Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Queen B vs Lady G

The difference between Beyonce and Lady Gaga are as numerous as their combined downloads but Mrs. Carter actually took at page out of the House of Ga's playbook.  Keep them guessing.  How did some random Italian-American  girl from NewYawk become so influential.  Lady Gaga immersed her music into any and everyplace that music permeates and created a POP style.  Predictably her songs push her vocals and out to the breaking point. Where we all sang along with Edge of Glory from the very first time we heard the chorus, ARTPOP is less singable and more laughable.  We do have to admit that part of the EDM shift in American Pop music hinged in large part to the self promotion and shock marketing of Madame Gaga.  I'm on the edge of glory is fun to sing in a crowd, do what you want with my body is lurid with no substance.  Where ARTPOP fails is in production the songs themselves are pure sacc
harine.  ARTPOP redone with an artistic approach methodical, contextual, and experiential would have been much more effective.  You've got our attention, now say something.

Mrs. Carter on the other hand had the exact opposite problem.  Beyonce's eponymous album, tells the story of a Michael Jackson style tragedy.  Beyonce exposes with more detail then expected what it is like to be her, to be both Eve and Mary.  She expresses how it feels to be a sex object haunted and tortured to be pretty and silent.  With audio clips from her past we hear her how her entire life was on stage and how identity cast shades and shadows of doubt when placed under the bright colored lights.

So in essence Beyonce is not artist.  She's work of art.  She was sculpted, chiseled and refined into pop
and hip-hop culture personified. Where Beyonce is the incarnation of Pop, Lady Gaga is trying still glue together a macaroni project of an album.

In The words of Lily Allen's scathing song about reviewers and bloggers placing female artists at odds with one another.
"We’re all watching Gaga, L-O-L,oh, ha ha
Dying for the art, so really she’s a martyr
The second best will never cut it for the divas"

Pretty Lights - Lost and Found (Odeza Remix)

Pretty Lights
The electric remix, consists of mid-fast beats that catches your attention early in the song. The addition of catchy drops and breaks also adds flare. Odesza is a duo that started two years ago that has released a couple of albums.The instruments used in the beginning of the song makes the image of large, fancy chandeliers show up, then quickly transitions to the slow-motion club lights.The slow beat of the song makes it feel like you are in your own world, moving around like a zombie.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Water Fountain by TUnE YArDs

The song Water Fountain brings a whole new level of interesting to the playing field by combining pop with tribal bongos and a touch of what seems like 80's disco. Merrill Garbus the vocalist (pictured above) delivers the quirkiness into the song. The vocals sound like they are being played through an old gramophone along with the overpowered bass. It remind me of memories when I played Ring Around the Rosie as the song sounds innocent yet the lyrics are a little sinister and macabre.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Johnny Foreigner - Le Sigh

Number 59 on the Birp April 2014 Indie playlist, Le Sigh, starts out with a dissonant sorrow guitar. This will catch most people off guard as it quickly transitions into a swift rock song. The lyrics themselves are unique because of the story that they convey. The band has made songs with strange lyrics before but this one is especially unique, because it is talking about a riot at a concert in Tokyo. Then it moves on to talk about the people in the riot, that were saying that they sound the same as every other band they have heard. Quickly switching between the two vocalists while maintaining the flow of the song, and the dissonant resonance of their voices complement the guitar. The song sounds like it came straight out of a rock band top 25 songs of all time. 

Background Info:
 Johnny Foreigner has performed over 360 concerts around the world, but most were based in the UK. Johnny Foreigner has been a band for around 8 years now, and 2006 was the year when they had their first concert, at the "Dublin Castle" in the UK. 

Sam Smith - Stay With Me Review

Sam Smith - Stay With Me

      Sam Smith has blasted on to the music scene in the past year. Born in the UK, he started studying and playing music at a very young age. He would eventually become an alumnus of Youth Music Theater UK and study under jazz pianist and vocalists Joanna Eden. He burst on to the music stage by featuring on a track called "la la la" by Naughty Boy and would get his first number one single with this song. He would go on to win the 2014 BRIT Critics Choice Award and the BBC's Sound of 2014 Poll. His new hit single "Stay with Me" emphasis his beautiful voice and the lovely piano and choir that accompany him in the background of the song. The song tells a story of the kind that every man and woman has gone through, a breakup. The song brings listeners to a point in a breakup where they desperately want the person to stay. It personally brings me back to my bedroom with a box full of tissues and thoughts of a previous girlfriend. While this song is sad, Mr. Smith's angelic voice is like light clouds on the ear and combining with the choir give the impression of something heavenly. Sam Smith's voice alone is enough to bring anyone listening into a trance and certainly get the song stuck in the head of any listener. This touted youth certainly has the stuff to be a great artist and the song "Stay with Me" is a great indicator of what is to come from Mr.Smith.
60. Like You Used To - Kidnap Kid

The fast, melodic style made the song very enjoyable and exciting. The techno/alternative rock genre made me feel hyper. The song refelected easy to decipher words and quick change in beats, which kept the song upbeat and exciting. The appealing song has been because of the mixture of genre from rock/vocals to techno, which were combined. Like You Used To made me feel happy and exotic as I listened to the constant changes and smooth, understandable lyrics. I could smell a cool breeze of air and collaboration of sweat from different bodies, as if I was at a concert. I could taste sugar as this song reminded me of the happiness evoked as I eat any sweets.

 10. Breaking The Angle- Against the Tide

Breaking The Angle Against The Tide used a fast melody.  The song used a dark timbre. The very first part of the song sounded like an alarm clock ticking. I picture the rock band using an ancient harp and violins in their song along with electric guitars. The band also used a fast drum beat. It made me think of a rock and roll band playing music at the beach.   It also included a simple guitar melody with a super fast base.

 90. Stranger in Moscow- Tame Impala

This song is a cover of Michael Jackson’s song of the same name (Stranger in Moscow) and actually sounds very similar to it. The style is slow-paced, just like the original. The genre would fit either in synthpop or electropop. The instrumentals had almost a 80’s or 90’s synth feel with the relaxed and slow beat. This too would also point to the fact that the original song was made in 1995. The vocals sound similar to John Lennon’s, though they should've aimed for Michael Jackson. The beginning instrumentals encouraged curiosity and can sort of help you picture a stranger walking down the streets of Moscow. Tame Impala covered this song well, sounding very much like the original, even though the original is almost ten years old. It is no surprise they decided to cover this, as they have covered other artists such as DJ Blue Boy and Outkast. My experience that could relate to this was when I was walking around at an University, seeing a lot of college students studying and running around and I felt like I was a stranger, being a lot younger than all of these people.

31. Diamond Days- HABITATS
The British band HABITATS started in 2013.  They wrote Diamond Days, a rock-alternative song. It has a fast and upbeat style and creates an urge to dance in the listener.  For some reason, it reminds me of a long road trip on a cloudless day.  The lyrics are hard to understand at times, but when they aren't, they complement the instrumental perfectly.  The upbeat theme remains constant through the song; there are no sudden changes or sketchy transitions.  Anyone who listens to this song is sure to have a "diamond day" of their own.

Cosmo Sheldrake, The Moss

Cosmo Sheldrake comes from a very artistic background. He plays multiple instruments and he composed multiple pieces that have gone into films. His almost spoken lyrics perfectly complement the beat of the songs.  The Moss manages to create a crisp, clean beat while retaining a sense of swelling and releasing in both the instruments and lyrics. The large amount of instrumental diversity in the song, creates a layered effect that complements the simpler singing style. This reminds me of the month of april turning into summer time, it makes me think of a depression with a resolve at the end of it.