Tuesday, June 15, 2010
The Juan Maclean guest dj'ed "A Club Called Rhonda" in LA this past weekend. I had other commitments and couldn't go but this gig got me on Youtube doing a search for anything new from the band and to my surprise, there was a video for "Happy House." The track was the first single from their 2009 album "Future Will Come" and is a heavenly trip down "happy house" lane. If you're hungry for that classic piano-house style sound, this track should definitely settle any cravings you might have. Lastly, If you haven't heard the rest of their album, check out, "One Day" which sounds like a modern day 'Human League' track. If any of my readers plan on being in the Detroit area, 4th of July weekend, be sure to catch Juan Maclean playing at the Magic Stick. Get Tickets for $10.
The Juan MacLean - Happy House - EP
The Juan MacLean - Happy House - Video
The Juan MacLean - The Future Will Come (Bonus Track Version)
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Here's a new segment that I have been meaning to start. This is the billboard charts wrap up along with my own personal charts as well.
The top 10 of the Hot 100 has been fairly static the last month until this weeks 2 new entries. The first from Black Eyed Peas, whose track, "Rock Your Body" jumps seven spots to the #9 position this week making this their 5th single from their 2009 album The E.N.D. to go top 10 while three of them went to the top of the summit. "Rock Your Body" doesn't look like its going to take the pole spot because while sales have climbed, airplay doesn't look like it will be increasing at this point. I congratulate the Black Eyed Peas on quite a successful, worldwide, album run and look forward to their next project.
La Roux also charts her second week in the Billboard hot 100 top ten. I never thought in a million years "Bulletproof" would even hit the hot 100 much less go as high as #8 (last weeks Hot 100). The only other chart action to note is Katy Perry's "California Gurls" ending Usher's reign at # 1 (3 weeks) with OMG. Congrats to Katy on her second number one single and if "California Girls" is a good representation of her upcoming album, Teenage Dream, then I expect to see her notch a few more # 1's this year.
Here's this week Top 10 from Billboard Hot 100:
01 - Katy Perry Featuring Snoop Dogg - California Gurls
02 - Usher Featuring will.i.am - OMG
03 - B.o.B Featuring Hayley Williams - Airplanes
04 - Ke$ha - Your Love Is My Drug
05 - Travie McCoy Featuring Bruno Mars - Billionaire
06 - Taio Cruz Featuring Ludacris - Break Your Heart
07 - Lady Gaga - Alejandro
08 - B.o.B Featuring Bruno Mars - Nothin' On You
09 - The Black Eyed Peas - Rock That Body
10 - La Roux - Bulletproof
In contrast, here is my personal estrogen heavy top 11 for the week:
001 Kelis - Emancipate
002 Robyn - Dancing on My Own The Video:
003 Katy Perry - California Gurls
004 Kelly Rowland - Commander
005 Christina Aguilera - Lift Me Up
006 Hot Chip - I Feel Better The Video:
007 Kylie Minogue - All The Lovers AMAZON MP3 STORE
008 M.I.A. - XXXO
009 Lady Gaga - Alejandro The Video:
010 Robyn - Fembot
011 Kelis - 4th of July (Fireworks)
Friday, June 11, 2010
LA Concert Calendar
6/19/2010 IMOGEN HEAP / GEESE / BEN CHRISTOPHERS - Greek Theatre - Ticketmaster
6/20/2010 ERYKAH BADU / JANELLE MONAE / LUPE FIASCO - Greek Theatre
6/27/2010 GOLDFRAPP - Ticketmaster - Hollywood Bowl - $12 - $131
7/06/2010 MARINA & THE DIAMONDS - TROUBADOUR - LA - $15
7/15/2010 LA ROUX - CLUB NOKIA - Ticketmaster - $21.50
7/16/2010 LIL KIM - KEY CLUB - Ticketmaster
7/23/2010 KELIS/ROBYN - ALL HEARTS TOUR - Ticketmaster - Music Box LA - $27.50
8/10/2010 KELE (Bloc Party) w/ JESSICA 6 (Hercules & Love Affair) - TROUBADOUR - $20
8/11-12/2010 LADY GAGA - STAPLES CENTER - Tickets still available on Ticketmaster!
8/14/2010 BILLY IDOL - HOLLYWOOD PALLADIUM - Ticketmaster - $49.50
8/29/2010 CHEMICAL BROTHERS / CHROMEO / YACHT / KCRW - Ticketmaster
9/25/2010 MUSE - STAPLES CENTER - Ticketmaster $35 - $65
10/3/2010 BELLE & SEBASTIAN - HOLLYWOOD PALLADIUM - Ticketmaster - $38.50
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Fincher who had previously worked with Madonna on her now greatest video classic, Express Yourself and would later go on to direct "Vogue" and "Bad Girl" before moving strictly into film. Oh Father is the final track on the upcoming album from Sia Furler, "We Are Born." Less melodramatic than the original, the Sia version is almost bouncy with it's new more current electronic backing (hand claps and all). I can't say that I prefer this one to the original; actually, I don't. I will say though, that on its own merit (without any comparison to the original Madonna classic), the track is rather enjoyable. Sia's vocals are the stand-out on this fun and light-hearted cover. I suggest checking out the comments section of my posts going forward, wink wink.
Sia tickets for her upcoming Jimmy Kimmel Performance in Hollywood are still available - FREE
Sia tickets for her upcoming Jimmy Kimmel Performance in Hollywood are still available - FREE
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
So, I've been listening to the new Christina Aguilera record, BIONIC, released today in the US.
Here is my track by track review (which may change on further listen):
1 Bionic - Produced by Switch (M.I.A., Major Lazer). The track opens the album with a dance hall feel and a fairly catchy chorus. The track could have been on the last Major Lazer record. A
2 Not Myself Tonight - Produced by Polow Da Don (Beyonce, Keri Hilson), NMT is a major club-ready thumper. Full of attitude, fierceness, catchy chorus and great vocals. The problem lies in the fact that one can't seem to enjoy this track without recalling the ill-conceived Hype Williams directed video-clip. This should have been an easy top 5 for Aguilera but alas debuted and peaked at #23 on Billboard's Hot 100. A-
3 Woo Hoo - Produced by Polow Da Don and featuring guest rapstress of the hour, Nicki Minaj, Woo Hoo is funky, catchy, pop-hop and also unofficially the second single from the album. I think the label is testing the waters with radio and airplay at the moment. B +
4 Elastic Love - Produced by M.I.A. and Switch, Elastic Love has M.I.A. signed all over it. The word cosmic comes to mind when listening to this track due in part to the heavily produced vocals on both Aguilera and M.I.A. I actually can't confirm if M.I.A. is even on this track or if Aguilera is made to sound identical to her. B-
5 Desnudate - Produced by Tricky Stewart, Desnudate is another club-ready track geared for the Latin scene, with a hot saxophone(?) part towards the end. Pitbull will most likely appear on any remix for this track. Lastly, Aguilera's vocals are up and center in the track and sound sensational. A-
7 Glam - Produced by Tricky Stewart, Glam was originally considered for the album's first single. Accurately described by Aguilera and Stewart as a modern day "Vogue," the track fails to make much of an impact except right around the middle when she actually starts singing "Runway on fire, fashion gods inspired..." The track also uses elements from Daft Punk's Technologic. It might be a good club single but this is the first weak point on the album for me. C
8 Prima Donna - Third and final track Produced by Tricky Stewart, Prima Donna is a slow - mid tempo, hip-hop inspired dark and moody track where Christina Aguilera wails on the chorus about being a pri-madonna and knowing she can "rule the world" all while horns reminiscent of Madonna's "4 Minutes" take this clearly Madonna dedicated track from boring to mediocre but nowhere near futuristic. C-
9 Sex For Breakfast - Produced by Bernard Edwards of disco-band Chic fame, Sex for Breakfast is a track you'd find towards the end of any Janet Jackson album post 1993. The track even comes complete with rain and thunder sounds (unless I'm delirious). Now why is Christina Aguilera working with a disco mastermind and coming up with this? Madonna worked with Nile Rodgers (also from Chic) and gave us Like A Virgin. Xtina, I think you could have made some magic with this guy. C-
10 Lift Me Up - Produced by long-time collaborator Linda Perry, Lift Me Up is a stunning ballad and my favorite track on the album. This is also sadly the only track Linda Perry worked on for this project. Lift Me Up is Christina at her best and this will go down as a "Beautiful" if the marketing/styling folks behind this project get their acts together. A+
11 All I Need - Produced by Sia Furler & Sam Dixon, All I Need has Sia's signature style all over the track but doesn't translate well with Christina's vocals. The track seems like a Sia throwaway and does not take advantage of Christina's vocal powers. This is weak and underwhelming especially for being a Christina and Sia collaboration. C-
12 I Am - Produced by Sia Furler & Sam Dixon, I Am makes up for the previous weaker Sia collaboration. This track see's Christina singing verses in a much lower register than I am used to but sounds refreshing. The track is a soothing lullaby, and should be a contender for single release, if we get anymore. A
13 You Lost Me - Produced by Sia Furler & Sam Dixon, You Lost Me is exactly what one expects from a collaboration of this kind. Elements of Sia's Breathe Me mixed with arguably one of Christina Aguilera's strongest vocal performances, takes this haunting track to goosebump/chills zone. A+
14 I Hate Boys - Produced by Polow Da Don, I Hate Boys sounds like a standard catchy radio track. Short and sweet, running under 3 minutes. B
15 My Girls - Produced by Le Tigre and featuring Peaches. This track is airy, fun and a good representation of what Christina promised in Bionic! A
16 Vanity - Produced by Ester Dean, Vanity contains some of the cockiest lyrics I've ever heard, but what do you expect with a song with that name? Aside from hearing Xtina sing about turning herself on, the track is extremely catchy and the beat is tight. There's also a guest vocal appearance at the end. A-
I may go in and edit some of these as I listen to the album more but for now there you have it, my track by track review.
My big gripe is all the best tracks off this Bionic project didn't make the final regular album release. Monday Morning and Bobblehead, both Switch produced tracks, are more of the "Bionic" we were promised and actually exactly what I was expecting for this "futuristic" project. The haunting (Ladytron / Cathy Dennis produced) Birds Of Prey, is a pulsating electro track with Aguilera wailing in a middle eastern style. How did this not make it? Ladytron also produced the inspiring and uplifting Little Dreamer. I would have easily replaced All I Need with the Sia produced bonus track Stronger than Ever. So essentially someone decided that all the excellent tracks would stay off the album and be offered on deluxe or bonus edition releases. Let me know what you all think?
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Katy Perry's first single from her upcoming sophomore album, Teenage Dream, debuted at a whopping number two on the Billboard Hot 100, 3 weeks ago. The track, California Gurls, meant to be a response to Jay-Z's ode to NYC, "Empire State of Mind," was produced by Dr. Luke and Max Martin. After dropping to number three on the Hot 100 in it's second week, the track jumped back to number two in last weeks issue due to airplay gain and sales gain. Perry was lowered onto the stage on a surfboard when she performed the track for the first time this past weekend on the MTV Movie Awards. I am going to bet the track does not hit number one when the newest Billboard results come out this week. Usher's track OMG, which is the main culprit in keeping Katy away from the number one spot, continues to go strong in both airplay (Top 40 & Rhythmic) and sits right behind California Gurls in digital sales on iTunes. The only way California Gurls can hit number one is if there was a real surge in sales after the performance. We shall see. In the meantime, if you haven't seen the MTV performance yet, check it out!
UPDATE 6/9/2010: It only took 4 weeks for Katy Perry's California Gurls, to hit the # 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100. She notched an 18% increase in sales (318K downloads) this past week and airplay zoomed up 25% from 10 - 6 (pop airplay charts). Congrats Katy on your second # 1 single!
Also, check out the 30 second clip of the upcoming music video for the single.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, Lady Gaga has released the Steven Klein directed clip for Alejandro. The extended, almost 10 minute long, video has intense homoerotic, religious and military imagery. One can't help but feel like she has once again taken a tip or two from the little how-to guide book called "Madonna." Gaga collaborated with Steven Klein who has been a heavy influence on just about every visual experience from the Madonna of the last decade. From her 3 W magazine extended spreads to providing the visuals for her 3 last tours, Klein has definitely been a constant in the Madonna world so I already found it intriguing that he would be directing his first video clip (unless you count some of the videos from the last 3 Madonna tours as official videos) for Lady Gaga . I definitely see parts of the 2003 W magazine collaboration in this video clip. This may go down as one of Gaga's best but that remains to be seen. What do you guys think?
Buy The Alejandro/Bad Romance (American Idol) Performance at:
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Thursday, June 3, 2010
LA Concert Calendar
KELIS/ROBYN - ALL HEARTS TOUR - TICKETS GO ON SALE TOMORROW! 6/4/2010 - Ticketmaster - Music Box LA - $27.50
Lords Of Acid / My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult July 16, 2010 - Ticketmaster - Club Nokia, LA - $19