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

Thursday, June 30, 2011

US Chart Roundup: Maroon 5 & Christina Aguilera Land A Much-Needed Hit

After debuting new single "Moves Like Jagger" on The Voice last week, Adam Levine's band Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera score a hit as the song goes into the Billboard Hot 100 at #8.

Xtina, of course, suffered a very public fail with her Bionic album last year, and her last Top 40 hit came in the form of massive flop (for her) "Not Myself Tonight," which tanked at #23 on the chart. (See the 10 Worst Singles Of 2010 list.)

Maroon 5's most recent album Hands All Over also disappointed, and has yet to go Gold. (A recent report shows the record has only sold half-a-million copies worldwide.) The LP spawned a lone Top 40 hit last year in the form of "Misery," which peaked on the Hot 100 at #14. Things got really desperate when frontman Levine stripped all his clothes off for a men's cancer campaign.

Respectively, Christina and Maroon 5's last Top 10 hits were "Keeps Gettin' Better" (#7, 2008) and "Makes Me Wonder" (#1, 2007).

The other big news this week is that Britney Spears' third Femme Fatale single "I Wanna Go" jumps 60 positions to #29 following the premiere of the music video last week. This marks The Wig's third Top 40 hit off her latest album, and fourth Top 40 single in a row, overall.

I guess it's also worth mentioning that Adele's seven-week reign at #1 ends as Pitbull & Co. move "Give Me Everything" to the top. Ne-Yo's probably praising Jesus he got onto that project.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer *1 week*
2. "Rolling In The Deep" - Adele
3. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock
4. "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" - Katy Perry
5. "Super Bass" - Nicki Minaj 
6. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
7. "E.T." - Katy Perry feat. Kanye West
8. "Moves Like Jagger" - Maroon 5 feat. Christina Aguilera *new*
9. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
10. "How To Love" - Lil Wayne

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Javier Colon Wins 'The Voice,' Seals Lifelong Bromance With Coach Adam Levine

You can read my full recap of tonight's finale here, and older recaps here.

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

When The Mail Doesn't Suck: Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Take That & Suede (Again)

I hope Sophe spends the cash she made from me wisely. Also, another week, another Suede reissue. I have no idea why I got Take That. Total impulse buy.

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It's Coldplay's "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" Video

I posted the video for Coldplay's current single "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" over on Idolator today, and I don't have to much more to add here other than Xolondon is a dumb-dumb head for not liking this upbeat jam. So there.


'The Voice': Javier Colon's "Stitch By Stitch" Was The Best Original Song

As with any singing competition TV series, the original songs the contestants sing are never as much fun because, well, we can't really sing along. Case in point: last night's final performance round of The Voice, which to me just seemed a bit anticlimactic after an otherwise surprisingly electric first season.

The finalists' duets with the coaches were pretty bland, and the original songs didn't stand out that much, except for Javier Colon's "Stitch By Stich," which is a Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins production.

Actually, even that one is a little weak — especially the intro (is anyone else getting a Backstreet Boys "I Want It That Way" vibe here?) — but I dig the production overall, particularly on the chorus.

Adam Levine really lucked out getting this guy on his team. I thought Dia Frampton's "Inventing Shadows" and Vicci Martinez's "Afraid To Sleep" were dull beyond belief, while Beverly McClellan's atrocious "Lovesick" felt like it was written during a commercial break.

Here's how the songs are doing on iTunes, though, where every download counts as a vote for that contestant on tonight's season finale:

1. Dia Frampton, "Inventing Shadows"
3. Javier Colon, "Stitch By Stitch"
15. Vicci Martinez, "Afraid To Sleep"
35. Beverly McClellan, "Lovesick"

Sorry, Team Xtina. Better luck with the telephone vote.

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Monday, June 27, 2011

Here's Kelly Rowland 'Here I Am' Cover

The Real Talent From Destiny's Child Kelly Rowland has revealed her Here I Am album cover. And, even better, now that Beyonce's 4 is projected to flop with the velocity of 46 obese hookers plummeting off the Empire State Building, Ms. Kelly's album has been bumped up to a July 26 release date.


Kelly Rowland Does The BET Awards While Beyonce Seeths

Since I bothered to post Beyonce's acceptable Glastonbury performance, I might as well put up The Real Talent From Destiny's Child Kelly Rowland doing "Motivation" with Trey Songz at the BET Awards.

It's probably a given that Bey was backstage at Glasto, seething with fury as she watched Kelly own the stage on a monitor. And no doubt she ripped off her weave and began thrashing around wildly like an untamed animal as it became obvious that Ms. Rowland can no longer be held back from success.

Eventually, Bey probably choked her assistant by ramming her wig into the poor servant's throat and jamming it down her esophagus with her stiletto heel.

What the hell are we talking about? Oh, right — Kelly Rowland.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Beyonce Does Glastonbury

My longtime London blogger buddy Richard "Tricky" Chapman emailed earlier raving about Beyonce's Glastonbury performance. And while I'm not exactly the world's biggest Bey stan, I realize some people are into this sort of thing.

So, here you go — some of the numbers she did this evening at the rock fest, in front of an audience of 175,000 (!!!!) people. The closing, with "Halo," is pretty emotional, when she walks by all the fans and lets them fondle her thighs. She's a giver, that Beyonce.

Beyonce, "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)" (at Glastonbury)

Beyonce, "If I Were A Boy/You Oughta Know"

Beyonce, "Sex Is On Fire" (at Glastonbury)

Beyonce, "Naughty Boy" (at Glastonbury)

Beyonce, "Best Thing I Never Had/End Of Time" (at Glastonbury)

Beyonce, "Baby Boy" with Tricky (at Glastonbury)

Beyonce, "Halo" (at Glastonbury)


UK Chart Roundup: Why Does It Have To Flop So Hard, The Feeling?

To pick up where we left off with last week's UK chart commentary, Sophie Ellis-Bextor's woefully under-appreciated (and vastly under-performing) new LP Make A Scene has now dropped from its debut position of #33 on album roundup to, well — completely out of the Top 100 albums altogether. Heavy sigh. Oh, well — I ordered my copy from Amazon UK, and look forward to its arrival shortly. Don't spend the £1 royalty all in one place, luv.

This brings us to Lady Bex's guitar-strumming husband, Richard Jones, and his band The Feeling, whose third album Together We Were Made has a #22 debut this week. That is, of course, a far cry from the #2 peak of their Platinum-selling 2006 debut Twelve Stops And Home and the chart-topping glory of previous effort Join With Us. But with lead single "Set My World On Fire" getting no higher than #129 and a gulf of three years dividing their sophomore album and this one, I guess we couldn't really expect a miracle.

Over on the singles chart, Jason Derulo's utterly shit Robin S-sampling "Don't Wanna Go Home" has become his second UK #1 (after "In My Head"). Wake me up with he stops sampling/interpolating other artists' material...or, preferably, stops recording altogether.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Don't Wanna Go Home" - Jason Derulo *new* *1 week*
2. "Changed The Way You Kiss Me" - Example
3. "Bounce" - Calvin Harris feat. Kelis
4. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
5. "The A Team" - Ed Sheeran
6. "Mr. Saxobeat" - Alexandra Stan
7. "Badman Riddim (Jump)" - Vato Gonzalez feat. Foreign Beggars *new*
8. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
9. "Right There" - Nicole Scherzinger
10. "I Need A Dollar" - Aloe Blacc

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Trashback: Hithouse "Jack To The Sound Of The Underground"

Say, kids, what time is it? It's time for HOUSE...and what I'll attempt as a recurring weekly feature, Friday Trashback.

I've been working on a side project (a book — hence me being a little scattered with the posting occasionally this year) for the past few months, and delving deep into the d'luvvly recesses of my memory for all kinds of godawful fodder. Last night got me thinking about house music in 1989, for instance.

This Hithouse jam "Jack To The Sound Of The Underground" sticks out, because I remember taping it off the radio one Sunday afternoon that spring, when one of the local Top 40 stations would air a special that played dance music for two hours. Yeah, my social life rocked in 9th grade.

I have seriously not heard this song in 22 years, though I know exactly where that cassette tape is in my old bedroom back in PA.

Anyway, here 'tis:

That, chyldryn, is some hot trash. A little online research shoes that the Dutch DJ/producer behind Hithouse, Peter Slaghuis, sadly died in a car accident in 1991, at the age of 30.

"Jack To The Sound Of The Underground" reached #14 on the UK singles chart, and if I recall correctly, dented the US dance charts, too.

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Darren Hayes Shapes Up With His "Talk Talk Talk" Video

Darren Hayes is back with "Talk Talk Talk," which I'm quickly coming to realize is his best single since "So Beautiful," and now the music video is out. It's got Daz looking emotive and pop-star-angsty while all sorts of geometric shapes spin around him. I'd do the typical online music theorist thing and assume Hayes is secretly a member of the Illuminati, but even suggesting it makes my eyes roll so far up that my head hurts.

Actually, the whole clip plays more like an homage to Tears For Fears' "Sowing The Seeds Of Love" video.

Also, good news, Darren fans: "Talk Talk Talk" was made available on iTunes worldwide today. I just bought it, and you should too, because the B-side is a cover of Madonna's "Angel," and it's pretty electro-dreamy. Nice to finally hear some vocal power on this jam.


Thursday, June 23, 2011

US Chart Roundup: Katy Perry Racks (And I Mean RACKS) Up Fifth Top 5 Single Off 'Teenage Dream'

Katy Perry's immensely awesome "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" took forever to get a single release, but it's finally here, and it's now her fifth Top 5 hit on the Billboard Hot 100. This week the jam moves up to #4 on the chart, and is just one position above Perry's "E.T." (Billboard points out that she's the first artist in 2011 to place two titles in the top five simultaneously as a lead act.)

Meanwhile, Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" has been #1 for seven weeks, and she can now boast about having the longest stay at the top of the chart so far this year. Just behind her is Lady Gaga, whose "Born This Way" was on top for six weeks. Katy's "E.T." was #1 for five weeks.

It'll be interesting to see if "Last Friday Night" can become Katy Puxxy's fifth #1 in a row. It was the top download on iTunes for the most part of the past week, until Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera's "Moves Like Jagger" was made available Tuesday evening.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Rolling In The Deep" - Adele *7 weeks*
2. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
3. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock
4. "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" - Katy Perry
5. "E.T." - Katy Perry feat. Kanye West
6. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
7. "Dirt Road Anthem" - Jason Aldean
8. "Super Bass" - Nicki Minaj
9. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
10. "The Show Goes On" - Lupe Fiasco

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Enrique Iglesias' "Dirty Dancer" Video Is As Generic-Sounding As The Song

I wasn't down with this super trash song from Enrique Iglesias (featuring Usher and Lil Wayne) when it was released a month ago, and I'm sure as shit not into it now that the boring strip club-themed video has arrived.

Like "I Like It," this is RedOne at his most generic.

I can't even muster up any kind of critique here for "Dirty Dancer." Lowest common denominator garbage. Enrique is really slipping.

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It's Britney Spears' "I Wanna Go" Video

Britney Spears' "I Wanna Go" music video premiered today, and in addition to the Max Martin/Shellback jam being my favorite of The Wig's three Femme Fatale singles so far, it also boasts the most playful lyrics (she's singing about masturbation, y'all!).

And thankfully "I Wanna Go" now has an equally fun video, to boot. I can't really remember the last time Britney took part in a press conference, but this clip starts out with one. After being asked a series of ridiculous questions ("Is it true you banned junk food, smiles, candy, sunshine and laughter from your Femme Fatale Tour?"), Brit rattles off a series of "fuck yous" to the press and goes rogue.

Ass-grabbing, face-bashing and pop culture references (Half Baked, Crossroads, Terminator, "Thriller") abound, and at one point Spears ends up in a car with Guillermo Diaz. And he should be happy, because this is the classiest trash he's done since Party Girl!

Diaz gets his freak on by dumping milk all over his head in the car — I'm guessing that's the least he's been splashed with in the face — and in the end, Britney realizes she was daydreaming.

Which is a shame, because I'd totally stan for Crossroads 2: Cross Harder.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Maroon 5/Christina Aguilera's "Moves Like "Jagger": The Best Thing Either Has Done In Ages

Strangely, I've found myself completely hooked on The Voice since it premiered in late April. I don't know which team I'm all for yet, because truthfully each coach has great singers (though I think Dia Frampton and Javier Colon are possible contenders to win the whole thing).

Anyway, Christina Aguilera and Adam Levine are two artists whose careers could use a little pep these days, and what better way to capitalize on the success of The Voice than to release joint single "Moves Like Jagger" (Adam's part via his band Maroon 5, of course)?

I'm actually surprised at how electro-pop this jam is, given the M5 factor. I mean, Adam's voice is Auto-Tuned. But I like it. Solid jam.

Of course, it does kind of make me want to hear the Rolling Stones' "Miss You" now.

The pair will perform "Moves Like Jagger" on The Voice, and the single will be made available on iTunes right after.

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Monday, June 20, 2011

UK Chart Roundup: Why Does It Have To Flop So Hard, Sophie Ellis-Bextor?

Calvin Harris' latest jam "Bounce" debuts this week at #2 in the UK, and thus gives featured singer Kelis her high-charting single in the country since "Trick Me" reached the same peak in 2004.

Just behind them at #3 is Ed Sheeran with his folky major label debut single "The A Team." I like this trash — it sort of reminds me of that Nizlopi single from a few years back...

Okay, wait. I just had a panic attack when I realized that the Nizlopi song was out six years ago (!!!!). Oh, well — that's probably nothing compared to when Sophie Ellis-Bextor fell backward into the drapes, ripped the curtain rod out of the wall, crashed through the glass and plunged into the pool below after seeing her latest LP Make A Scene go into the UK album chart at #33. Her previous effort, Trip The Light Fantastic, went in at #7 on the strength of the Top 10 lead single "Catch You."

Sigh. That's a shame. Her current single "Starlight" — which was released last week via digital download only and completely failed to chart — has been my jam all spring.

On the other end of the spectrum, Take That's re-packaged re-release of Progress — now called Progressed, with an additional eight new songs — is #1 on the album chart.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Changed The Way You Kiss Me" - Example *2 weeks*
2. "Bounce" - Calvin Harris feat. Kelis *new*
3. "The A Team" - Ed Sheeran *new*
4. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
5. "Spaceship" - Tinchy Stryder & Dappy *new*
6. "Right There" - Nicole Scherzinger
7. "Mr. Saxobeat" - Alexandra Stan
8. "I Need A Dollar" - Aloe Blacc
9. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO
10. "I'm Into You" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Lil Wayne

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

It's Britney Spears' "I Wanna Go" Video Teaser

This looks promising. My fave jam off Femme Fatale. Can The Wig deliver?


Friday, June 17, 2011

When The Mail Doesn't Suck: Suede Reissues

Well, here's my weekend listening sorted out. Remember, chyldryn, when music starts to suck, go back to Suede.

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Darren Hayes Teases "Talk Talk Talk" Video

Darren Hayes is finally back with new music, and from the sound of things — i.e. first single "Talk Talk Talk" — the four years he took off from releasing material to recharge the creative juices was well-spent.

That snippet we heard the other day of the single doesn't really do the song justice. The whole enchilada is a rad mix of the dance-pop style Daz had been evolving into with his last two albums and the irresistible, hook-laden material that granted him commercial success to begin with.

Anyway, below is the first look at the "Talk Talk Talk" music video. As I mentioned the other day, the tune was produced by Carl Falk (Nicole Scherzinger's "Don't Hold Your Breath").

There will also be a B-side to the single when it's added to iTunes — a cover of Madonna's classic "Angel," which I'm imagining can only be a massive vocal improvement upon the original.

I am so effing happy this classy broad is back.


WTF: Lady Gaga's "The Edge Of Glory" Video

Oh, good — Lady Gaga's finally reached that point where she'll chuck out boring, trite swill with a half-assed concept and expect the world to collectively Rabbit itself into a frenzy.

Take, for example, her "The Edge Of Glory" music video, which co-stars sax man Clarence Clemons and features the Gaga strutting around in some leather strappy number on what looks like a cheap set on the Paramount lot.

Word on the street is that Joseph Kahn (Kylie's "All The Lovers," Britney's "Toxic," Backstreet Boys' "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)") was axed after originally being announced as the director for this vid.

But, honestly, it now just plays like a clip by an artist who scrambled to make a video because they had money invested, the time booked and a few hours to kill.

Lady Gaga, hon, it's time to pull the saxophone out of your ass, take a month-long vacation and recharge the ol' batteries. This is the fourth utter shit video in a row (I'm including "Alejandro"), and, quite frankly, Katy Perry is kicking your ass in this department.

A monster of a fail.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

US Chart Roundup: Adele Is Making Some Cash

With six weeks at #1, Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" has now tied with Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" for the longest stretch atop the Billboard Hot 100 in 2011. Coming in second place would be Katy Perry's "E.T.," which racked up five weeks at #1 earlier this spring.

Over on the Top 200 album chart, Lady Gaga's Born This Way slips to #2 in its third week after selling another 100,000 copies, and is replaced at #1 by Adele's 21 (114,000). The latter album, which has sold over 2 million copies in the States, has now been #1 for 10 non-consecutive weeks.

Meanwhile, the video for Lady Gaga's "The Edge Of Glory" (#6 on the Hot 100) is set to premiere tonight during So You Think You Can Dance. Odds of it leaking online beforehand: Very high.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Rolling In The Deep" - Adele *6 weeks*
2. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
3. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock
4. "E.T." - Katy Perry feat. Kanye West
5. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
6. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
7. "On The Floor" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Pitbull
8. "Just Can't Get Enough" - The Black Eyed Peas
9. "Dirt Road Anthem" - Jason Aldean
10. "Super Bass" - Nicki Minaj

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It's Rye Rye & Robyn's "Never Will Be Mine" Video

Not sure how necessary it was for M.I.A.'s protege Rye Rye to record "Never Will Be Mine" — the hook of which is based around Robyn's (2005 or 2008, depending where you live) single "Be Mine!" Well, actually, it was probably very necessary, since these types of gimmicks often gain new artists the attention they need.

But anyway, both the song and Tim Nakashi-directed video are nice enough. Once again, Robyn continues to be awesome.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

It's A Snippet Of Darren Hayes' "Talk Talk Talk"

Just when you were ready to commit seppuko because you thought the only release worth mentioning that's seeing the light of day in June is Beyonce's epic fail Snore 4, along comes this short tease of "Talk Talk Talk," Darren Hayes' first single off his upcoming fourth LP.

It's noted on Darren's YouTube that the single is out everywhere June 24.

"Talk Talk Talk" was written by Hayes and Carl Falk, who recently co-produced Nicole Scherzinger's unbelievably rad UK hit "Don't Hold Your Breath."

Welcome back, Daz!


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ye Olde Vampyre Madonna Rising From The Grave, Recording New Album This Summer

Dear God!! The spell that had been cast by Lady Gaga to keep Ye Olde Vampyre locked in her lead-lined sarcophagus has weakened, and like a blood-thirsty demon, she is ready to feed on our mortal plain again.

The Formaldehyde Girl's long-tortured henchman Guy Oseary confirmed on Twitter today via a series of tweets:
"Madonna goes into the recording studio next month to begin work on new album... she has a good idea on which producers she will be working with... lots of questions about what kind of music it will be... stay tuned..."
As we know, Thee Vampyre hasn't released a studio LP since the woeful sonic abortion known as Hard Candy. And other than that, her last substantial release came in the form of the two-disc 2009 hits collection Celebration.

Since then she's been off directing future Oscar-winning epic W.E. (Sadly, she chose not to take up an acting role in the movie. Sigh.)

I will note that when I went to Italy in April 2008, Hard Candy's first single "4 Minutes" was just becoming a huge hit. And now that I'm going back to Italy this summer, Madge is suddenly back in music mode again.


* Piers Morgan Further Rips Into Madonna
* Madonna: Banterview With The Vampyre
* Lady GaGa Hammers A Giant Stake Into Madonna's Undead Corpse
* Lady GaGa Again Spanks Madonna
* Madonna: Truth In Advertising
* Lady Gaga: 4, Madonna: 0
* Madonna's New Single Is A Hit Somewhere!
* Lady GaGa Renders Christina Aguilera Irrelevant (Say Hi To Madonna, Christina!)


Monday, June 13, 2011

UK Chart Roundup: Nicola Roberts Never Had This Much Disappointment When She Was On The Pole

Yet another dance jam with a lightweight rap atop it captures the top position on the UK chart this week. This time it's Example's "Changed The Way You Kissed Me." Hey, it's better than "Kickstarts," right?

Moving on from that trash we have Nicole Scherzinger, who's "Right There" climbs to #3 and becomes her third Top 5 hit in the past year or so. It's a subpar offering that's just bland enough to become a hit in the States...and yet it didn't! "Right There" peaked at #77 here, proving once and for all that Nicole, as the title of her winter single suggests, really is chart poison in her home country.

Coldplay's "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" (#6) becomes the band's first Top 10 UK hit since "Viva La Vida" went to #1 three years ago, while Nicola Roberts' godawful "Beat Of My Drum" massively flops its way to a #27 debut.

Back to the pole, stripper.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Changed The Way You Kiss Me" - Example *new* 1 week*
2. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
3. "Right There" - Nicole Scherzinger
4. "Mr. Saxobeat" - Alexandra Stan
5. "I Need A Dollar" - Aloe Blacc
6. "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" - Coldplay *new*
7. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO
8. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
9. "I'm Into You" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Lil Wayne
10. "Bass Down Low" - Dev feat. The Cataracs

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" Is The Hottest Music Video I've Seen In My Entire Life

As I suspected after seeing the teaser clip, Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" music video is the hands-down classiest piece of trash I've seen in my entire life. Or at least this year. Lady Gaga needs to stop drinking her own Kool-Aid and bust out a video this fun.

Where do we even begin? Viral video star Rebecca Black (who sings "Friday" — get it?) appearance as the girl who drags nerdy "Kathy Beth Terry" to the party?

Kathy Beth fondling some hot passed-out dude in her bed?

Kevin McHale looking like even more of a dork than when he plays "Artie" on Glee?

Katy Perry's transformation into...Juliette Lewis-esque '80s mall queen?

Effing Kenny G?!?

I'm just so glad this song finally got a single release. Will it replace "Teenage Dream" as my fave off Katy's latest album? Possibly. The only thing for sure is that I now have a whole new level of respect for this nutty broad.  Watch the vid below!

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Friday, June 10, 2011

9-Year-Old Kid Dances To Madonna's "Vogue" In 1991, Creates Defining Moment In History

Britney Spears could never.

Says Robert Jeffrey:
"I performed to MADONNA's 'VOGUE' in the Summer of 1991 when my parents took me to Hampton Beach Casino in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire. A business in the casino at the time gave tourists the chance to lip-synch to their favorite pop songs in front of a blue screen background, and I was lucky enough to partake that summer."
P.S. He grew up quite fit, no?


In Defense Of Take That's 'Progressed' Track "Man"

I was gifted with an early copy of Take That's Progressed, which is out on Monday in the UK, and I'm just now listening to it.

I will note that I was disheartened to read usually-trusty Popjustice's quip on the track "Man" the other day: "This sounds like most of the bangers on Progress, except it's no good. Should it have been on the main album? NO"

Upon hearing the snippets of the That's new tunes last week on Amazon UK, "Man" seemed to me to be an early favorite with the most potential to make me go for endless walks through the city streets with my iPod on, breezing past all the Yankee commoners not aware of Take That's sheer brilliance.

I'm happy to report that Popjustice got it wrong. Should it have been on the main album? YES. I, for one, am all about the quartet's new "universal everyman against the confusing world" era. It's like someone whispered in Gary Barlow's ear, "Pssst. This is what U2 and Coldplay have been doing for years," and he was all, "Oh, right. But we'll actually make good music!"

"Man" is a jam. Now go put on "Babe" and have a ballad-induced cry, all ye non-believers. (Said with love love, of course.)

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The Robot Covers The Vampyre: Hear Britney's Version Of Madonna's "Burning Up"

So, Britney Spears is apparently going to "sing" Madonna's 1983 classic "Burning Up" on her upcoming Femme Fatale Tour. And it turns out there's a full studio version of Wigney's cover, too.

This is great! It's probably my favorite single from Ye Olde Vampyre. So naturally it flopped when it was originally released.

I played Madge's original once at a house party I DJ'd and the place went nuts. Britney's version is totally fun, too. Between this and her appearance on Rihanna's "S&M" remix, who knew there was still some action left in the robot slag?

Meanwhile, Madonna is probably all, "Brava, Britney. And thank God — finally, someone who makes me sound like a good singer."

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Thursday, June 09, 2011

US Chart Roundup: Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall For Beyonce

It's a pretty flat week on the Hot 100, save for the fact that Coldplay's "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" debuts at #29 and gives the band a sixth Top 40 hit to their credit (the previous one being last December's "Christmas Lights," which peaked at #25).

That position is based on the time the single went on sale early last Friday to the following Sunday evening. And given that its been hovering in the Top 5 on iTunes this whole past week, expect it to climb by the time next week's Hot 100 rolls around.

Elsewhere, Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" re-enters the chart at #63 and Beyonce's "Best Thing I Never Had" debuts at the soaring heights of #84. Add to that the facts that "Run The World (Girls)" has plummeted from #29 to #55 and her album 4 leaked this week and, well, let's just hope there's a swiveling red chair for Bey on The Voice next season.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Rolling In The Deep" - Adele *5 weeks*
2. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
3. "E.T." - Katy Perry feat. Kanye West
4. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
5. "On The Floor" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Pitbul
6. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRoc
7. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
8. "Just Can't Get Enough" - The Black Eyed Peas
9. "Till The World Ends" - Britney Spears
10. "The Show Goes On" - Lupe Fiasco

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Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" Video Teaser Is Completely Classy

Jesus, after "Teenage Dream," "E.T." and now "Last Friday Night (TGIF)," I might have to just start admitting I kind of like this broad. This video teaser (full thing out June 14) alone is worth at least two or three views.

If this song doesn't go to #1, there will be blood.


Selena Gomez & The Scene's "Bang Bang Bang" Is Up There With "Naturally"

I feel like Selena Gomez never really surpassed the pop potential she showed with her rad single "Naturally," which I still play on a regular basis. Sure, "Round & Round," "A Year Without Rain" and "Who Says" were decent, but some kind of magnetic hook seemed to be missing from all three.

But thankfully "Bang Bang Bang" is here (on iTunes today), and the sassy dance-pop jam — her second single off upcoming album (her third in less than two years!!) When The Sun Goes Down — just might have what it takes to place alongside "Naturally" in my book.

I'm just trying to forget that Selena's probably singing about her boyfriend Justin Bieber when listening, because even though she's 18, she could pass for 34, and the Biebz still looks about 13. Ick.

It's going to take a few listens. But for now the Toby Gad-produced "Bang Bang Bang" is perfect pre-summer fodder...well, for this week at least.


It's Britney Spears' "I Wanna Go" Single Cover

Great song, but who the hell's this on the single cover? It certainly doesn't look anything like Robotney.

I will say that "I Wanna Go" is one of of my favorite jams off Femme Fatale. Is it just coincidence that Spears' jam about masturbation contains whistling, just like Cyndi Lauper's own classic single about the same topic, "She Bop" (a #3 hit on the Hot 100 in 1984)?

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Sunday, June 05, 2011

UK Chart Roundup: Kelly Rowland Beats Beyonce's Wig Into Dust

It's a pretty sad state of affairs when the UK chart has become even more dull than the US one — and, actually, the Hot 100 is pretty jumpin' these days — so thank Christ for Alex Gaudino and Kelly Rowland's sassy dance jam "What A Feeling," which debuts at #6 this week.

Yes, once again Kelly mops of the floor with Beyonce's wig, proving that she was the real creative force behind Destiny's Child all along.

My one gripe is that I wish this jam had broken through in the US the way "Motivation" did, but I can't complain. Miss Kelendria is on a roll, and the ball just barreled into Beyonce and sent her wig flying into the wood chipper.

The UK Top 10:

1. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer *3 weeks*
2. "I Need A Dollar" - Aloe Blacc
3. "Mr. Saxobeat" - Alexandra Stan
4. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO
5. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
6. "What A Feeling" - Alex Gaudino feat. Kelly Rowland *new*
7. "Beautiful People" - Chris Brown feat. Benny Benassi
8. "California King Bed" - Rihanna
9. "Sweat" - Snoop Dogg
10. "I'm Into You" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Lil Wayne

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Friday, June 03, 2011

Coldplay Go To Rio With New Single "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall"

The new Coldplay single "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall" is out today, and it very clearly borrows from Peter Allen's "I Go To Rio" (and, in turn, The Sacados' "Ritmo De La Noche"), much in the way the band's superb 2005 jam "Talk" was based on Kraftwerk's "Computer Love."

But with that out of the way, maybe the best summation of the song itself is to say that it sounds very Coldplay. There is, of course, no way to tell what the rest of Chris Martin & Co.'s upcoming fifth album will sound like. But "Teardrop" sounds as if it could have been on 2008 LP Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends.

Maybe it's a bridge between the last album and this one? After all, "Violet Hill" certainly wasn't the best offering from the last album, yet it was the first single. Then they hit us with "Viva La Vida."

Oh, well — I listened to this a couple times, and it had me humming along. It's not the most immediately catchy piece of music, and really doesn't kick in until Martin starts wailing with "waaaaaaaaterfall" nearly three minutes in.

Maybe it's a grower? Anyone else feeling it?


Thursday, June 02, 2011

Robyn's "Call Your Girlfriend" Video Reminds Me Of My Junior High School Dances

First of all: Best video EVER. Robyn's "Call Your Girlfriend" premiered today, and it features the Swedish pop broad dancing in one continuous shot throughout a gymnasium, all Flashdance-like.

As the title of this post suggests, the Max Vitali-directed clip reminds me of going to dances at my junior high school, especially when the disco lights switch on. Except in this video, they're not playing Belinda Carlisle and Bananarama. They're playing Robyn.



I Kind Of "Love Love" Take That's New Video

Yesterday, DC20008 (aka "Neil") tweeted at me, "Mr. Rigger, waiting patiently for your analysis of the "Love Love" music video. Can't believe you aren't all over it yet!"

Well, silly me, luv luv — we weren't able to view Take That's new damn video here in the States for a few days, so it kind of passed me by. Of course, I've written about the song itself — which I now love love even more after seeing the video.

And, why, here 'tis, courtesy of some Russian YouTube user!

Bravo! Downright excellent arm-twirling by all five of the That DILFs, I say. I'm not sure if you could pay me to go see X-Men: First Class, which is out tomorrow, though. After all, that last X-Men movie (The Last Stand) sucked harder than Britney did to get her Jive contract.


US Chart Roundup: Scotty McCreery & Lauren Alaina Should Make Out On TV More Often

The aftershocks of Lady Gaga's Born This Way album release and her American Idol finale performance last week send "The Edge Of Glory" up 11 positions to #8 on this week's Billboard Hot 100, while "You And I" enters the chart at #37 and "Marry The Night" debuts at #79. "You And I" is Gaga's 12th song to chart in the Top 40, though it's technically not a single.

Speaking of Idol, Season 10 winner Scotty McCreery's "I Love You This Big" lands on the Hot 100 at #11, while runner-up Lauren Alaina's cover of Kristy Lee Cook's "Like My Mother Does" debuts at #20. So are those two hitting it, or is that just the hype being used to boost their post-AI profiles, since everyone pretty much forgot about Lee DeWyze the minute the show ended last year?

Meanwhile, thanks to a round of promo appearances last week (The Oprah Winfrey Show, Billboard Music Awards, Idol finale, etc.), Beyonce's dismal "Run The World (Girls)" scrapes its way up to #29. The mediocre attempt at music had previously debuted and peaked at #33.

Currently, Beyonce's flop is #34 on iTunes, so it shouldn't bother the upper reaches of the Hot 100 much.

I already rambled on yesterday about Born This Way topping the main album chart with 1.108 million copies sold in its first week. Billboard is now reporting that the LP will likely remain at #1 for a second week, and could sell around 200,000 more copies.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Rolling In The Deep" - Adele *4 weeks*
2. "Give Me Everything" - Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, AfroJack & Nayer
3. "E.T." - Katy Perry feat. Kanye West
4. "On The Floor" - Jennifer Lopez feat. Pitbul
5. "Just Can't Get Enough" - The Black Eyed Peas
6. "The Lazy Song" - Bruno Mars
7. "Till The World Ends" - Britney Spears
8. "The Edge Of Glory" - Lady Gaga
9. "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett & GoonRoc
10. "I'm On One" - DJ Khaled feat. Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

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Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Lady Gaga's Relentless Promo Pays Off, 'Born This Way' Sells Over 1.1 Million Copies

The Born This Way numbers are in, and Lady Gaga has become the fifth female artist to have an album sell over a million copies in one week. Here's how she stacked up:

* Britney Spears, Oops!...I Did It Again (2000, 1.319 million)
* Lady Gaga, Born This Way (2011, 1.108 million)
* Whitney Houston, The Bodyguard (1992, 1.061 million)
* Taylor Swift, Speak Now (2010, 1.047 million)
* Norah Jones, Feels Like Home (2004, 1.022 million)

It's also Gaga's first Top 200 chart-topping album, and, Billboard notes, only the 17th LP in the SoundScan era (i.e. since 1991) to sell a million copies.

So, the question on everyone's minds: how much did the 99-cent deal at Amazon's MP3 store aid the overall sales of Born This Way? Billboard points out that about 440,000 downloads flew through the digital retailer throughout last week. (The album had the under-a-buck deal last Monday and Thursday only.)

Guess doing 148 TV shows in one week really does pay off.