Tuesday, February 28, 2012

EP - Garçon Garçon

Much to my surprise and delight today, my hardcopy of EP by Australian Electro-pop duo, Garçon Garçon came in the mail yesterday.  Since removing it from it's very well enclosed mailing envelope, I have listened to it non stop.  Synth and Electro are totally my bag and I this EP will not disappoint anyone who is a fan of the genre.  Think a little Pet Shop Boys, some Spandau Ballet, the lavishness of 80s Kylie and as much glam and over the top fantasticness you can throw together on 5 tracks and you may begin to understand what it is to listen to this album.  It's not all a large flash in the pan, however, this record has depth of character and sensibilities.  The songs are carefully put together, they are written with an experienced hand and Nathan and Nick are able to do nothing short than magic when it is all brought together.

You left without leaving
Your ghost is still here
Don't let go

With as much synth pop floating around these days, it's easy to get lost in the shuffle and I think this is where Garçon Garçon are going to set themselves apart.  The lyrical content is something that I believe is going to be the real seller here.  Sure the tracks are fun and groovy with an outstanding ablility to make you move but listen to the lyrics and you'll see the beauty here is well deeper than just the skin.  My favorite song on the EP is "Save Our Souls" because I think it is a very timeless message of hope that we don't seem to have nearly enough these days.  Over on It's the Money Shot, they did an incredible job of putting the song in context so I'll let them do it.  Go here and read the article then come back and hang out with me some more.  Every time I've listened to the song, I have gotten choked up because of how poignant the song is.

There isn't one bad song out of the 5 and like I said, I am ready for more.  Buy the album on iTunes or get a physical copy from their website.  Support them so we can get a full length album from them.


Monday, February 20, 2012

Top 3 Pop Songs (Male Edition)

I've been rolling it over and over and over in my head, trying to come up with 3 different male pop stars that encompass my criteria for what makes a great pop song for my categories (80s, 90s, and 00s) and I can't come up with 3 different stars because one just keeps eclipsing all the others.  So I'm going to run with it.


Michael Jackson - Billie Jean
Who else but the King of Pop is going to reign supreme (Thanks Iron Chef) in this challenge. The video is iconic, the song is larger than life and the minute you hear the first note drop, you know exactly who and what it is.


Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal
Unapologetically, I am a Michael fan. Always have been, always will be. We will never have another artist like him in my lifetime. Over the top, theatrical, flashy.  He even held the patent for the shoes that allowed the 45 degree lean.  He is a big enough star that he holds both my spots for 80s/90s.  This song is theatrical and the video is the same.  This is one of the original cuts of the video from the movie Moonwalker.  If you haven't seen Moonwalker, you need to because it is a love letter to the genius that was Michael Jackson.


*Nsync - Pop
Even the video I chose had Michael Jackson in it. Can you name any other band that had as much sway over the industry as *Nsync? They ruled the airwaves for the majority of the 2000s. This song is the epitome of what a pop song is more than any other I've chosen.  Their VMA performances set the standard for what they should be and other artists attempted to be as big as they were.  Their performance with Britney from the 1999 VMAs was incredible and they totally ruled the school (pun intended).  What is crazy about that video is that Justin never sang lead it was just JC.  I wonder if that was by design some how.

Any way, those are my choices for best pop songs, male and female for the past 30 years.  God that is so weird.  What do you think?  Am I off base, do you have a song you feel is better?  Let me know.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Top 3 Pop Songs (Female Edition)

My friend, Billy and I were talking about pop music and he called me his "personal authority on all things popish" (which I took as an amazing compliment) and he posited a question... What are your top 3 pop songs. I couldn't pick just 3 because I don't think that does the genre justice so I've expanded it to 6, 3 male and 3 female.  For me to make a great pop song, it has to be something that as soon as anyone hears it, they immediately know what it is and they are able to draw some frame of reference to base a memory or experience on.  I kind of picked songs from 3 decades (80s, 90s, and 00s). So without further pomp and circumstance my top 3 female pop songs.

80s -

Cyndi Lauper - Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
This song is fully representative of everything a pop song should be. Upbeat, poppy with catchy lyrics and a chorus that gets in you. The song has been covered by anyone and everyone that's anyone in the music industry and it's a testament to what makes a good pop song. Is it deep? No... It's pop music, it doesn't have to be.


Madonna - Vogue
Over the top, glamorous, trend setting. This is Madonna at her finest. She took a dance style from the drag balls of Harlem and turned it into a worldwide phenomenon. This video is from the MTV Music Awards in 1990 and it shows the opulence that this song is indicative of. Again, you immediately know the song, it's going to get stuck in your head for days and more than anything - it's a pop masterpiece.

00s -

Britney Spears - Stronger
Taken off the Oops! I Did It Again album, this song is all about empowerment and realizing that you have more potential than you may have realized. The song is uplifting and has all the qualifications to make it a stand out pop song.

So this all brings me to one of my most favorite quotations.  "Music is music and it doesn't matter what it is as long as it gets you where you're going" and I think all of these songs do just that.  They get you to a place that will make you change your perception for at least a moment in time.  Are they going to win awards for their lyrical content? Not at all but they don't have to because they have made you stop for a minute and relived a moment.

I'll post my boys top 3 tomorrow.  Stick around.  What are your top three songs?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Freddy Freeman - Eyes of Love

There is an ocean of difference between being religious and spiritual.  So many people in the gay community consider themselves spiritual because there is faith in a higher power and a belief there is a master design, but a lot of us have had our issues with the church and "God's fan club".  It's not the higher being I have a problem with in the least bit, it's the people telling me what I can and cannot do in His/Her name.  So when you come across a song that is full self affirming and so full of promise and hope, all you can do is realize that the hand that wrote it was lead by something greater than themselves.  That can be faith in a higher being, or the realization that they are part of something that is bigger than themselves.

"Eyes of Love" by Freddy Freeman is the first single off his upcoming release, Enter the Stillness and based just on the titles alone, Freddy has come a long way in his journey.  His previous release, Break the Silence was released some time ago (I ran into it when I was living in Nashville and he had a myspace... yes, I know: a myspace?!?)  Freddy is one of the founders of a music festival that is huge in the Bear Community called Bearapalooza and it has seen the likes of Elijah Black, Kendall Kelly, Yolanda, Bobaloo and so many more artists.  It has given artists, performers, songwriters and fans an outlet for music in an industry that may not be the most welcoming.

This song is gorgeous and from the first sitar note, I knew I was in love.  I am a fan of musical fusion and pulling influences from where ever you can find them.  I love traditional Indian music and I have done quite a bit of research into the music because of my love of Bollywood films.  I've used these words to describe other music by different artists but they fit here as well: vast, lush, expansive.  The production design is spot on and it doesn't sound like something thrown together in a basement.  It is all rich and laced with just the right amount of pop sensibilities to make it stand out against other artists and tracks.  The overall feeling you get when listening to the song is so uplifting and powerful that it allows you to become part of something bigger.  If we could all just stop with the judgement, the bickering and the gossip - the world could be a better place and what could be more of a positive sentiment.  It's so easy to talk about but difficult to do.

Now, I have some business to attend to.  You see me every other post talk about how important it is to support these artists.  Why independent artists are so important to me and I try to remind everyone to not be dicks and steal their music but this time, I mean it even more.  Freddy and Jay Freeman are making some pretty large changes in their lives and they need our help.  Why do they need our help, because if we are able to help them, they will be able to create more music and everyone is happy.

So what I need you to do is go to this link: http://freddyfreeman.blogspot.com/p/eyes-of-love-fundraiser.html and give a donation for the single.  Donate whatever you want, whatever you think the song is worth.  It's going to help a well deserving musician be able to continue to craft music that is going to mean a tremendous amount to so many people.

Do it now.  Oh and I couldn't have asked for a better post for my 200th.  This is what it's all about, people.  Helping those out that need it because the universe will  give you back what you put out.  That's a fact!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Aiden James - Trouble With This

There are 2 types of male artists in my world, singer/songwriters and dance artists.  There is no grey area with male dance artists; either they are great or they aren't.  Singer/Songwriters have a little more leeway and give but when you're an artist of Aiden's caliber, you really don't have to rely on any trickery.  He has the ability to straddle the lines of both categories and dow so with a smile.  I don't really remember how I ran across him but it was recently and I started scouring YouTube (like you do) to find anything and everything I could because I wanted to know as much as I could about him.  I have since purchased 2 of his albums and they are amazing.

Both are unmistakably him but at the same time, they are extremely divergent of each other.  Each has it's own space that it occupies and they both have an individual feeling all of their own.  The first album I bought, On The Run is very rootsy, very stripped down with almost a country feel to it.  Trouble With This has more of a pop music feel to it.  The songs are a bit more produced with more of a "synthetic style" to them, not that there is anything wrong with that.  Some of the vocals still have the smallest country influences to them and I think that adds a depth of character to the tracks.  His voice is versatile enough to do either and he does not have to stretch at all.  Both albums have a great diversity of sound to them and when you just shuffle through them, you get to learn a great deal about Aiden and it makes for an awesome experience.

Trouble With This starts off with "Best Shot" and it's a super romantic romp that will have you bobbing along before you know it.  The album doesn't diverge off this track through the remaining tracks and it is all tailored to work so perfectly with Aiden's voice.  He has the ability to draw you in and bring you into his world without even really trying.  "Snapshot", "Next To You", "Gonna Hurt More" and "My Only" are probably the songs that made the biggest impact on me.  Gonna Hurt More is just so soulful and you can feel it through his words without a shadow of a doubt.

It's amazing how many amazing independent artists I have come across as of lately and I am glad to put Aiden in this category.  Like all the indie artists I talk about, make sure you support his music and his art because it's the fans that are going to make a difference and make it where he can create more music.


Matt Alber - Constant Crows

Sometimes I'm in the mood for fun and flirty music; there are other times when I need to be melencholy and morose but still there are even other times however when I want to refine my palate and listen to something more mature.  Something grown up and honest.  Something that has a little under it's belt but isn't done making it's way around the block yet.  Right now, for me, that something is Constant Crows by Matt Alber.  I had seen the video for "End of the World" back on Logo quite some time ago but I just don't think I was ready for his music at that time.

That's a concept I have grown to understand; there are some musicians and music that you have to be ready for and if you aren't you will not be able to appreciate what they have to offer.  It's taken me months and a bit of life experience myself but when I received the CD in the mail the other day, it appeared that I was ready.  From start to finish, the album contains a quiet intensity that I haven't heard in many other artists.  The songs are thoughtful and you can tell that each and everyone was crafted with the utmost level of detail.  I'm going to make a comparison and it's not about how the song sounds or even if it's reminiscent, but there is something that I when listening I hear John Denver.  I think it's the thought and emotion that's written into each lyric.  He doesn't say anything he doesn't need to say and his expression is pure and direct.

He has the ability to craft an image not many people can and his music is very evocative of the emotions he is coaxing out so effortlessly.  The production of the album is stripped down and nothing too overdone.  You can only hear instruments, no heavy digital work anywhere to be found and I think that's important when you are working with content that is this powerful.  If you were going to lump him in with other artists, I would have to say David Gray, Matt Nathanson, Rufus Wainwright or Ray LaMontagne but I hate making those correlations.  He is his own artist and I applaud him for that.  There aren't enough good things I can say without coming off as smitten so let's just say that I am incredibly glad this album has come into my life.  It is certainly going to get me a lot to chew on for a while.

I don't want to pick a stand out song because they are all works of great creativity and they all have a life of their own but "Tight Rope", "Take a Bow" and especially, "Brother Moon" are all outstanding tracks that just make me want to close my eyes and be taken where the songs want me to go.  I implore you, if you are a fan of Singer/Songwriters, Independent Artists and generally just people that have something to say, buy this album.  It's available at all major audio outlets and I promise you, it's so worth it.  There isn't enough music with a transformative nature in the world and what there is of it, we need to treasure and hold on to because it's important and it's good.  I hope to hear from Matt for years to come.

Track Listing

1   Velvet Goldmine
2   River
3   Tall Tales
4   Tightrope
5   Wallingford
6   Seldomly
7   Brother Moon
8   Old Ghosts
9   Kiss
10  Take a Bow


Lights - Banner

I love Light's particular brand of pop music. It's easy, it's light and it never comes across as preachy.  This song has a pretty awesome message and I dig the feeling of the video.  Even when things seem hopeless, you can always find hope.  I also like how the song is light on the drum and bass and has a more dance/pop feel.  The beats are strong and the message is stronger.  I wish more pop had this type of vibe because it gives you a bit more with purchase.  Watch the video and let me know what you think.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Limousines - The Future

From start to finish this video is incredible, driving the Delorean and every part of the video. I don't want to spoil anything so I won't. I think this is their biggest video yet and it's great. The song is like most of their work, big and flashy and full of substance. It's easy to categorize them as a party band but stop and listen to the lyrics. They will win you over without a shadow of a doubt. Huge fan, will be for as long as they are putting out music. Great job guys and I look forward to more amazing videos.

Lana Del Rey - Born To Die

Way back in November, I wrote about Miss Del Rey and remarked how incredible her voice is.  It seems that I am not the only person that thinks so because her rise to fame is close to meteoric.  She has been written about by every blogger this side of Timbuktu and she has been on SNL and all the attention is on her right now.  I commented that her EP was incredible and "Video Games" and "Blue Jeans" were both amazing songs.  My concern was that she wasn't going to get enough diversity on her album to add any interest to the way she sings.  I was certainly wrong in that respect.  In fact, I think that the album sounds kind of schizophrenic and you don't really get to know who Lana is.  You certainly get a representation of her talents but a lot of the album seems to be all over the place.  Don't get me wrong, I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing that the album is a bit of a madcap romp through just about every square inch of the pop landscape but I would like to see her hone her focus a little on the next album.

One thing that Lana does on this album is Vamp.  And I am going to use that word in it's verb state because she vamps all over the album.  From her turn of phrase on "Video Games" to her absolute coy, sex laden usage of her sex on "Off to the Races", she is all woman and you know it fairly quickly on this album.  Not that there is anything wrong with that, she takes the tools she has and she uses them to the best of her ability and she does a damn fince job at it.  There is a definate difference in how she works the songs on the album, from her version of rapping on "National Anthem" to an almost lullaby fueled turn on "Carmen" crooning ever so sweetly. She has talent and is so fluid in her delivery that each track doesn't leave you wanting. They are mini-events that are self contained little morsels of goodness. You don't need to have any requisite knowledge from one track to another to understand where she's coming from. "Radio" is a pop ready single that could be played on the radio at any time.

Track List
  1. Born to Die
  2. Off to the Races
  3. Blue Jeans
  4. Video Games
  5. Diet Mountain Dew
  6. National Anthem
  7. Dark Paradise
  8. Radio
  9. Carmen
  10. Million Dollar Man
  11. Summertime Sadness
  12. This Is What Makes Us Girls
Don't write this album off as kitch or a one off. I think that if she is taken care of by her label and by her fans, we can hopefully see a long fulfilling career out of Lana. There is enough about her to keep her interesting and to keep her fans guessing. There is nothing more disappointing than an artist that has exhausted all of their tricks on one album. I think she has more up her sleeve and I can't wait to see where she goes from here.


Monday, February 6, 2012

Ladyhawke - Black, White & Blue

Pippa has created a beautiful homage to high fashion in the 70s with her first single off her second album, Anxiety.  The video is a re-creation of the classic 70′s film The Life of Laura Mars which starred the legendary Faye Dunaway and Pip is showcased wonderfully and the song is a fantastic choice for the first single.  It is an easy reminder of what she stands for and I think does a great job of whetting your appetite for the new album. It doesn't come screaming out of the gates and it isn't overly emotional - it's just an easy song that sets your expectations.  I am a huge fan of her and her first album blew me away.  I know her sophomore release will also be amazing and I can't wait for the release.

Alexandra Burke - Elephant

The video for the lead single off Alexandra's forthcoming album was recently released to a lukewarm reception in the UK. Fans are complaining that it isn't different enough from her first album and it doesn't show as much growth as an artist. I call shenanigans on that.  The difference between American Pop versus British Pop is vast and wide.  I love how British Pop is so fueled by dance music and is so upbeat and full of energy.  I think this is a solid example of a proper pop song that showcases her talent and shows off the amazing effortlessness that is her voice.  The range she has is incredible and she achieves her highs and lows like someone that has been in the industry for years and years and in reality she only won The X-Factor in 2008.   I really like the song but don't really understand why the producer, Erick Morillo, gets a "featuring" credit.  What do you think about the song?

Foxy Shazam - I Like It

There are a few bands that do things and do them well. What Foxy Shazam does well is blow the top off anything they attempt. With the video for their latest single, "I Like It", they excel at doing just that. From start to finish this is an exercise in excess and I like it. Not only do I like it, I love with it. It's a non-stop riot of a video showcasing everything that is great about the band. Eric owns every part of the stage and does the exact same with every part of the screen. Alex and Sky are also bouncing off the walls as they are prone to do. It's an amazing video and I can't get enough of it. I'm actually having a difficult time coming up with things to say about the video because it is so great. Just watch it and see for yourself.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

M.I.A. - Bad Girls

"Live fast, die young. Bad Girls do it well."

First and foremost, damn and double damn. This is what I'm talking about.  Music should be made to make you feel something.  It doesn't matter what it makes you feel as long as an emotion is invoked.  When you pair that with a video that is breath taking in it's visuals, you are sure to achieve a reaction.  I have been a fan of M.I.A. since I ran across "Galang" back in 2005.  Her music is born of her passion and her experiences and influences so this song is right up there with everything she does.  You almost have to watch the video twice because of how much is going on.  I'm not going to attempt to interpret it because I don't think I'm capable.

The song is powerful and resonates deeply even after the track is finished.  Using the traditional Middle Eastern beat structure is oh so clever because it gives the song an edge to it that sets it off right.  The visuals are stunning from beginning to end and you can see how what she's doing is in protest to the antiquated laws and traditions held by many people in the Middle Eastern nations.  From what I understand, there was no CGI used in making this video and the drivers are professional stunt drivers.  M.I.A has always spoken her mind in everything she does and this video is no different.  One YouTube commenter says:
A powerful display of feminist commentary, through a primary use of irony: merging Western constructions of female strength with the traditional patriarchal culture of the Middle East – which is largely seen by the West as backward. The result is a striking assemble of sex, speed, power, fashion, and ultimately – a statement of autonomy of masculine rule. This is exceedingly affective as an ironic incongruity in the regional setting.
And you can see how she is absolutely standing up for what she believes in with this video.  I can't wait to hear more from her new album because I am never not surprised by anything she does.  Also, the video was filmed in Morocco.  Thought that was an interesting fact.

Madonna - Give Me All Your Luvin' (Feat. M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj)

Let me just start this off by saying I am a fan of Madonna. I have been all my life. From "Material Girl" to "Cherish" to "This Used to Be Our Playground". True Blue is one of my most favorite albums of all time.  I've watched Who's That Girl more times than I can count.  I have her entire discography and I am one of those middle aged gays that worships the ground she so effortlessly walks on.  That is until now.  This song and this video are so shallow and so vapid, that I was going to stay totally away from talking about it but I just couldn't.

Madonna used to be ahead of the curve and she used to push boundaries so hard that there was no way they could push back.  Ray of Light  was so far ahead of it's time that critics and fans alike were gobsmacked.  Music was brilliant and everything she did in the 80s and 90s was just Madonna.  She was the innovator and a generation modeled themselves after her.  But then you get the first single off her new album, MDNA and with this song, it seems like she is just trying to keep up instead of lead the way.  Never have I felt like something reeked of desperation like this video does.

I long for Blonde Ambition.  Hell, I'll take Bedtime Stories over this drivel.  I can't even say that I like the chorus or the hook because all that I can hear is L U V Madonna Y O U, You Wanna!!  And every time the chant is chanted, my brains melt a little more.  The best thing I can say about this song is Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. and that doesn't say anything about Madonna.  Sure the video is flashy but with all the football references, it's hard not to see her pandering to the Superbowl crowd since she is going to be performing this song at the Half Time Show.

I really hope this isn't a sign of what I can expect from this new album because I'd hate to be stuck in the past with my old Madonna collection.

Little Jackie - Made4TV

Throwback.  Retro.  Stylized.  All words that could be used to describe the sound Little Jackie has put out into the universe with their new album, Made4TV and to deny any of those labels would be counter productive.  They can be lumped into the same category as other acts such as The Like, Nikki and Rich, Amy Winehouse, and others.  What makes them unique is their content is completely and totally current with today's sentiments.  The lyrics would be great sung over any beat but when they are sung over these nostalgiclly inspired sounds, it creates quite a fusion of sound.

Little Jackie is made up of Imani Coppola and Adam Pallin.  You may know Imani for her late 90s release, Chupacabra which spawned the single, "Legend of a Cowgirl".  I've been a fan of hers since then and I enjoy her solo work quite a bit.  But I do what I can to make sure I don't judge her new work off her old stuff.  Someone told me, "Don't judge me by my past, I don't live their anymore" and I think that is very true for Miss Coppola.   Adam Pallin, I am less than familiar with, but I know that he has worked with Chiddy Bang and I am a fan therefore I have a predisposition to like his other work.

Made4TV is all over the spectrum from Rock and Roll to Rhythm and Blues to Doo Wap with funk and soul covering all the bare spots.  The album is charged with not only unrequited sexual energy but also a tremndous amount of chemistry between Imani and Adam.  Songs like "31 Flavors", "Cock Block" and "Time of Your Life" may seem a bit over the top at first but when you actually listen to them they are less hardcore sex romps and more erotic adventures.  From start to finish the album has a ton of character and with not so much in the way of expectations of the new sound, it's hard not to be let down.  Imani's is totally capable of running all over the musical spectrum and she does a bang up job of it without ever sounding like she's over extended herself or done something she shouldn't have.  I can totally close my eyes and see Little Jackie opening up for the one and only Diana Ross and the Supremes at any point in their career.

It's a helluva album and it was released on Bandcamp so every penny made from the album sales go straight to the artist.  It's a full length album and it only costs $12 so you aren't getting raked over the coals.  I highly recommend this album to any one that's a fan of this sound or the artist.  You won't be disappointed.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Adam Lambert - Better Than I Know Myself

Adam's first video and single from his upcoming album, Trespass,  "Better Than I Know Myself" does everything that Adam does well.  It's an over-the-top power pop ballad tinged with his signature edgy-ness.  His voice is strong and the song is in the same vein of "Whatta You Want From Me".  I think those are the songs where Adam shines, the tortured, heartbreak songs where you are on the verge of doing something you know better than doing.

The video is super stylish and is a great representation of not only the song, but the feeling and emotion that's invoked.  It's a solid piece of pop music and I wish it would get more radio play that I know it's going to.

If you're an Adam Lambert fan, you're gonna like it.  If you're a fan of this style of pop music, it's right up your alley.  I like it can't wait to hear his new album.  He's one of the only contestants from American Idol I keep up with.  Kelly Clarkson is really the only other one.  Watch the video and leave me some comments.  Let me know what you think.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Zelliack - Noir Tone EP

You've probably never heard of Zelliack and that's fine (for now) but I am going to introduce you to probably the most important group you've heard of in the past 10 years.  Zelliack is a group comprised of Zack Ordway and Elliot Coleman and they hail from Texas/Maryland.  Their sound is a fusion of jazz, funk, rhythm and blues, pop, rock and a dash of smoothness that can only be described as legendary.  What makes this band an incredible feat to behold is not the fact they are masters of the smooth groove but the fact this is a super creative outlet for our band members.  What's that mean, you say?  Zack and Elliot are 2 of the main members of another group called Sky Eats Airplane.  To best appreciate their music, listen here.  Come on back when you're done and finish this review.  So are you surprised?  Maybe a little.  Both groups are amazing at what they do and they both have the ability to spread their message to two different sets of people.

When you sit down to listen to this EP, you are immediately wrapped in the silky goodness that is created when these two gentlemen create their art.  The songs are rich and filled with so many lush moments it's hard to pick one specific song or breakdown that is better than another.  Some of the songs are just so expansive but every second is jam packed with wall to wall sound that all comes together to bring  you an intense experience not like many I've heard in the music industry.  "These Hands" was the first song I heard off the EP and I immediately fell head over heels with the band,  Elliot's vocals are hands down some of the most controlled I have ever heard.  The places he can go are just ridiculous and what he is able to do on "These Hands" makes you immediately melt and become putty in those hands.  It's hard to say that some songs are super smooth and others aren't because they all are.  Each track has so much character and you can hear that they love what they do.  "Hargrove" is just this song that takes you all over the place and has so many different feelings and genres in it I am going to have to call it Gumbo Pop because they just pulled everything out of the fridge and threw it in a pot.  All five tracks just build on one another to create a total experience.  And by the last refrain of the bluesy, "Call Me Old Fashioned" you are just satisfied all over.  They do things that not many can and for that I am grateful.

One of the coolest things I think they did was release the album on BandCamp, a service that allows the artists to interact directly with the fans, no middleman, no overhead.  Just the band and the fans.  On top of removing all the excess baggage, they priced the album so that you pay what you want for it.  I think this is an amazing concept.  They start it at $1 and if that's what you want to pay, then so be it.  I'll call you a dick if you do because it's worth so much more.  It's an album that will get played over and over and they deserve every penny they earn from it because I tell you, and I am not lying, you are going to play the shit out of this record.  You have someone you want to slow things down with and set the mood... Noir Tone.  You want to impress your friends and show them that you are a classy guy... Noir Tone.  You want to wash away the dirt and the grime of a shitty day... Noir Tone.  It's going to pay you back so give til it hurts.  Zack and Elliot did.

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Zelliackband

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Carly Rae Jespen - Call Me Maybe

Every so often I run across a song that is so infectious and so full of sugary sweet saccharine goodness, that I have to just get enveloped in it's full on pop goodness and this song by Canadian born, Carly Rae Jespen is a song chocked full of everything nice.  It's a super cute song about how you feel when you first meet someone and you get up enough gumption to actually ask them out and give them your digits.  Do people still give the digits?  Am I using antiquated slang?  Any way, you exchange numbers with the stipulation, Call me... maybe.  I mean, if you want to call you can but I'm going to sit over here and pretend not to be waiting for the phone to ring.  It's all good, Aloof is my middle name.  So, yeah it's all of that and it's filled with a super poppy chorus and a hook that will send you into a diabetic coma.

The video is also super cute and makes you all swoony and feel like a 15 year old girl again (yes, even you... I see you over there.  I know you know what it feels like to be a 15 year old girl.)  It doesn't take itself too serious and it fits the song perfectly.  I would like to hear more from her to make sure I'm not gonna get "State Fair, Funnel Cake sick" from her music.  You know, the sick you get when you eat too much funnel cake even though you know you should have stopped eating it a long time ago but it's so cloyingly sweet, you just can't stop.  Anyway, watch the video and tell me what you think.

Little Jackie - 31 Flavors

My, my, my. You have certainly grown up, Ms. Coppola. That's right, ladies and gentlemen. You are looking at none other than Miss Imani Coppola, 90s songstress responsible for the ever so lovely earworm of a track, "Legend of a Cowgirl" and now Miss Thing is letting us have it with this power pop, soul/funk explosion.  Little Jackie is a project made up of Imani and Adam Pallin, long time friend and producer.  This is the first single I've heard from the group and I am a fan.  It is funky, it showcases Imani's vocals in a way that shows her maturity. It is an amazing step up from her solo days.

They have released several albums and they are doing BandCamp, which is an superb concept where the artists release the albums directly to the fans via digital download.  No middleman, no record store, just you and the artist so you know your money is going where it should.  Once I have time to listen to the album and give it a once over, I'll write about it and probably talk incessantly about it.  I was a super huge fan of Chupacabra, Imani's solo album so I hope I am not let down with this project.