dispatches from the pop scene...minus the corn syrup.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!

Saturday night there was the most hip-hoppin' happening in West Hollywood: A party attended by D'Luv! Those who know me know that I rarely ever go out. Alas, I Brandon Flowers-ed it up and went to the shindig with digital camera in tow.













Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Shelf-Life Tops The UK Singles Chart

English pop pickers have picked a winner! And it's Westlife's lifeless coffee-mug-coaster-disguised-as-a-pop-single, "You Raise Me Up." Don't these 4 lads have anything better to do, like go make car bombs in some dank Belfast council home basement?

Ironically, former Shelf-life member Brian McFadden has enlisted Backstreet Boy Nick Carter -- whose latest single debuts at #8 in the UK this week -- to pen songs for his new album. Perhaps he should just toughed it out with his own boy band.

And if there was ever any remaining question as to group member Mark Feehily's sexuality...

The UK Top 10:

1. "You Raise Me Up" - Westlife
2. "I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor" - Arctic Monkeys
3. "Push The Button" - Sugababes
4. "King Of The Mountain" - Kate Bush
5. "Tripping" - Robbie Williams
6. "Don't Cha" - Pussycat Dolls Ft. Busta Rhymes
7. "Wake Up" - Hilary Duff
8. "Just Want You To Know" - Backstreet Boys
9. "I Wanna Hold You'" - McFly
10."Gold Digger" - Kanye West Ft. Jamie Foxx

The Life Of Brian

Was it only a year ago that former Shelf-life... oops... Westlife member Brian McFadden launched a promising solo career?
Why, yes it was. And in typical British pop industry fashion, after scoring 3 Top 10 hits -- including "Real To Me," which went to #1 in England -- his career has been deemed to be "in trouble." To be fair, the album barely made the Top 40.

In reaction to this, Brian is apparently covering one of his former coma-inducing hits with Shelf-life, "Flying Without Wings." And this time it's a duet with home-wrecking girlfriend Delta Goodrem. Make that a coma from which one may never wake.
Brian's next step at career resurrection has been to call up Nick Carter (huh?) out of the blue and ask him to write songs for Brian's next album. You know, 'cause Nick's so edgy and all. Or something. We shall see.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Westcorpse

Over in England, boy band Westlife -- who lost a member in recent years and saw an existing member come out of the closet -- have released their new single this week. Surprising to no one, it's a ballad!

Now, the label really tried to launch Westlife in America back in the days of 2000 -- a time of boybands and teen pop dominating the airwaves. Alas, their only single to mildly cross over here was "Swear It Again," which barely made the U.S. Top 20.

Anyway, here are some lovely excerpts from reviews of Westlife's new single, "You Raise Me Up," as posted by shoppers at the UK iTunes store:

Anonymous: "It is so dull and I don't know how anyone can listen to it without throwing up."
Anonymous: "Westlife seriously need to split up and give people a break from this drivel."
Fuzzymaquango: "It just makes me a feel a bit depressed and nauseous... oh dear!"
Noodlesfly: "ARGHH! *pukes*"
Banksy: "A good song ruined by trying to turn it into some sort of Irish roots malarky..."

Miss Puxxy Reviews The New Darren Hayes Single

Ever since my megabitch cat Miss Puxxy (excuse the spelling, but this is a family site, hookers) first began hopping on top of D'stereo D'Luv, I've always trusted her judgement on what constitutes good or bad music. If she's really into a song, you'll often find her looking quite like this in the photo, staring into space, taking in the song and tapping her paw along to the beat.

Today, I played Darren Hayes' new single, "So Beautiful," for Miss Puxxy. It's off the upcoming Savage Garden greatest hits set, and it's a ballad that Darren wrote and produced himself -- sort of a precursor to his third solo album being released in the new year.

Miss Puxxy stared into space for the first two minutes. By the middle-eight, she licked her tail, indifferent to what sounds like a Savage Garden throwback to the period when the band realized that boring songs charted better than "To The Moon And Back." Before the tune ended, she was already on her way to her 4th nap of the morning. It should be noted, however, that upon a second listen, Miss Puxxy did warm up to the song, as her tail began wagging a little bit during her slumber.

"So Beautiful" is available for download now at the U.S. iTunes music store, and is released on CD single format in the UK on Monday.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Chart Don't Lie: Madge's Big Debut

"Hung Up," Madonna's new single, becomes her 51st chart entry in the U.S. as it debuts at #20 this week on the Hot 100 Singles chart. It's also her 6th song to debut in the Top 20. And, as we really like this song, this is great news!

Now, looking at the single sleeve here for "Hung Up," we're not sure why she got Lindsay Lohan to pose for it. Unless, of course, that actually is Madonna, with about 56 years photo-shopped away?

Anyway, Gwen Stefani also has two debuts on the singles chart this week. "Luxurious," her 5th single off her debut solo album, opens at #80, while Pharrell Ft. Gwen Stefani's "Can I Have It Like That" enters at #97.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Gold Digger" - Kanye West Ft. Jamie Foxx
2. "Run It!" - Chris Brown
3. "My Humps" - Blackeyed Peas
4. "Photograph" - Nickelback
5. "Soul Survivor" - Young Jeezy Ft. Akon
6. "Like You" - Bow Wow Ft. Ciara
7. "Shake It Off" - Mariah Carey
8. "Because Of You" - Kelly Clarkson
9. "Wake Me Up When September Ends" - Green Day
10. "We Be Burnin'" - Sean Paul

Remind Us Who This Guy Is Again?

One of those American Idols called Bo Bice is putting out an album in December. It's not titled yet and the tracklist isn't finalized, but songs have been submitted for the album by Nickelback's Chad Kroeger, Ben Moody and Richie Sambora.

Production on the album was handled by Max Martin(!), John Shanks, Desmond Child and Marty Frederikson. We're guessing the Max Martin song will sound like "Since U Been Gone," as the last three singles he produced for other artists all were in the same vein.

Of course, we jest about not knowing who Bo is. Why, I myself almost ran him over on Melrose Avenue last spring. Bo's version of "Inside Your Heaven" debuted at #2 on the Hot 100 Singles chart this past summer, two weeks after Idol winner Carrie Underwood took the same song to #1. That's right, the exact same song.

This is art, children.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

You Can't Do That On Television

As predicted last week, Ashlee Simpson -- shown here performing what looks like some lewd, base act on live television last week during an interview with Ryan Seacrest -- debuts atop the U.S. album chart with her sophomore set, I Am Trashlee... er... I Am Me. She had overall sales of 220,000.

Now, lest all you get a bit celebratory too quickly, let's not forget that her debut album had first week sales of 398,500 last year. Whether the lower debut this time is chalked up to the overall decline of music sales that's plaguing the industry in general, or the fact that she was exposed as a teen pop pantomime trash box last year, who can tell?

The important thing is that we were able to find yet another ridiculous picture of her.

Oh, Robbie!

Click here to watch the trashy commercial promoting Robbie Williams' web site, where he gets all naked and plays with his, uh, Willy-iams.

Make sure to watch the whole way through.

Dirty.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Things Not To Do

1. Drink And Operate A Blog - posting silly things like photos of yourself with the opening line, "Holy Fuck Am I Drunk!!!" Ugh.

2. ......


Yeah, #1 is pretty much enough to work on for this week.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Cry For Help

An Open Letter To Rachel Stevens:

Dear Rachel,

Here's the trouble your career is in, Doll... Rick-fucking-Astley just sidestepped your ass in the charts today. Rick Astley! With an album of coma-inducing covers, no less! He hasn't even had an album out in England since 1993.

It's time to do some soul-searching. Actually, it's too late for that. So, D'Luv is gonna tell you what to do. First off, axe your manager. He or she clearly doesn't have any real direction for your career to be going in, since all your singles sound so different they could each be by a different artist. And no, that's not a good thing! The public wants familiarity with their pop stars. Look at said Astley. When he chucked the Linn drum and started hanging with Elton, we dumped him.

Next, find ONE goddamn producer and stick with them. Your songs are all over the place, and we don't really know who the hell you are or want to be. Are you a pop singer? A hip, trendy electro act? An '80s revivalist? We have no idea.

Finally, go make an album like Kylie's Fever. Now, she happened to work with different producers on that album. But, hey, she'd been in the biz for 13 years by that point, and earned the right to do so. She fuckin' knew what she was doin' with that album. You should sit back and watch. You know you want to be her, anyway.

Rachel, we wish you well. We really do. We like some of your songs. But not enough to stand by you if you keep on this "what-do-I-wanna-sound-like-this-week?" kick.

Take these words to heart, Babe. Cuz D'Luv don't lie. Nor do the charts! (Your single, "I Said Never Again" disappointed at UK #12 last week, and your album Come And Get It didn't make us come and get it, debuting at UK #28, two notches below The Rickster). Be warned.

With Love,

D'Luv

More Charts, More Truth

Let's switch over to the UK -- Wow, Franz Ferdinand has topped the singles chart in England! Oh, wait... No. It's actually Arctic Monkeys, another band that sounds the same and is on the same label. And by saying they sound the same, we mean in the not-as-good sense. Hmmm. At any rate, they knock Sugababes from the top after 3 weeks.

Anyway, moving on, Dannii Minogue missed the Top 10 by one notch, landing at #11 with "Perfection." Oh, Kitty, what are we to do? Where's the love? The song is certainly better than Robbie Williams' (which just won't go away) or McFly's (ugh)!

And what's the story with this Friday Hill boy band? I listened to their song on their official site, and it's not bad!

The UK Top 10:

1. "I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor" - Arctic Monkeys
2. "Push The Button" - Sugababes
3. "I Wanna Hold You" - McFly
4. "Tripping - Robbie Williams
5. "Don't Cha" - Pussycat Dolls Ft. Busta Rhymes
6. "Gold Digger" - Kanye West Ft. Jamie Foxx
7. "Baby Goodbye" - Friday Hill
8. "Bad Day" - Daniel Powter
9. "We Be Burnin'" - Sean Paul
10."Song 4 Lovers" - Liberty X

The Chart Don't Lie: Sigh....

This is a few days late. I've been super-busy. Whatev.

I really can't understand why people like bad music. I'm not saying that the music I like (which, in case you've never read this site before - is everything from Kylie to Nirvana, The Beatles to Jackson 5, Ace Of Base to The Killers, etc.) is necessarily good, but Chris Brown is just bad, bad, bad.

Not only is this a shit song, it sounds like every other redundant hip hop song in the U.S. charts these days. Even stating this is redundant. So why are people buying this? Oh, that's right, because of radio leading mush-brained listeners like a corporate Pied Piper.

And so, sigh... The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Gold Digger" - Kanye West Ft. Jamie Foxx
2. "Run It!" - Chris Brown
3. "Photograph" - Nickelback
4. "My Humps" - Blackeyed Peas
5. "Shake It Off" - Mariah Carey
6. "Like You" - Bow Wow Ft. Ciara
7. "Soul Survivor" - Young Jeezy Ft. Akon
8. "Wake Me Up When September Ends" - Green Day
9. "Because Of You" - Kelly Clarkson
10. "Sugar, We're Goin' Down" - Fall Out Boy

Saturday, October 22, 2005

OMG!

Look what's goin' on at G-A-Y in London on November 5th:

Saturday, 5 November
STOCK AITKEN & WATERMAN GOLD Album Launch Fortnight Starring SINITTA, SONIA & JASON DONOVAN + The 4th Contestant Voted Off THE X FACTOR




























And in case that wasn't enough, here's the following week:

Saturday, 12 November
STOCK AITKEN & WATERMAN GOLD Album Launch Fortnight Finale Starring Special Guest DJ PETE WATERMAN + The 5th Contestant To Be Voted Off THE X FACTOR






Decisions, decisions.... ;-)

Trashlee's New Album Set To Top The Chart

Ashlee Simpson's second album -- um, whatever it's called -- came out on Tuesday, and it looks set to top next week's Billboard Top 200 Albums chart.

Early sales from record retailers are pointing toward a prediction of about 250,000 copies sold when the first week is all said and done. Not bad, though her first album started off its run with 398,500 in its first week last year.

Currently Trashlee's single "Boyfriend" is sitting at #24 on the Hot 100 Singles chart, after a few weeks of yo-yo-ing up and down. Over at iTunes, another song from her new album, "L.O.V.E," is receiving enough downloads to jump up to #16 on the daily Top 100 Songs chart.

Captain Jack Dead At 43

Franky Gee (born in Cuba as Francisco Guiterrez), aka Captain Jack, died from a brain hemmorhage yesterday in Spain. Franky moved to Miami as a kid, then joined the U.S. Army. He got into music while stationed in Germany in the '80s.

Chances are, if you've got a collection of '90s Eurodance compilations, Captain Jack's got a song or two on them. The one I remember most is the song "Captain Jack," as it's on the Super Dance Hits Megamix '96 compilation I got in fall of 1996, my senior year of college. I wasn't really ever crazy about the barking-military-orders style of the vocals, but the music was always top-notch Europop.

Here's what the Eurodance Encyclopedia reports:

On the 17th of October, Franky collapsed on monday at a party in Palma de Mallorca. He was taken to the hospital with the suspicion of stroke. He already had one 3 years before. In the night to friday 21st October, he fell into eternal sleep without ever regaining his consciousness, according to his ex-wife Daniela Schaefer.

Send These Two Out To Pasture

Yeah, yeah, yeah...

So the other day Madge went on Letterman and she and Dave rode horses side-by-side down 53rd Street in Manhattan and... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Whatever. Everything's so sanitized now. Bring back the days of March 1994, when that cranky whore went on The Late Show sucking on a cigar like it was gonna be her last oral fix ever, and proceeded to launch a whirlwind of F-word-riddled jibes at Dave.

Those two need to pry their lips off each other's asses and stop acting like such boring, OLD senior citizens at a family reunion.

Meanwhile, is "Hung Up" getting any radio airply at all? It's currently #3 for downloaded singles. And whoever is still downloading "Gold Digger" needs to be shot!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Rick Likes Broads And Cash

Portraits, the snoozey covers album from Rick Astley finally came out on Monday on Sony/BMG in the UK. As of today it's at #54 on the UK iTunes store download chart, #40 on Amazon UK's daily album sales chart, and, according to Kitty, #29 on the official UK album chart midweeks.

Overall, not bad for a being, well, an album of covers.

You can click here to watch Rick on GMTV last week promoting the album, plus read a live webchat he did, which features such gems as this:

John0478: What is it like being famous and successful?

Rick Astley: Hi John, it's great. But I'm really only interested in the chicks and the money.

1 888 2-DOLLAR-HOOKER

Oh, Madge. Ever the marketing genius. As D'Luv gets ready to curl up in bed, he has a naughty confession that he just has to call and tell you on your 1 888 2 CONFESS message line.

You see, "Hung Up," your new single, is really irritating. Not because it sucks like your last 17 singles have. Au contraire, Hooker Britches! D'Luv is annoyed because he actually kinda sorta maybe-just-a-little secretly likes the song! Eeek!

Now, granted, jumping on the "new song over old song" bandwagon seems a bit tired, even for you, doll. But since you had the class to sample ABBA, and not some wanked-out shit like The Gap Band, it adds a tinge of grooviness to the song.

And thanks for reminding yourself to come up with an actual hook this go 'round. I don't know if your dreidel was spun too tightly when you made that last album, but, girl, all those songs sure sucked! I could have recorded a better album by taping one of Miss Pussy's litterbox sessions!

Anyway, that's it. I've confessed the ultimate sin of liking your new single. For that I think I'll go flog myself with Shanaynay's Journey's Greatest Hits CD.

The Veronicas Pop Up On iTunes, And Other Jazz...

The full-length album from The Veronicas is available as of today at the iTunes music store, as is the video for "4ever." Don't forget to pick up the November issue of Instinct and check out my sass-tastic interview with the Aussie twins.

Meanwhile, it's that time of year. Tonight I've started playing the Band Aid single on repeat for lengthy periods. And no, I'm not talking about the crap 20th anniversary version from last year, either.

Also, I kept meaning to post about the 4 concerts I went to over the past two weeks - The Killers at the Long Beach Arena, Franz Ferdinand at the Greek, Green Day at the Home Depot Center and LCD Soundsystem at Avalon - but I've been so busy with work and other stuff that I never got around to it. At any rate, every single one was a great show.


Alright. Off to bed.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Well, The Eyes Are The Same...

Okay, since it's a Dannii kind of weekend, and her 34th birthday is on Thursday -- and also since it's too much fun posting new pics of Dannz next to old ones -- I thought I'd tell you all about a great site called Am I Annoying, where you can create lists to add celebrities onto and vote on their ranking.

Why is she considered annoying, you might ask? The site lists the following reasons: she smokes, she has breast implants, and what's up with the spelling of her name?

Here are just a few of the lists the younger MInogue appears on at the site:

* Collagen-injected lips (#19)
* Posed for Playboy (list too long, tired of looking)
* Rumored to use botox (#30)
* Sexy Sheilas (#8)
* I come from Oz (again, too long)
* Women who dress like whores (#66)

Sugababes / Steps Flashback

A good buddy of mine, Mediawhore (also one of the best British transplant publicists in L.A.), got me the new Sugababes CD a week ago, and last night I finally took a listen.

It really reminds me of the last full-length album Steps put out, Buzzz. Neither is a totally perfect pop album, and both lean a tad too far into the R&B realm for my total liking. But, somehow the pop hooks rise to the top and manage to sway you to the album's side.

Thinking back, I used to drive around Los Angeles listening to Buzzz in late 2000 so much (was I living in my car? It felt like it!) that I knew every song backwards by Christmas time. My faves were the non-singles "Turn Around" and "Paradise Lost," as well as the later single "You'll Be Sorry," which was released as a double A-side with "Here And Now." After thinking about it, I can't believe 5 years has gone by already.

As for Sugababes, "Better," "Joy Division," "Bruised" and "Ace Reject" are really rad songs so far. Lookin' forward to a lot more listens!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

The Way She Were

In honor of Dannii Minogue's new single "Perfection" being released on Monday in the UK, I was thinking it might be nice to send you all on a nice trip down Memory Lane.



Waaaayyyy back...






Now, looking at old pics of Dannz, circa the early '90s, it's amazing how different she looks now! Why, these days, Kylie and her seem to be cut *ahem* from the same mold.

Friday, October 14, 2005

The Chart Don't Lie: It's Actually Worse Than Our Government!

That's right, and it's time to get political. Now, I'm not gonna bitch about Kanye retaining the top position for another week, cuz at least he's down with the gays. But the runner-up spot has become like a presidential election -- having to decide between the lesser of the evils!

In this case, I'm siding with Mariah Carey! "Shake It Off" had been #2 for weeks, held back by "Gold Digger." But this week, the evil Nickelback has shaken off Mariah's curvey charms and taken over the #2 position.

I want you all to go out there and download! Download Mariah! Don't download anything else, because it'll just split the lesser vote and give Nickelback the upper hand! George W. is probably listening to Nickelback right now as he fumbles with a crossword puzzle or something.

If "Photograph" goes to #1, I'm moving to France.

The US Top 10 Singles:

1. "Gold Digger" - Kanye West Ft. Jamie Foxx
2. "Photograph" - Nickelback
3. "Shake It Off" - Mariah Carey
4. "My Humps" - Blackeyed Peas
5. "Like You" - Bow Wow Ft. Ciara
6. "Wake Me Up When September Ends" - Green Day
7. "Soul Survivor" - Young Jeezy Ft. Akon
8. "Run It!" - Chris Brown
9. "Because Of You" - Kelly Clarkson
10. "Play" - David Banner

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

You Know America Has Bad Taste When...

Corporate rock poster dorks Nickelback managed to score their first chart-topping album this week with All The Right Reasons. All I can guess is that it must have been pay day for a lot of folks at the trailer park.

Less dire is the fact that Franz Ferdinand debuted at #8 at the top of the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart with their latest, You Could Have It So Much Better. This is great, considering their last album originally debuted at #164 -- although it would go on to sell almost 1 million copies once the single "Take Me Out" took off at radio and MTV.

The real test of patience will come tomorrow, when the Hot 100 Singles chart is published. Will Nickelback jump up to #1 with "Photograph?" Or will Kanye West bore us with another week at the top?

The excitement of anticipation is riveting.

Oh, Ricky, You're So Pretty

Wow! Ricky Martin has never looked gayer in his entire career, so surely his music must have gotten better, right? I'm thinking upbeat, poppy hooks, a nice, catchy chorus and maybe a cowbell thrown in somewhere.

Well, let's hop over to RickyMartin.com, where there's a soundclip of his new single "I Don't Care" playing.

Wait, is this Usher? Should we be surprised that La Martin's sound is like that of every other R&B-tinged act out now? Ricky, you look like a fussy Chelsea leather tart -- now be a doll and go make some appropriate music.