Hey guys, so today is my first time writing as the new “Music Review Guy” for AfterElton.com. For those who don’t know who I am, you may have caught an episode or two from my time on this little known show on MTV called The Real World: Denver.
But that’s not why I’m here! The reason I’m here today is because of my long-standing, (some might say obsessive-compulsive) passion for finding new and great music and sharing it with my friends.
My uncle is the manager for Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith and another uncle is a song writer for artists like Wynona Judd and Sixpence None the Richer. Pretty much everyone in my family can play an instrument and I’ve put my musical passion into discovering and sharing amazing artists with those I love.
So here I am today to begin a journey with you guys. I hope you enjoy the bands and talented singers that I share with you bi-weekly (chuckle) from here on out. So basically around the same time that you’re getting paid each month, I’ll be posting a new blog. So be sure to read it!
I’ll be giving you the heads up on some tours that you have to check out, some excellent singles and albums worth taking a listen to, some poignant interviews by artists worth getting to know a little better, and some must-see music videos!
So let’s get started.
I’m sure you’re well aware that Lady Gaga has added North American dates to her already legendary Monster Ball Tour in 2011. I’ve got my ticket in February!
She’s opening with the Scissor Sisters, whose latest album Night Work is quite great if you haven’t already heard. I particularly like Stuart Price’s take on “Invisible Light.”
I had the opportunity to see Gaga in Chicago this summer at Lollapalooza, and the only way to describe it is spiritual. The show is great because of a combination of songs you already know and love enhanced tremendously by slick remixes and an amazing stage performance with basically every wacky outfit you’ve ever seen her in.
Oh and the “little monsters” in the audience are like no other fans I’ve seen before. It definitely makes for great people watching at the least.
After the success of her “All Hearts” tour with Kelis this summer, Swedish “pop-princess” Robyn has set out again across the United States on a brand new tour just in time for the release of her second of three 2010 albums, Body Talk Pt2.
After selling out Chicago’s Metro Arena in only 4 hours, I’ve conveniently decided to make a trip home to Atlanta to see her show in November. Shh, don’t tell my folks the real reason I’m in town!
I was able to catch her at Pitchfork Music Festival over the summer, and boy does she put on an awesome show! Backed by talented DJ’s, this pint-size diva gets the party started no matter whether you’re in an indoor venue or out on a massive field. Everyone is dancing to her dancehall beats. She has the best energy and is so cute on stage. I so wish her performance at the VMA’s this year was a tad longer.
Check out Robyn’s tour dates here.
I can remember clearly the first time I heard Chris Willis’voice. It was 2005 and I was in Paris, France going to my first gay club – Queen, on the Champs Elysees.
There were loads of half-naked men dancing on podiums and some of the best music I had ever heard. One song in particular stood out that night – the David Guetta produced track “Love Is Gone.”
This year Chris Willis again teamed up with Guetta on the Fergie/LMFAO collaboration “Getting Over You.” This article from Gay & Lesbian Times takes a neat look at how this openly gay former gospel singer first met Guetta and why he’s determined (and proven) to not be a one-hit wonder.
Here’s an interesting look at what goes on behind-the-scenes for the creation of a Kylie Minogue video. Time and again, her videos are wildly creative, uber-sexual, and filled with gorgeous men. Need I say more? The video for “Get Outta My Way,” my personal favorite track on her summer album Aphrodite, is no different. Enjoy the creative process below.
Behind the Scenes on Kylie Minogue’s "Get Outta My Way" Video
For anyone who absolutely fell in love with Florence + the Machine after her spell-binding VMA Performance, or for those of you like me who just need another reason to fall back in love with the British chanteuse, then you really have to check out Yeasayer’s amazing new remix of the international smash hit “Dog Days Are Over.”
Check out the Yeasayer "Dog Days Are Over" Mix here
Barbadian singer Rihanna is gearing up for her fifth studio album Loud and I must say the two songs I’ve heard so far are the perfect return to the RiRi I’ve been missing.
Good Girl Goes Bad, in my opinion, was one of the best dance albums of the past decade, and while I liked some of the tracks on her follow-up album Rated R, the darker direction just didn’t work for me.
“Only Girl (In The World)” (the first single from Loud) has very quickly grown on me. Can’t wait for more!
Jamiroquai is gearing up for a highly anticipated new album and the latest single “White Knuckle Ride” is already getting the remix treatment.
Both Alan Braxe’s and Seamus Haji’s take on the hit deserve a listen, but there’s truly nothing like the original.
The song has this 70’s feel combined with current dancehall beats while fortunately not being too far from the sound which made them so unique. Enjoy Seamus Haji’s epic mix here.
Cutie American Idol runner-up David Archuleta follows up his smash self-titled debut album with the release of The Other Side Of Down on October 5th. While the first single “Something Bout Love,” pales in comparison to some of his catchier tunes like “Little Too Not Over You” & “Crush,” it is still nice to have some fresh Archie material. Plus the video for “Something Bout Love” shows that David is surely maturing into a handsome man.
Other October 5th Releases…
Dark Dark Dark – Wild Go
Bruno Mars – Doo-Wops & Hooligans
KT Tunstall – Tiger Suit
Guster – Easy Wonderful
Antony Hegarty of Antony& the Johnsons releases his 4th studio album Swanlights worldwide on October 12th,2010 through Secretly Canadian. The album features a duet with Bjork entitled“Fletta” that is quite lovely. My personal favorite take-away from the albumthough is the haunting “I’m In Love.” The album is a return to form that made Antony’s I Am A Bird Now garner the covetedMercury Award. While I personally prefer the musical style of his side project Hercules & Love Affair, I can still appreciate the genius that is Antony.
Other October 12 Releases…
Lil Wayne – I am Not a Human Being LP
Simian Mobile Disco – Is Fixed
Sufjan Stevens – The Age of Adz
Robbie Williams- In and Out of Consciousness- The Greatest Hits 1990-2010
Belle & Sebastian – Write About Love
I’ve totally been behind Brooklyn-based Sleigh Bells since the moment I first heard “Crown on the Ground.” M.I.A. signed them to her N.E.E.T. Recording label, and their debut album Treats is cram-packed with loud garage-band noise pop. It’s brilliant for what it is. They’ve just released this excellent video for “Infinity Guitars,” which feels like they had to have been watching the Britney Spears Glee episode before filming.
In other video news, Marina & the Diamonds dropped the video for her latest single “Shampain.” I had the pleasure of seeing Marina live in Chicago a few weeks ago at Lincoln Hall,and my favorite song of the night just happened to be this very hit.
Marina looks gorgeous as always in this tribute to Michael Jackson’s "Thriller.
Enjoy "Shampain" here