'American Idol' champ goes the soft rock route for his RCA debut
Looking forward to more or hoping for a reunion?
Brother Liam and Noel Gallagher very publicly broke up their band Oasis last year, and now we've finally arrived at the rebound part of the relationship.
Liam's new project Beady Eye, to be more exact, took custody of his ex's friends for a new song, "Bring the Light," available as a free download. Gem Archer, Chris Sharrock and Andy Bell are all on board for the piano-led rocker, which takes on a '50s vibe with some lady-backers and the typical late-'90s British garage rock from Gallagher that made Oasis so famous.
"Baby come on," Gallagher vamps at the end, perhaps urging Oasis fans to join him on the next leg of this journey?
Apparently, not all fans are so enthusiastic about the take, which managed to piss off manager Alan McGee something awful. "I was on the internet this morning, everybody's judging the band on one tune,” he told NME. “How can you do that? Let’s hear the album. It’s a f*cking free download. It’s too early to f*cking say.
Hate to bear bad news, but isn't that how it's done? Anyway, if it's that important to you, let's -- let's hear the whole album.
I personally dig the tune, though nothing new is cropping up from it. Liam's voice has always been such a presence, and I hope he's inspired by more than just his old tunes to create more. Hopefully he'll make the music he's intended to make rather than crowd-source the tracks based on internet opinions. What the hell does the internet know, anyway?
Beady Eye is prepping a full-length album for 2011, to be helmed by vet Steve Lillywhite.
Young Money rapper unleashes a seven-minute clip of all her debut's tracks
Nicki Minaj is prepping the Black Friday release of her "Pink Friday" and, with half the songs having leaked or released, it's about time she lift the curtain a little more.
What is confirmed is her many big-named guests: Drake, Kanye West, Rihanna, Eminem, will.i.am and Natasha Bedingfield have all apparently made the cut. Too, there seems to be plenty of pop-oriented jams, and fewer street tracks. Harajuku Barbie seems to have no problem singing the hooks herself, as evidenced by "Right Thru Me," though to hear the majority of the guest spots, we'll have to wait until its closer to the drop date. These slivers of the songs seem to want to showcase the styles of her songs, not give away what Drizzy has to say of his "wife."
Below, I break down some quick thoughts on the clips, but you should give it a gander yourself.
"I'm the Best" - The title make it sound like Drake should be on this one, but instead we have a bumping beat and some epic self-aggrandizing and cultural touchstones (y'know, like Lindsey Lohan).
"Roman's Revenge" featuring Eminem - "I'm a bad bitch, I'm a c*nt"... makes me wonder how Em's gonna trump.
"Did It On 'Em" - Haaaaard.
"Right Thru Me" -- We already previewed.
"Fly" featuring Rihanna -- will it be "Rated R" or "Loud" Ri? I'm thinking the latter, considering the cute keyboard line. Think more dance.
"Save Me" - Minaj is singing here more than she does the other tracks previewed, with a clip of skittering d'n'b tagged on the end of the preview.
"Moment 4 Life" featuring Drake - Minaj will have to battle hard with Drake as to who the real "heavyweight champ" is here
"Check It Out" featuring will.i.am - Which we generally
abhor heard. The sample may end up being more popular than her Annie Lennox rip for "Your Love."
"Blazin'" featuring Kanye West - Lightning fast raps and a reverb-drenched beat.
"Here I Am" -- Revving engine? Minor key? A fast, sad car?
"Dear Old Nicki" "Jumping off the ledge..." hope she's not referring to recently re-incarcerated T.I. and his feat of talking down a jumper. Or is she talking to herself? Very ode.
"Your Love" The original mixtape version of this needed a serious shine, which it gets here. Just in case you're not sick of it from this summer.
"Last Chance" featuring Natasha Bedingfield - Hey! We actually get a chorus hook!
Check out the English songwriter's take on Jackson C. Frank
Laura Marling's album "I Speak Because I Can" will most certainly reside somehwhere in my top ten for the year. And with her two new covers, her voice alone proves why (more icing than the sweet, sweet cake).
Earlier this week, Jack White's Third Man Records released the 7" "Blue Series" single, which contains a cover of Neil Young's "The Needle and the Damage Done" and Jackson C Frank's "Blues Run the Game." The White Stripes frontman produced the sparse tracks, which each were apparently done in one take.
You can stream those below.
Marling, 20, and another 2010 favorite Mumford & Sons paired up previously for an EP (aside from the latter serving as the backing band for the former on her record) and Glassnote is finally releasing that four-song set in the U.S. Indian folk group Dharohar Project's tracks intermingled with Marling's "Devil's Spoke" and Mumford's "To Darkness." The set's out Dec. 7.
Did you know Jessica Simpson, Indigo Girls and Wilson Phillips have something new for the holidays?
Another year, another slew of Christmas and holiday-themed albums. This year brings the “gift” of internet sensation Susan Boyle for a second time, while TV stars like “American Idol’s” Katharine McPhee, the cast from “Glee” and featured crooners from “The Sing Off” have their own crop.
Live and deluxe albums from Dave Matthews Band, Thirty Seconds to Mars
Loretta Lynn gets made over by Reba. Reba sings Beyonce. Kanye helping out on Thirty Seconds to Mars. Kid Cudi releases sophomore set on Kanye's imprint.
There's a lot of crossover in the new music releases for the week of Nov. 9, including a pair of high-profile compilations: the next installment of the "NOW" hits compilation series and a stellar tribute to Loretta Lynn. Cee Lo is a "Killer"Â while GWAR promises a "Bloody Pit" and Twista threatens a "Storm." How aggro!
Check out the major new albums hitting the shelves this week:
Susan Boyle, â€œThe Giftâ€ (Syco Music/Sony) â€“ The Scottish internet sensation is back and while her first effort last year brought "Silent Night" as its yultide greeting, this sophomore set is chock full of Christmas classics. And remember that debacle with Lou Reed and SuBo's cover of "Perfect Day?" The Velvet Underground legend has gone out of his way to make it up to her, by directing the video for the cover, released this week. HowÂ punk rock.
Cee Lo Green, â€œThe Lady Killerâ€ (Elektra/Atlantic) â€“ Not every song on the set sounds like viral hit "F*ck You," but the soul's all the same. The Gnarls Barkley/Goodie Mob member mixes Motown with '70s soul, hip-hop and dance for this soul set. Read our interview with Cee Lo here.
GWAR, â€œBloody Pit of Horrorâ€ (Metal Blade) â€“ It's hard to believeÂ this vet metal group is from Virginia, and not an actual bloody pit of horror, with this newest effort as a reminder. Get ready for zombies, genocide, t*ts and many slain fans.
Hellogoodbye, â€œWould It Kill You?â€ (Wasted Summer/Rocket Science) â€“ Want starter cash for your album? Fund it yourself. That's what Rocket Science founder Kevin Day did with his dancey-rock band for this sophomore album. "When We First Met"Â is the single currently in rotation from that album; the group may even get an extra charge from touring with 3Oh!3 all this month.
Jamiroquai, â€œRock Dust Light Starâ€ (Mercury) --Â Sorry, America: This album is import-only at this point, but funky "White Knuckle Ride" and forthcoming single "Blue Sky" is enough to throw-down extra for air mail. Jay Kay co-produced the set with Charlie Russell and Brad Spence.
Quincy Jones, â€œQ: Soul Bossa Nostraâ€ (Qwest/Interscope) â€“ Industry legend Quincy Jones' hits and collaborations get makeovers by some big names, like John Legend, Amy Winehouse (!!), Ludacris, Snoop Dogg, Usher, T.I., B.o.B. and David Banner. And, of course, Jones helms the reinterpretations himself. Just as he said, "Everything Must Change."
Kid Cudi, â€œMan on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Ragerâ€ (G.O.O.D. Music/Universal Motown) â€“ Hinted in his first album, Kid Cudi incorporates more rock into his slacker hip-hop tunes. Kanye West helps out on single "Erase Me," a single that got a comedic video interpretation. It's out on the G.O.O.D. imprint, Kanye's label.
Dave Matthews Band, â€œLive in New York Cityâ€ (RCA) â€“ DMB is taking 2011 off in terms of touring, so it seems only right that they treat fans with yet another double-disc concert set.
Reba McEntire, â€œAll the Women I Amâ€ (Valory Music Group) â€“ Country star Reba plays many roles in her life -- mother, wife, business woman, writer, singer -- so she crafted a whole album around the many "women" she must be. Its led by â€œTurn on the Radioâ€ and includes her version of Beyonce's â€œIf I Were a Boy,â€ performed earlier this year unplugged on CMT.
Aaron Neville, â€œI Know Iâ€™ve Been Changedâ€ (EMI Gospel) â€“ Same Neville you know, with the added bonus from producer and very-cool-man Joe Henry.
Twista, â€œThe Perfect Stormâ€ (Get Money Gang Entertainment) -- Twista. Storm. I see what you did there. The lightning-fast Chicago rapper gets a little help from his friends like Chris Brown, Raekwon, T-Pain and Waka Flocka Flame. Rumor had it he was shopping it to G.O.O.D. too. Maybe next time.
Underoath, â€œ"Ã˜ (Disambiguation)" (Solid State/Tooth & Nail) â€“ Christian metalcore may sound a bit obscure, but remember that this troupe nearly took No. 1 on The Billboard 200 before ("Define the Great Line" made it to No. 2 in 2008). Expect Reba and Boyle to get a run for her money to the top next week.
Various, â€œCoal Minerâ€™s Daughter: A Tribute to Loretta Lynnâ€ (Columbia Nashville) -- What do Sheryl Crow, Faith Hill, Alan Jackson, Kid Rock, Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride, Paramore, Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood, Steve Earle, the White Stripes and Lucinda Williams all have in common? They each interpret Loretta Lynn's songs on this new compilation, celebrating 50 years of this trailblazer's country and Americana music.
Various, â€œNOW Thatâ€™s What I Call Music! 36â€ (Capitol) â€“ At this point, there's no escaping these hits compilations, and with artists on the tracklist like Katy Perry, Ke$ha, Maroon 5, Chris Brown, Sugarland and other chart-toppers, expect to see "Now 36" in a Christmas stocking and sale aisle near you this holiday season.
Thirty Seconds to Mars, â€œThis Is War: Deluxe Editionâ€ (Virgin) â€“ This previously released album gets a makeover with a DVD of music videos and the CD with three bonus tracks, including a Kanye West collab on â€œHurricane.â€
Is this supposed to get us excited for the new album?
Does Michael Jackson's new song "Breaking News" make you want to scream?
Media and character assassination weren't unusual topics for the late pop star, who made his frustrations known in hits like "Scream" and "Leave Me Alone." But the newly released song -- now streaming for the week on michaeljackson.com -- seems to be going a step further down the victim path. The King of Pop refers to himself in the third person, claiming that everyone wants "a piece of Michael Jackson," as it bops along to a New Jack Swing beat. Michael Jackson sounds as obsessed with Michael Jackson as everyone else.
The term "breaking" in "Breaking News" has him put in a vulnerable state, of his psyche and tolerance becoming broken down. But it's more the song itself that's broken.
The lyrics leave the listener a little dry, like weak punches at a straw man, as synthetic horns and strings sections artificially amp up the melody. It's chicken and egg with what could be a Justin Timberlake track from the early 2000s, though according to Sony/Epic, the song was recorded around 2007. The vocals -- especially during the verses -- sound like a badly compressed mp3 rip from a large file, the notes all watery and overly tinkered-with. The chorus is catchy but ultimately empty, given that the songs has two dynamics: play at 10, and stop. A couple nostalgic "whooos" are thrown in for good measure, like a stamp of approval, although something tells me that Jackson would have never given it the nod.
His family feels the same way. Jackson's father Joe's attorneys have released a statement indicated that the estate doesn't feel the song is a completed work and that its release would have gone against the singer's wishes were he still alive. Mom Katherine is reportedly outraged. Fans are claiming online that the vocals don't sound like Jackson's at all. Some feel that there shouldn't be the new album -- "Michael," out Dec. 14 -- at all.
However, Epic says the label has "complete confidence in the results of our extensive research, as well as the accounts of those who were in the studio with Michael, that the vocals on the new album are his own."
That all being said, if the Jackson family didn't think posthumous releases would demean his legendary body of work, then they should have either known fully what tracks they were sitting on or not entered into the $200 deal with Sony at all. "This Is It" feature the same incomplete state of Jackson's abilities, where were the complaints then? "Confidence" seems to be a farce at this point.
What the hell is going on here
Anna Kendrick has skills. I mean, beyond acting skills. She has the pow-power of sending cosmic energy into mens' minds and capturing their souls in a different dimension, with the help of her thuggy friends.
Wait, what was that? Nonsense? Yeah
Just watch the video for LCD Soundsystem's "Pow Pow," which means those in debt to the beautiful "Up in the Air" actress suffer ridiculous special effects. It's a strange contrast to the party nature of the track, culled from James Murphy and Co.'s latest "This Is Happening."
As previously reported, the mysterious clip was directed by action writer David Ayers ("Training Day") as part of the new venture between Mean Magazine and MTV.
It may have fewer homicidal pandas in it, compared to "Drunk Girls," but it has its own charms.
What do you think of the clip?
Rapper to release newly dubbed 'No Mercy' from the clink; Chris Brown gets back up after 'they' push you down
As Lil Wayne finally makes his way out of Rikers, T.I. heads back to the clink this week, and has a few announcements on his way in.
The rapper and producer returns to prison after violating his probation earlier this year and thus is no longer "Uncaged," the title he previously gave his forthcoming new album. The set has been re-dubbed "No Mercy" and now will officially be released on Dec. 7, as he serves out his 11-months in California.
As his note of departure, T.I. has unleashed a new track and video, for "Get Back Up" featuring Chris Brown.
It's less a matter of supporting or opposing when I say this, but more a matter of taste: it's just wrong to have Chris Brown singing the lines "When they push you down you got to get back up." It's not cute or ironic, coming from the lips of a convicted felon who beat up his girlfriend. But the tone of the track has Brown casting Brown as a victim. And hell, same with T.I.
T.I. and Brown call for no "judgement" -- of their crimes, especially after they've asked forgiveness from fans and media -- but as consumers of pop music, we can judge their reactions within their artistic work . Thus, "Get Back Up," as a pop tune is only sort of catchy but weighed down by the hopeful message mixed in with a defensive one and, given the context of these performers' perspectives, comes off as cheap and reactive. Chris Brown's voice still sounds tops, but T.I.'s rhymes are clearly curbed.
No matter. He's had a slew of hot records that came out all summer, including my favorite "Ya Hear Me." From his interviews, it sounds like T.I. is willing and prepared to weather another few months in prison, even if this album release suffers for it. There's no delaying that which wants to be uncaged.
Why do I have "Knock You Down" in my head now?
What do you think of "Get Back Up"?
Party-starter pop star produces one of her most eye-raising music videos yet
Are you a dirty little freak? Dance like one? Drink like one? Sleep with one?
Pink has corralled all her favorite outcasts and her least-favorite "norms" into one hilarious and eye-raising clip for "Raise Your Glass," the new single culled from her forthcoming "Greatest Hits... So Far!!!"
Starring as narrator Rosie the Riveter, she immediately employs gender politicking, directly before she slays a matador the same way he slays his horned combatant. But then she turns around to "milk" women in the same manner as America's corporate farms in order to feed a calf .
There's a handful of approaches she and director Dave Myers take on marginalized peoples (and animals), which highlight the single itself, with its Max Martin-produced studio flubs and unscripted asides that make this party track perfect in its imperfections.
From Sumo wrestling Uncle Sam, to fist-bumping gangsters from a chopper bike, to finding holiness through sex with religious figures, to literally flattening two-dimensional high school girls appalled at that second corn dog, Pink claims the underdogs as her clan as the leader of the clan. She doesn't quite illustrate how she earns the distinction except that she can point to a decade-long history of edgy performances and willingness to become a chameleon for each.
Interestingly, it comes in the same season that Kanye West told us to raise our glasses for the "douchebags," "assholes," "scumbags" and "jerkoffs," an anthem like Pink's that celebrates more who we are less than what we aren't. But, y'know, with more sarcasm and admiration.
Too, it comes a week after Katy Perry made her own statement about being yourself, also featuring a girl struggling with her body image. It's sort of like Freak Flag Flying vs. "Firework," with Pink (and Tony Hawk) getting down and ugly while Katy Perry just keeps her eyes to the sky. Do you think they're raising their glasses the same way?
The clip certainly increased my appreciation of the song, while it gives my eyes a lot to look at and applaud. She may not pull off the "nerd" look the same way Taylor Swift does in "You Belong to Me," but those dance moves are right on track.
"Greatest Hits... So Far!!!" is out Nov. 16.