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

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Samanda Rape Aqua

These ho's were on U.K. Big Brother or some shit. Their butchering of Aqua's "Barbie Girl" is so atrocious, it'll be on my "best of the year" list.

I guess the combo of their names -- Samanda -- is supposed to be cute? Awww. Dumb broads, just start scissoring.

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Sugababes Squash Shayne Ward And Show Girls Aloud How A Real Girl Group Charts

Whereas two-bit skank bandits Girls Aloud failed (again) to achieve a #1 single on the official U.K. chart earlier this month -- "Sexy! No No No," stalled at #5 -- Sugababes have landed "About You Now" [video] at the top based on download sales alone, a week before the physical CD single is in stores. It marks their sixth U.K. #1.

In fact, the only reason that cheap-ass five-piece slut troupe Girls Aloud slithered to the top in the spring with the godawful "Walk This Way" was because they duetted with the angelic 'babes.

But why even keep mentioning those silicone-addled mattress-testers, when poor Keisha Buchanan of Sugababes has revealed to the Mirror that she was suicidal when the threesome started out:
"I went through a really bad patch when I was around 17," she says, her voice cracking. "A lot of my friends were just incredibly mean to me and I was really depressed. I always invited my friends to the shows but they never came and they never invited me out. It was a difficult time. My parents would say I should go out on a Friday night but I didn't have anyone to go out with. I had everything I wanted but not happiness. I wanted to fall asleep and not wake up."
That's so sad. I'm pretty much blaming Girls Aloud. But, oh well, at least Keisha can smile knowing she and the other two broads stomped their stiletto heels on hot piece of Mancunian ass Shayne Ward this week, whose troubled double A-side "No U Hang Up/If That's OK With You" [video] settles for the #2 position.

Elsewhere -- like, in the nether regions of hell -- car insurance divas The Sheilas watch "(I'm So) Happy Happy (You're Mine)" make its grand chart debut at #89. Hopefully they took out a policy on that single.

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "About You Now" - Sugababes *1 week*
2. "No U Hang Up/If That's OK With You" - Shayne Ward *new*
3. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
4. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston
5. "Let Me Think About It" - Ida Corr vs. Fedde Le Grand
6. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
7. "Stronger" - Kanye West
8. "1973" - James Blunt
9. "She's So Lovely" - Scouting For Girls
10. "Shut Up And Drive" - Rihanna

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Will.i.am Gets Daft Punk'd, Too

Apparently Will.i.am sees no shame in biting Kanye West's style and sampling Daft Punk (in this case, the duo's '97 hit "Around The World").

Gotta admit, this actually make's "I Got It From My Mama" pretty catchy now. And isn't that Aria in there, the Euro-blonde who tries to eat Valeria's salmon roll in the "Girl I Told Ya" video?

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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Darren Hayes And The (Much) Speculated Demise Of Attitude Magazine

Here's the crackin' new video from Darren Hayes, for "Me, Myself & (I)." Arjan's streaming a rad mix, and the single is due out November 5.

Great send up of the old Memorex tape ads. Or was it Maxell? Hey, I was only 15 when the '80s ended, and by then I was usually cracked out on Pixie Stix and D-Mob records, so it beats the shit outta me.

But perhaps an interesting subtext is that Darren appeared on the August/September cover of U.K. gay mag Attitude, wearing the red shirt get up he has on in the video, but nary an issue of the publication has been seen since that one.

After a bit of "research" -- i.e., looking on the mag's Wikipedia entry -- here's what turned up:
The January 2007 edition of attitude did not appear on its publication date. Speculation mounted over whether the magazine was still in publication with reports of cleared offices and disconnected telephones.[1] At one point, it was reported that attitude had closed owing to financing problems and that they may be put up for sale.[2] However, the February 2007 edition came on sale as planned. In his monthly letter, the editor explained the problems had been due to a change of publisher. It has since been confirmed that the magazine has been sold to Giant Clipper Ltd.[3]

The July 2007 edition of attitude also didn't appear on its publication date. Staff claimed not to have been paid since April as Giant Clipper Ltd faced a financial crisis. At the end of August a combined Aug/Sept issue was published. [4]

The attitude website appears to no longer be online. The domain registrant of attitude.co.uk is still recorded as Remnant Media Ltd in the Nominet WHOIS database. [5]
So, did Darren Hayes sail that ship on its last voyage? More importantly, what the F ever happened to my "We Call It Acieed/Trance Dance" 12"?

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Where's The Friendly Fire When You Need It, Soulja Boy?

Hip hop has eaten itself. America, "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" isn't a good song. And it's certainly not good enough to send back to #1.

"Ms. New Booty"? Now that was some damn fine lowest common denominator rap. And "Buy U A Drank" really spoke the people. But Soulja Boy can go suck it on the low in the barracks.

Meanwhile, what's up with "Bubbly" by Colbie Caillat (#10)? Just what we need -- another broad with an acoustic guitar and a ratty notebook who got dumped at the coffee shop. Get a job, ho -- Jewel's not dead just yet.

And what's the deal with these hot pieces of ass like Rob Thomas and Adam Levine foisting mediocre crap like "How Far We've Come" (#11) and "Wake Up Call" (#19) onto the masses and expecting a hit? That might work for the VH1 set, but unless they come up with something brilliant like "Soulja Boy," they can kiss the Playboy Mansion goodbye.

Truth be told, there's only one good pop song in the Top 40: Timbaland and OneRepublic's "Apologize." If you haven't downloaded it yet, do so now. It's up from #33 to #22 this week. Don't even get me started on that one-hit wonder, Feist, or that whore Jennifer Lopez having the Hot Shot Debut at #53 with her latest disposable jiggle trash, "Do It Well" (ironically written and produced by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder).

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" - Soulja Boy *3 weeks*
2. "Stronger" - Kanye West *airplay gainer*
3. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.
4. "Big Girls Don't Cry" - Fergie
5. "Bed" - J. Holiday
6. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
7. "Let It Go" - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil Wayne
8. "Rockstar" - Nickelback
9. "Who Knew" - Pink
10. "Bubbly" - Colbie Caillat

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Killers To Face Off With Britney Spears

November 13 looks set to be the battle of Britney and Brandon.

As noted last month, Billboard confirmed Monday that The Killers' third album, Sawdust, will likely contain previously released B-sides and soundtrack cuts, as well as "Tranquilize," a new duet with Lou Reed. Sawdust is sheduled to be on shelves and available digitally November 13.

However, Billboard also went on to note that "songs that were written during sessions for 2006's Sam's Town but didn't appear on that album are also likely to surface on Sawdust." That would certainly be a plus for the suckers who've opened their wallet for expensive import singles over the years and already have all of the B-sides *cough*.

In the meantime, Spears, whose fifth studio album is due out the same day, saw the iTunes release of her single "Gimme More" yesterday, amidst a score of personal trials and strife surrounding her. Within a day, the single has jumped to #16 on the online music store's Top 100 Songs chart. Duran Duran's "Falling Down," a collaboration with Justin Timberlake, and Jordin Sparks' "Tattoo" also became available yesterday digitally.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Leona Lewis Can Kiss My Unimpressed Butt

So, given that everyone's been furiously masturbating over X Factor dame Leona Lewis -- most notably her puppet masters Simon Cowell and Clive Davis -- I figured, Gee, this broad must have golden pipes or some junk.

But listening to "Bleeding Love", her snoozefest of a new single, has me taking U.K. singer Jamelia's side with her recent rant against Leona:
“When Simon stops all this stupid hype about her, that’s when we’ll see if she can deliver. Like every artist Simon has, she’ll fade into obscurity eventually. Only Will Young has been successful, and that was because he’s talented and cut ties with Simon. Leona is a poor man’s Mariah Carey. Simon’s lost it. He is disrespectful. Leona may be talented, but she’s not worked as hard as me or others in the industry — fact!”
Of course, Jamelia's probably a bit on the defensive because her last album flopped like a dead whore at bachelor party, and now she's gotta shill perfume and strip for PETA to make a living...but still!! At least she's saving monkeys and undoing her bra without Simon's carefully guided hand unfastening the strap.

No, the only Cowell dog 'n pony act I wanna see getting fondled is Shayne Ward. And after watching the last minute of the video for "No U Hang Up," fondling never looked so good:

New Towleroad column up now!

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Monday, September 24, 2007

Surely You've Got Worse Things On Your iPod

So The Sheilas U.K. single is finally out today. Here they talk to The Daily Mirror about how they're the new Steps and so on.

And then here's the three broads singing "It's Raining Men" at G-A-Y on Saturday (where they also apparently did "Love In The First Degree" and "(I'm So) Happy Happy (You're Mine)").

Based on the interview above, it sounds like if the single goes well, there'll be an album out by Christmas. Sheilas, can you define "goes well"...?

* Single available from: Amazon UK & 7Digital

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Sunday, September 23, 2007

Sugababes Remixes Give "About You Now" An Early U.K. Chart Boost

If 50 Cent and Babyshambles are your cup of tea, then hoo-ray, it's a très fab U.K. singles chart for you to celebrate this week. But for us lovers of all things melody 'n sass, it's the #35 entry of Sugababes' "About You Now" that gives something to doff our caps over. It appears based on digital sales of the single's remix EP ahead of the October 1 physical CD release. Additionally, last year's hits set from the 'babes, Overloaded: The Singles Collection, flies up 128 positions on the U.K. album chart, to #71.

James Blunt's All The Lost Souls lands the #1 album spot. Looking ahead, it'll be interesting to see how Shayne Ward's long-delayed "If That's OK With You" -- now double-A sided with "No U Hang Up" -- and the PWL comeback single from The Sheilas fare on next week's chart.

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston *4 weeks*
2. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
3. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
4. "Stronger" - Kanye West
5. "1973" - James Blunt
6. "Delivery" - Babyshambles *new*
7. "She's So Lovely" - Scouting For Girls
8. "The Pretender" - Foo Fighters
9. "Shut Up And Drive" - Rihanna
10. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.

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I'm Only Happy When It Rains

Friday and Saturday it rained in L.A. for the first times since April.

This is the view across the street from Chez D'luv. In a reverse sort of way, it was like when the sun finally comes out after a long grey stretch of winter. I felt compelled to sit outside in the downpour for 10 minutes.

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Saturday, September 22, 2007

Robyn To Get A U.S. Release, Says Entertainment Weekly

The new issue of Entertainment Weekly has the mag's fall music preview. Nothing much new in there, but there's an accompanying write-up on "The 10 Most Exciting Artists Now," which includes the recent Swede of reinvention, Robyn. Apparently her album will be out in the States via Interscope on December 4. This might be old info, but, you know, once it's in EW, that means it's sexy. "Coming back to the States with people not remembering me is not a problem," Robyn tells the weekly rag. "I feel no pressure, but I do have 10 years of experience. I'm right where I want to be."

The link to the article above contains a stream of Robyn's "Handle Me."


Friday, September 21, 2007

No Charges In Darren Hayes Race Case

Yesterday was the day of Darren Hayes' London hearing for the alleged racist remarks he made to a worker at a Thai eatery, and here is the statement posted on his MySpace blog today:
Today the Crown Prosecution and The Metropolitan Police concluded there was no case to answer in relation to the recent allegation that singer Darren Hayes had racially abused a door person at a London restaurant on July 22nd 2007. Upon an investigation the Police recommended that no formal charges be brought against Mr. Hayes and that there was no racist undertone to the incident.

"I could never think, let alone utter a racist remark. It's just not who I am," Mr. Hayes said. "As a gay man, I find the notion of discriminating against a human being because of race, gender or sexuality to be abhorrent. It goes against everything I have stood for."

Mr. Hayes confirmed that an altercation took place at the restaurant, for which he received a caution, but strongly denied any racial undertones to the brief exchange. He is pleased that any notion of racism has been ruled out by Police recommendation and he was not charged with any crime.

"It was a horrible thing to be accused of and I want to thank all of my friends, family and fans for giving me the benefit of the doubt. The experience has been frustrating and at times made me very sad, but through it all I have to say I support the legal system and our right of protection under the law. I'm glad the truth is out there. I just want to concentrate on my music now."

* [Chart Rigger's podcast interview with Darren Hayes]


*UPDATED*: Sugababes, Radio 1 Compilation Kick Off The Rad Fall Releases

Forget all the wrinkled, hot-flash matrons of pop -- Sugababes' new U.K. album Change is out in two weeks (October 8), and it's about time!

Says blonde 'babe Heidi Range: “One of our favourite tracks is 'Back Down,' which is a reggae song that we did with Novel, who worked with Joss Stone.” Adds Amelle Berrabah: “We hope it’s going to be a single. We all love all the album but this one really sticks out a bit.”

Additionally, the week before, the BBC celebrates 40 years of Radio 1 with Radio 1. Established 1967, featuring 40 artists earch covering a song from the years the U.K.-based station has been on-air. (I initially wrote about this compilation here.) Among the acts and songs included are The Feeling ("You're So Vain"), Natasha Bedingfield ("Ray Of Light"), Kylie Minogue ("Love Is The Drug"), Keane ("Under Pressure") and Sugababes ("Betcha By Golly Wow").

Full track listing.

In the meantime, NME posted the details of Kylie's new album today. Going along with the previously unofficial name for the set that had spread across the internet, X has now been confirmed as the official title.

Here's the tracklisting:

'2 Hearts'
'Like A Drug'
'In My Arms'
'Heart Beat Rock'
'The One'
'No More Rain'
'All I See'

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

OneRepublic's "Apologize" Finally Becomes A Hit

Kanye West's "Stronger" has topped Billboard's Hot 100 chart, and becomes only the fourth single to reach #1 on both the U.S. and U.K. charts in 2007, following "Beautiful Girls," "Umbrella" and "Give It To Me." That's swell, but on the heels of the whole Kanye/50 Cent circus, the latter's churlish "Ayo Technology" has also swung into the Top 5.

And like when jumper cables are attached to a cracked-out hooker in a dumpster, Pink's career continues to leap back to life, as "Who Knew" now matches the #9 peak of "U + Ur Hand" on the Hot 100. Sure, the song was co-produced by Max Martin, but, you know, surely people care about Pink, too. I mean, it's Pink!

There are about 14 other Kanye and 50 Cent songs on the chart this week, and "Wake Up Call," Maroon 5's crappy follow-up to "Makes Me Wonder" is up 17 positions to #23. But the one other track really worth mentioning is Timbaland featuring OneRepublic's "Apologize," which I've been touting since Shock Value came out in April. It's at #33.

Here's the video, which sadly doesn't feature cute singer Ryan Tedder (pictured above). This has to be the best thing the over-exposed producer has twiddled the knobs on:

You can watch the original video, with Ryan and before Timbaland remixed the track, here.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Stronger" - Kanye West *1 week*
2. "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" - Soulja Boy *airplay gainer*
3. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.
4. "Big Girls Don't Cry" - Fergie
5. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
6. "Bed" - J. Holiday
7. "Let It Go" - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil Wayne
8. "Rockstar" - Nickelback
9. "Who Knew" - Pink
10. "Shawty" - Plies feat. T-Pain

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Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Someone Finally Made A Ghetto-Ass YouTube Video For Take That's "Rule The World"

...and it's like fantasy Stardust!


Music Junkie Digest: Kanye Beats 50 Cent, Backstreet Album Art & The Sheilas Get Filleted

While 50 Cent didn't even come close to winning the chart tussle with Kanye West, his posturing no doubt helped boost sales for both rappers.

Billboard reports today that in the end, West's Graduation sold 957,000 copies, while 50's Curtis limped behind like a worn-out hooker with 691,000 copies moved. That not-gay hick Kenny Chesney is at #3 with whatever junk he has out.

Speaking of albums, here's the cover of the new Backstreet Boys one:

The title Unbreakable might have something to do with the fact that, despite Kevin Richardson leaving the manband last year, the BSBs didn't break up. So there, Kevin.


A big thanks to Pop Trash Addicts for scanning this write-up in Sydney's Sunday Telegraph about the Darren Hayes podcast, and sending it along:

If you've not yet listened to the marvelous meeting of the minds between D'luv and D'Hayes, d'do it here.


The following could be the best music review ever. It's Digital Spy, talking about the single "(I'm So) Happy Happy (You're Mine)" by The Sheilas:

Only Pete Waterman could watch a God-awful car insurance advert with an intensely irritating female trio howling about the "cheapest wheels" and start seeing dollar signs and potential single flash up in his mind. Most of us would reach for the remote or, even worse, the shotgun...With a lyrical mundanity that would embarrass The Vengaboys, the trio of Emma, Carly and Cathi, squawk about "sunshine", "blue sky", "your love", "rain" and "pain", with the latter being the predominate emotion felt by the listener. With more computer systems than the Starship Enterprise working overtime on the production and girls' voices, the tune's got the soul of a twig and the irritation levels of 77 Janet Street Porters locked in a small room.
If twigs and Janet Street Porter are your thing, "(I'm So) Happy Happy (You're Mine)" is available now from several European iTunes stores, and the physical single is out September 24. [Watch the video]

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Just Have A Little Patience With Take That

Looks like things are finally gearing up for the release of Take That's new single, "Rule The World," off the Stardust soundtrack. While the U.S. box office receipts for the film were likely enough to make Claire Danes' blown-out wig stand on end, Stardust is opening in the U.K. on October 19, with "Rule The World" being made available three days later. The foursome will premiere the track in a performance at London's Royal Festival Hall on September 28.

In the meantime, the groups' Everything Changes, Never Forget and 1996 Greatest Hits are now available as of this week on the U.S. iTunes store.


The Last Britney Spears Post For At Least A Week

While Britney Spears is being sucked up into a whirlwind of scandal, her new single "Gimme More" is lined up for an October 2 iTunes release.

Here's what's currently on the troubled singer's tabloid grocery list:

* Dealing with an ex-bodyguard who claims she used drugs and walked around her kids in the buff.

* Getting dumped by her custody-battle lawyer, as well as her manager at The Firm.

* Getting banned from L.A.'s Chateau Marmont for allegedly "smearing food all over her face."

* The FBI investigation into a hit contracted on her ex-husband, Kevin Federline. (This is a bad thing.)

Meanwhile, "Gimme More" is slated to be released in the U.K. the same week in November as Kylie Minogue's comeback single, "2 Hearts."

The two pop vixens previously faced off there in March 2004, when "Toxic" hit #1 and trumped Minogue's "Red Blooded Woman," which debuted at #5.

New Towleroad column up now.

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Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Britney Show Trudges On While Backstreet Boys' New Video Is Kinda Good

Entertainment Weekly dissects the strange week that was Britney Spears' return in the new issue: from the VMAs to the Chris Crocker video.

Speaking of videos, the one for Backstreet Boys' new single (on iTunes now), "Inconsolable," is out. But while I'm trying to determine whether the song is the sonic equivalent of watching paint dry or not, it's nice to find the video isn't as witless as some of the pared-down group's later ones have tended to be. At the very least it scores points for making Howie Dorough and Nick Carter look bounceable for once.

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50 Cent Beat To #1 In The U.K. By Kanye West. Did He Retire Yet?

Well, it's back to L.A. for me, just in time to find another bland week on the official U.K. singles chart. In fact, there's nary a new song in the Top 10 this time around. But looking at the album chart, Kanye West has beat 50 Cent to the #1 position in what is likely a premonition of what's to come here, too. At least 50's trash-ola single, "Ayo Technology," is faring better in England than it is in the States, where it has yet to crack the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100.

Snooze-rock broad KT Tunstall is right behind the rappers at #3 with her new album, Drastic Fantastic, while dance act Ultrabeat also score a Top 10 debut, with The Album going in at #8. Gosh, "Feelin' Fine" was totally my jam back in early 2004!

A bit further down, Siouxsie Sioux manages a #39 debut with her solo album, Mantaray. I wonder if she bought Kanye's album or 50 Cent's?

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston *3 weeks*
2. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
3. "Stronger" - Kanye West
4. "1973" - James Blunt
5. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
6. "Shut Up And Drive" - Rihanna
7. "Sexy! No No No" - Girls Aloud
8. "With Every Heartbeat" - Robyn with Kleerup
9. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.
10. "She's So Lovely" - Scouting For Girls

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Saturday, September 15, 2007


Austin City Limits was hot...literally. A propane tank exploded and set a truck ablaze, it was 94 degrees and Björk's speaker caught on fire.

All in all, during the 10 hours, The Killers, LCD Soundsystem and Blonde Redhead were rad. Pete Yorn was whatever, and I didn't get to see M.I.A. or Björk because other bands were playing at the same time.

That pic was taken during Joss Stone. Can you tell we were wowed?

* [More on ACL]

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Thursday, September 13, 2007

No No, No No No No -- There's No Limits

Hey, it's all my junk on a table in a cafe in Austin, Texas...

I flew in for a couple days to visit a pal that just moved here. It also happens to be the weekend of the Austin City Limits Festival.

But I'm not here to be all douchebag-y and "give the inside scoop" (gag). I'd rather jack.

In fact, we're only going to the festival for one day (tomorrow). Annoyingly, Björk and The Killers are both playing at the same time, on different stages. Maybe I'll just run back and forth between them every two minutes and pretend I'm watching the MTV VMAs again. It's Britney, bitch.

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The Lamest Chart-Hyping Scam Of The Year Is Off To A Grand Ol' Start

The Kanye West/50 Cent scuffle was pretty much proven to be hyped-up balderdash during Sunday's MTV VMAs broadcast, when the two rappers appeared on stage together in a moment of self-parody. Nevertheless, the chart race began yesterday as 50's Curtis and Kanye's Graduation were both released. Today Billboard reports that, as of day one, Kanye is outselling his adversary, with 437,000 copies moved compared to the latter's 310,000. Either way, these two can both suck it, because we're never gonna see any of their cash.

Really, what would be hot is a week of Mariah Carey, Madonna and Kylie Minogue chart scandal horror shock drama at Christmas time.

At any rate, on Billboard's current Top 200 Albums chart, the High School Musical 2 soundtrack is in its fourth week at #1.

On the Hot 100 Singles chart, Matchbox Twenty make a return with "How Far We've Come," which jumps from #93 to #12 due to the single being tacked on as a free download with iTunes pre-orders of the band's upcoming greatest hits. It ain't no "Back To Good" or "Bent," but Rob Thomas still looks like he'd be good for some classy sex in a shopping cart behind a Blockbuster Video store, so what the hell.

On a final note, Britney Spears' "Gimme More" debuts this week at #85.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" - Soulja Boy *2 weeks* *sales gainer*
2. "Stronger" - Kanye West
3. "Big Girls Don't Cry" - Fergie
4. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.
5. "Bartender" - T-Pain feat. Akon
6. "Rockstar" - Nickelback
7. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
8. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston
9. "Shawty" - Plies feat. T-Pain
10. "Let It Go" - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil Wayne

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Monday, September 10, 2007

D'luv Speaks: Darren Hayes Interview!

* [Darren Hayes interview is up now!]

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Our 2nd Annual MTV VMAs Banterview...Or Thank God For Fast Forward

Oh, Britney. The Cheetos bag has crumbled. Really, you gotta love how she didn't even bother frontin' with a microphone for her comeback....or, from the looks of things, a gym membership for the past year.

The real performances of the night were Chris Brown and Rihanna, then Rihanna with Fall Out Boy. Or at least it looked like it on fast forward. I mean, you didn't actually think we were gonna watch this trash past Britney, did you?

J'ASON D'LUV: Gosh, Britney Spears' performance is a shame, because her background dancers look really great.

MOOGABOO: Yeah. I like when the hunks drag the broads across the stage at one point. Classy. On the bright side, Rihanna will be sleeping a lot easier tonight.

JD: Britney's not even lip-syncing very well. Did she forget the lyrics?

M: And what happened to the much-hyped Criss Angel special effects show, I wonder? They must have broken up just before airtime. Apparently Britney partied the weekend away with Paris Hilton, 50 Cent and P. Diddy instead of rehearsing. So that was a good plan.

JD: How about Nicole Scherzinger's pre-show performance on the red carpet? That's one Pussycat that needs to be put down.

M: I'm sure Nicole's real performance was after the show in a hotel suite full of industry execs looking to collect on her 6.5 minutes of fame.

JD: So her mouth is good at something, then?

M: Someone at the PJ forum actually had the nerve to say, "That dumb pageant girl -- Miss South Carolina or whoever -- doesn't belong at the VMAs." That's so funny, because I think she should be narrating them.

JD: Clearly that Eurowanker doesn't understand the notion that America loves to foist its cornfed bimbos onto a pedestal. Speaking of which, I really hope Hillary Clinton wins the election next year.

M: Oh, Babe, even Hilary is too classy to show up to the VMAs. And I'm talking about the Duff.

JD: Yeesh. MTV VJ John Norris is looking like a corpse with blond highlights anymore. If only Britney looked this good.

M: I hear Alicia Keyes does a snazzy rendition of George Michael's "Freedom." I don't know if it's the original Wham! version of "Freedom 90." Either way, screw her.

JD: What, was the arrangement for "Last Christmas" was too hard to figure out?

M: Oh, look...Jennifer Garner. There's rock royalty.

JD: You know, this whole Kanye West/50 Cent feud...maybe if they bumped off Kanye and injected his personality into 50 --

M: He'd be the black Perez Hilton. Maybe if they just removed the last remaining fragments of 50's brain and replaced them with a microchip DVD of Beautiful Thing...

JD: Then if 50 bent over and let John Norris fiddle around in his candy shop...

M: Oh, did you hear? The full version of Madonna's "Candy Shop" just floated into cyberspace...and no one could hear me scream. Do you think she'll ever tire of putting the word "dancefloor" into her songs?

JD: It's probably been at least 18 years since Madge was anywhere near a dancefloor. The closest that broad gets to a strobe light is when she orders Guy Ritchie to shine the lamp through her bifocals so she can thumb through Readers Digest while waiting for the Nyquil to kick in.

M: I think you mean formaldehyde.

JD: How have Panic! At The Disco not gotten beaten up and dropped by their label yet?

M: For the same reason Paris Hilton still manages to get screen time. Something to do with blowjobs.

JD: You're probably right. Getting Timbaland to do your next album doesn't come for free, after all.

M: I think Timbaland comes free.

JD: So back to Britney -- I wonder if she actually knew she was performing there, or if she just stumbled in from a nearby strip joint that she took the kids to dinner at, thinking the VMAs were the restroom?

M: Honestly, you know after the Britney performance/blow-up/let-down, everyone tuned out. Not just the viewers at home, but everyone in the "live" audience and everyone behind the cameras and in the control room. Everyone. It's over.

JD: So true. In fact, why are we even zipping through this trash when there's a hot rerun of Home Improvement on Nick At Night?


Check out more Chart Rigger banterviews in the sibebar drop menu, or by clicking the "banterview" tag below.

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Sunday, September 09, 2007

Girls Aloud? No No No!

It's amateur hour as usual for Girls Aloud, as the 10-legged ho machine limps into the U.K. Top 10 this week at #5. In fact, it took a pairing with the far superior Sugababes to get them to #1 earlier this year. But let's face it, even that was only because "Walk This Way" had the novelty of being a charity single.

Girls Aloud haven't hit the top of the British chart without another band's help in three years, when their needless 2004 cover of The Pretenders' "I'll Stand By You" crawled up there then slumped over like a down-at-heel prostitute in a rat-trap alley on Christmas Day.

On the flip side, James Blunt makes a jump up from #10 to #4 with "1973," as the physical CD single was released this past Monday. #4 is clearly higher than #5, where Girls Aloud are.

And while Natalie Imbruglia's "Glorious" barely made a dent last week at #23, she manages to hang in there ever so slightly at #35.

The U.K. Top 10:

1. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston *2 weeks*
2. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
3. "Stronger" - Kanye West
4. "1973" - James Blunt
5. "Sexy! No No No" - Girls Aloud *new*
6. "Shut Up And Drive" - Rihanna
7. "With Every Heartbeat" - Robyn with Kleerup
8. "Ayo Technology" - 50 Cent feat. Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
9. "She's So Lovely" - Scouting For Girls
10. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.

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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Sugababes Not Cooler Than The Yellow Dress In Their New Video

Sugababes' new video for "About You Now" is very Bourne Ultimatum in concept. The hookers look smashing while...well, doing nothing, really.

And what's up with all the Amelle haters? She's the hottest one now! No wonder the other two broads wanna kick her out of the group.


Friday, September 07, 2007

Long Before She Lost Her Marbles, Britney Spears Was Born To Make Us Happy

Unless you've been living under Britney Spears' wig, by now you know the tarnished pop topliner is opening this Sunday's MTV Video Music Awards. At this point, most folks have become so hardened toward her trainwreck-edness that it's easy to forget that, once upon a time in the late '90s, Britney was a breath of fresh air on both the radio and MTV itself.

In fact, while scurrying around YouTube bleary-eyed after midnight earlier this week, I stumbled upon the following video clip of her and Max Martin recording the ...Baby One More Time album in 1998, and almost fell over!

Way back before all the botched magazine shoots, before the kids, before K-Fed, before fame...she really was that innocent. (And a bit brighter!)

It's kinda fascinating to watch now. (And just where is that version of "I Will Be There" -- with the staccato "Do You Know What It Takes"/"...Baby One More Time" synths, rather than the guitar-laden version on the album -- available at?)

Love Brit's descriptions of all the songs on the album at the end: "'E-mail My Heart' is, like, a song everyone can relate to. Everyone has been doing e-mails, and it's 'E-mail My Heart.' 'Sometimes' is a very nice song. It's very sing-along, and everyone can sing along to it."

But what a difference all the cash has made for Max Martin! Just for the record, this is what he looks like after the Britney/Backstreet Boys/*NSync money came rolling in:

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Thursday, September 06, 2007

It's A Sin!

Talk about "disappointed...once more!" A quick check of the Pet Shop Boys' official website revealed the following:

Regrettably, due to unforeseen logistical issues, the Pet Shop Boys have been forced to cancel their previously announced September 27th Hollywood Bowl performance. Refunds will be available at point of purchase. Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe would like to apologise to all ticket-holders for any disappointment and inconvenience caused.

I was looking forward to that show even more when I found out last week that Ladytron had been confirmed as the opening act.

Additionally, Parlophone have now pushed the release date for Disco 4 from September 24 to October 8.


In A Bold Move, Westlife Record A Ballad

"Hi! We're a pack of bastards!"
Hold on to your hats:
Westlife's New Single

It’s the news you’ve all been waiting for – we can finally reveal that Westlife’s new single will be released next month!

It’s a cover version of the gorgeous ballad ‘Home’ by Michael Bublé and will be out to buy on 22nd October (those of you paying attention during last Saturday’s X Factor may have heard a taster!) The video shoot has just been completed, so stay tuned for more info.

The song is taken from their upcoming album, which the guys have just finished recording. It’s packed full of brand new songs which Westlife have worked on with a team of top writers and producers. Full details coming your way shortly.

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Vapid, Milquetoast Zeroes Keep Buying Nickelback

Nickelback singer Chad Kroeger must wake up every morning, smoke a pack of Kools, scratch his ass and think, Gosh! People really love us. And apparently he's right! The low-rent corporate rock act's All The Right Reasons has sold sold six million copies. It's still in the Top 10 on the Billboard album chart...and it's been out for two years! And this week their umpteenth single off the set, "Rockstar," is at #8 on the Hot 100. God bless America!

In other exciting news, Carrie Underwood -- who no doubt lost her virginity while Nickelback was playing in the distance on a transistor radio -- jumps from #93 to #17 with "So Small." The single was made available for digital download last week.

Pink, who probably took Carrie's virginity, is now just outside the Top 10, at #12, with "Who Knew."

On the album chart, it's a third week at #1 for the High School Musical 2 soundtrack, which has sold almost 1.2 million copies in less than a month.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" - Soulja Boy *1 week* *sales gainer*
2. "Stronger" - Kanye West *airplay gainer*
3. "Big Girls Don't Cry" - Fergie
4. "The Way I Are" - Timbaland feat. Keri Hilson & D.O.E.
5. "Beautiful Girls" - Sean Kingston
6. "Bartender" - T-Pain feat. Akon
7. "Hey There Delilah" - Plain White T's
8. "Rockstar" - Nickelback
9. "Make Me Better" - Fabolous feat. Ne-Yo
10. "Shawty" - Plies feat. T-Pain

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Buona Notte, Pavarotti

Sadly, the modern world's most well-known operatic tenor, 71-year-old Luciano Pavarotti, has died after a long battle with cancer.

One of the "King Of High Cs" great achievements in the pop music world are his Pavarotti & Friends charity compilations, which collectively boast duets with Aqua, Spice Girls, Mariah Carey, U2, Eurythmics, Enrique Iglesias and Darren Hayes, among a slew of other artists.

For me, as a teen, Pet Shop Boys forever immortalized the singer on their 1993 Very album, in the song "The Theatre," with the line: "Pavarotti in the park, then you walked back up the Strand / Did you catch my eye?".

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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Apple Jacks

The new iPod Touch: the good touch or the bad touch? Chart Rigger's new weekly column is now up at Towleroad.

It was an interesting morning trying to keep up with the updates from the Apple press conference on the live Gizmodo blog, while writing the piece (and revising each minute).

Kind of a bummer no Beatles on iTunes yet, though :/ And what's up with the whole Starbucks connection? The world will be a better place when Pinkberry is the new Starbucks.

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Some Chick From The Hills Made A Pop Song That Samples Yaz And Doesn't Suck Too Bad

Admittedly, I don't watch The Hills. But this broad from the show, Heidi Montag, seems pretty pissed that her debut single has leaked. It's kind of old news by now -- last month Ryan Seacrest somehow got ahold of Heidi's track "Body Language" (hey, wait a minute!), which also features rapping by her Ken-doll boyfriend from the MTV program. Seacrest played it on his L.A. morning radio show, Heidi blew a gasket out of her thong and blah, blah, blah. Strangely, the song (which samples Yaz's "Situation") is fairly likeable, in that on par with Paris Hilton pop trash way.

In fact, why aren't Madonna and Britney leaking songs this good?

See what you think:

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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Mariah Carey's Interview Interview

So, at some point over the holiday weekend, I remembered Mariah Carey's ultra-camp Bruce Weber-shot issue of Interview was out.

A few stores and newsstands were sold out -- guess Mariah's a hot commodity in the pin-up circle -- but I eventually happened upon a small stand that had two issues left. Some strange, compulsory need to learn all about the shrill diva took over, and I found myself grabbing both copies.

The photos are very Bruce Weber (i.e., gay). If you're not familiar with his particular brand of flawless young beefcakery, check out the Pet Shop Boys' videos for "Being Boring" and "Se A Vida É," which he directed. Or just walk into an Abercrombie & Fitch store, or open their catalogues.

Anyway, the interview itself took place over a 10-page spread. It was "okay." Nothing that revealing. Mostly it's just Ingrid Sischy being lead around Mariah's penthouse, looking at photos of her relatives (Zzzzzzz).

Here were the interesting parts, though:

* "I used to come in and work at [Warner Bros. exec Ben Margulies'] studio, which was [at the back of a loft space that was covered in wood chips], and I wrote "Vision Of Love" there, songs that became number one hits that I don't listen to anymore."

* "I got a job as a backup singer [for Brenda K. Starr] because I was one of those girls hanging out with Lenny Kravitz."

* "Did we show the butterfly room?"

And here's the hottest part:

IS: Sometimes I interview people who say they are scared by their fans.
MC: ...Oh, this is a burn book like in Mean Girls, only the fans did it with celebrities.
IS: [reading] "Jennifer Lopez is a fugly skank who can't sing!"
MC: But I didn't write that!
IS: [reading more] "Eminem is almost too gay to function. 50 Cent is a mouse on steroids..."

And here are Mimi's panties: