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Friday, May 30, 2014

Studio Killers - Grande Finale

"I will clean my act up"

I didn't expect Studio Killers to come back so soon, especially given how long it took for them to put out a debut album. I'm not complaining, mind you! However, I haven't been able to fully fall in love with this new single like I did with their older songs. I don't know what it is. I guess everything, from the lyrics to the production to the melody, seems a lot more mainstream--like they've softened the edges that made them so exciting in the first place. But the chorus still soars and the vocals remain indelible. It's hard to complain too much when we've got a group this awesome. Even if they never give us something as fabulous as Jenny or Eros & Apollo again, they've already established a great legacy. And hopefully that second album won't take as long to complete as the first!

Grande Finale by Studio Killers on Grooveshark

(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. Buy the single here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.


Thursday, May 29, 2014

Kylie Minogue - Crystallize

"You only have to turn my way"

Supposedly, Kylie Minogue has done a lot of collaboration with Jake Shears and Babydaddy from Scissor Sisters, and I'm so irritated that they can't just get that music out there. Instead of releasing a full collaborative album, the tracks come out in unexpected drips and drops. And, they've all been fantastic so far. Crystallize is the latest. It's a charity single (so, not on the underwhelming new album, then), but it's got a music video and everything so that makes it official. And, honestly, I probably like it more than any of the singles released by Minogue so far this year. Co-written with Babydaddy, it's got that effortless disco sheen that characterizes most of Kylie's SS collaborations. For example, it fits in perfectly with the impossibly brilliant I Believe In You while also sounding a lot like The One (which was not a SS collab). Honestly, I much prefer this timeless, melodic Minogue over the trend-chasing, doin'-what-the-young-ones-are-doin' popstar she sometimes becomes.

(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. Buy the album here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Austin Mahone - Secret

"Everybody's got a secret"

I've gotta admit, I am really impressed by the pop star that Austin Mahone is turning into. After a string of excellent singles, I was keeping my fingers crossed that he'd follow a similar path with his EP. And he did! Listening to this EP (well, album if you tack the previous tracks on) is like listening to a modern version of a Backstreet Boys or Nsync album. The producers (RedOne, in particular) have stuck with a turn of the millennium sound that's just old enough now that it's nostalgic.Yes, readers, What About Love was not a fluke. It's only one of the many fantastic 2000-style pop songs in Mahone's discography. In fact, adding it on as the second track of the album works wonders. The flow between 'Til I Find You and What About Love is tremendous. Secret is another song I want to highlight, mostly because it sounds like Everybody (Backstreet's Back), which is a great thing. Also check out The One I've Waited For for a spot on I Want It That Way pastiche.

In summary:
What About Love = Bye Bye Bye?
Secret = Everybody (Backstreet's Back)?
The One I've Waited For = I Want It That Way?
Can't Fight This Love - Larger Than Life?

Secret by Austin Mahone on Grooveshark

(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. Buy the EP here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Alvaro Estrella - All In My Head

"Maybe it's all in my head"

Now this is a nice surprise! I liked Bedroom, Alvaro's Melodifestivalen entry earlier this year, though it lacked somewhat in the live performance aspect and didn't have a lot of staying power. Honestly, I didn't really expect him to come back with another single, especially one so awesome. It all starts out a little Jedward, with those clipped verses, but that chorus is one of the absolute best I've heard all year. It's so simple, yet so unbelievably effective. To my ears, it has this slightly gypsy-inspired sound, augmented into a huge singalong that sounds very European but also very accessible. God, I love it. Perfect for the summer months. If he ends up releasing an album, I need it to sound like this.

All In My Head by Alvaro Estrella on Grooveshark

(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. Buy the single here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.


Monday, May 26, 2014

Kliff - Maija

I've been waiting for this song/music video to premiere. Finnish band Kliff's debut single, Mun Jopo, has unexpectedly become one of my favorite singles of the year so far. When the guys posted a clip of Maija a few weeks ago, I couldn't wait to hear the full thing. There's something so addictive about this Euro-dance-hip-hop-dubstep-boyband sound they've got going. I don't think I'll become quite as obsessed as I was with Mun Jopo, but you can't deny the awesomeness and immediacy of the chorus here. Honestly, Finland is killing it right now when it comes to pop music. It's been one of the most pleasant surprises for me over the past couple of years. They've got some great songwriters and producers in their corner of Scandinavia. Maybe one day they'll give Sweden a run for their money?

(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. Buy the single here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.