Thursday, September 23, 2010

The good advice I always hated

Via Idolator...

Nicki Minaj - "Right Through Me" (Tags) by nickiminajorg

Rapper Nicki Minaj's new single, "Right Through Me," may tone down the playful obscenities of her featuring appearances in favor of continuing the sparkling modern ballad feel of "Your Love," but it matures and improves that template. The excellent if lyrically incongruous chorus hook overshadows the verses' story, an up-and-down relationship that the narrator sometimes sabotages but ultimately wants, with a thoroughly loved-up feel. It remains to be seen whether or not "Right Through Me" will stay just as lovable when subjected to the radio test--this might be the sort of song best played on your iPod--but for now, it's a welcome addition to pop's charm bracelet.

Nicki Minaj's single "Right Through Me" is not yet available for sale, but you can buy her earlier work on iTunes. Her album, Pink Friday, is out this November but is not yet available for preorder.

I reached out for your hands and you threw it all away

"You Gave Me Nothing," taken from British producer Mark Ronson's forthcoming album Record Collection, is, to paraphrase Popjustice, the best proper duet I've heard in months. Not that there's been much competition--if we're just talking about balanced duets, not featuring appearances, what else has there been, save Robyn and Snoop Dogg, since, say, spring?

05 You Gave Me Nothing (feat. Rose Elinor Dougall & Andrew Wyatt) by poppostergirl

The singers in question are Andrew Wyatt of Miike Snow and Rose Elinor Dougall, formerly of the Pipettes. Andrew's appearance on "You Gave Me Nothing," which might be more intuitively titled "You're Not My Baby," is certainly the most I've ever enjoyed his voice; listening to the Miike Snow album always felt more like an art appreciation exercise than an engaging musical experience, though the seemingly-still-unreleased remix of "The Rabbit" might be the exception to that rule. Maybe it's the added urgency of the gently unsettling dystopian music (yes, a gentle dystopia--the kind where our robotic overlords aren't killing people left and right in the streets but have passed futuristic Alien and Sedition Acts). Maybe it's balancing his voice with an equal amount of Rose, whose indie-beloved solo material I've ignored to date but who here comes across like the next great popstar.

Regardless, the two singers and Mark all bring out the best in each other. The cold fire of Mark's dark electro-meets-band composition, the dismissive anger of Andrew and Rose--how can there be such power in the final product when all parties involved resist the urge to scream and shout at each other? "You're Not My Baby" somehow still manages to radiate icy, ominous fury in the midst of its grown-up hooks. Free of kitsch or self-aware irony, let's hope it and its sheathed-knife electro passion set the template for Mark Ronson's upcoming work with Duran Duran.

"You're Not My Baby" is taken from Mark Ronson & the Business Intl's album Record Collection (which does feature vocals from Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon on the title track), out next week. You can preorder it here (physical).

Evergreen, you and me, we got everything here

The lead single from the second album of Sweden's Vincent, the singer of "Miss Blue," co-writer of Danny and Therese's "If Only You," and son of Roger Pontare, is another throwback to the pop-rock of the '60s. In fact, if anything it may play up those influences even more than his previous work.

Baby Hurricane by poppostergirl

Vincent has kept the gentle electronic touches of his earlier work, though, which enhances "Baby Hurricane"'s charm. The little electronic riff that opens the song is catchy but in a subdued way; combined with the Beach Boys-style harmonies and a drum part which is prominent and energetic in a functional, modest way, it creates the feeling of a smart, controlled mid-tempo romp.

We're not talking unrestrained exuberance, though. There's a certain joy the participants in an us-against-the-world relationship have, which shows up in "Baby Hurricane," but even if its subjects are willing to throw all caution to the winds, the song doesn't quite go there. It's a summer celebration song, sure, but hints of autumn sneak through.

The unassuming nature of "Baby Hurricane" might mean that it slowly creeps up on you. Creep up on you it will, though--"Baby Hurricane" sounds like the work of a (one-man) band so confident in its own abilities that it doesn't need to show off and instead can just get straight to the business of making something that is honed to greatness.

(On another note, the lyrics certainly have me hoping we'll get a music video.)

Vincent's single "Baby Hurricane" should eventually be able on Swedish iTunes. I'll update this link with more specificity and an international-friendly link should one become available.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Fall in love at first sight

Drop what you're doing--the music video for Le Kid's new single "We Should Go Home Together," the most joy-inducing song since Alphabeat's "Fascination," has arrived. Please, please, please watch it--or at least listen.

One of the best songs of the year, no doubt about it. It's amazing how they make "we should go home together" and "oh oh oh oh" sound like the most anthemic things you've heard all month.

According to Oswalds Popcorn, the single will be available for purchase September 27.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Talkin' fantasy right to my face


Xenomania News pointed out that several songs from Jessie Malakouti's time at Xenomania leaked recently. The best news about this fact? We finally get to hear the full studio recording of "Who's That Man." Though I'd rather have the opportunity to pay for the full quality version, with Jessie moved on to her Jessie and the Toy Boys project, it seemed unlikely we'd ever hear it, making this is something of a relief.

Magnus Carlsson has a new single coming out. It's called "The Best In Me" and is probably produced by Pitchline (based on how much he's worked with them and the fact that it's got a Pitchline remix). The cover can be viewed here, while the tracklist seems to be "The Best In Me," a solo version of "Crying At The Discotheque" (eek), "Feel You (Ruff & Jam Radio Edit)," and an extended remix by Pitchline of "The Best In Me."

On the "I'm way behind in reporting this" front, Nadine Coyle's debut single is "Insatiable," written by her and Guy Chambers. It's apparently not a ballad and bears a resemblance to the Bangles, though the latter is a comparison from the Sun so take it with a grain of salt. Fingers crossed--I really want this solo project to live up to Nadine's potential. Fellow Girls Aloud member Cheryl Cole's lead single for her second album is called "Promise This;" there's a low quality clip here, but I'll need to hear at least the chorus to know for sure what to make of it. Speaking of Girls Aloud, I don't think I've mentioned here yet that Luciana Caporaso reported she was writing songs with Sarah Harding. As I've said elsewhere, that seems like it could be a good match; Luciana's punky pop-dance work might be a good way to channel Sarah's apparent love of rock and sometimes shouty vocals (and Sarah's solo Xenomania songs aren't a million miles away from Portobella songs like "Meet Me At The Y Bar" or Kylie's Luciana-penned "Cupid Boy").

The music video for Kylie Minogue's joy-inducing "Get Outta My Way," one of the songs of the year, is out. Floor choreography! Chair choreography! Actually, the choreography is nowhere near the star of the show--that's got to go to these moments. I usually try to hold the belief that everyone has a perfect right to like and dislike what they want, but if you don't enjoy "Get Outta My Way," it's hard to believe you like music.

Margaret Berger has posted some pictures from a recent photoshoot on her Facebook page, as well as stated her new single will be out this fall (maybe as early as September, but I may have misunderstood what she was referring to). We were told earlier to expect it as a spring/summer single so there could understandably be some skepticism, but hopefully we'll have new Margaret music soon. Now, if only Bertine Zetlitz would give us a release date...

a1's new album, Waiting For Daylight, is out October 11 in Norway. That's not news. What is news--or news-ish, anyway--is that you can see a tiny picture of the cover here.

On the subject of albums going to be released in Norway, Melodi Grand Prix 2010 contestant Bjørn Johan Muri's album, Airwaves, comes out September 13. The tracklist and cover are here.

Swedish Stereo broke the new about the tracklist and cover for Ola's third album, out September 15; you can view them here. At ten tracks, four of which are already available for purchase, it's a short album, but hopefully it's got the gems he's capable of being a vehicle for.

The summery new single from British boyband JLS, "Ay Mama" (which features Shontelle), sounds kind of nice, based on a live performance of it.

Alcazar are featured on an Anders Hansson/Sharon Vaughn song on the new Same Difference album. Details at Scandipop.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

I guess the change in my pocket just wasn't enough

I hated Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy," but the only thing wrong with the new single from soul singer Cee-Lo Green is the radio edit, "Forget You," which suffers from a poor word replacement choice.

The original, though? Solid gold.