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Jewel Wicker

OVO Sound/Warner Bros. Records Inc

OVO Sound/Warner Bros. Records Inc

“All the things that I put a hold on just for you to hit me with a hold on.”

Majid Jordan dropped a new single a few days ago and it’s proof that Drake was smart in snatching them up and signing them to OVO.

Drake premiered the new single, “My Love,” last week during an interview with Zane Lowe on Beats 1, according to Billboard, because he’s team Apple Music and the streaming war for exclusive content rages on.

Sonically the simple production makes way for the duo and Drake’s verses that are brimming with questions, regret and a smidgen of resentment.

“I’m not your trophy baby I won’t let you show me off or shine me up or line me up,” Drake sings at one point during the song.

It will be tempting to subtweet the lyrics of “My Love” at your unofficial boo, but you must resist.

You may remember Majid Jordan from Drake’s hit song “Hold On, We’re Going Home.” Back then people assumed the duo was one person. Since them they have release an awesome EP, A Place Like This, to cement their sound and place on the OVO roster. The 2014 project featured songs such as “Forever,” “Her” and “A Place Like This.” Continue reading

Karmin in “Sugar” video

Karmin in “Sugar” video

Rihanna’s “Bitch Better Have Me” is the very definition of #Boss.

The menacing pop cut finds Rihanna talking her sh*t in a way that is completely expected, without feeling old, and the video takes the lyrics to an entirely different level. (There really is a kidnapped wife in the backseat of her foreign car, oh my God.)

Karmin’s new cover of the single is equally as badass, but in a different way.

The group turns the chant-worthy title into a melodic hook and takes on RihRih’s verses over a bass guitar.

Over the past few years it has become apparent that Karmin is still trying to find their lane in the pop world, but I like this new sound. A lot. It’s the same nostalgic feel they went for with “Sugar” last year and it totally works.

I only they could capture everyone’s attention and make them believe they’re worth all of the hype again. Continue reading

Alessia Cara covers Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood"

Alessia Cara covers Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood”

“Bad Blood” is one of my least favorite Taylor Swift songs. I’ve said it since 1989 was released and I still feel that way even though the song has become a single.

For me, its only saving grace is the appearance of Kendrick Lamar on the single version. Kendrick makes everything better.

Newcomer Alessia Cara took on the hit single for BBC Radio 1 and she stuck to the single version instead of the album version, meaning she mostly sung Kendrick Lamar’s verses and the hook. It’s not hard to rap along to King Kendrick’s verses, but Cara did it with ease. And all while adding her own style to it.

I’m not ashamed to say I like this cover better than Swift’s original version.

The 18-year-old’s flow and the way she sings the chorus are so awesome that the cover garnered attention from Swift.

And, thus, Taylor Swift made the day of yet another teenager.

Also, if you’re wondering, Cara’s original material is awesome, too. Her song “Here” is all about being socially awkward at a party and it’s something I’m sure a lot of introverts can relate to.

School Boy/Interscope Records

School Boy/Interscope Records

These past few weeks have been hard for me.

Ever since I realized 2015 would not be the year that Carly Rae Jepsen finally received the justice she deserves, I’ve just felt numb. What is there to love about a world that doesn’t recognize that her 80s-inspried pop music is some of the best of it’s kind in recent years?

Anyway, there’s a new Bleachers remix of “I Really Like You.” It sounds just like a Bleachers remix should.

Heavy on the percussion.

MORE SYNTHS.

And all without taking away from that infectiously repetitive chorus.

It’s good stuff, indeed.

It won’t do anything to help with album sales, though, since the album is already in Japan (and, thus, has already leaked globally), but doesn’t come out in America until August 21.

It’s very typical of Jack Antonoff to provide hope where there is none. It’s like a requirement for all fun. band members, I think. (Assuming fun. will continue to be a thing in the future. OMG. What if it doesn’t?!) Continue reading

Facebook

Facebook

There has never been a time in the history of this blog that I have not blogged for over a month. Until now.

For a little over half a year now I have been struggling to figure out the identity of my blog now that I am an entertainment reporter for another publication and cannot write about all of the same artists I usually write about. As a result, I’ve struggled to stay motivated.

I’m still not sure what shape my blog will take while I’m at my current job, but I’m determined to figure it out. I’m much happier when I’m writing about music.

Anyway, I’m returning with a song that is something you should to listen if you’re going through a breakup.

Ann-Marie’s “Stole” is a striking tale about a failing relationship that will probably stop you in your tracks.

“A shadow’s laying where you should. So tell me where you’ve gone with my heart,” she sings in the song’s hook.

Ann-Marie’s voice contains a hint of raspiness that gives her vocals a bit of edge over the steady percussion. The instrumental is simple, as are the lyrics. It’s her voice that ties it all together with a passion that is heartbreaking.

The British artist currently sings with popular English band Rudimental.

Listen to the song and share your thoughts below. Continue reading

Epic

Epic

In case you forgot, Tamar Braxton doesn’t just host the talk show The Real. Braxton has unveiled her new single to remind you that she has vocals for days ahead of her new album Calling All Lovers (July 31).

“If I Don’t Have You” is a refreshing R&B cut about being hopelessly in love. The soulful cut, produced by Da Internz, definitely centers around Braxton’s vocal prowess.

“If I don’t have you, cuts me to the core, I can’t love no more,” she sings, delivering heartfelt ad libs over background harmonies.

SHE.DID.THAT.

Get every bit of your life below.

(In case you missed it: Braxton released a video for the Aaliyah-sampling “Let Me Know” last year.) Continue reading

D∆WN in "Titans/James Dean" video

D∆WN in “Titans/James Dean” video

Dawn Richard has dropped her last name and is now going by D∆WN.

Her first release under the name change is the music video for a new song, “James Dean,” ahead of her forthcoming EP RedemptionHeart. The visuals actually include two parts, the first being for a Blackheart interlude titled “Titans.”

I’m always amazed by D∆WN’s videos and what she manages to display on a seemingly small budget. Her visuals usually take place on one set with minimal props. This time the credit for making the singer’s project visually appealing is Monty Marsh. In the new release, D∆WN can be seen dancing alone and with two male dancers as her hair blows. There’s a fog machine and mood lighting for added effect.

As for how the new song sounds, the signer’s vocal delivery sounds a lot like Frank Ocean’s on the second half of “Pyramids” and the lyrical content is isn’t anything novel (“He said love don’t really matter, you can just be my Marilyn.”).

The visuals are definitely the draw here. Which is fine, because they’re pretty stunning. Continue reading

Capitol Records & Schoolboy Records

Capitol Records & Schoolboy Records

Tori Kelly’s Max Martin-produced single “Nobody Love” ended up being the perfect mainstream introduction for the YouTube singer and now she is ready to follow it up with another solid release.

Following the release of the title track “Unbreakable Smile,” Kelly has unveiled the lyric video for the album’s second single “Should’ve Been Us.”

“Should’ve been a fire, should’ve been a perfect storm,” Kelly sings on the made-for-radio track. She sounds amazing despite the fact that the lyrics are incredibly reductive compared to the songs on her EPs.

The lyric video for the single follows a woman as she meets up with a love interest and displays their tumultuous relationship through dance. The catch? We never see above the couple’s torsos.

“Nobody Love” wasn’t a top 40 hit, but it did what it needed to do in getting Kelly’s name out and getting her on major stages such as the one at the Billboard Music Awards.

Let’s just hope she can capitalize off of that now. (With Scooter Braun at the wheel, I’m not too concerned.)

Unbreakable Smile will be released on June 23. Continue reading

Chuck Willis

Chuck Willis

I haven’t loved Joy Williams’ new solo material so far.

Maybe it’s because I’m craving the dynamics that The Civil Wars had sonically.

Since the group broke up, Joy Williams has been pretty vocal about her attempt to speak to John Paul White, her former bandmate, while White has failed to even utter her name during a Grammy acceptance speech. It’s bizarre. Dramatic, even.

It’s odd enough to make you wonder what went wrong and caused such a deep riff in a duo that once had such palpable chemistry.

Williams addresses the split without going into much details in the recently released “What A Good Woman Does”

“Hear me, I haven’t lost my voice without you near me. I could tell the truth about you leaving, but that’s not what a good woman does,” she sings during the piano ballad.

William’s soft vocals shine over the sparse production as she delivers lyrics that are simply heartbreaking.

We still don’t know exactly what happened to the duo, but it’s clear the scars from the fallout still haven’t healed.

Williams is scheduled to release her solo album, Venus on June 30.

Listen to “What A Good Woman Does” and share your thoughts below. Continue reading

TITLE 9 / PRIMARY WAVE / BMG

TITLE 9 / PRIMARY WAVE / BMG

Melanie Fiona is back and her new single will probably be on repeat through summer.

“Bite the Bullet” features the sharp lyrics we’ve come to expect from Fiona, over live horns and a Caribbean-influenced production.

“I remember when you said you loved me, three little words that burned into my soul. Maybe you didn’t mean those things you told me. Maybe you really didn’t mean those words at all,” she sings before the infectious chorus comes in.

Comparing the love from an unfaithful lover to a loaded gun, Fiona keeps in touch with her core audience. Her fans want to hear tales of heartbreak and resilience from her and that’s exactly what she’s delivered with this new single.

You’ll want to listen to it more than once for sure. The song is now available on iTunes.

Fiona released her third studio album The MF Life in 2012.  Continue reading