Monthly Archives: September 2015

A review and a retraction – Disclosure – Magnets ft. Lorde (music video)

In the description for this blog it says that if you’re reading something more than a week after I published it, then I’ve probably changed my opinion. I find this an important message to get across because 1) music is so multidimensional, a song you heard a year ago and hated, you could love if you listened to now because of an evolved music taste, new experiences etc. Also, 2) one of my biggest philosophies in life is to always continue learning and never be afraid to be wrong. Keeping this in mind, I’d like to retract most of what I said yesterday in my review of Disclosure’s new Lorde assisted single, “Magnets”. After seeing their vision for the song in the music video released today, a lot of things fell into place that just weren’t meshing in my mind after my initial listen of the song. Continue reading

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REVIEW: Janet Jackson – Burn It Up ft. Missy Elliott

In a world of immediate consumption where if a song doesn’t hit straight away people will often dismiss it altogether, a low-key banger from a veteran of the dance music scene, Janet jackson, is more than welcome.

Her new song, “Burn It Up”, featuring Missy Elliott went right over my head first listen. I couldn’t understand a single word Janet was saying, Missy seemed to just be shouting random words into the void, and there didn’t seem to be a “wow” moment that had me throwing my credit card at Janet and begging her to take my money.

After putting it on repeat though the song began to form much better in my head, all of the elements that at first had sounded like a whole lot of noise and not much else came together to create a much more cohesive whole. The song is introduced by a crunk sounding beat which Missy raps over to announce to the world that Janet is back. Missy’s verse even after a few listens is still odd, she meows, and oohs, and boom, boom, pows and offers nothing of substance. However, this is a dance track, it’s not meant to be substantial and Missy does her job of creating an impact that peaks listeners interest in the song in a world where most top 40 listeners might know Janet’s name, but not her extensive back catalogue. Continue reading

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REVIEW: Magnets ft. Lorde – Disclosure.

The new Disclosure song, which features New Zealand songstress Lorde, has finally dropped and I’ve spent the last little playing it alongside Lorde’s own music trying to figure out why it doesn’t hit as hard as I feel a collaboration between the two young acts should.

When listening to Lorde’s own music it’s like Lorde’s voice is moving in and out of a fog. It envelops her and just as often she envelops it, the combination of the dark synths and punching percussion compliment her gravelly voice creating a space of intimate engagement between her and the listener.

In the Disclosure-Lorde collab “Magnets”, Lorde’s voice doesn’t feel anywhere near as immediate. It’s sanded down and while the gravel is still there it doesn’t saturate the music, it sits on top of it and glides along at the same pace without any of the usual engagement expected from Lorde. Continue reading

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REVIEW: Little Mix – Love Me Like You

The last time I remember hearing a 50s/60s doo-wop sound in a pop artists music was over a year ago now when Meghan Trainor forced herself upon the world with “All About That Bass” and it’s subsequent EP and full length album. Unfortunately her cutesie doo-wop sound was marred by an onslaught of skinny shaming and ignorant comments about eating disorders. However, Little Mix has more than made up for Meghan’s failings with their adorable new single “Love Me Like You” from their upcoming album “Get Weird”. Continue reading

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David Cook Then and Now: Light On vs. Criminals.

Being a massive fan of David Cook’s debut self titled album, but not really paying as much attention as I would have liked to any of the music he’s released between then and now, I thought it might be interesting to compare the lead single from his initial output, “Light On”, and compare it to “Criminals” from his latest album “Digital Vein” the music video of which has just been released.

The first thing that hit me listening to the two songs one after another is how much urgency there is in Light On. In the beginning of the song there is only a a few seconds of instrumental before David’s voice comes in, intense and passionate. There’s little room for subtlety – David had recently won American Idol and couldn’t allow any space for people to become bored or forget who he was. “Light On” seems to have been written to instantly grab your attention and hold it for the duration of the entire song, building to even greater heights as it moves along. Continue reading

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