Showing posts with label Beyoncé. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Beyoncé. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

I Want My Music Television: 2/16/16



Formation - Beyonce


I much prefer my Beyoncé when she is singing cheesy ballads or dancy pop song. My ears just glaze over whenever she tries to be hard. Please note I am not making a racist rant about the political overtones of the video. Seriously, anyone calling her Super Bowl performance racist are some of the dumbest people on the Earth like Rudy Guilani calling it an attack on police. Ugg, I do not know if he is a moron or he is just pandering to morons he can charge large amounts of money for speaking fees. But that is what the Republican party has devolved in and then wonder why Donald Trump is so high in the polls. I actually do believe some of the loudest rebel rouser (Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh) only say these crazy things knowing that it turns off a large portion of the population and makes the whole Republican party look crazy and unelectable and they will make more money under a President Hilary Clinton than a President Cruz or Rubio.

Ophelia - The Lumineers


My favorite moment in music this century so far is what I called the Neo Folk moment. Late 2014 I wondered if Shakey Graves' Dearly Departed was the last great song from the Neo Folk Era. Mumford and Sons is probably the biggest group of the era but their sophomore album just sounded like outtakes from their first and their last album it sounded like they were trying to be U2, and for the most part failed massively. The Lumineers had the biggest song of the era with Ho Hey and now are putting out their second album. But like Mumford and Sons, the first single just sounds like a leftover from their first. I guess I should wait to completely pass judgement until I hear the whole album, but this was a pretty "meh" start. The Neo Folk Era may truly be over. But then again, maybe the Fleet Foxes will release another great album this year giving a second wind.


Where the Lights Get In - Primal Scream featuring Sky Ferreira


Sometimes all the Brit-Pop band of the eighties and nineties blend into each other. Primal Scream is the one who sang Movin' On Up. I guess I can see why Sky Ferreira would jump on a track with them because she definitely goes for an eighties New Way type sound. Still kind of a weird collaboration that I am not sure about yet. In a month I am either going to really love this song or hate. Or more likely, forget it even existed.


Hold On (The Break) - Walk of the Earth


I get it, the new Walk Off the Earth song is entitled Hold On and they are hosting a contest to see which number can hold on the longest. Unfortunately there is not much you can do while hanging off a bar as you can tell by the minimal choreography. Instead it came off as one of the boring Survivor challenges that Probst always has to spruce up by tempting people to drop out in exchange for food. Really I was only left wondering if this was a real contest or if it was staged as to when they would give up.

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

I Want My Music Television: 2/3/16



Hymn for the Weekend - Coldplay featuring Beyonce


Didn't Coldplay already do the weird colored sand thing in a previous music video, or am I thinking of someone else that did that? But anyway. I am not really liking the happy Coldplay of their latest record. Yeah I know there last one was super depressing but they really did not need to swing the pendulum so far in the other direction.

Wide Open - The Chemical Brothers featuring Beck


The Chemical Brothers have always done some pretty creative music videos and add the mysterious disappearing dancer to that list.Simple but really visually effective.

Lose It - Oh Wonder


I do not know if the whole new Oh Wonder video was staged or these were actually reactions but I really hope it was the latter. I just feel bad for whoever had to clean up the confetti after every audition.

FloriDada - Animal Collective


The new Animal Collective music video is pretty freaky, I would not expect anything less from them.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The 100 Best Songs of 2014



1. Destination - Nickel Creek

2. Take Me to Church - Hozier

3. Boom Clap - Charli XCX

4. Uptown Funk - Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars

5. XO - Beyoncé

6. Kansas City - The New Basement Tapes

7. Say You Love Me - Jessie Ware

8. Blue Moon - Beck

9. Get Hurt - The Gaslight Anthem

10. Waiting Game - Banks

11. Mother and Father - Broods

12. Gotta Get Away - The Black Keys

13. Dearly Departed - Shakey Graves featuring Esmé Patterson

14. Keep It to Yourself - Kacey Musgraves

15. Understand - The Roots featuring Dice Raw and Greg Porn

16. Fever - The Black Keys

17. Supernova - Ray LaMontagne

18. Air Balloon - Lily Allen

19. If I Could Change Your Mind - Haim

20. Jungle - X Ambassadors and Jamie N Commons

21. Thinking Out Loud - Ed Sheeran

22. Yellow Flicker Beat - Lorde

23. Blank Space - Taylor Swift

24. Bridges - Broods

25. Rollin' and Tumblin' - The Gaslight Anthem

26. Every Breaking Wave - U2

27. Bad Self Portraits - Lake Street Dive

28. Fall In Love - Phantogram

29. Beggin For Thread - Banks

30. I Blame Myself - Sky Ferreira

31. Brill Bruisers - The New Pornographers

32. Budapest - George Ezra

33. Gimme Something Good - Ryan Adams

34. Love Me Harder - Ariana Grande featuring The Weeknd

35. Our Time - Lily Allen

36. My Silver Lining - First aid Kit

37. I Wanna Get Better - Bleachers

38. Magic - Coldplay

39. Left Hand Free - Alt-J

40. Do You - Spoon

41. Right Time - Nikki Lane

42. Rabbit - Lily and Madeleine

43. The Heart - Needtobreathe

44. First Things First - Neon Trees

45. Hurt You - Toni Braxton and Babyface

46. Be Mine - Meiko

47. Hate To See Your Heart Break - Paramore featuring Joy Williams

48. Strong - London Grammar

49. Reflections - Misterwives

50. Ex's and Oh's - Elle King

51. I'm Not the Only One - Sam Smith

52. She Used to Love Me a Lot - Johnny Cash

53. Word Crimes - "Weird Al" Yankovic

54. Ain't It Fun - Paramore

55. Cecilia and the Satellite - Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness

56. Just One of the Guys - Jenny Lewis

57. Red Eyes- The War on Drugs

58. Diamond Eyes - Boyz II Men

59. The Wall - Willie Nelson

60. Kingdom - Common featuring Vince Staple

61. The Heart Wants What It Wants - Selena Gomez

62. This Is What It Feels Like - Banks

63. I Don't Want To Change You - Damien Rice

64. Let's Be Still - The Head and the Heart

65. Happy Idiot - TV on the Radio

66. Another Story - The Head and the Heart

67. Talk (Expletive Deleted), Get Shot - Body Count

68. Morning Song - The Avett Brothers

69. High Road - Mastodon

70. Something from Nothing - Foo Fighters

71. Never Gonna Change - Broods

72. The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) - U2

73. Foil - "Weird Al" Yankovic

74. Automatic - Miranda Lambert

75. Don't - Ed Sheeran

76. Invisible - U2

77. Brain - Banks

78. L.A.F. - Broods

79. Back in the World - David Gray

80. Lazaretto - Jack White

81. Drowning - Banks

82. Girls - The 1975

83. Ink - Coldplay

84. Drive-in Movies - Ray LaMontagne

85. Riptide - Vance Joy

86. The Chamber - Lenny Kravitz

87. Paris - Magic Man

88. Stay With Me - Sam Smith

89. Light Will Keep Your Heart Beating in the Future - Mike Doughty

90. Tough Love - Jessie Ware

91. Let Her Down Easy - George Michael

92. Figure It Out - Royal Blood

93. I Hope This Whole Thing Didn't Frighten You - The Hold Steady

94. Shut Up and Dance - Walk the Moon

95. Somethin' Bad - Miranda Lambert with Carrie Underwood

96. Cool Kids - Echosmith

97. Wild - Royal Teeth

98. Stranger to My Happiness - Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings

99. Girl In a Country Song - Maddie and Tae

100. Waking Light - Beck

Monday, May 19, 2014

I Want My Music Television: 5/19/14



There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Part II (On the Run) – Jay-Z featuring Beyoncé


Okay this is less a music video for the Jay-Z song and more a teaser for the upcoming Jay-Z / Beyoncé summer tour. And for those that did not stick around for the end, the movie is “coming never” but I actually enjoyed the generic trailer if just for Rashida Jones and Kat Dennings as a police officer. Oh, wait, that was Emmy Rossum? Ooops.


Understand – The Roots featuring Dice Raw and Greg Porn


I do not sure if it is true or not, but I am just going to go ahead and believe the latest The Roots music video is an homage to two great 80’s videos Rockit by Herbie Handcock and Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel.


Appreciate – Paul McCartney


So the I, Robot robots really do take over the world and then create own Night at the Museum scenario with Paul McCartney.


We Exist – Arcade Fire


So in the last month, Spider Man has dressed in drag for Arcade Fire and made out with Chris Martin… is he trying to say something? I hope he is trying to say Gwen Stacey is available, I personally would be happy to take her off his hands. I hope he is not saying he wants to star in a Flashdance remake even if he’s about a good a dancer as Jennifer Beals. But if it did happen, who should sing the theme song? Keeping with the gender bending theme maybe Ed Sheeran.



Tuesday, March 04, 2014

I Want My Music Television: 3/4/14



There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.


Midnight – Coldplay


Usually when an artist drops a new song, it is accompanied by big fan fair, maybe a press release about a new album. But now we are living in a post-Beyoncé world where artists are getting more and more cryptic. Prior to releasing a new music video, Coldplay posted on social media that they would be releasing something, at midnight in the time zone local to Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia. The song ended up being entitled Midnight and is this weird Bon Iver meets Radiohead track with an even weirder accompanying video. A week later they did announce a new album coming in May with pre-order where the insta-download track being a more traditional sounding Magic (though it is more bass heavy than previous Coldplay work) which they are calling the first single instead of Midnight which is stuck in the very middle of the album.


Partition - Beyoncé


Speaking of Beyoncé, she just officially released a new music video (though if you bought the visual album, you have already seen it). It weird that after giving birth, her music videos have gotten more sexual between this and Drunk in Love as if she has something to prove. And she definitely is proving something. Why do I think this is just your average Monday in the Carter household?


If I Could Change Your Mind – Haim


Even though they are a band who play their own instruments, listening to their music, you can easily tell that Haim are heavily influenced by girl groups of the nineties and their latest music video is just a great throwback to that era. Of course the song itself is a throwback lamenting “lying eyes” which were a staple in lyrics back in the eighties and nineties (I guess songwriters today date people with better poker faces). And like I do whenever they release something new, it is time to update the Haim Sisters Power Rankings and after this video I have Alana in pole position.


Arabella – Arctic Monkeys


The golden age of music video nudity continues with Arctic Monkeys who latest looks like a mix between an old noir flick and old time peep show.

Monday, January 27, 2014

We on Award Tour: 2014 Grammy Awards



After a lackluster 2013, this year's Grammy's was surprisingly not horrible. Only two performances had me reaching to switch to the Pro Bowl. Of course the no defense game had me back on CBS quickly. Here are some quick thought on the show.

- Beyoncé gave me a serious seizure. Not a very good way to start a show. Plus I do not really like the Grammy trend of opening up the show with someone who is not nominated but just promoting an album.

- LL Cool J has to be the most boring host ever. Seriously, can you get a host next year that will make at least one Justin Bieber joke. Why did they not have Anna Kendrick host? She was more more entertaining in two minutes than he was all night. Or at least have her present with Kendrick Lamar?

- Um, Lorde already did Royals at the nomination special. How about let her do something else. At least they did not force her to perform with Madonna.

- Remember how Best New Artist was a joke but last decade they managed to get it right ever year for almost ten straight year from Alicia Keys to Adele? Well it looks to being back to being a joke.

- Should I know who Hunter Hayes is, that performance was not very good. If that was The Voice, no one would have turned their chairs.

- Oscar winner Juicy J should be brought up at every award show. Katy Perry, not so much.

- Was Pharrell Williams the first interpreter at the Grammy's? I guess it should not be a surprise they did not speak, they are French.  He certainly was the first real life human to wear an oversized Dudley Do Right hat.

- Kevin Hart was in the house and still they had LL Cool J hosted?

- So Robin Thicke sings blurred Lines with Earth, Wind & Fire on the nomination special and with Chicago on the big show. Hey Grammy's how about stop double dipping. At least they were both an upgrade over Miley Cyrus.

- Having YouTube performances during the Pop categories was stupid.

- After Steve Hyden of Grantland suggested that a potential Lorde acceptance speech could be a mix between Pearl Jam circa 1996 and Fiona Apple on MTV, her acceptance speeches were a bit disappointing. But she definitely deserved it.

- I have a feeling one day we are going to learn the last twenty years or so of Ozzy Osbourne's life was a Weekend at Bernie's situation.

- Jamie Fox was only a little bit awkward focusing on Beyonce.

- I feel bad for Kacey Musgraves for having to follow the Imagine Dragons / Kendrick Lamar song. Whoever sequenced that did a really bad job. I still would have had Kendrick perform a mash up with Anna Kendrick instead. But I did love how Imagine Dragons did not bother to clean up after their performance. And Kacey's boots were awesome.

- Why does Taylor Swift not have her own dedicated dance cam stream? It is 2014 people.

- Mike Ditka on a wrecking ball during the "halftime show": something I will not be able to unsee.

- Where was Taylor Swift during the massive Daft Punk dance party? She could not have been pouting over losing the Best Country Album. Not only was Kacey Musgraves' better, it was an actual country album.

- Does Lars Ulrich really have a mullet?

- Same Love needed more Trombone Shorty and less Madonna.

- It is interesting that Miranda Lambert performed The Everly Brothers song with Billie Joe Armstrong instead of Norah Jones considering they just recorded an Everly's cover album together. Come to think of it I do not even remember them performing together to promote the album.

- Get Lucky is a great song but not great enough to get an otherwise underwhelming rest of the album worthy of Album of the Year. But then again it was a weak category this year.

- A solid closing performance, I really enjoy the Lindsey Buckingham enhanced version of Copy of A better than the original. Get that version on iTunes soon before I have to get a copy through nefarious means.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The 25 Best Albums of 2013



While compiling this list I was tempted to put Beyoncé first even though I have not listened to the whole thing yet because even though it may not have the best collection of songs, Beyoncé won the year. While everyone else was trying to come up with a new way to market an album, Beyonce just went, “how quaint Katy Perry and your gold plated semi truck, I am dropping my album in the middle of the night on Thursday without any promotion and sell twice as many records.”

When I compiled this list last year, I was having problems because nothing seemed worthy of number one or even top ten for that matter. I chalked it up to listening music almost exclusively on shuffle. Basically when an album is released I would listen to it five to ten time, then the best songs go into shuffle never to be heard in its entirety again. So my New Year’s Resolution was to listen to at least one full album a day. And that worked, to a point, I am more content with this year’s list than last.

But Beyoncé really showed what is really hurting my enjoyment of albums: over-promotion. Much like no movies live up to the hype of their trailers anymore, the incisive promotion is so over the top by the time you hear it will inevitable be a letdown. The best songs were probably already released as promos and really all that is left if filler. And the promotion cycle has increased so much they last almost as long as presidential campaigns. Just this year, Drake released his first single in early February for an album that was not released until late September.

Granted some could argue that Beyoncé did not completely avoid marketing for this album considering she dropped a couple songs just prior to Super Bowl performance that were met with a resounding yawn. So instead of throwing more songs at the wall hoping something would stick, she finished the album on her terms and let everyone dissect it at once as a whole work of art, not parceled out over a couple months. And therein lies the problem with the current promotion cycle, by the time album is released, everyone has already downloaded the best song or two song that were pre-released as singles and have already moved on to the next big album that just dropped their new single. And in an era of diminishing album sales, Beyoncé was the first to figure out how to get people to buy your album, stop teasing and just give it to them. And it worked brilliantly. Just look at her first week sales which like every other artist were receding:

Dangerously in Love (2003): 317,000
B’Day (2006): 541,000
I Am… Sasha Fierce (2008): 482,000
4 (2011): 310,000
Beyoncé (2013): 617,000

And keep in mind Beyoncé was only available on iTunes and not physically, and that is only three days worth of sales instead of the usual six. Now the question is will this become the norm? Probably not, you have to be a global superstar like Beyoncé to pull this off and looking at next year, the only artists who may be releasing albums that could pull a stunt like this off could be U2, Taylor Swift (though she is the rare artists who's numbers are going up with each album), and Shakira (except she has already announced the date of her first single so she really cannot drop her album out of nowhere now). I do not think people will flock to iTunes to get that new Colbie Caillat album if dropped out of nowhere. Hopefully record companies do look at this and at least shorten the pre-album promotional period to a month or less.

So yeah, Beyoncé is not on this list, but the album just won the year because I spent over a page talking about it on my Best Albums of 2013 and I barely listened to it (my two word review: it’s alright; that only furthers the reason for a shorter promotion period, get the people to buy it before they realize it is only just okay; just imagine her first sales week if the album dropped a month or two after Bow Down was released; my guess it would have been lower than 4). So without further ado, here are the best albums of the year that I actually listen to all the way through (my original reviews are under each album for those that I did review while the album title goes to Amazon and the artist will take you to their iTunes page):

1. The Civil Wars - The Civil Wars
I Don’t Want to Fight but I’ll Fight For You if I Have To

2. Same Trailer Different Park - Kacey Musgraves
Woke up on the Wrong Side of Rock Bottom

3. Modern Vampires of the City - Vampire Weekend
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XV

4. Pure Heroine - Lorde
I’m Kinda Over Being Told to Throw My Hands in the Air

5. Days Are Gone - Haim
Nothings Gonna Wake Me Now Cause Im a Slave to the Sound

6. If You Leave - Daughter

7. From Here to Now to You - Jack Johnson
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XVII

8. The Electric Lady - Janelle Monáe
I am Sharper than a Razor, Eyes Made of Lasers

9. The Marshall Mathers LP2 - Eminem
Lets Take it Back to Straight Hip-Hop and Start it from Scratch

10. The Stand-In - Caitlin Rose

11. Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song - Amos Lee

12. Lightning Bolt - Pearl Jam
Everybody’s Thinking That They’ll All Be Delivered Save it in a Box Like Lost and Found

13. Paradise Valley - John Mayer
A Little Bit of Summer Is What the Whole Year’s All About

14. Magpie and the Dandelion - The Avett Brothers
Let Me See Your Skeleton Well Before Your Life Is Done

15. Where Does This Door Go - Mayer Hawthorne
When the Music's on She Can Do No Wrong

16. Mechanical Bull - Kings of Leon
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XVIII

17. The Bones of What You Believe - Chvrches

18. In Rolling Waves - The Naked and Famous
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XVII

19. Like a Rose - Ashley Monroe

20. Wise Up Ghost - Elvis Costello and The Roots
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XVII

21. AM - Arctic Monkeys

22. Girl Talk - Kate Nash
Words Are Only in My Mouth

23. Don't Look Down - Skylar Grey
Someone’s Gonna Get Hurt and it’s not Gonna Be Me

24. Annie Up - Pistol Annies
Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XIV

25. The Blessed Unrest - Sara Bareilles
Say What You Wanna Say and Let the Words Fall Out