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Music Is My King Size Bed

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Christina Aguilera Isn't Herself Tonight

I've been excited about hearing new stuff from Christina Aguilera ever since I heard some of the big names she's collaborating with this time around - Sia, Tricky Stewart, Le Tigre, Polow Da Don, Ladytron, Diplo, Linda Perry, etc.  That's quite an impressive list of, by and large, more electronically-influenced artists.  What kind of sound is Ms. Aguilera going for this time around?  I for one can't wait.
Sony/BMG started the hype early last week, teasing us music lovers with little clues posted on her website. A new countdown every day leading to a daily "unveiling."  It started with the title of her new single, "Not Myself Tonight," as well as the single sleeve artwork.  Next up we were able to see the song lyrics.  Next...a press release about the single and forthcoming album.  Then at the end of last week, an 18 second clip of the first single premiered.  I like what I hear so far, and turns out we don't have to wait too much longer for more of a taste.  The Polow Da Don-produced "Not Myself Tonight" is going to premiere in full on March 30th on Christina's website.  The single will impact radio on April 5th and will be available to download on April 13th.  The album, called Bionic, is due for release on June 8th. PHEW! Whirlwind!

Bionic is going to be Aguilera's first album in 4 years (since the 2006 throwback pop 2-disc Back To Basics) so it makes sense that Sony is pulling out all of the stops this time around.  This is a big deal! Christina Aguilera is one of the most recognized names and faces in pop music today.  Says Aguilera about Bionic:
"The artists I chose to work with added so many unique sonic layers to Bionic. My intention was to step into their world and what they do combined with my own vision and sound. The results were magic."
I appreciate that Aguilera can step back from her own style of music and appreciate different genres. It's probably very easy to pigeonhole yourself into one distinct style, but artists like Madonna have proven that the only way to stay on top is to evolve.  The fact that she helped handpick every collaborator on Bionic is a true testament to her artistry and appreciation for music.  According to Aguilera, the sound heard on Bionic is going to be unexpected:
“I was able to explore and create a fresh, sexy feel using both electronic and organic elements with subject matter ranging from playful to introspective.  I am so excited for my fans to hear the new sound.”

I choose to be an optimist here. I'm really excited about Aguilera's new sound and style.  As for the album artwork...I very much like it. More so than the single artwork for "Not Myself Tonight." To be fair, when "Not Myself Tonight"'s artwork was first unveiled, I did like it. But when I saw that it had nothing to do with the Bionic album artwork, I became discouraged. I prefer a certain amount of continuity in an album artwork campaign. Oh well. Not a big deal. The music likely more than make up for it.

Check out Christina Aguilera on the web:

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New Look, New Blog Post

Hello friends! It's been far too long. You'll notice a couple of differences on my blog. Well...probably one and that's the layout. I am loving Blogger's new layout design tools. I thought it was time for a change so I just went ahead and changed things over. Still has the same look overall but I'm using a new template.

I thought I would EASE my way back into blogging with a "back to basics" approach - the all too simple "Album Artwork Update." Yeah, I know it doesn't take too long to upload a bunch of pictures but hey - give me a break! I need to take it slow here.

So without further ado...

Oh...Side Note: Some of this information might seem a bit out of date. This is likely because I started the post a couple of weeks ago and never finished it. Forgive me.

Lady Gaga and Beyonce TelephoneI don't really think this song needs any introduction. Written by Lady Gaga, Rodney Jerkins, LaShawn Daniels, Lazonate Franklin and Beyoncé "Telephone" had one of the most anticipated video premieres ever...and for good reason. It's a masterpiece! If you haven't checked it out yet, what are you waiting for? Check it out HERE. I love the single sleeve here. It mirrors the whole Kill Bill influence seen throughout the video in terms of the fonts and still photos. Download the remix EP on iTunes HERE. You can also pick up the video HERE.

Allison Iraheta Scars"Scars" is the second single from American Idol's third runner up Allison Iraheta last season and it's a ballad. Debut single "Friday I'll Be Over U" was cute, uptempo and fun but didn't really showcase Iraheta's chops. "Scars" should do that and then some.

Alicia Keys and Beyonce Put It In A Love Song
Alicia Keys Un-Thinkable (I'm Ready)"Put It In A Love Song" served as Alicia Keys' official 3rd single in the U.S. ("Try Sleeping With A Broken Heart" will serve as her third UK single, due out May 24th) and was released in January. "Un-Thinkable (I'm Ready)" will be her official 4th single and was released to radio on March 15th. It's really a shame that Love Song featuring Beyoncé didn't have more of an impact on radio as it's one of my favorites from The Element of Freedom. "Un-Thinkable (I'm Ready)" is a ballad featuring Drake produced by Noah "40" Shebib. It's got a really stripped down, raw feeling. Not as "fun" as it's predecessor but it really showcases Keys' vulnerability and talent.

Adam Lambert Whataya Want From Me"Whataya Want From Me" is Adam Lambert's second single from his debut album For Your Entertainment. After the crazy debacle that was his performance at the AMAs last year, Lambert and his label seemed anxious to move on. Lambert made a series of TV appearances performing the ballad. Written by P!nk, Max Martin and Johan Shellback, the track was originally intended for P!nk's Funhouse album, but never made the final cut. The song is growing on my considerably, thanks in part due to the remixes by Fonzerelli that have surfaced. Check out the video HERE and check out THIS stripped down Australian performance.

Hole Skinny Little BitchNow I've never been a fan of Hole OR Courtney Love for that matter, but I'm always up for a good comeback/trainwreck. To be honest, I was kind of excited about Courtney's long-in-the-works solo career that never materialized so it will be interesting to see how this goes. "Skinny Little Bitch" will serve as Hole's first single off of Hole's fourth album, Nobody's Daughter and fourteenth single overall. The song isn't something I would normally listen to but it's growing on me. After a 10 year hiatus, it's safe to say that this is one of the years most anticipated comebacks. Download it on iTunes HERE.

Estelle Freak"Freak" featuring Kardinal Offishall is the new David Guetta-produced single for UK R&B singer Estelle, who took the U.S. (and the world) by storm two years ago with her Top Ten single "American Boy,"featuring American rapper Kanye West. This time around she's pairing up with Canadian rapper/producer Kardinal Offishall on a decidedly LESS R&B/Hip-Hop sounding track. "Freak" is an electro JAM with Guetta's trademark beats all over it. Check out the cool video HERE. Download it on iTunes HERE.

Diana Vickers OnceDiana Mae Vickers is the latest pop star to come off of the UK talent show The X-Factor. Vickers competed in the 2008 series (Alexandra Burke, JLS), ultimately being signed with RCA Records. "Once" is the debut single (April 19th) from her forthcoming album Songs from the Tainted Cherry Tree, due to be released May 3rd. After X-Factor, Vickers went on to star in her first West End show, The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, showcasing her talent on the stage. Nerina Pallot, Ellie Goulding, Starsmith, Alexis Strum, Patrick Wolf, and Guy Sigsworth are just some of the big names Vickers' collaborated with while making this album. "Once" is a beautiful song (with a beautiful video) and I think she has lots of potential to become another X-Factor success story.

Cascada Pyromania"Pyromania" is a new single from Cascada, and while it's not part of the Evacuate The Dancefloor album, it's got a very similar sound. According to lead singer Natalie Horler, Cascada is working on a new album so in all likelihood "Pyromania" will make an appearance. I like the cheesiness of the song. While I don't think the track will have much influence on mainstream radio here in the U.S., I think that this song has the same potential to do well in the clubs. I'll always be a closet Cascada fan. They are SUCH a guilty pleasure! Check out the new video HERE.

Paloma Faith Upside Down"Upside Down" is Paloma Faith's 4th UK single, released on March 15th. I am a HUGE fan when an artist's artwork all follows a theme and so far Faith's has been consistently top notch. Colorful costumes, crazy hair and makeup...I love it! The song is also one of my favorites from Do You Want The Truth or Something Beautiful? It's got a great old fashioned jazzy feel to it. The video is also fantastic, as are the club remixes from Cahill. This is one artists who I would die to se live here in the U.S. I think we're ready for a Paloma Faith invasion.

Kimberly Wyatt Not Just A DollPoor Pussycat Dolls. They keep losing members left and right! With all of the girls now working on solo projects, Robin Antin and Nicole Scherzinger both are saying that some "new faces" will be coming on board. Sounds like a reinvention. I honestly can't say that losing Carmit Bachar was all that devastating to the group's success but losing EVERYONE except for the lead singer? That could be potentially very jarring. I mean, who are we's always been Nicole Scherzinger front and center with her back up dancers and I can't foresee that changing so who really cares who's in the group, right? As long as the songs are hot, that's all that really matters? At any rate - Kimberly Wyatt has released a new promo single called "Not Just A Doll" in which she claims to be a "dreamer" and that she's "not just a doll." Nothing spectacular, but feel free to check it out on iTunes. The real solo album I'm looking forward to from this crew is Melody Thornton, though it would be interesting to hear what Jessica Sutta comes up with. I quite liked her in German DJ/Remixer Paul Van Dyk's "White Lies."

Taio Cruz and Ludacris Break Your Heart
Taio Cruz is another fantastic British artists that I've been familiar with for quite some time, who's starting to get popular here in the States. His single "Break Your Heart" was released in America at the end of February and went all the way to the top of Billboard's Hot 100 chart. Pretty impressive for a first single! I'm guessing that the re-jiggered American version featuring Rapper Ludacris didn't hurt. U.S. radio stations do tend to prefer it's pop music with R&B/Hip-Hop influences, so Taio Cruz's blend of the two musical genres should do him very well here in states, and I couldn't be more thrilled. I've already turned several friends onto his beats. America - get used to Taio Cruz. He's gonna be huge. Now...if only the video for his next UK single would finally premiere. Cruz is releasing "Dirty Picture" featuring the ever popular Ke$ha on April 26th. It will serve as the official third UK single. If the U.S. label were smart, they'd release it as his second U.S. single. Ke$ha is sort riding high at the moment.

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