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10Songs_15May

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Years & Years, Diplo, Jamie xx And More

10Songs_15May

Here’s a collection of tracks we loved this week. Tick them off your list so you can move onto next week confident that you took everything from this week that you possibly could.

Years & Years
Shine

British trio Years & Years had a mighty task following up their UK chart-topping single King, but it seems as though they’ve done it with ease. Shine takes a slightly different pace to King but it’s no less euphoric with frontman Olly Alexander’s vocals once again sounding flawless. At this point it’s hard to see the band making any missteps on their forthcoming album Communion which is due out 10th July.

Elliphant
Love Me Badder

Swedish songstress Elliphant has been churning out perfect pop for the better part of two years but it finally feels like she’s hit her stride. Last year’s MO-featuring One More was one of our favourite tracks of 2014 and this latest one Love Me Badder is just an impressive. It’s a big-sounding, dancehall-sampling ballad with a chorus made for the masses. Elliphant’s voice is smokey and full-bodied and tackles the huge melody without any problems at all. Her Splendour In The Grass shows should make her plenty of fans here.

Novelist
Ignore And Wot

I’ve spent the better part of the week trawling through grime history for a piece that is about to go up on the site. It feels like an appropriate reward that at the end of it all a new Novelist track emerged. Ignorant And Wot popped up on Novelist’s soundcloud and it’s a corker. It’s a ready-made anthem with a simple but hard-hitting hook bookended by fast-flowing verses. It’s baffling that this guy is only 18 years-old.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/novelist/ignorant-and-wot[/soundcloud]

Anne-Marie
Karate

Rudimental collaborators have had a pretty good track record when it comes to moving onto their own solo careers. John Newman had a number single on his own, Ella Eyre is making waves with her solo tracks and Sinead Harnett looks set to make a big splash with She Ain’t Me. Anne-Marie has toured with Rudimental as their live vocalist but looks to be more than ready to do it alone. Karate, her debut single, is a little more left-field than what the aforementioned names are making. It’s experimental pop with a strong melody and airy vocals. It may not be a number one single in waiting but it doesn’t feel like that was the goal.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/iamannemarie/anne-marie-karate[/soundcloud]

Rihanna
Bitch Better Have My Money (Diplo & Grandtheft Remix)

For one of Rihanna‘s less-successful tracks Bitch Better Have My Money keeps popping up everywhere. Last week we got the EDM remix courtesy of R3hab and now we have a remix firmly in the trap-world courtesy of Diplo and Grandtheft. It’s far more true to the original than any other remixes we’ve heard but it does give it an extra dose of oomph with abrasive horns and hard-hitting beats. It’s definitely one of Rihanna’s more curious singles but it really does just keep getting better. Diplo and Grandtheft have helped that cause.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/diplo/bitch-better-have-my-money-diplo-grandtheft-remixofficial-you-losers[/soundcloud]

Charli XCX
Doing It (Carmada Remix)

It’s criminal that the original of this song didn’t reach number one for 40 weeks on the Australian charts but Aussie duo Carmada may have the answer to ensuring its resurrection. They have been on the Groovin The Moo festival trail with Charli XCX playing their Doing It remix along the way but now we finally have the proper, final product. They keep that stellar chorus and around it build a world of flickering synths, high-pitched vocal samples and mournful keys. We reckon Charli would approve of this one.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/carmadamusic/charli-xcx-doing-it-carmada-remix[/soundcloud]

Rita Ora
Poison

Rita Ora really doesn’t get enough credit. She’s currently trying to crack America and in that market she looks like an underdog but in the UK she’s had four number one singles. That’s damn impressive. Poison is the latest tune to be taken from her forthcoming second album and it’s another perfect piece of pop. “I’ve picked my poison and it’s you,” she sings over a hard-hitting beat that only eases up for the euphoric verses. It may not be as immediate as I Will Never Let You Down but after two days of listening we can guarantee it’s a grower. Listen here.

Jamie xx
I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times) (Feat. Young Thug)

Popcaan and Young Thug may not be the most likely suspects for a Jamie xx track but goddam does it work. This version that leaked this week only features Young Thug but you can see where Popcaan would happily slot in on the album version. While the feature-vocalists may suggest otherwise, it actually doesn’t sound that far out of Jamie xx’s world. There are still steel drums, warm bassy synths and a soulful throwback sample (of The Persuasions’ Good Times. Like Gosh and Loud Places, it’s uplifting music, which seems to be a theme of In Colour when you also consider the multi-coloured album art.[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/looie31007/young-thug-ft-jamie-xx-i-know-theres-gonna-be-good-times[/soundcloud]Laura Clock
Fade

Robyn is the queen of mournful dancefloor stompers but in her absence there are plenty of other artists keeping the space warm. One of them is Laura Clock (previously known as Butterclock) who’s gearing up to release her debut EP under the new moniker, Baby – Part One. Fade is the first single from that and it’s a dancehall-inspired track made for the latest point of the night when the dancefloor is empty enough to really cut loose – Dirty Dancing style.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/goldenbruise/fade/[/soundcloud]

Billie Black
Going Under

We’ve been waiting a while for new material from London singer Billie Black but now we finally have it. Black has returned with a killer new hairstyle and a sleek sound that recalls Sade and Jessie Ware. Going Under is her most confident sounding track yet with the latter half exploding into a clean slice of electronica that immediately sounds like London. The track is taken from her forthcoming Teach Me EP which is due to drop 25th May.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/billie-black/billie-black-going-under[/soundcloud]

 

 

 

 

carmada

Carmada Release ‘Doing It’ Remix

LDRU & Yahtzel, better known these days as Carmada, have just released the official version of their remix of Charli XCX’s ‘Doing It’. The boys have been touring with the British pop princess as part of Groovin’ The Moo over the past few weeks and this track has been a huge part of their live set. They also performed it live as a collab for Triple J’s Like A Version, and have now finally chucked it up on their Soundcloud.

10Songs_8May_2

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Britney Spears, Tame Impala, Shamir + More

10Songs_8May_2

While we started the week with The Script performing at the Logies and celebrities somewhat distastefully referencing Chinese fashion at the Met Gala, things seem to have only gotten better. These 10 songs could be the best collection we’ve had this year to date and it manages to put Britney Spears in the same article as Tame Impala, so there are wins all round.

Miguel
Coffee (Fucking)

This week it came out that Miguel was getting sued for that incident in which he kicked someone in the head a few years ago accidentally but the release of his new track Coffee (Fucking) still managed to outshine that news. The track is rumoured to be the first taste of his third LP Wild Heart and is an extended version of the same track that originally appeared on his late 2014 EP. This version features an added verse from Wale but it’s still all about Miguel’s ridiculously smooth vocal. This track stacks up to anything that was on his last record Kaleidoscope Heart and just has us hanging out for the next track.

Tame Impala
Eventually

Eventually is the forth song we’ve heard off Tame Impala‘s forthcoming third album Currents and we tend to agree with frontman Kevin Parker that it’s one of the best. Apparently he dreamt it up on the back of a scooter and it’s essentially a break-up song. It’s not your standard break-up tale filled with bitterness though, it’s a sweet tune about moving on so both parties can be happier. That sentiment is delivered in the form of a sprawling, synth-driven chorus which elevate’s Parker’s voice up amongst the angels. Stunning stuff once again from the Perth boys.

Hot Chip
Why Make Sense?

What better time to release a song titled Why Make Sense? than on the same day as a particularly convoluted British election. This is the title track off Hot Chip‘s forthcoming sixth album and it also closes the album. To listen to it you have to head to an unbelievably confusing British election news website because, well, why make sense? It’s one of Hot Chip’s more organic tracks, driven by a crushing drum-line that’s complimented by flighty synths.

Head here to listen to the new track.

Shamir
Darker

We’re used to hearing toy-like, colourful tunes from Las Vegas native Shamir but this week he slowed it down, delivering the soaring ballad Darker. It’s from his debut album Ratchet which drops next week and showcases the singer really opening his lungs and letting it rip. “It doesn’t get darker, unless you expect it to,” Shamir sings being both melancholic and uplifting at the same time. It’s good to hear another different side of Shamir, who’s becoming an impressively multi-faceted artist.

Giorgio Moroder
Diamonds (Feat. Charli XCX)

Giorgio Moroder mostly released tunes when piracy wasn’t an issue but he’s really having a shit of a time keeping the tunes from his forthcoming record Deja Vu under-wraps. Diamonds his track with Charli XCX leaked this week and while it’s bad news for Moroder, it’s fantastic news for us as we get to hear another heavenly slice of disco-perfection with added XCX. It encapsulates Charli’s rebellious energy and Moroder’s disco-tinged melodies perfectly and has the potential to be his big hit from the album. Apparenly Charli wrote it when she was 15 years-old, on the same trip that she wrote Icona Pop’s mega-hit I Love It on. Charli was asked how she felt about the track leaking and she responded, “I don’t care that much.” Great, let’s dig in then.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ep2pPd9K7HM

Little Boots
Better In The Morning

British songstress Little Boots‘ tracks have often found a home in the clubs but on her new tracks she’s telling everbody that things are Better In The Morning. It’s the first single to come from her forthcoming album Working Girl and it’s produced by Ariel Rechtshaid who’s basically penned and produced every alternative hit in the past few years (HAIM, Sky Ferreira, Tobias Jesso Jr.). Boots’ sweet voice sits atop a perky instrumental that stands up on its own but is also begging for some killer remixes. It’s a quirky pop song but its has a subtle charm to it that begs for repeat listens. We’re excited to see where Little Boots is going with this LP.

Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea
Pretty Girls

This song has seemingly been teased for longer than Britney‘s marriage with K-Fed lasted but it’s finally here and it was probably worth the wait. Over the week Pretty Girls shot up the iTunes charts, particularly in the US and looks like it’s about to give Britney her biggest hit in a little while. And that’s because Britney sounds the most relevant she has in about five years. We could take or leave Iggy‘s parts but Britney actually really kills it alongside a hip-hop beat. This coupled with her track with Giorgio Morder, Tom’s Diner, mean that 2015 is shaping up to be a pretty stellar year for the fallen popstar.

BOSCO
Boy

’90s RnB has probably been the most referenced genre this year and newcomer BOSCO is further proof of that. She’s just been signed to Fool’s Gold and this track Boy places her in the same spectrum as artists like Kelela and Tink. It’s an incredibly confident, slinky track that she owns with her breathy harmonies. It may be an overcrowded genre but that just makes it easier to truly spot brilliance when it comes along and it looks like Fool’s Gold have literally struck gold with BOSCO. Her Boy EP is out soon.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/foolsgoldrecs/bosco-boy-feat-jace[/soundcloud]

Nocturnal Sunshine
Believe (Feat. Chelou)

Maya Jane Cole, acting under her alter-ego Nocturnal Sunshine, is gearing up to release her LP on 22 May. Believe is the second single from that album and it features the vocal talents of up-and-coming singer Chelou. Cole is working on Chelou’s debut album so it’s fitting that he return the favour on one of her tracks. Believe is a dark, woozy track haunted by circling vocal samples over mind-bending keys. It’s shows yet another dimension to Cole and has us hanging out for the record.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/nocturnalsunshinemusic/believe-ft-chelou[/soundcloud]

Hopium
Right Now

People have been mumbling Hopium‘s name under their breath for a while now but this should be the track that has them shouting. Right Now is the third release from the Melbourne duo and is arguably their best to date. It’s a silken, angular track that’s immaculately produced. What’s even better is that the video shows a band that really knows their aesthetic and how to achieve it visually as well as sonically. Take these guys overseas stat, they’re about to blow up.

Groovin

REVIEW + PICS: Groovin The Moo | Canberra

Groovin

In a climate where many of its fellow festival are dropping like flies, Groovin The Moo is an unexpected success story. Now in its tenth year, the festival has continually grown, delivering a better and better lineup each year. This year it has sold out four of its six legs and while Canberra was one of those that didn’t sell out, the grounds were packed with excitable punters ready to dip into all the goodness the lineup had to offer.

A$AP Ferg perhaps looked a little out-of-place on the lineup as the only international hip-hop act but it didn’t stop him from tearing the join apart. The trap-king had the Moolin Rouge pumping very early in the day, making a small but extremely hyped crowd very sweaty. While his set was mostly light-hearted he used part of it to address the situation in Baltimore saying, “I don’t give a fuck if you’re black, I don’t give a fuck if you’re white, I don’t give a fuck if you’re Puerto Rican or Asian.” It was good to see that behind some of his ridiculous lyrics, there was someone very willing to use his status for messages of equality.

The Preatures are worlds away from A$AP Ferg but both of them are masters of swelling the crowd into hysteria. With their gritty, Aussie rock aesthetic Isabella Manfredi and co delivered a stellar set of tracks mostly taken from their debut album Blue Planet Eyes. The band is tight but Manfredi is a phenomenal front woman with her effortless charisma recalling images of the late Chrissy Amphlett. In songs like Better Than It Ever Could Be  she adopts a vocal growl but then can switch it to a sweet trill on something like Somebody’s Talking. As she emptied a bottle of water on her head it was clear that Manfredi intended to leave everything she had on that stage. Closer Is This How You Feel? is still the crowd favourite but there are plenty others, like the funk-driven Cruel, which are just as pleasing.

As the sun began to set on what had been a rare warm day in Canberra, 11 year-old native Black Summer took to the stage for his first DJ set, warming up for Carmada. triple j Unerathed may be hyping him up because it’s a great story but there’s no doubt the kid has serious talent and will be a force to be reckoned when he’s the age of most of the producers on the bill. Around the same time we also spotted a kid wearing an RL Grime hat, confirming that kids these days have traded totem tennis for electronic music.

S/O to the coolest kid on the field at @groovinthemoo Canberra. @rlgrime @groovinthemoo

A post shared by the interns (@theinterns_net) on

Carmada had a tough job ahead of them to outshine Black Summer but they’re seasoned pros at this now and looked more comfortable than ever as a duo. They delivered essentially a party set with throbbing bass filling every corner of the Moolin Rouge. Their latest single On Fire received the biggest wrap from the crowd sans Charli XCX. That was until they dropped Blink 182’s What’s My Age Again and awoke the frustrated teen in all of us.

Charli XCX was probably one of the biggest drawcards on the bill. With plenty of hits and a number of all-star collabs in the bag, she’s perfectly tread a line between cult-hero and mainstream popstar. They’re the kind of acts that go down the best at festivals and Charli took to the stage, dropped a bag of hits on the crowd and left them in a sweaty mess. To go into a little more detail, Charli stalked the stage in a leopard print onesie and moved through everything from the punk-inspired Break The Rules to Icona Pop’s I Love It which she wrote herself. She said little more in between songs than the titles but she didn’t need to. She’s naturally charismatic with the charm of Josie (& the Pussycats) combined with rough and tumble of Joan Jett. It was interesting to see that Boom Clap was the one that really resonated with the crowd given that tracks like Gold Coins and Doing It have far more raucous energy. Her solo version of Fancy proved she was there to have a good time and give the crowd exactly what they wanted even without I.G.G.Y.

Canberra gets mighty cold when the sun disappears but the Moolin Rouge became suddenly steamy when Broods took to the stage. In 12 months the brother and sister duo from New Zealand have gone from shy newbies to confident highlights with frontwoman Georgia Nott killing it in a Rita Ora Adidas getup. Their mild debut album Evergreen is given a total facelift live with bolstered percussion and vocals with added grunt. Bridges blew the roof off with its dazzling electronic chorus while Everytime was aggressive and forceful. Nott’s smooth dance moves proved she’d successfully transformed into a fully-fledged popstar. The way she handled the chorus of closer Mother & Father showed she was perfectly capable of pushing things more and more. The crowd adored them and it really felt as if Broods had fully realised the capabilities of their music in the live arena.

Following Broods, Phil Jamieson warmed-up the crowd with party hits but nothing could have prepared them for the onslaught that was RL Grime. Word has spread around the country over the last few weeks about just how special his shows have been and he showed Canberra exactly why. The WeDidIt producer held nothing back as he absolutely tore the joint apart with pulsating track after pulsating track hitting every accent with a sharp hook and moving towards climaxes as if he had an army to conquer. He dropped everything from Drake to Kanye but nothing could beat the moment that Core created. The track, which has become a staple of many DJ sets over the past year, created a death circle and sweaty bodies moshing from the front row to the back. From there things just got crazier and crazier with the crowd descending into anarchy (safe, might we add). It had the aggression of a rock show and he orchestrated the whole thing masterfully. Just phenomenal.

RL Grime was always going to be an almost impossible act to beat, but leave it to local heroes Flight Facilities and their ability to make a whole crowd swoon to do it. They occupy a far calmer spectrum of the dance world to RL Grime but the crowd was just as adoring. As we took flight the boys infused funk, deep-house and retro pop together for a flawless hour-set. While they’re brilliant up there in their aviation costumes, they would be nothing without sex-kitten Owl Eyes up the front prowling around. Her voice is sublime and her dance moves are slinky and angular. She played the perfect host weaving her honey-soaked vocals through Crave You and her own feature Heart Attack. Flight Facilities have amassed so many great tunes and they rightfully deserve their place at the helm of most festival lineups.

Based on the strength of this year it seems as if Groovin The Moo will continue to be a main player in the Australian festival scene. It’s a great way of bringing business and music to rural areas and is also well-organised. It seems as if it has the formula down-pat. Now all it needs is a lineup better than this year’s to keep punters flooding back.

Gallery: Groovin The Moo, Canberra 3 May 2015 

XCX-37

PICS: Charlie XCX| The Metro Theatre, Sydney

GigGuide_28April

This Week’s 5 Gigs Under $50

GigGuide_28April

The music scene in Sydney is bursting with talent, but between the plethora of international acts and growing number of lesser known artists performing each week, it can be tricky to choose where to spend your time and cash. Here at the interns, we make it our mission to fit in as much music into each week as humanly possible. So check the best of what’s on this week so you can get your fix of live music without breaking the bank.

Charli XCX

Wednesday 29th April @ The Metro Theatre

Charli XCX

How Much: $49.90

British pop goddess Charli XCX returns to Australia to play a string of shows across a number of capital cities as well as touring with Groovin’ The Moo. She’s had incredible international success off the back of her role on Iggy Azalea’s Fancy last year and followed that up with two huge singles Boom Clap and Break The Rules, and will also be supported live by the irrepressible Tkay Maidza. Tickets from here

Josh Pyke Live with the SSO

Wednesday 29th & Thursday 30th April @ Sydney Opera House

joshpyke

How Much: From $39.00

There are some incredibly special shows going down at the Sydney Opera House this week. ARIA award winning songwriter Josh Pyke will perform alongside the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, bringing a fresh vibe to his known performance style. Pyke has completed over 22 national tours in his time as an artist, but these performances promises to go beyond any incarnation of his past performative self. Tickets from here

SAFIA

Thursday 30th April @ Newton Social Club

SAFIA

How Much: $25 On The Door (Limited Tickets Available)

Fresh from being announced on the Splendour In The Grass lineup, SAFIA visit the Newtown Social Club to officially launch their already hugely popular single Counting Sheep. This gig is an exclusive part of the unique Vinyl Club series where fans will be able to get first access to exclusive an exclusive vinyl version of the new single on the night.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/safia-music/counting-sheep[/soundcloud]

Tijuana Cartel

Friday 1st May @ Oxford Art Factory

TijuanaCartel

How Much: $23.80

Tijuana Cartel are a unique bunch; mixing electronica, acoustic, and middle eastern sounds with a weird but very cool resulting vibe. They’ve got an album in the works, so don’t miss your chance to see these guys throwing down some brand new beats in a super unique live show at Oxford Art Factory. Tickets from here

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/tijuana-cartel/hectic[/soundcloud]

Karnivool

Sunday 3rd May @ The Metro Theatre

Karnivool

How Much: $49.85

Karnivool are absolute legends of the touring circuit in Australia, having played just about every festival and venue you can name in the ten years since their inception. This week sees them play back to back shows at The Metro in Sydney, and with the first show having already sold out be sure to get in quick to grab tickets to their gig on Sunday. Tickets from here

YouTube Music Awards

Highlights From The 2015 YouTube Music Awards: FKA Twigs, Action Bronson, Shamir + More

YouTube Music Awards

After taking a year off the YouTube Music awards are back. The game has changed slightly this year as there will be no live awards show and the contending videos have all just been dropped via YouTube and VICE media. As a music video enthusiast it’s wildly refreshing to see directors and musicians teaming up to try and create something memorable and unique. Here are my top picks and predictions from the 2015 crop.

Action Bronson – Baby Blue (Directed by Lil Chris)

The world’s most lovable chef (sorry not sorry Jamie), rapper and all round cool dude Action Bronson is my personal favourite pick this year. In an ode to “Coming to America” he travels through NYC to find his queen (who has serious guns). Playing multiple characters along the way, we get to watch with delight as his effortless cool flows through each and every character he portrays…it’s fun, it’s well shot and it’s really fucking clever. It’s also worth a mention that this single was produced by Mark Ronson, further adding to the excellence of Baby Blue. It won’t take out the top spot but I’d really like it to.

FKA twigs – Glass & Patron (Directed by FKA twigs)

This will win best video because of course it will (also, VICE is involved). FKA twigs has self-directed her new clip (of course she has) and it’s making every indie blog and my entire news feed freak out (of course…). A pregnant (OMFG) Twigs gives birth in the back of a van to an entourage of well-dressed fierce dancers with perfect bone structure who join her in a total vogue-off atop a luminous catwalk in the middle of a dark forest…because of course.
I am one of the few humans on the earth somewhat immune to the hype that surrounds FKA Twigs…she did not wow me at Laneway, her ad for Google glass did not make me wet myself and her first self-directed clip, Pendulum was not “everything” to me. I’m saying this because it’s important you know I am not totally bias on this one and that when I say that this song is fucking brilliant in all its genre-defying beauty and that this video is going to win not just on hype but because it is outstanding…that I really mean it.

Shamir – Call it Off (Directed by Philip Hodges)

Youngster Shamir was definitely given a decent budget for this one. The muppets are totally adorable and fitting for his personal brand of weird-cute. The video is all fun colours and happy dancing and easily makes my top five as well as making me want to try and pull off white denim. As a follow-up single to the brilliant On The Regular it goes alright too.

 

Charli XCX – Famous (Directed by Eric Wareheim)

Mark my words, if you make it to the end of this clip you will have nightmares. With that, you have been warned. In what begins as a seemingly innocent clip we watch a Charli obsessed lookalike go totally selfie crazy (like, what better way to pass the time than just STARE AT YOURSELF IN A TINY SCREEN). Things go from weird to weirder though when both her Apple devices run out of battery and she is forced to hang out in the real world (which is not very real at all) minus the shiny filter provided by our virtual realities. Wareheim is obviously making some serious social commentary with this clip and I dig that, seeing as most of the other entries are just weird for weird’s sake. Charli is the perfect platform for this kind of statement, as her fan base would be made up of mostly culprits akin to the clip’s protagonist. It’s definitely in the running for an award, though as I mentioned above, once FKA twigs put herself in the mix there is just not much hope for anybody else…not even ’90s lovin’ candy baby Charli.

KYGO – Stole the Show (Directed by Saman Kesh)

As a fan of a few of KYGO’s remixes, I did have high hopes for this song but it’s a bit of a slow burner so I guess it will have to grow on me. We’ll definitely be hearing it in some party mix tapes though and that is totally fine. At first glance it’s kind of a boring messy house party but if you can stick it out till about 2:47 you’ll be rewarded with some SERIOUS dance moves and then the storyline morphs into a cute extra terrestrial love story. Also, the FX graphics at the end of the clip are excellent. A quick FYI…music videos generally have a really shitty budget so either KYGO has splurged for this or Saman Kesh has some excellent 3D graphic mates who put in the hard yards on this and that deserves credit.

Ed Sheeran & Rudimental – Bloodstream (Directed by Emil Nava)

This song is getting a mention because the film clip is TERRIBLE and I’m annoyed that director, Emil Nava probably had triple the budget of most of the better clips. The big issue here is that the director is using shots that are clearly meant to make us sympathise with the protagonist but we have ZERO back story except for his walls full of gold and platinum records in his big expensive house. Poor you middle aged musician with your expensive scotch and all your awards in your big beautiful house full of groupies ready to bang you. I feel SO BAD for you, WHAT DID YOU DO TO DESERVE THIS? Give me a break, if you want to make anybody feel bad for a dude like that you need a feature length film with an excellent back story and an Oscar worthy lead. This clip has zero heart in it and makes me sad that it even made the short list.

Lindsey Stirling – Take Flight (Directed by Joe Sill)

Lindsey is a two-time YouTube music winner & performer so it only felt right to include her in this list. The song is what I imagine classical music students would consider a banger and the clip is a trippy Escher-esque wonderland. Chasing down the remedy to cure her dying flower, Lindsey scales buildings in a very Insurgent manner whilst donning a cape that looks like it belongs to Frodo Baggins. It’s all very ethereal and reminds me a bit of a dark Japanese video game. The graphics are pretty awesome and I can only imagine how much time and effort went into producing this.

MAX feat. Hoodie Allen – Gibberish (Directed by Greg Jardin)

I am clearly not young enough to know who MAX is (apparently he came to fame covering songs on YouTube) and I kind of never want to hear this song again because it sounds like Jason Derulo and Nick Jonas had a baby but if you can stomach it, you have to see this one. The clip is a piece of technical genius, which would have been a total bitch to shoot and cut together (I work in Post Production ordinarily and just watching this makes me anxious at how many hours would have gone into getting it right). On video merit alone this could win some awards but I’m hoping it does not beat out the few excellent songs that also made the cut.

 

 

9songs

9 Current Songs That Prove Interesting Music Can Top The Charts

9songs

When you turn on the radio and the first thing you hear is “Dear future husband…”, it’s pretty easy to get down on the state of music. The truth is that the commercial world of music is full of injustice. They play a song about “finding a cheerleader” but they don’t play FKA twigs and they’d rather play a song called All About That Bass than anything that actually has bass like say, Run The Jewels.

The fact is any successful business knows their audience and they play these songs because they’re popular or they want to make them popular. It’s a stubborn, unchangeable business but that’s why it’s all the more joyful when something really memorable seeps through. For those who have lost hope with mainstream music here are nine reasons why we should hold our heads up about what’s popular at the moment:

Rihanna, Kanye West and Paul McCartney – FourFiveSeconds

The trajectory of this song has been very interesting to watch. When the song dropped out of the blue earlier this month it was almost to a collective “what the fuck”. Nobody knew if it was Rihanna or Kanye’s song or what on earth Paul McCartney was doing with two of the biggest stars in urban music. After being performed at the Grammys, the song has risen to number one on the ARIA Charts and is on high rotation on commercial radio.

It only took about three different instruments to make FourFiveSeconds and yet it’s easily one of the most captivating songs of the year. Kanye is obviously going through a spout of minimalism at the moment and it’s worked wonders for Rihanna. She sounds the most raspy and powerful she has in years. She’s an artist who’s always looked for new things to do and it’s almost comical that it took her to strip a song to the bone to create one of the highlights of her career. This is a game-changer. You can expect more and more songs to sound like this in the year ahead.

Taylor Swift – Style

Who would’ve thought that such a straight-out pop album would’ve become one of the more divisive of last year (for triple j listeners at least)? The reason 1989 was so divisive is because people outside the mainstream started to show appreciation for what was a brilliantly conceived pop album. The naysayers were left wondering why they were suddenly left alone when every jumped to team Tay Tay.

Style is by far one of the highlights of 1989. It’s a slinky, immaculate pop tune with a throbbing bass-line. The song was written by Taylor Swift with Max Martin who’s made some of the biggest pop tunes of all time (Since U Been Gone, I Kissed A Girl, Shake It Off). What makes it so interesting is it actually sounds like nothing else on the charts right now. The melody is straight out of the how-to-make-a-pop-song book but the instrumental is dim-lit and brooding with the percussion taking cues from the ‘80s.

Florence + The Machine – What Kind Of Man

This may be hovering just past the top ten on iTunes’ around the world but it’s a pretty spectacular feat for a song that’s so angsty and raw. Florence has crossed over into the mainstream many time before but that was with the help of Calvin Harris or a cover, never with a song like this. A lot of its success comes from the fact that people are happy to have Florence back but this is a testing song. Her voice wails amongst growling guitars and thrashing percussion while all the while she taunts “What kind of man loves like this?”

Florence Welch has done a brilliant job over the last five years of bringing interesting, challenging ideas to a wider audience and it seems she’ll be stretching that ever more on her next album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful. The best thing is, as soon as you hear one of her songs it couldn’t be anybody else in the world singing it. That’s a quality that many songs on the charts miss.

Tinashe – 2 On (Feat. Schoolboy Q)

More than a year after its release and Australian audiences are starting to catch onto this tune by US RnB singer Tinashe. It’s already been a hit in the US but radio has just put this on high rotation which is odd for such a bare urban track. You’d have to go as far back as Ashanti to find a song as minimal as this climbing up the charts.

It works because Tinashe’s melodies in the verses are so tight and she struts vocally with gusto. She’s confident and immediately gives us a whiff of her personality on 2 On. It’s obvious she’s young, it’s clear she’s cool and best of all it sounds like she’s a self-made artist. This type of song doesn’t usually seep through on the Australia charts but it could open a door for many more.

Hayden James – Something About You

Commercial radio have shyed away from many Future Classic artists in the past. They only started playing Flume’s Holdin’ On once it was a certified alternative hit and Chet Faker can owe most of his success to triple j’s build-up. It seems, however, that one artist in particular has caught their attention of late. That man is Hayden James who is currently sitting at number 24 on the Radio Airplay Chart with Something About You.

The track which appeared on Future Classic’s Teen Idols compilation and has since become a budding commercial hit. It’s warm synths and deep-house-esque beats have struck a chord with Australian audiences (he may have Chet Faker to thank for warming them up). It’s actually quite rare to find a track like this finding favour on the charts. Even mainstream Australian audiences passed on much of Disclosure’s efforts despite their obvious pop notions.

Mark Ronson – Uptown Funk (Feat. Bruno Mars)

It may be driving most insane now but don’t forget the first time you the blaring horns of Uptown Funk coupled with that infectious beat. Uptown Funk reached sales in excess of one million this week in the UK and in Australia it’s been certified platinum five times but sonically it stands by itself on the charts. Ronson was very clever in pulling Bruno Mars into this song because not only does he do a brilliant job vocally, he also brings a certain likeability for audiences that may not be so familiar with Ronson’s work.

Uptown Funk is the kind of song that demands you listen the first time you hear it. It’s almost obnoxious how in-your-face it is. It does so on its own terms though. It’s not following a mainstream trend, there’s no EDM-flavours, almost none of that typical Max Martin-sheen and no lyrics regarding forbidden love.

Charli XCX – Doing It (Feat. Rita Ora)

Charli XCX is one of the first popstars of this millenium that’s done it completely on her own terms. Nowadays jumping on an Iggy Azalea track is a planned career move but we’ve got to remember that when Charli featured on Fancy Iggy was yet to achieve any mainstream success. Charli then took her newfound fame and released a record inspired by obscure Swedish punk music. It’s an odd route to take but it’s one that have made the charts far more interesting.

Doing It sees Charli team up with Rita Ora for an unlikely pop anthem about “doin it like we’re doin it”. The video sees her dressed as a glamourised cowboy. It’s not pretty, neither of them look like models but it’s cool because it’s sets her apart from any other popstar. Even Beyonce and Lady Gaga’s Telephone (a video similar to Doing It) made them look like sex symbols. This does nothing of the sort but it makes pop videos look like shit loads of fun which is what they should be.

Calvin Harris – Pray To God (Feat. HAIM)

By the time you get to the drop every Calvin Harris song is exactly the same by LA singers HAIM bring something different to a classic Harris song. They build-up the track with a gospel-inspired grunt that makes you actually live for the drop. It sounds like they’re levitating towards the heavens as they sing “I pray to God I just don’t know anymore”. HAIM go EDM was such an unlikely headline but here they make it work purely because their own artistic identity is so strong.

It’s been a while since Calvin Harris has sounded inventive but HAIM’s super tight melodies and unbreakable chemistry means that the song sounds sleek and cool rather than being simply your run-of-the-mill EDM song with a guest vocalist plopped on for good measure. This is HAIM featuring Calvin Harris because they completely own it.

Kendrick Lamar – The Blacker The Berry

So often political and cultural statements that end up on commercial radio are “heal the world” mantras dreamt up by some big-wig in a large record company who’s decided that compassion sells. Kendrick Lamar is a rapper who knows how powerful his voice can be and when he’s at his best no message could be more clear.

The Blacker The Berry features some of the most powerful lines by a major label rapper for a long time and he’s completely committed to selling the cause. “My hair is nappy, my dick is big, my nose is round and wide/You hate me don’t you?”, he raps with a grittiness to his voice. He calls out stereotypes and re-writes people’s thoughts in one of the most powerful moments of his career and yet he does so in a way that is managing to climb up the charts.

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Ty Dolla $ign Joins Forces With Charli XCX, Tinashe And Cashmere Cat

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Norwegian producer Cashmere Cat is becoming the go to producer at the moment. He produced Ariana Grande‘s brilliant Be My Baby last year and also popped up on Kanye West’s Wolves last week. Now he’s produced the latest Ty Dolla $ign single with Stargate and got Charli XCX and Tinashe on board as well. It’s an all star lineup for Drop That Kitty which will appear on Ty’s debut album “coming soon”, according to his YouTube.

The track centres around XCX’s abrasive hook, with Ty and Tinashe delivering silky smooth vocals to perfectly juxtapose the hook. Before Fancy Charli XCX would have been such an odd choice for a hip-hop track but now she’s suddenly become the Ashanti of this decade, which we’re fine with.

Charli XCX will be in the country soon for Groovin The Moo. Dates below:

Wednesday, 29th April
Metro Theatre
Sydney

Friday, 1st May
Corner Hotel
Melbourne

Thursday, 7th May
The Met
Brisbane

10songs_23Jan

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Tobias Jesso Jr, St. Vincent, Paris Hilton + More

10songs_23Jan

Tove Stryke- Ego

Tove Stryke is a Swedish songstress who been released some boisterous pop music in 2014 and now she’s gearing up for a full-length release, Kiddo, in 2015. Sweden is the land of pop music and quite frankly, pop’s not worth listening to unless it comes out of Scandinavia so obviously, Ego is brilliant. It’s elevated by a sprawling, elated chorus, the type that would make Dev Hynes squirm and Robyn dance. Very excited to see how Tove strikes in 2015 (see what I did there).

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/tovestyrke/ego-1[/soundcloud]

Charli XCX- Doing It (Feat. Rita Ora) (A.G. Cook Remix)

The PC Music mastermind A.G. Cook is at it once again, combining pop with nostalgic bubblegum video game sounds. This time he’s remixed the new single by Charli XCX, which has Rita Ora on it for some unknown reason. The remix sees XCX and Ora’s vocals pitch manipulated and backed by rushing, toy-like synths. It’s a choice move from Charli XCX to support this remix as it continues her appeal as both a mainstream and alternative pop hero.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/charlixcx/charli-xcx-ft-rita-ora-doing-it-ag-cook-remix[/soundcloud]

Paris Hilton- Never Be Alone

Paris Hilton is not a singer and she shouldn’t try, but that doesn’t mean she can’t release music. On Never Be Alone, which surfaced this week, her voice is manipulated within an inch of its life and surprisingly its a nostalgic hit. The production (seemingly by DJ Poet? Who?) channels early 00s club music- think DJ Sammy or Scooter. It’s not going to win a Grammy nor will it set the charts alight but its nostalgic quality makes it a likely contender for an internet cult hit. Also, don’t pretend you don’t revisit Stars Are Blind at least once a year.

Tobias Jesso Jr- How Could You Babe

We included Tobia Jesso Jr in our Class of 2015, and we’re feeling pretty happy with ourselves after he dropped yet another stellar track, How Could You Babe, this week. The song was endorsed by Adele on Twitter and raved about by nearly everybody with an IP address this week. It’s a throwback track once again showing Jesso Jr’s old soul and immaculate song writing prowess. In an age where the production possibilities are endless, he shows that sometimes the greatest beauty is found in simplicity.

Burial- Temple Sleeper

Enigmatic British producer Burial is readying the release of his new single, Temple Sleeper, through Keysound Recordings and this week we were treated to a three minute sample. Temple Sleeper has the appeal of a heart-beat racing ’90s rave tune which sees Burial explore far more energetic territory than we’ve heard in the past. You can buy the vinyl now and here the whole track if you like.

Giorgio Moroder- Right Here, Right Now (Feat. Kylie Minogue)

Kylie’s street cred seems to have sky-rocketed in the past few months. First she teamed up with Flight Facilities and now she’s taking to the dancefloor with Italian producer and Daft Punk-collaborator Girogio Moroder. Right Here, Right Now is from his forthcoming album 74 Is The New 24 which will also feature collaboration with Charli XCX, Britney Spears and Sia. It’s a sprawling, disco-flavoured track with a chorus that shoots into the stratosphere.

Lime Cordiale- Hanging Upside Down

Coming off the back on an absolutely hectic year of touring nationally and through the States, brass-infused indie-pop Sydneysiders, Lime Cordiale, have just released their new single, Hanging Upside Down. Produced by Sydney’s Jean-Paul Fung (Art vs. Science, Jinja Safari, Glass Towers), Lime Cordiale delivers an insanely catchy tune which will be a Summer soundtrack essential. Of course, a little Lime charm couldn’t be resisted and includes lyrics mentioning ‘perky tits.’ Also, the track was released with a super trippy film clip with artwork by Louis Lime and animated by wolfboy.

St. Vincent- Bad Believer

We’re very, very close to having St. Vincent grace our shores for Laneway Festival. She’s one of the greatest live performers on the planet at the moment and this new track, Bad Believer, will make a hearty addition to her already formidable set. It’s being added to a re-release of her self-titled album and it’s probably the most up-tempo, funky track of the album. It’s a warped, grungy pop track with one of the catchiest choruses she’s ever produced.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/st_vincent/bad-believer[/soundcloud]

Roy English- Julianne

From one funky tune to another, Julianne is the first official single from US artist, Roy English. It’s a fuzzed-out pop tune backed by Dev Hynes-esque guitar-jabs and vocals that feel as if they’ve been caught in a dispersing cloud. A few years-ago this brand of lo-fi pop would’ve been could’ve been lost due to the sheer volume of tracks like it being released but in 2015 it’s actually refreshing to hear an alt-pop tune that doesn’t sound like a crisp, RnB renewal.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/royenglish/julianne[/soundcloud]

Emilie Haynie- Wait For Life (Feat. Lana Del Rey)

Producer Emilie Haynie is gearing up to release his star-studded album, We Fall. He’s already dropped tracks featuring everyone from Dev Hynes to Charlotte Gainsbourg and now he’s revealed Wait For Life with vocals by Lana Del Rey. Haynie was responsible for much of the production on Del Rey’s debut Born To Die and once again here they swell a grandiose atmosphere of old school charm. Del Rey seems to be going from strength to strength lately and no doubt her third album, which is apparently more similar to her debut, will be one to look out for this year.

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