17/30

Kim Ann Foxman – Creature (Video)

90s House is making a comeback.

Adem: Who is this lesbian, and why does she look like a (slightly) more approachable La Roux? Whatever, she's an amazing lesbian and this is all kinds of hot. Did she hire Madonna's Blond Ambiton Tour dancers for the video? I can't wait to hear this in a club on a loud system; it's like it's 1994 and I'm listening to corker house music on my boombox in the bedroom. I also enjoy the fact it goes for a hundred years, like all house music in the 90's did. 4/5
D'Luv: I love this guy! And I also love the fact that the video could just as well have been shot in the time period the song sounds like it's from. 4/5
Joe: Oooh me likes! Kim looks like she took dance lessons from Whitney Houston. The voguing queens make up for her lackluster dance skills. And I am loving her Ya Kid K fasions! The more I listen to this song the more I am loving it. Anyone who wants to bring back early 90s House gets my seal of approval. I must hear more!! 5/5
J-Step: Don't get me wrong, the notion of decent 90's inspired house making a major comeback is beyond awesome. But when it's purposely dull and boring, what's the point, honestly? I've seen more excitement in the face of an arsehole than poor ol' Kimmy! 2/5
Mike: Dust off your favourite lime green t-sheet, re-charge your glow sticks and grab a chupa chump - the 90s are back! Just be careful. Listening to Kim's mesmerising opus will bring on every pill you've popped over the past 20 years. This shit should come with a warning! 4/5
The Prophet: Honey, I know the 90s are in right now, but this is just a little too desperate. Still, i can't bring myself to give it a flop rating. 3/5
Total: 22/30

Kylie – Better Than Today (Video)

Third single from "Aphrodite".

Adem: You know what? I am so fucking angry with Kylie's people for releasing this as the next single over "Aphrodite" or, you know, basicaly any other song on the album, that I'm tempted to give her absolutely no score at all. It's lovely and great and I enjoy it but this is NOT a single. Not at ALL. And what's with all the remixes taking out the best bit; the whales-being-raped sound after each chorus? This really is a frighteningly disappointing turn in events when it comes to the 'Aphrodite' album campaign. That said; 3/5
D'Luv: I really wish Kylie didn't have that unspoken rule about not releasing album title tracks as singles, because "Aphrodite" is miles ahead of "Better Than Today." Unfortunately, "Better Than Today" is probably deemed to be more "radio friendly." Oh, well—not a bad song. It's just kind of… there. 3.5/5
Joe: This is a great example of a song that gets better w/ a good video. I remember when Kylie did this on her North American tour, and I thought...meh it's ok. But it's one of those songs that gets better w/ more listens. Though I wouldn't say it's the best choice for a single. I'm still waiting for 'Cupid Boy'! 3.5/5
J-Step: "Cupid boy, when we touch, I'm in heaven in your arms..." Oh, no, wait, that was the BETTER option wasn't it! I mean it's cute, catchy, but...yeah. I've tried to react differently since hearing this was third single, but the best I can manage is a nice positive shrug of the shoulders! 4/5
Mike: The Pop Panel has spoken. "Cupid Boy" is single everyone wants from "Aphrodite" - not this annoyingly cheerful Scissor Sisters rip off! This is the dumbest decision Kylie has made since relegating "Tightrope" to a bonus track. I'll be happily surprised if this even cracks the top 30 in the UK but she is our leader, so I'm giving it 4/5. Begrudgingly.
The Prophet: I want to automatically give this a zero because I suspect it will win and I want to sabotage the PP and go against popular opinion, but then I remember that this is one of my favorite cuts from "Aphrodite", but also the one that most people bitch about, so I'm going to give it a high rating, partly because I want too and partly out of spite. I hope that's right. 4.5/5
Total: 22.5/30

SINGLE OF THE WEEK

Kim Zolciak - Google Me (below)

Real housewives of Atlanta superstar unveils her latest single.

Adem: The voice of an angel!! She's great and this trashy-bonanza is too, but she doesn't hold a candle to the genius musical stylings of Heidi Montag, does she? And also too, when is the great Snooki going to release a single? And Kathy Griffin's Mom? I am ALL FOR reality sluts getting in front a microphone. I don't even need to listen to the whole song to know Kim gets full marks. 5/5
D'Luv: Bow down to the High Priestess Of Pop! Thankfully she got off her lazy ass and recorded another masterpiece. And at this rate, we can probably expect a full album sometime in 2017! Her soaring, angelic vocals have me seriously thinking she just might be yanking that New Queen Of Soul title away from Ke$ha in the near future. Brava! 5/5
Joe: LEGEND!!!! Kim needs to do an album!!!!! 5/5
J-Step: What a pure talent!!! Does it get any better... NO!!! 5/5
Mike: The voice. Those lyrics. That wig. Kim really is the new queen of pop! Madonna must be shitting herself - when not googling "how to be as fabulous as that stunning beauty from the Real Housewives of Atlanta". 5/5
The Prophet: How could this not get a five? 5/5
Total: 30/30