Monday, January 30, 2012

MADONNA'S SINGLE COVER IS AMAZING - album/single press release ahoy!

This is what we in the business call a "brilliant single cover"

So Madge-Mantis is gearing up for her first studio album since the...less than spectacular 'Hard Candy,' and if the promo campaign for the record is anything to go by, that LP's relative failure taught Miss M some Hard lessons.  (Ed:  groan.)

First, Madonna's wisely moved up the availability date of the track on iTunes.  Originally it was slated to be available on February 7, two whole days after her Superbowl performance.  It might be a reflection of the terrifyingly fast-moving world we now live in, but those two days could have (likely would have) meant the difference between possibly having a chart-topping hit for the first time since 'Music' way back in 2001, and everyone forgetting that the song even exists.

The revised plan is now for the video to debut during American Idol on Feb. 2, the track will be available from iTunes on Feb. 3, and any pre-orders of the album made between Feb. 3 and Feb. 6 will come with a free download of the single and remix.

The second big piece of information the Evil Queen has deigned to give us is that the album will feature no less than EIGHTEEN TRACKS (amazing, unless half of them or filler which - let's be honest - they very well might be) from the likes of William Orbit, her 'Ray of Light' collaborator, Martin Solveig, The Demolition Crew, Marco “Benny” Benassi and Alessandro “Alle” Benassi, Hardy “Indiigo” Muanza, Michael Malih and of course at least one written by Madonna - presumably her Elton John/David Furnish-incensing 'Masterpiece' from her film 'W.E.'

To be fair we haven't been this excited about a Madonna project since 'Confessions on a Dancefloor' came out, so fingers crossed that everything goes right.  But with a killer single (and flat out amazing single cover) and the most prime promo gigs available, we're not too worried.  And we imagine neither is she.

Here's a promo for the video that includes approximately 2.3 seconds of the clip in seizure-like flashes:


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Kylie shows she's a true artist on BRAND NEW 'Finer Feelings' - watch now!

Fierce and mighty.
So there was this girl named Kylie and she was a soap opera star in Australia and then a soap opera star in England and then a pop star everywhere for the next TWO AND A HALF DECADES.  She was at the top of the music heap then at the bottom, and then pulled herself up by her gold hotpants and became the PRINCESS OF EVERYTHING ALWAYS - in the process conquering cancer, having some of the biggest hits of the 2000's and becoming Britian and Australia's most powerful celebrity. 

In case you're wondering how she managed all that, the long answer is very complicated and involves branding and marketing and promotion and PowerPoints with lots of tedious graphs and such, but the short answer is THROUGH DECADES OF CONSISTENTLY AMAZING MUSIC.  And just in case you need more clarification about that, someone has chucked together this handy compilation clip that sums up the Pop Princess's videos in a remarkably un-tedious 17 minutes.  It advertises itself as a celebration of one star, but in reality is a time capsule of pop music itself over the last 25 years.  It traces popular song from its 80's infancy to the all-powerful force it is today.  But be warned, ScopiSubjects - you think you'll watch it for just a couple minutes but then 20 minutes later you'll look up from your screen, bleary-eyed and wondering what happened.

Worldwide she's as big as Madonna, and in the U.S. she's a cult celebrity with a fanbase (read: the gays) more rabid than America's biggest acts could ever hope for.  And to celebrate sticking around for 25 years, K-Mo has launched the K25 "project," which is essentially a YEAR-LONG CELEBRATION OF HERSELF - which we think we can all agree is AN AMAZING THING TO DO.  Included in that celebration is new material, and an album of her greatest hits recorded with a live orchestra at Abbey Road studios.  And to kick things off, Kylie has given us this video of her 'Finer Feelings,' which proves once and for all something that die-hard fans learned during her late-90's "indie phase," and what the general public is starting to finally realize - that underneath the glittery pop veneer, Miss Minogue is an ACTUAL ARTIST.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Brillballs Gabriella Cilmi is back with some 'Vicious Love' - watch the premiere now!

Haters can ride it.
In "ABOUT GODDAMN TIME" news, Gabriella Cilmi - who gave us the literally amazing 'Sweet About Me' and 'On A Mission', is back on the scene with a sort-of-single, sort-of-teaser to give a taste of what is in store for her new album.  And it is VERY GOOD.

The Aussie songstress started out at the age of just 16, riding the new-soul tidal wave that brought us Amy Winehouse and Duffy, but then went full-on pop for her second album.  This new material seems to have more in common with her low key soul roots, but luckily for us it seems like she didn't forget everything she learned on her sophomore long-play, as the first track still has a definite pop edge to it.

It's no wonder her handlers have decided to turn back the clock, though - her first album outsold its follow up 2-1, and even spawned some success in America - something she couldn't replicate with her last album, '10'.  Perhaps they're trying to get back some of that chart magic, but we doubt we're alone in hoping there's at least one disco-stomper on the new LP.

Welcome back, Gabriella.  We missed you like whoa.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

FREE DOWNLOAD AHOY - The new Santigold is very good but "not everyone's cup of tea"

Santigold used to be called Santogold but isn't any longer.  She also used to make music but then stopped for like, 5 years or something.  Anyway, new name in tow, she's returned with a BIG COMEBACK SINGLE that will probably win a thousand Grammys but be played on the radio only once by a late-night NPR DJ who is a close personal friend of the artist.

It's got some of the hallmarks of a hit - sick beat, "now" lyrics - and anyone with a keen ear might hear a kinship between it and recent tracks by Beyonce and Nicola Roberts.  That's because it was produced by Switch, who did music for each of them. 

But regardless of its pedigree, it's MORE THAN A BIT STRANGE and miles away from anything chart friendly.   The video certainly doesn't help matters, as it's a low-budget celebration of 90's live animaction with a few quirks of its own.  Look, bad lighting and no makeup!  Squiggly lines everywhere!  Hi-tops!!

It's as if all of fauxhemian Brooklyn got together and said "let us anoint a 35 year old woman from Philadelphia as our queen" and this is what resulted.  Which isn't to say it's bad.  Just that we're going to wait for the next single before we pre-order the album.

Luckily this track is ABSOLUTELY FREE over at Santigold's website

So, weird or not, it's still going on our iphone.

Mission accomplished, Santigold.  Mission accomplished.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Alexandra Burke is back with BONA FIDE CLUB BANGER 'Elephant' - listen now've got something on your lips, dear...
Alexandra Burke has had quite a time of it hasn't she?  She burst onto the pop scene as winner of the UK X-Factor in 2008, and has since tallied up 3 number 1 singles and a chart topping album.   She was the first female solo artist to sell a million copies of a single, and sold 105,000 copies of her debut a single day.

But as is the way in these fast-moving times, things got a bit wonky toward the end of her first album's campaign.  Granted, it was the sixth single from the parent LP, but final release 'Silence' only limped to #16, and many started wondering if Alex's follow up album would suffer from the dreaded sophomore slump.

Well it's about time to find out, as the lead single from Ms. Burke's second record is finally here.  'Elephant' is an of-the-moment donkfest of the highest order, with a thumping beat and bubbly bassline.  But while that formula once nearly guaranteed chart success thanks to the dance music craze, one can't help but feel that Alexandra is jumping on the bandwagon just a bit too late.  In fact, we're pretty sure that 2012 will be the year that the current manifestation of club music jumps the shark and is replaced by some random underground oddity that will be co-opted by an up and coming pop act. 

Only time will tell whether Alexandra's foray into poppers-o-clock pop will prove successful, but at the very least we get a jam of a song out of it.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Wanted take over Ellen for their first American tv appearance - watch now!

Buy my single and I'll move the sign.
So apparently 2012 is not only the year in which the world ends, but is also the year in which England once again launches a pop invasion of the US.  With Cher Lloyd already gunning for the American charts with 'Want U Back,' fellow teen popstars The Wanted have just upped the ante by performing their UK #1 single 'Glad You Came' on Ellen.

The group have already been trapsing around to radio stations and playing club gigs in seedy eurotrash gay bars, but with a radio re-release of the track slated for January 24, it appears the boys are going big or going home to jolly old England.

The performance itself is pretty by the numbers, with some awkward standing around and then some QUITE THRILLING (read: not thrilling at all) running around in the audience.  But it is notable for being pretty damn on-point vocally, and even for the world's top pop acts that's a big feat these days.  If anyone had doubts these kids have some serious vocal chops this video will go a ways toward silencing them.  But that doesn't mean their infectious brand of UK cheese will make any impact in the charts.

As we've seen lately with everyone from Kylie to Leona Lewis, US success has less to do with quality than it does with quantity and relentlessness of promotion.  Despite a balls-to-the-wall fierce America's Got Talent performance, K-Mo's singles off her latest album floundered outside the dance charts, and with no in-person promotion to speak of, Leona's 'Collide' barely made an impact.  A lot of this is just because the US is so damn big that a few tv and radio spots can't possibly cover the number of people required to have an actual hit, but it's also because the charts have become so homogenized of late that unless you're Katy Perry, Britney or LMFAO, no one is going to play your song anyway.

Sure, the UK gave us Adele, but let's not forget that she also was on most every awards show there was in 2011.  Her whole album was lightning in a bottle, but more importantly, she had the touring and promo schedule to back it up.  The question for The Wanted is whether they are willing and able to do the same, and are ready to sacrifice the time and effort it takes to make it Stateside. 

We're guessing they are - if only just so they can have ultimate bragging rights over JLS.

'Glad You Came' is out to download now in the US, and will be rereleased to mainstream radio on January 24.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Cher Lloyd's rather amazing 'Want You Back' finally gets a video

What do you mean I wasn't supposed to put on ALL the makeup?
If you live in the UK you've probably already made your mind up as to whether you love or hate Cher Lloyd.  If you live anywhere else, you probably have very little idea who she is, which is exactly why Cher's handlers have gone ahead and chucked an American rapper on her new track for literally no reason at all.

The dude's name is Astro and he came in like 11th on US X Factor or something, but no one cares so that's all we will say about that.  What people SHOULD care about is the video, which is KIND OF TREMENDOUS.

Cher's strong suit has always been her personality - she doesn't just sing words, she injects them with her own unique weight and meaning - and it's on full display in this clip.  It's basically her spunkily stalking her old (very hot) boyfriend and his new girl, jumping into their pictures and videos and dumping stuff on them. 

For anyone who's been through a painful breakup recently it could be a meaningful and cathartic experience, but for the rest of us it's just QUITE A LOT OF FUN.

Also she looks amazing.  So good for you, Cher.  Now stop letting them put rent-a-rappers on your tracks.  Thanks.

Cher Lloyd Feat. Astro - Want U Back (HD) from mike roda on Vimeo.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Goldfrapp's new single 'Melancholy Sky' is a gorgeous slice of electropop heaven

Goldfrapp is an amazing band that everyone thinks of as an EPIC DANCE GROUP but is really an EPIC ELECTRO-CHILL GROUP.  Much of this confusion comes from the fact that nearly every chart hit the band has had has been a poppers-o-clock thumpfest, but has also not really been representative of their overall sound.  Like, at all.

Sure, they did one largely-clubby album, but other than that their output has always consisted of mostly low-key melodic e-folk.  Which is fine.  We don't judge.  ("hahaha, that's a joke" etc.)

Anyway, their slower, more pensive tracks are arguably their best ('Black Cherry' and 'A&E,' anyone?), but we have to admit that every so often we still long for the stomping, faux-flapper discobitch that gave us 'Ooh La La' and 'Strict Machine.' 

Every time we get our hopes up,though,  they let us down - albeit in literally the BEST WAY POSSIBLE.  Everything inside us calls out to them to give us a donkfest club stomper, but instead we are given gorgeous, glittering, pitch-perfect downbeat pop that puts most every other group to shame.  And their new single is no exception.  It's ethereal, melodic, and a wholly immersive experience that pretty much no other band is doing and certainly no other could pull off, which might be exactly why the group insist on giving us these tracks instead of going along with the current dance music trend. 

Long story short, 'Melancholy Sky' may not be the banger we were hoping for, but if disappointment sounds this good, we'll take it.

Monday, January 2, 2012

2012 starts with a f*cking bang - the Scissor Sisters have just put out what may be the single of the year

We just blew your minds with our amazing new single.
What you are about to hear is epic in every sense of the word.  It is current without being trendy, it is pop without being pandering, and it is



Here is Scissor Sisters' new single 'Shady Love.'

Shady Love (Clean) by Scissor Sisters Official