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Tag: Pop (21-30 of 1130)

Hear the late-season summer song vibes of Ugly Kids Club's 'I Wanna Be Bad'

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Nashville duo Ugly Kids Club—singer Aliegh Shields and producer Steve Wilson—cite noisy underground duos like Sleigh Bells and Crystal Castles as some of their main influences, but on their new single “I Wanna Be Bad” mixes in a lot of Top 40 pop sugar with their high-density electronics. The result sounds a little like Katy Perry fronting a digital reproduction of an ’80s arena rock band, and although it’s coming in a little late in the season, it might have just enough summer song vibes to make you forget that fact.

Their album Head Games is out Sept. 30.

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Kid Sister is back with a new sound, a new philosophy, and a new alter ego

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When Melisa Young, aka Kid Sister, released her breakthrough single “Pro Nails” back in 2007, hip-hop, pop, and dance music all still existed pretty much in their own lanes, and blending them together the way she did was still a largely unexplored idea. The song obviously didn’t take itself too seriously— it’s about getting your nails did, obviously — but it was revolutionary in its own low-key way, and after Kanye jumped on a remix, it became a smash hit in the club scene where a new generation of rappers and dance DJs were just starting to mingle.

“Pro Nails” led to Young being signed to Downtown Records, but despite the backing of a big label, production work by future EDM superstars like A-Trak, Rusko, Steve Angello, and Sebastian Ingrosso, and a plethora of hooks, her 2009 debut album Ultraviolet failed to live up to its high expectations. As the hybrid style she’d developed spread from the underground to the Hot 100, Young herself faded from the public eye.

At the end of August, nearly five years after Ultraviolet dropped, Young released  DUSK2DAWN- The Diary of Jane Jupiter, a mixtape that finds her going harder than she’s ever gone before, with a new sound with a noisier edge and a newfound interest in writing on topics far deeper than manicures. EW got her on the phone to talk about the transition.

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Hear Sirma's classical-influenced electronic pop on her EP 'Instincts'

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Turkish singer Sirma is only 24 years old, but she has already lived several different lives in music. She began her career early on as a classically trained pianist, transitioned into jazz singing in high school, recorded with Akon and Keri Hilson as the Turkish representative on the official 2010 World Cup theme, and joined an experimental rock band in Boston before finally striking out on her own. You can hear echoes of her former musical ventures here and there on her new EP Instincts, but its main focus is juxtaposing elegant pop hooks with aggressive electronics and an intriguing hint of Turkish classical music.

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Swedish singer-songwriter Tove Lo is an emotional rollercoaster

Even in an age where music has become immediately accessible to anyone in the world with an Internet connection and no need to wait for import CDs to make their way across the ocean and into Tower Records, it’s not uncommon for songs to find their American audience months or even years after breaking in Europe. In fact, some fairly sizeable hits have happened that way—Disclosure’s “Latch,” Icona Pop’s “I Love It,” and Ellie Goulding’s “Lights,” for example.

There are a handful of such singles on the Hot 100 right now. Among them: Swedish singer-songwriter Tove Lo’s “Habits (Stay High),” which this week reached No. 23, its highest point in the 13 weeks it’s spent on the chart. Lo initially self-released “Habits” in March of last year, after which it was picked up by a label and reissued in December. But it wasn’t until this past March, with the official release of a remix that the California duo Hippie Sabotage had originally posted online, that the song really took off. The remix hit the top 10 in a half-dozen countries in Europe and Oceania, and was picked up by a number of influential American pop blogs.

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Hear HAERTS' transcendent new single 'Giving Up' (and watch the lyric video)

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New York City electropop quartet HAERTS went from utter obscurity to an extraordinary amount of attention in a very short time after releasing their first single back in 2012. Their forthcoming self-titled debut album, which drops Oct. 28, has turned out to be one of the most hotly anticipated releases of the year, and the lead single, “Giving Up,” proves it’s worth believing the hype: a propulsive stroboscopic synthesizer provides a launch pad for delicately arranged layers of chiming guitars, airy synths, and a vocal melody delivered by vocalist Nini Fabi that builds to a sublime climax, delivering the gravity-defying sensation of a perfectly crafted pop tune.

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Dan Bodan delivers heartfelt electropop on 'Jaws of Life'

Electronic musician Dan Bodan came of age in Montreal’s fertile noise scene, but after he was exposed to Berlin nightclubs while studying abroad, he turned his attention to more coherent electronic expression. His debut album, Soft, comes out Oct. 28 on the esteemed DFA Records label.

Like DFA founder and LCD Soundsystem front man James Murphy, Bodan mixes danceable beats with aching pop hooks and deeply expressive vocals. He also shares the same disregard for genre boundaries; while the album centers around electropop, there are bits of techno and drum ‘n’ bass floating around in the mix.

Soft‘s lead single is “Jaw of Life,” which blends rich analog synth sounds, the funkier end of the ’80s pop spectrum, and Bodan’s voice into a lovely and unguardedly intimate ballad. READ FULL STORY

Charli XCX on her new album 'Sucker' and getting angry at pop music: An EW Q and A

At last night’s MTV Video Music Awards, Charli XCX was one of the evening’s stealth victors. Though she did not cash in on any of her five nominations (four for her turn on Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” one for Artist To Watch), her pre-show performance of “Boom Clap” ended up being one of the most compelling of the evening.

She also dropped some details about her forthcoming album Sucker, which will arrive on October 17, and unleashed the video for the album’s second single “Break the Rules.”

The clip, which features actress Rose McGowan, is a timely piece of back-to-school anarchy—one last summer tantrum before the leaves fall off the trees and beach jams start sounding passé.  READ FULL STORY

Nicki Minaj vs. Taylor Swift: Who won this week's music-video showdown?

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On Monday, when Taylor Swift unveiled her new single in front of a select group of Swifties (and an untold number of viewers watching it on webstream), she did so with the casual confidence of someone with a large enough and devoted enough fan base to ensure it a No. 1 spot. And according to Billboard, “Shake It Off” very well may debut at the top of the Hot 100 next week, finally knocking Magic!’s strangely resilient “Rude” out of the place it’s held since mid-July. She’ll face some heavy competition when she gets there, though—much of it from female artists. Ariana Grande and Iggy Azalea have basically owned the chart for the entire summer. Between the two of them they currently have five out of the top 10 songs in the country, including their team-up “Problem.”

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Listen to the B*Witched comeback album you didn't know existed

This is not a drill: B*Witched released an album in April 2014.

I’ll let that sink in. April 2014. It’s now August. That means that for the past three to four months, there have been six new B*Witched songs just floating around in existence that fill a bubblegum pop void few people were aware needed filling.

The details: Back in December 2013, the four-member Irish dance-pop group began offering their new EP—Champagne or Guinness—to fans on PledgeMusic, the music-only answer to Kickstarter. In addition to the EP, they sold studio visits, dance classes, and other fun Irish things. In April, the entire thing dropped, and it’s… glorious. Entirely. The first single, “Love & Money,” was released way back in 2013 as something of a tease to the new material. It’s certainly rocking more of a modern vibe than the group’s old stuff, as if all four members turned into little Kelly Clarksons in the interim:

The new single, “The Stars Are Ours,” appears to be the first proper single in anticipation of a wide album drop this September. If you’ve ever thought, “Wow, I wonder what B*Witched would sound like if they recorded a song with Avicii at a pub,” then proceed:

The title track “Champagne or Guinness” is more like the get-up-and-jig anthem you’ve been waiting 15 years for, with a little “Call Me Maybe” string section to it.

“Waiting All This Time” is a little less intense in its EDM breakdown, but still a sheer delight. It’s like waiting for the bass to drop at the loveliest garden party you’ve ever attended.

I have less to say about “Fighting For the Drop,” which is definitely the song you would skip but which is still perfectly acceptable because IT’S A NEW B*WITCHED ALBUM.

And of course, the ballad “We’ve Forgotten How,” which would make for a really great soundtrack during the part of any ’90s teen movie when there’s a really sad misunderstanding between Mandy Moore and her onscreen love interest.

Who is B*Witched, you ask? You’ll remember the group every time someone says the phrase “C’est La Vie,” the name of the band’s silly 1998 pop song that was aimed at kids but was apparently really about sex the whole time. They followed up with “Rollercoaster,” “To You I Belong,” and the most important cover of “Mickey” ever recorded for Bring It On. The group sold over 3 million albums at the height of their success in 2002, then split up soon afterwards. In 2006, two of the members—sisters Edele and Keavy Lynch—began a duo sister act, but in October 2012, the group reunited for a British reality show. And now they’ve officially returned.

Welcome back, girls. C’est la freaking vie.

Love it or loathe it? EW debates Taylor Swift's 'Shake It Off'

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Taylor Swift dropped some big news yesterday—her forthcoming album 1989, inspired by the sounds of “late ’80s pop,” will debut on October 27. The singer also released the album’s first single and music video. EW writers Kyle Anderson (who knows a lot about music) and Marc Snetiker (who really, really likes music) debate the merits of Swift’s latest song—and whether it’s a hit or a miss.

MARC: Do you know what it feels like when Kermit the Frog dances? When he waves his hands in the air and lets his head wobble freely, as if little more than fabric and stitching is holding it together? That, perhaps, is how to best describe the dance I haven’t been able to stop doing—alone, in my office, with or without the lights on—since Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” dropped.

KYLE: I should begin by saying I don’t have any fundamental problem with Taylor Swift. She’s made a lot of songs that I like, and she’s made a lot of songs I don’t particularly care for. I’ve enjoyed work that she has done both in a pure country form (“The Best Day” is a tremendous acoustic story-song) and when she’s gone totally pop (“We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” remains my jam). But I find “Shake It Off” pretty repulsive for a number of reasons. I’ll start with the one that has always driven me nuts about Taylor Swift: Her inexplicable persecution complex. Sure, her personal life gets written about in tabloids, and she’s had to put up with her share of paparazzi, but she isn’t affected any more than any other famous person, and she’s spun the prurient interest in her paramours into radio gold time and time again. The whole “Haters gonna hate” refrain rings so unbelievably false to me. READ FULL STORY

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