There’s been an online petition going around to ‘cease and desist’ Weezer from releasing “endless whimsical cutesy album covers and music videos”.
Weezer’s drummer Patrick Wilson upped the ante, saying that they’re willing to make a deal at $20 million. Then they’ll release a ‘Deluxe Breakup’ album.
This got me thinking: Could this process have worked on bands in the past?
Think about it for a minute. What band, group or solo ‘artist’ has continuously aggravated you to no end during their reign on the Top 40 charts?
Was there an ‘indie’ group just trying to fit in to the crowd, or a pop singer who just wouldn’t quit, even when the fans did?
With enough money, anything’s possible, right? 50 Cent made a bet that he would stop making records if Kanye West outsold him in a week. Although 50 Cent revoked the bet once Graduation walloped Curtis on the charts.
Who would you get rid of now, or would have liked to get rid of while they caused havoc to your eardrums?
"That's the wrong way to...nevermind. Sounds the same."
Kanye West has been trying his luck at rebuilding his image ever since he didn’t let Taylor finish. Ever since the birth of @kanyewest, he’s been writing a flurry, and destroying grammar along the way, hoping that his one million Twitter followers will forgive him.
When the famous bombarding of the country singer’s award for ‘Best Female Video’ for “You Belong with Me”, West hopped on stage to what looked like a crazy addition to the already clapping of hands.
Then we all know what happened, and now it’s all part of the ever-growing internet meme list.
But it hasn’t ended. Oh no. Both have plenty of energy left to use what that incident caused. Kanye West’s new album is fast approaching, meaning he’s got a lot of damage control to work on.
Last year Kanye was quoted: “DON’T HAVE A F****** TWITTER… WHY WOULD I USE TWITTER??? I ONLY BLOG 5 PERCENT OF WHAT I’M UP TO IN THE FIRST PLACE.”
Suddenly two months ago, he flipped around, now tweeting on his brand new Twitter account with important things like:
Man I love Twitter… I’ve always been at the mercy of the press but no more… The media tried to demonize me Saturday, 4 September 2010 8:55:05 PM via web.
I’m cool with trial and error … the trail part is cool… the error, not so much 7:49 AM Jul 31st via web.
Which even caught the attention of The New Yorker to put into cartoon format.
So with an album to promote, and a million listeners, Kanye shot out over seventy tweets in a matter of hours to grab the attention of everyone, and to apologize. He even said he’s written a song for her.
But apparently Taylor isn’t happy about her name being used to promote his album.
What do you think about it? Is Kanye still a mastermind of music, and this is simply his way of dealing with moving on? Or do you think someone’s pulling the right strings at the right time?
Am I being prudish, or can someone agree with me that there is a lot of unimpressive music coming out nowadays? Have any breakthrough CDs come through that you’ve been absolutely blown away by? Remember when Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon came out? People were talking of it as a musical revolution!
But Lil’ Wayne? I mean…come on.
Kanye West felt the need to jump on Taylor Swift’s chance at glory by praising Beyonce’s ‘Single Ladies’ video clip. I watched that film clip. What’s so great about filming three dancers in leotards singing a song? Black and white? BRILLIANT! That makes sure no one compares us to Gwen Verdon’s performance on the Ed Sullivan Show back in 1969. No one’s ever done that before.
Did Kanye really need to go up and say that? If you really want to hook up with Beyonce, buy her flowers or something. Write a song about her. Something romantic. Something original. But I guess so is eating a head off a bat. I’m sure Sharon Osbourne wasn’t thinking about Ozzy the same after that. Kanye, I hope you interrupt someone a lot taller and stronger than you, with a tendency to hit people when they interrupt.
Maybe it’s just me. But it feels like R&B music nowadays is sung by artists lying on a hammock with unenergetic charisma. It’s as if the efforts could be matched to the guy waiting in the supermarket checkout line, bugging his friend by spinning rhymes about the cereal and milk.
“Yo..yo…the name’s Darryl…look at the cheese, look at the cheese, won’t you please, I’m on my knees, well not exactly, my name’s not Lee.”
I found Saturday Night Live’s version of Single Ladies with Andy Samberg and Justin Timberlake had more…oomph to it, and even presented an ironic side to the video clip.
It seems we’ve lost interest in musicians using their own voice as well. Heaven forbid we have someone use their own voice. But hey, someone put a lot of work into developing the AutoTune technology! It needs to be used as much as possible, right?
Speaking of AutoTune, I saw this yesterday: It’s an app for your iPhone called ‘I am T-Pain’. It’s essentially a portable AutoTune that you can use. I would actually give kudos to an R&B singer came out on stage with an iPhone and AutoTune.
Any wanna-be singers out there worried about how you sing? Isn’t it nice to know that isn’t a factor anymore?
In the wise words of X-Factor”s Simon Cowell: “My advice would be if you want to pursue a career in the music business, don’t.”
WOW! What a week for new releases this has turned out to be. My selection for the top three will all be BIG, mark my words you doubters! So here in reverse prime number release order you go:
Madonna – Hard Candy The eleventh release from the undisputed queen of pop. The mega success of her last release Confessions On A Dancefloor sold over 2 million copies on the week of release and a staggering 10 million plus to date, but may just be set to be overtaken by this latest opus. This is almost predictably another about turn for Madonna, as she moves from the electro pop of the previous offering to a harder urban sound that is more a return to her underground R & B roots. Produced in collaboration with Timbaland and Justin Timberlake, who both appear on the lead single "4 minutes", Pharrell Williams and Nate "Danja" Hills. And along the way some vocal collaborations with Timberlake and Kanye West, Madonna herself has said that the album took much longer to complete than any of her previous efforts, mainly due to the complicated scheduling of all the involved parties. This album will no doubt appeal to a much wider American audience than her previous effort, and as such I predict it will out sell it’s predecessor!! For a track by track breakdown check out this post from hit40uk.
Portishead – Third Now I wonder if you can guess which number studio release this is from the band from just outside Bristol?!? Their second offering confusingly titled "Portishead" came eleven years ago, and apart from their live offering ‘PNYC Live‘ the year after, we have not heard much from the "founders" of Trip Hop. The title may not be quite as imaginative as you could summon your good selves, but the advertising campaign, placing the semi translucent 3 over thousands of parking signs (as per the cover) is a beauty! As with a lot of their songs the first single ‘Machine Gun (youtube clip)‘ is so simple in its beat, yet so full of things to listen to, and of course there is Beth’s unmistakable voice. "The Rip" blooms and builds to a stunning climax, "We Carry On" bowls along at a surprising pace and I also like "Threads" maybe as close to classic Portishead as you can get. Well, was the album worth the wait? When so much is expected of a band, and the wait has been so long, disappointment often comes, but from what I have heard this is as unmistakeably Portishead as the first taste of a new seasons strawberry.
Sam Sparro – Sam Sparro This is the first full length release from the Australian born singer and songwriter hwo has since lived in the USA and now the UK. The second single from this album "Black And Gold" seen here courtesy of YouTube, debuted at #23 in the UK charts and peaked at #2. It reminds me so much of the legendary ‘Stevie Wonder’ from his ‘Innervisions‘ and ‘Fulfillingness First Finale‘ period that I had to do a second take (if you are a young Sam Sparro fan and never heard of Stevie Wonder I suggest you check him out!). This is an assured and confident debut, Sam stands out from the crowd of similar artists with his mix of Soul and electro-funk, think of ‘Jamie Lidell‘ and ‘Seal‘, this is a Soul album full of funk, thoroughly modern but as retro as you can get. He may just get a space on my CD rack next to the mighty Stevie Wonder!
So, there you have it, might just be worth a fiver on these being number one, two and three at your local bookies (remember: if you gamble, risk only what you can afford to lose!). Can’t see what you are looking for here? Check out the full list of New Release CDs and Pre-Release CDs at CD WOW!
It’s funny how sometimes the covers of new albums, quite by accident I would imagine, have a very similar feel to them. It must be accidental as the planning process has to be a long and, if I know artists, an arduous one! I received my copy of the "We Are Scientists – Brain Thrust Mastery" in the post this morning and it has a predominantly black and white cover (I love the live at the Union Chapel bonus disc by the way) and lo and behold, the first two albums I chose for today’s reviews also have black and white covers…
"REM – Accelerate" came out today, the follow up to 2004′s "Around The Sun" and the stop gap "Live" album released six months ago. The title gives us a clue to what this record is all about, this is a big step forward for R.E.M. and they have done it by taking a big step back! Accelerate is the most amped up, aggressive album they have recorded in many a long year. This album was all recorded in a mere nine days we are told. It was recorded fast, and the album is fast, the eleven tracks whistle by in a tad under 34 minutes, and take us right back to the harder post-punk sounds of their pre-major label days. This album thrills by it’s very speed. Accelerate, an apt title indeed!
"Snoop Dogg – Ego Trippin’" is a different kettle of fish, not just in style obviously, but as it contains an impressive 21 tracks, and comes in at 77 minutes! Maybe more surprisingly, it also has no guest appearances. This is no "Doggy Style" but then Ego Trippin’ is the ninth studio album by the Long Beach California based super rapper, and as befits an artist of his longevity features a dynamic blend of different styles and sounds, and of course the now almost compulsory use of a vo-coder. Named as the title would suggest after Snoop Dogg’s desire to make an album of music that he loves, it includes tracks influenced by 80′s pop, drawing from Prince, Rick James and George Clinton, some groove influenced R&B and of course the gangsta rap cuts that have made Snoop a hip hop icon.
"Estelle – Shine" will be riding on the wave of the success of new single "American Boy" feat Kanye West, which of course appears on the album. Signed to her new mentor John Legend’s Homeschool Music Label, "Shine" has some of the biggest names in today’s chart music appearing as guests; Kanye, Will I Am and Mark Ronson among others. There is also a stunning duet with the man himself, John Legend! The London born rapper has been flirting on the edge of chart success for some while now and with the single knocking the seemingly unmovable Duffy from top position last week. Can the album do the same? Only you can make it happen….
"Gnarls Barkley – The Odd Couple" an aptly named title for the musical duo consisting of producer Danger Mouse and singer and rapper Cee-Lo. Their sophomore album comes just a few minutes after you last heard the never-to-be-forgotten flagship song from the first album "St Elsewhere", what was it called? Don’t tell me you have forgotten, crazy fool! Almost retro sounding, this album takes influences from soul, funk and R&B with the duo adding their own unique spin ending with a happy upbeat sounding album. I can imagine this playing on my iPod while I sit on the beach in the sun, cold lager in hand… featuring the singles "Run" and "Whose Gonna Save My Soul", which can both be found on their myspace page along with "Going On" from this album and of course "Crazy". Nice review here from seattlepi!
See how I subtly got away from the black and white sleeves and ended on glorious technicolour? Well there we are then, some great releases for your pleasure, but if these are not your thang why not check out our full list of New Release CD’s and Pre-Release CD’s on CD WOW!
Paul McCartney put his troubles behind him tonight as he was honoured for outstanding achievement at the Brit Awards. There was no reference to anything controversial… "I’m hugely privileged to have been in the Quarrymen, the Beatles, Wings and the solo stuff," he said. "I just think British music is the best." Sir Paul McCartney also found the energy between court appearances to close tonight’s ceremony with a 15-minute medley of hits which earned him a standing ovation from the 8,000-strong audience.
Here is a list of the big winners at tonight’s Brit Music Awards!
‘Cause this is Thriller! Thriller Night! Welcome back Jacko! The 25th Anniversary Edition of the magnificent Thriller was released in the UK last Monday and is sure to be HUGE for MJ the second time around.
Thriller was Michel Jackson’s 6th album (including Jackson 5 releases) and sold 40 million copies in its initial chart run, with seven of its nine tracks reaching the Top Ten. You don’t see that too often! It is alleged to have sold 100 million copies worldwide since it’s launch which would make it the best selling album ever… but according to the Recording Industry Association of America, the best selling album ever is The Eagles Greatest Hits. Hmmm… I know which one I remember best!
I’m sure some of you remember the first time you saw the video for Billie Jean, Beat it or Thriller. Good times. Check out The Official Michael Jackson Channel on YouTube. It has great interviews with all the contributors and the original producer himself Quincy Jones!
Winehouse had been nominated for six Grammy Awards and was scheduled to perform live at the big show last Sunday night, but owing to her alleged (ahem) substance abuse issues she was denied a visa to travel. The good people at Homeland Security eventually allowed Amy to travel but unfortunately it was too late to make it to LA… but thanks to modern technology she performed live from London.
Amy Winehouse went on to clinch 5 Grammys including best new artist and song of the year for ‘Rehab’. Watch her below performing her signature tune, plus ‘You know I’m No Good’, which is also taken from the album Back to Black.
Kanye West was the other big winner at the 20008 Grammy Awards… hence the mini pun in the headline. No? I better put the tabloid headline writer career on hold! Anyway… Kanye West had led the field with eight nominations and finished up with four Grammys, including best rap album for ‘Graduation’.
West then went on to perform ‘Stronger’ with the superb Daft Punk. You can check it out here. It’s not bad, and a nice tribute to his mother who passed away a few months ago.