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

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween, Part Two: When You Were Young

Here's a gem MoogaBoo unearthed from Halloween 1995. That scream you hear in the background is him realizing I posted it on the blog...


I think he looks quite dashing (on the far left). Let's just ignore my low-rent raver look. This was taken in a Pittsburgh parking garage outside our fave gay club at the time, Pegasus. I later turned this pic into a mixed CD cover, hence the high-tech "additions." Boo!

Happy Halloween!

And really, what's scarier than this bit of info, from Billboard:

Michael Jackson and Black Eyed Peas producer/rapper will.i.am have begun collaborating on new material for Jackson's as-yet-untitled album, due late next year via the Bahrain-based Two Seas Records.

The pair recently entered a studio in Ireland. "I like what he is doing and thought it would be interesting to collaborate or just see how the chemistry worked," Jackson told Access Hollywood in an interview airing this week. "I think he's doing wonderful, innovative, positive, great music."

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Something Kinda Oooops!

Girls Aloud continued to disappoint this week as their latest single, "Something Kinda Ooooh," became their sixth in a row to miss hitting either #1 or #2 on the official UK singles chart. Now, we know a lot of you are GA fans, so really you only have yourselves to blame for letting the hookers down. You all should've been out there buying this trash instead of being content with the MP3 you illegally downloaded months ago.

Instead, good ol' McFly have the top song this week with "Star Girl." This composition's imaginative title is surely only a mere hint at its awesomeness. And somewhere out there, Lee Latchford Evans must be having a pint in celebration that the reality TV boyband he was ousted from, Upper Street, only scraped to #35 with "The One." Now that's kinda ooowch!

On a final note, Robbie Williams has claimed the top of the album chart. Be sure to check out our banterview on the Robster in the post below.

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "Star Girl" - McFly *new* *1 week*
2. "Put Your Hands Up For Detroit" - Fedde Le Grand *new*
3. "Something Kinda Ooooh" - Girls Aloud
4. "Welcome To The Black Parade" - My Chemical Romance
5. "Irreplaceable" - Beyoncé
6. "America" - Razorlight
7. "Rehab" - Amy Winehouse
8. "Rock This Party (Everybody Dance Now)" - Bob Sinclair feat. Cutee B
9. "It's All Coming Back To Me Now" - Meat Loaf / Marion Raven
10. "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'" - Scissor Sisters

Saturday, October 28, 2006

The Banterview: Take That, Robbie Williams!

J'ason and MoogaBoo were convinced they loved the new Robbie Williams album, Rudebox...until they sat down to talk about it.


J'ASON D'LUV: Hey, do you remember when I had those pictures of Robbie on my dorm room wall in 1996, which I'd ripped out of Interview magazine? He was quite the lad then.

MOOGABOO: I think you and I, like most Americans, fell pretty hard for Robbie at first sight. He was scruffy-cute and had a rakish accent. He seemed to be wearing the hat of life with a tilted brim! But it was a sad case of the music not being as cute as the singer.

JD: And now, based on the artwork from Rudebox, the Robster's life is best viewed through a pixellated lens.

M: His reputation as a horny libertine was enough to get me to buy his first album.

JD: I didn't buy that one, but I shelled out some cash for the import of Sing When You're Winning in 2000. It was certainly no Scooch Four Sure.

M: Well, really, what was? Talk about setting a high bar.

JD: I put "Rock DJ" on the very first mixed CD I ever made. Remember when burning CDs was like discovering gold?

M: And owning a CD burner was akin to having visited the moon?

JD: I made about eight copies of that mix, and mailed it to everyone I know. I'm sure grandma's still cheerily dusting the fine china to Alice Deejay.

M: I went to a party one December and flaunted our friend Mr. Brady's '98 Cheese Collection -- "Look, everyone! A rare Kylie remix...on CD!" Meanwhile, now fetuses have iPods.

JD: Okay, so Rudebox has some winners on it. Robbie sounds very suave on "Louise" and "We're The Pet Shop Boys."

M: I agree! The covers are the highlights on this album. "Louise" is beautiful.

JD: I bought The Human League's greatest hits cassette back in fall of 1990, when "Heart Like A Wheel" was a minor U.S. hit. I never paid much attention to "Louise" or "Being Boiled," but those two songs are now considered respected classics. I'll admit, at the time I thought "Louise" was boring, but when stacked up against "Mirror Man" and "Love Action," how did it stand a chance?

M: Perhaps "Louise" was just a victim of sequencing, because it sounds good in Robbie Williams' version. So God knows the original is probably 800 times better.

JD: At least Robbie picked a song from the best era of The Human League -- when Phil Oakey was a woman.


M: God, I miss those days. He's still a woman in my electric dreams! "Kiss Me" is another great cover, produced by Joey Negro.

JD: And it has handclaps, so I'm sold!

M: I think Joey, aka Dave Lee, also produced Take That's "Relight My Fire," which now makes me wonder what Robbie might have done to Lulu's rudebox when he had the chance...

JD: Oh, I'm sure he was very respectful. And by that, I mean he took her from behind.

M: I heard Lily Allen's keening mew in the background somewhere on this album. It caused me to go do the dishes.

JD: I hope Robbie gave Lily the clap, and avoided catching rabies in the process. She sings with him on what's now slated to be the third single, "Bongo Bong." But moving on, since the Pet Shop Boys rarely get mentioned on this site, I feel I should acknowledge that I only picked up Rudebox because of their involvement.

M: Are they sending you checks yet?

JD: Neil and Chris have so much energy these days, and they should just move into becoming the new Max Martin. Their production on "She's Madonna" is everything pop isn't, but should be.


M: The PSBs make sexy music, but their image isn't sexy. They should just hire young sexy people to do their promotion. Do you believe this alleged Guy Ritchie backstory behind the song?

JD: Not sure. What's the deal? Robbie dated the chick Guy dumped for Madonna?

M: Yes. I forget her name, but apparently she told Robbie the whole sordid story of how Guy ditched her for Madge in just the way the song depicts.

JD: I'm sure Robbie can't remember her name, either. I wonder if M will be irked or flattered by it all?

M: Well, Robbie apparently played "part of it" at her house several months ago and she loved it.

JD: So, like, he played 10 seconds of the intro without vocals...

M: I don't think Madonna has anything to worry about, even though the rumors of the song's origin are most likely true. It's flattering! And she got a kid out of it all. Sheesh!

JD: Guy is more likely to be irritated, but Madge will just spank him with a riding crop and tell him to "pipe down while the song about me is playing!"

M: There are about 10 more tracks on here, but I just realized I don't care about any of them.

JD: If Will Young had done this album, it'd be much more of an event.

M: Interesting concept. Of course, if Will Young had done this album, it would have sounded more like Willa Ford.

JD: Isn't "Rudebox" Willa Ford's nickname?

M: No, Robbie never chases trim that classy.

JD: You're right. And I don't care about the rest of these songs, either. Now, where'd I put that Human League tape?

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Friday, October 27, 2006

Music Junkie Digest

This week the Pet Shop Boys merchandising onslaught continues as the A Life In Pop DVD was released in Britain Monday. Yes, it's Region 2, but thank goodness for modern technology. Order here. Meanwhile, I got my Best Of Smash Hits book, Robbie Williams Rudebox and PSBs Concrete CDs this week in the mail, plus the "Numb" singles. I really love the B-side, "Bright Young Things," and I'm happy it's finally available. There was much disappointment on this end when Stephen Fry decided last minute to not include it in his 2004 film of the same title. Great movie, though!


POPtastic! has the MP3 for Young Divas' cover of "Happenin' All Over Again," their second single and second Stock Aitken Waterman cover. Quite simply, the Divas' version is poptastic! D'luvvly...

Not so lovely for Janet Jackson or boyfriend Jermaine Dupri is that, following the tanking of yet another JJ album, Dupri has stepped down as Virgin Records' president of urban music. He had a big hand in shaping Janet's 20 Y. O., which, after four weeks, is barely in the Top 30 on Billboard's Top 200 Albums chart. Better luck with the next record, doll...

And speaking of next records... Usually I rely on glancing at tabloid headlines (reliable!) at the grocery store for info on Britney Spears, because, face it, her music's sucked since the second album. So, it's with a raised eyebrow that I noted Wikipedia mentioning rumors she may be working with Max Martin again for her 2007 album. This could either do the impossible and make Britney listenable again, or toss her in the large scrap heap of Kelly Clarkson clones.

Finally, here's a video 10 times better than the one Justin Timberlake served up for his song "My Love." Am I the only one completely over JT?

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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Diddy: Somehow Relevant Again

Not only has Diddy debuted at the top of Billboard's Top 200 Albums chart, but his low-rent duet with Nicole Scherzinger, "Come With Me," has crept into the Top 10 of the Hot 100 Singles after eight weeks. Chalk it up to the "appeal" of the Pussycat Dolls.

There's not much else going on this week, chartwise. One fact worth noting is that several pop stars have doubled-up their hits in the Top 40. Justin Timberlake is at #4 with "SexyBack" and #5 with "My Love." Nelly Furtado sits at #16 for a second week with "Maneater," while "Promiscuous" is still hangin' in there at #39. And Fergie's "London Bridge" and "Fergalicious" are at #17 and #19, respectively.

That's in addition to Nicole Scherzinger, who's at #9 with Diddy, and also has "Buttons" with Pussycat Dolls at #18. Oh, and The Fray have two songs up there, but they don't count because they suck the big one.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Money Maker" - Ludacris feat. Pharrell *2 weeks*
2. "Smack That" - Akon feat. Eminem *sales gainer*
3. "Lips Of An Angel" - Hinder
4. "SexyBack" - Justin Timberlake
5. "My Love" - Justin Timberlake feat. T.I. *airplay gainer*
6. "How To Save A Life" - The Fray
7. "Too Little Too Late" - JoJo
8. "Chasing Cars" - Snow Patrol
9. "Come With Me" - Diddy feat. Nicole Scherzinger
10. "Far Away" - Nickelback

For all you need to know on Nicole Scherzinger (i.e., "the dirt"), check out our trashtastic Banterview on her!

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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Don't Fuck With Babs

I never "got" this broad. Maybe it's a generation gap thing, but Barbra Streisand's appeal was somehow lost on me...


I did buy some cheesy greatest hits cassette of hers back in '93, and secretly listened to it while driving around my hometown after clocking out from my part-time summer job. I guess maybe I thought there'd be a startling revelation where some magical song by Babs would knock some gay sense into my 19-year-old self, and I'd be all, "Oh, so this is the shizz everyone's goin' on about!" But, yeah, nothing...

So fast-forward to two weeks ago, when the cranky old gal was performing at Madison Square Garden in New York, and during a Bush-mocking skit, some right-winger in the audience started to heckle her. Not only did Barbzz drop the F-bomb on the guy, causing him to leave, but somehow budding DJ Revolucian got the entire diatribe and laid it over a beat, creating the new dance jam "STFU" (Shut The Fuck Up) -- which, naturally, you can download from his MySpace page. Or you can just grab it here:

[MP3] - "STFU"

And now, after 13 years, I finally get it! Babz is amazing! This is her greatest achievement ever. If she totally got behind this song, it would most likely end up being her biggest hit. She should at least start performing it at her shows. It'd segue nicely into "Evergreen"...

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Don't Forget To Stuff Samantha Mumba In Your Stocking, Kids

There's a typical blizzard of "hits collections" and "best-ofs" out in time for the pre-holiday shopping season. But this was quietly put out yesterday...


There are 18 songs on Samantha Mumba's The Collection (is that possible?), but what more do you need than "Always Come Back To Your Love"? The label, Spectrum, is practically giving this one away. It's only £4.99 on Amazon UK.

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Put Your Hands Up For YouTube

I'd been meaning to mention Hellogoodbye for a bit now, every since their album had surprisingly spectacular first-week sales when it came out the other month. If this is emo, then it's the way it should be done -- with vocoded Cher vocals! But no, let's not use the "e" word. Hellogoodbye are hipper than that. Plus, they share a name with my favorite song by The Beatles, so how can they go wrong? Here's the video for their soon-to-be hit single, "Here In Your Arms."


Across the pond, super-cute Dutch DJ Fedde Le Grand (incidentally, not in the video) has out what Mr. Brady is predicting to be a huge hit in the UK by week's end -- his single "Put Your Hands Up For Detroit." The song apparently hit the Top 60 there off 12" single sales alone recently. Now, while the video for "Put Your Hands Up For Detroit" contains the thong-clad vixens typical of these one-hit floorfillers, there's also a surprising man-on-man angle...which, duh! Who else is gonna buy this, anyway?

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Sunday, October 22, 2006

My Chemical Romance And Pet Shop Boys; Similar-Themed Singles, Different Results

In Britain, My Chemical Romance continued to move large quantities of their post-9/11 operatic rock dirge, "Welcome To The Black Parade," giving it a second week atop the official UK singles chart. The song's style is not unlike the kind Queen or Meat Loaf used to belt out in the '70s, so it's kinda ironic The Loaf is at #6 with a cover of a tune his longtime collaborator, Jim Steinman, originally saw success with when Celine Dion recorded it. Meanwhile, Girls Aloud once again fail to land a single in their old stomping grounds of either the #1 or #2 position.

That said, even more dismal is the #23 entry of "Numb," the third single off the Pet Shop Boys' latest album. The midweek chart had placed it around #12, but with the Boys away on their North American tour and unable to do any promotion, plus hardly any digital download sales to factor in, "Numb" has easily become their 2nd worst-charting single after the #24 peak of 1991's "Was It Worth It." Of course, with sleeve art like this, it's hard to believe it wasn't flying off shelves...

[UPDATE]: My Brit friends have been informing me that Girls Aloud are at #5 on downloads alone, and that "Something Up My Ooosh-Nelly!" should hit #1 next week. They're so optimistic. I say it will never happen.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Welcome To The Black Parade" - My Chemical Romance *2 weeks*
2. "America" - Razorlight
3. "Rock This Party (Everybody Dance Now)" - Bob Sinclair feat. Cutee B
4. "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'" - Scissor Sisters
5. "Something Kinda Ooooh" - Girls Aloud *new*
6. "It's All Coming Back To Me Now" - Meat Loaf / Marion Raven *new*
7. "Come To Me" - P Diddy feat. Nicole Scherzinger
8. "Wonderful World" - James Morrison
9. "Checkin' It Out" - Lil' Chris
10. "Lonely At The Top" - Ordinary Boys

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Saturday, October 21, 2006

The Banterview: She Wants To Dance With Me

It's Dannii Minogue's 35th birthday (again), which has J'ason and MoogaBoo wondering if the Dames Of the Dancefloor get better with age.


J'ASON D'LUV: I'm playing the new Kim Wilde record, Never Say Never. How is it this good?

MOOGABOO: I know! It really does defy the comeback cash-in curse.

JD: The intro to "Maybe I'm Crazy" is so Pet Shop Boys, it shoulda just been called "She's Madonna."

M: "Maybe I'm Crazy" is like a total early-'90s reach-around. And the chorus reminds me of "On A Night Like This" and BBMak's "Back Here." That's two great rip-offs for the price of one!

JD: It's got the classic Madonna "Holiday," Rick Astley "Never Gonna Give You Up" and Pet Shop Boys "Being Boring" chords at the beginning.

M: Babe, I couldn't put my finger on why, but I knew you would love those chords!

JD: They guarantee at least at Top 15 hit... well, unless you're Kim Wilde.


M: "Maybe I'm Crazy" also reminds me a bit of "Mixed-Up World" by Sophie Ellis-Bextor.

JD: This is so my new jam. Move over, JoJo, grandma wants her rocking chair back!

M: I knew all the gardening shows and dietary supplement commercials were just a smokescreen for Kim's triumphant return to the lower reaches of the Eastern European charts. And "Maybe I'm Crazy" is actually a b-side on the "You Came 2006" single, so I'm glad it made it to the album as well. I wasn't buyin' both. Sorry, Kimbo, but a boy's gotta eat!

JD: Some of her other new songs are pretty rockin'. I hope Kim's in shape, because she'll look pretty silly being fat, 60 and jamming her air guitar on stage. Although, the last picture I saw of her looked like she'd at least adjusted all the right parts.

M: We Kim fans have watched her face evolve over the years, for better or worse.

JD: Surely it's not been as shocking as the Great Dannii Minogue Evolution. I think Darwinists will be debating that one till the earth stops spinning.


M: I suspect a whole "Paul Is Dead" scenario there -- like, the real Dannii was killed in a meat-grinding accident, so they brought in a homeless starlet to take over the role.

JD: If Macca hears that comparison, you'll single-handedly be responsible for causing the third Beatle to hit the dirt.

M: Speaking of D. Minogue, rumor has it her next single may or may not be a cover of Sister Sledge's "He's The Greatest Dancer" -- possibly for charity, and most certainly scheduled, delayed and cancelled by the time this banterview goes up.


JD: So she's realistically given up any hopes of having a hit again? Good for her, I say!

M: It's only a matter of time before Dannii's spotted dragging a futon and an Aldi bag full of clothes into the apartments above G-A-Y.

JD: Oh, that wouldn't be good. Isn't G-A-Y slated to be torn down at some point? Ohhh, I get it...

M: I often wonder what fascinates me about the Middle-Aged Dames Of Dance. Is it their talent? Their tenacity? Their ability to live for decades off nothing but tips from a drunk, occasionally brutal, gay male audience and the two cent royalty off an '06 remix that has little to do with their vocals?

JD: That's a really good question. I wonder if taylordayne@taylordayne.net would have the answer?

M: Well, now that Pride festival season is over...

JD: I really have to say, I thought that latest Gina G single would chart better than #57 in the UK. How grim. Why do we always back the losers in pop?

M: Because we can relate? Er, wait, I meant, because we feel bad for them?

JD: I feel like Madonna should start a fund for Fallen Dance Divas. She's certainly got the cash. And now that her own hit status is stretched as thin as her face, she's got the time.

M: That would be a very nice thing...so, yeah, she'd never do it. But maybe one of the other matriarchs -- one who isn't living from paycheck to paycheck -- could do it. Maybe Donna Summer or Diana Ross...

JD: I don't know. Diana might be tied up. Has she stopped chasing the armada of UFOs flying around her foyer with a broom yet?

M: Okay, so the Dames ain't exactly catching fire these days. Maybe they just need some new blood. I like to think that Jessica Simpson's "A Public Affair" hitting #1 on the Club Play chart was her official indoctrination into the society.

JD: Jessica does live in Hollywood. And she is over 24. Has her pension fund kicked in yet?

M: It's like the music world said, "Look, kid, you're never gonna have a real hit again, but we'll keep you around for the gays."

JD: And the gays love swatting at a blonde wig like a ball of yarn.


M: Part of me wants to take Jessica by the shoulders and say, "Babe, from now on it's going to be a lot of late nights in trashy discos, the smell of cosmotinis and GHB permanently soaked into your dress, and shirtless, sweaty guys with over-groomed eyebrows not giving a shit about the album version of your deeply personal repertoire. And that craggy, botoxed face looking back at you? It's Janice Dickinson, and she's throwing a bitch-fit because she's no longer Queen of the White Party. Beware -- this is your point of no return!"

JD: That could very well cause her to age 36 years on the spot and one of her three tits to slump.

M: The dance market is actually really bloodless right now. It's very polarized; on one side it's the very trite business of sexed-up divas mewing over a tribal beat, and on the other it's electro burp-n-fart (thank you Mr. Brady) that inspires dancing only among the severely depressed cutters of places like Misshapes.

JD: Christ, with a glib autopsy like that, where's Sinitta when you need her?

M: Sinitta went to that place where all dance ladies go to die -- trophy marriage.

JD: Didn't Jewel just whore herself out again by releasing a bevy of remixes for some song or other from her last album?

M: Yeah, the single for "Only One Too" came out last week, and it's a pretty sweet package of anachronistic "happy" mixes.

JD: I guess Jessica Simpson's gonna need someone to show her the ropes in P-town.


M: The Stonebridge mix is just so much damn fun, especially the last three minutes: the breakdown with the "Yeah...yeah...yeah," then the bridge laid atop and finally the looped wail followed by the repeat of the chorus. There's also the ecstatic moment at approximately 7:03 when she kicks it up a notch and shrieks, "I am the only one!" There's an electric guitar in there, too. It's a gushing fountain of diaphanous disco beauty.

JD: I'm sorry...you want me to make it seven minutes into a Jewel remix? What's in it for me? Anyway, don't you think Stevie Nicks is about due to have a synth-clap reinvention of some sort?

M: She did have a pretty big club hit with her cover of "Dreams," with Deep Dish. Decent as it was, I had to wonder what was the point.

JD: Despite the gay following, she never really caved in to the pressures of the disco and put out a full-fledged dance record. Who the hell does she think she is?

M: She's smart enough to look at the big picture and say, "Yeah, the fags love me, but I know they're sort of laughing at me, too. So fuck them." Stevie's not havin' it. She's one of your more serious ladies.

JD: Let's face it, when the disco finally burns to the ground, I think Madge and Kylie will be the only ones standing. Then Cher will step out of the smoke and knock them both over the head with a lightboard.

M: Cher's the mother of them all. I heard she's working on a new electronic dance album.

JD: Actually, isn't she working on a rock album?

M: Oh, fuck journalistic integrity!

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Friday, October 20, 2006

B'Day

Yesterday was the birthday of my (and I never throw this word around lightly) utterly fabulous pal and occasional partner in sass, Alex...


A small group of friends took him out to Hungry Cat, a new-ish Hollywood restaurant. As you can see, the drinks kept coming! I gave Alex the import of The Feeling's Twelve Stops And Home, and the girls behind us there in the photo noticed the CD sitting out on the chair. I ended up striking up a conversation with the one, who, it turns out, is a big fan of the band.

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Thursday, October 19, 2006

Love Her Or Hate Her, Chav Tart Lady Sovereign Cracks The U.S.

At once both horrifying and intriguing, Lady Sovereign and her Dr. Luke-produced "Love Me Or Hate Me" is making a chavtastic impact over here.


The pint-sized Brit geezer-bird has the Hot Shot Debut this week on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles chart, entering at #81. Thanks to its use in Verizon Wireless commercials, "Love Me Or Hate Me" has been growing in popularity for several months now in the States. She even became the first British artist to top MTV's TRL list. Personally, I'd like to see the S.O.V. grab Lily Allen by the weave and swing her off a cliff. Her album Public Warning is out at the end of the month from Island Def Jam.



As for the Top 10, what can you say? It's a Justin Timberlake world, and we're all just getting humped through it by him. Even though "SexyBack" is finally toppled by Ludacris at #1, Justin's "My Love" moves up to #8, giving him two songs in the upper tier of the chart. Which, of course, must mean he's just really awesome.


The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Money Maker" - Ludacris feat. Pharrell *1 week*
2. "SexyBack" - Justin Timberlake
3. "Lips Of An Angel" - Hinder
4. "Smack That" - Akon feat. Eminem
5. "How To Save A Life" - The Fray
6. "Chasing Cars" - Snow Patrol
7. "Too Little Too Late" - JoJo
8. "My Love" - Justin Timberlake feat. T.I.
9. "Chain Hang Low" - Jibbs
10. "Far Away" - Nickelback

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From Trash To Kylie: Boy George And His Sweeping Comeback

What a difference two months make. In August Boy George was cleaning the streets of New York for his community sevice work...


...and the other night he was on stage at the Pigalle club in London, performing his new comeback single, "Time Machine" -- a duet with Amanda Ghost -- as short 'n' sexy Kylie Minogue twirled into a disco frenzy in the audience.


Apparently, Boy and Amanda (pictured above) are working with Kylie on songs for her new album. Meanwhile, I had no idea Amanda Ghost co-wrote James Blunt's "You're Beautiful." (Still trying to figure out whether that's a good or bad thing...?) At any rate, between collaborating with Boy George and Scissor Sisters, this new Kylie record is sounding more and more rad by the minute! Now all it needs is a Jason Donovan duet...


...although, we'll probably just have to settle for the new Smash Hits book for that one. That said, do we really believe this report of Kylie working with Stock/Aitken/Waterman again? All you can do is step back in time...

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Young Divas Turn To The Hit Factory

This past May, Australian quartet Young Divas had a big hit in their home country with a cover of the Stock/Aitken/Waterman-produced Donna Summer classic, "This Time I Know It's For Real." It turns out their next single is yet another remake of a well-known SAW pop song -- "Happenin' All Over Again" by Lonnie Gordon. Lonnie's version originally charted at UK #4 back in January 1990. You can hear a clip of the Young Divas' cover here, courtesy of a thread at the Hit Factory Forum.

And here is the video for the 1990 version of "Happenin' All Over Again"...



...though I much prefer the 1993 update, from Lonnie's Bad Mood album, which you can download from U.S. iTunes. Rumor has it, according to a post at the Forum, that the Young Divas also recorded versions of two additional SAW tunes -- Sonia's "You'll Never Stop Me Loving You" and "Say I'm Your Number One" by Princess -- to appear on their debut album, out next month in Australia.

Check out Young Divas' official site for more info, or Mobius' site for all SAW news.

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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Music Junkie Digest

It's Tuesday, which means new releases hit stores and iTunes. And this week, JoJo's The High Road is finally out...


I'd just like to state that the banterview MoogaBoo and I did on the 15-year-old singer two months ago -- wherein we alluded to the fact that JoJo comes across as a loose ho beyond her years with her adult pop lyrics -- was probably way out of line. Never mind the fact that her new album contains songs titled "The Way You Do Me" and "How To Touch A Girl," because she ends the album with "Note To God." And so, really, that makes it okay.

JoJo's got a current Top 10 single here in the States, which is something Robbie Williams has been desperately pursuing since about, oh, the Mesozoic Era. And his label's still trying its darnedest. This week, "Kiss Me," a song off Robbie's forthcoming Rudebox album, is being offered as a free download from U.S. iTunes. I gotta admit, it's pretty good, which is a relief since I actually pre-ordered Rudebox from Amazon UK -- half because of the Pet Shop Boys' involvement, and half because of Hot Stuff and Paul's incessant blogging about the damn thing.

The past two weeks in the U.S. chart rundown, I've mentioned the strange phenomenon of the "Weird Al" Yankovic comeback.


But be sure to check out the recent Village Voice think piece on the poignancy of the ever-vital "Weird," titled "Dare To Be Stupid." In it, writer Jonathan Zwickel points out how Al wisely capitalized on the satirical viral YouTube craze with his own self-directed video for "White & Nerdy."



As we all know, Darren Hayes came out of his savage closet this past summer, and announced to the world via his website that he'd married his boyfriend Richard in London. U.S. gay rag Instinct nabbed the only interview the Aussie popster did about his decision to come out, which runs in their November issue. Dazza made the rag's (is that the second time I called it that?) annual list of Leading Men Of The Year. As you can see here, the debonair and suave Tim Gunn off Bravo's Project Runway graces the cover (click to enlarge).

And finally, since they popped up randomly on my iPod, I wanted to remind y'all how awesome mid-'90s Brit pop act Deuce really was...


I really have to thank both longtime D'luv friends Mr. Brady and Brian for getting me into Deuce back in 1996. The group was post-Ace Of Base and pre-Steps camp, but sadly, the four were only around for one album (On The Loose) in '95 and, a line-up change (or two?) later, a one-off single titled "No Surrender" in summer '96. You can read more about them here, and then track down a few of the members on MySpace.

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Sunday, October 15, 2006

The UK Has A My Chemical Romance Dependency On Emo

If Billy Corgan rammed his man paste up Marlon Brando's corpse, Gerard Way would surely be the offspring. Incidentally, Way and his band My Chemical Romance top the official UK singles chart this week with "Welcome To The Black Parade." Last month, Entertainment Weekly touted the band's new album as the second best release this fall. But then again, Jay-Z was their top pick, so what does that rag know?

Meanwhile, there's something just a tad morbid about Beatfreakz' cover art for their singles, no? I was at the Tower Records here in L.A. on Sunset Blvd. yesterday, which is having its big liquidation sale, and I had to stifle a yelp when I happened upon the 'freakz' "Somebody's Watching Me" single. This week, their take on "Superfreak" is at #7, giving them their second UK Top 10.

Finally, my new boyfriends, The Feeling, are hanging in at #25 after eight weeks with "Never Be Lonely," which is on its way to becoming one of my own top 10 fave singles of the year.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Welcome To The Black Parade" - My Chemical Romance *1 week*
2. "America" - Razorlight
3. "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'" - Scissor Sisters
4. "Rock This Party (Everybody Dance Now)" - Bob Sinclair feat. Cutee B
5. "Come To Me" - P Diddy feat. Nicole Scherzinger
6. "Checkin' It Out" - Lil' Chris
7. "Superfreak" - Beatfreakz *new*
8. "When You Were Young" - The Killers
9. "SexyBack" - Justin Timberlake
10. "Jump In My Car" - David Hasselhoff

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Saturday, October 14, 2006

The Banterview: There Are No Girls Aloud At The House Of Carters

This week J'ason and MoogaBoo knock down E!'s House Of Carters on top of Brit chicks Girls Aloud. You may be wondering exactly what the two have in common. But f*** it if we know.


J'ASON: Ever since I got $70-a-month cable again, I've been watching all my shows on YouTube. Clearly it's my smartest investment yet.

MOOGABOO: How about that innovative opening credit sequence for House Of Carters? We see Nick Carter and his siblings morph from childhood photos to current, sexed-up superstar glamour shots.

JD: That's the opening sequence? I thought it was a commercial for Saw III.

M: Did we know Aaron had a twin called Angel? I'm somewhat grateful we weren't ever subjected to a Carter Twins media explosion.

JD: Why does Aaron now look like the guy from Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure that isn't Keanu Reeves?

M: I'm getting more of a Shaggy from Scooby Doo vibe, or a young Anne Heche. But I instantly feel bad for the sister named B.J., just because she's named B.J. This family's problems go deeper than the tabloids.

JD: She's a mess. You can almost predict the marriage to some sleazy peripheral Hollywood leech...the softcore porn career...the embarrassing album that never gets released...the Playboy centerfold...then rehab.

M: I can already tell she's the most talented of the Carters.

JD: So is Nick fat or just chinless?

M: Oh, maybe a little of column A, a little of column B. But why is E! wasting quality footage on these boobs when La Toya Jackson is still out there, wandering free?

JD: La Toya is totally a bevvy of Emmy Awards waiting to happen. So, have you heard this new song by Girls Aloud? Why does everyone ejaculate all over the wall every time these five strippers croak out a bland single?


M: "Something Up My Ooh! Ooh!" is quite different: you're almost two choruses in before you realize it's going nowhere. (An improvement over their last one, the name of which I've already dismissed from my memory.) But their videos tend to look like they were directed by a pimp with a tazer.

JD: Girls Aloud honestly make me want to put a nail gun to my forehead. Sorry, the United Kingdom, but get over it.

M: And Cheryl Tweedy is the most popular member of the group because, well, somebody has to be. I guess she drew the short straw, since the ladies are pretty hard to distinguish from one another -- hair color aside.

JD: Cheryl Tweedy's a real person? I thought it was just a name that bin-liner Lily Allen used for a song title.

M: To be fair, the Girls really did breathe life into British pop with their sense of fun and their perfectly crafted songs, up through album two. And if the whole thing appears to be going to the dogs lately, well, they at least gave us two classic singles in the form of "No Good Advice" and "Love Machine." That's two more than we ever got from One True Voice.

JD: "Love Machine"...? As I go back through my mental tracklist of their songs, they all just blend together. You could record these broads getting flattened by a train and it would sound like their last four singles to me.


M: I have this image of Girls Aloud in my head that's like an animated gif looping over and over whenever I think of them: five girls in spandex dresses looking dead-eyed into the camera, shimmying in front of a cheesy blue screen background with no rhythm, all while moving their lips to say, "Canteloupe, watermelon, canteloupe, watermelon," because they can't remember the lyrics.

JD: Well, I'm ending this banterview here. I don't see any sense in continuing if you're gonna quote directly from the press release for their greatest hits.

You can watch E!'s House Of Carters here. Click here to feel the wicked sting of the pimp's tazer.

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