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Tag: Pop (11-20 of 1107)

'Billboard' Hot 100 recap: Vine stars and a new European import

Vine is beginning to follow in YouTube’s footsteps as an unlikely social-media launchpad for musical talent. Last month, Shawn Mendes—who got his first real break when a six-second clip of him singing Justin Bieber’s “As Long As You Love Me” went viral on the video-sharing platform—debuted his first single, “Life of the Party,” at number 24 on the Hot 100. Mendes had virtually no radio support or traditional marketing, but he does have 3 million followers on Vine, and the single sold 148,000 copies in its first week.

The latest Vine celebrities to land a song on the Hot 100 are Jack and Jack, a pair of recent high school graduates from Omaha, Nebraska who currently have 4.3 million followers on their shared Vine account. Their fan base skews young and female—a profile in their high school newspaper says it “consists almost entirely of 12- to 17-year-old girls,” and in the piece they claim to tailor the content they produce for that demographic. READ FULL STORY

Iggy Azalea, Rita Ora break out katanas and jumpsuits for 'Black Widow'

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Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora’s song “Black Widow” raises a lot of questions—like what does it mean that Rita Ora wants to love somebody until they hate her and also like a black widow? And what is up with Iggy’s tautologically fraught line, “If it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t be stuck singing this song?” And has someone, possibly a close friend or family member, talked to them about the fact that getting into “Fatal Attraction s–t” isn’t something they should be so proud of, and maybe they should consider a course of intensive therapy?

The video for the track only keeps the questions coming. Why is Iggy Azalea working in a greasy spoon with a poster in the kitchen that clearly has a drawing of her on it? What kind of high-intensity boob tape are she and Rita Ora using in those jumpsuits? And did anyone think that there were people out there who were begging to see Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora try their hand at comedic acting?

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Get hooked on Kero Kero Bonito's 'Sick Beat'

There’s a thriving electronic music scene, concentrated in London but extending around the world via the Internet, that’s defined not so much by a particular sound but by the way the artists involved combine sounds. They mix and match across genre lines in a hyperactively curatorial way that resembles a sonic equivalent of what Tumblr power users do with images and video. One excellent example of this micro-movement—which thankfully hasn’t yet been cursed with a corny name like “chillwave” or “PBR&B”—is “Sick Beat” by London trio Kero Kero Bonito. The song throws bits and pieces of dancehall, hip-hop, J-pop, and ’90s club music into the air like confetti and what comes down is similarly colorful, lightweight, and fun for fun’s sake.

The fashion-forward electronic label Double Denim will be reissuing Kero Kero Bonito’s Intro Bonito on Aug. 25. Until then, you can just keep “Sick Beat” playing on a loop, which is what’s been going on at the EW office all day.


Use Ella Henderson's new song 'Glow' to discover her better song 'Ghost'

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Back in the spring, British artist Ella Henderson released her debut single “Ghost,” a catchy pop thumper co-written by OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder, otherwise known as He Who Owns the Pop Hook. My great regret is that I didn’t write anything about it back then, since it quickly rose to the top of my summer playlist and became one of the mainstays in an otherwise meh season for pop. (No offense, “Bang Bang” and “I Will Never Let You Down.”)

On Tuesday, Henderson soft-released the video for her second single “Glow,” and it’s a solid follow-up track that shines some more light on her pop identity: There’s a little Ellie Goulding in the tone, some Leona Lewis in the upper range, and maybe just a little Cheryl Cole without all that boy band-busting choreography. Check it out below:

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Q&A: Ryn Weaver talks about Internet fame and letting her roots show

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When Ryn Weaver posted “OctaHate” on SoundCloud in late June she was a virtual unknown, but she had some important friends, including Passion Pit frontman Michael Angelakos and songwriter/producer Benny Blanco, who’s had a hand in a number of huge songs including “Moves Like Jagger” and “California Gurls.” After another friend, Jessie Ware, plugged the track on Twitter, it became a literal overnight sensation, racking up plays by the hundreds of thousands as it spread beyond Ware’s fan base and exploded all over the Internet.

Last Friday she released her debut EP, Promises, and its lead single is already beginning to repeat the success of “OctaHate.” In the lead-up to its release, Weaver spoke to EW on the phone about what it’s like to become a viral Internet pop star.

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CHVRCHES bring 'Mother We Share' to Guitar Center Sessions

The eighth season of the DirectTV-based concert series Guitar Center Sessions has leaned heavily on ’90s acts like Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, Damon Albarn, and Snoop Dogg, but for its penultimate episode they’ve brought in a group that’s only just started to bloom. This Sunday, Aug. 10, the show will feature Scottish trio CHVRCHES, whose debut LP, The Bones of What You Believe, has been steadily accumulating fans since it was released last fall, making them one of the more popular acts in the electropop revolution that’s leapt up from the indie underground and started taking over the pop charts.

Here’s a first look at their performance of “Mother We Share,” one of the standout songs from a catalog that’s full of exceptional pop hooks and delicious electronic production.

Dance-floor queen Kiesza goes acoustic to cover Nirvana

One of the most delightful singles of this summer is Kiesza’s “Hideaway,” which has been steadily climbing the charts off the strength of its very accurate emulation of the kind of club-pop that ruled radio in the early ’90s. It’s a great sound, and a great point in the retro revival cycle to specialize in it, but the Calgary-born singer appears to have more range than the average dance-floor diva.

For her installment of British music mag NME‘s Basement Sessions video series, Kiesza covers Nirvana’s “Heart-Shaped Box,” an unexpected choice made even more surprising by the sparse arrangement of bluesy vocals and flamenco-inflected fingerpicked guitar that she brings to it.

Maddie and Tae give Nashville a shakeup with 'Girl in a Country Song'

Ever notice how every country song on the radio kind of sounds the same? So did Maddie Marlow and Tae Dye, a teenage country duo who are currently storming up the charts with the single “Girl in a Country Song.” Built around the same drum-loop-kissed, honky-tonk hop that dominates the country airwaves, Maddie and Tae stick it to all the clichés that drive the problematic subset of the mainstream Nashville sound dubbed “bro country.”

“We were going into a songwriting session one day, and we had just been in the car listening to country radio like we do every single day, because we love these songs and we love these guys,” explains the 18-year-old Tae. “We were laughing, because all these lyrics were very similar, and there were a lot of clichés in them. So what we did was we made this checklist, and on the checklist it had bare feet, cutoffs, tanlines, tan legs, but the most important one is the girl.” READ FULL STORY

Get on Tkay Maidza's level with the gleefully noisy 'U-Huh'

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Eighteen-year-old Australian Tkay Maidza is the closest thing we have right now to a reincarnation of early M.I.A.—that is, M.I.A. as she was before the massive record deals and truffle fries and Madonna co-signs, when she was making a big racket out of sounds collected from around the world with the chaotic but innocent glee of a toddler smashing toy trucks together. Over the past year, she has released a string of singles that mix together glitchy electronic noise, hip-hop’s rolling rhythms (not to mention its unabashed swagger), and some truly uncanny natural pop instincts—and in the process, she has become a cult star in the increasingly influential antipodean EDM scene.

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Watch Charli XCX slay 'I Want Candy'

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Between her assists on massive singles by Iggy Azalea (“Fancy”) and Icona Pop (“I Love It”) and her own chart-scaling single “Boom Clap,” Charli XCX has earned herself a well-deserved reputation as a go-to performer of potently exuberant, candy-colored pop songs. There are few songs in the modern pop songbook that fit that same description as well as “I Want Candy,” originally performed by an ad hoc group called the Strangeloves in 1965, but thoroughly owned by Bow Wow Wow since they recorded a cover in 1982. So it’s not unexpected that Charli covering “I Want Candy” would work out pretty well.

What is surprising is how raw and–to use a shudderingly uncool word–rocking it is. Charli has been touring in front of a crack power trio, and “I Want Candy” is a much better showcase for their skills than acoustic versions of “Boom Clap.” Their version is just a little too fast and just a little too loud, and it’s pretty ragged around the edges, which is to say pretty much the ideal way of tackling this particular song. (Thanks in part to the usual lack of practice time before promotional duties like covering songs for internet TV shows, probably.) If Charli ever decides pop stardom isn’t for her, she and her girls could probably find a home making noise on the DIY punk circuit without much trouble. READ FULL STORY

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