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Instagram (Alessia Cara)

Instagram (Alessia Cara)

Alessia Cara’s cover of Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” is amazing so expectations for her covers are now automatically high.

After meeting fellow Canadian star Drake recently, Cara took on his latest release “Hotline Bling.”

Like many of Drake’s songs, the catchy track is a delicate balance of Drake reminiscing on an old relationship and wondering what his ex is doing in his absence.

The bouncy production serves as a pleasant disguise but emotionally the song is a lot to unpack. Maybe that’s why Cara’s acoustic cover falls flat.

It’s not bad. It’s just not particularly memorable. There are not places for her to showcase her beautiful voice and the emotion just isn’t there. I don’t believe Cara is really worried about her boo smoking and getting nasty with someone else based on this cover.

I can’t help but wonder how JoJo sound covering this song? She’s done an amazing Drake cover before and will reportedly release THREE new singles on Friday (August 21). Hmmmm… Continue reading

Dumblonde in "dreamsicle" video

Dumblonde in “dreamsicle” video

I wasn’t that impressed with Dumblonde’s debut offering “white lightening,” but the former Danity Kane members get it right with “dreamsicle.”

The infectious synth pop offering is only elevated by the fun, colorful Alfredo Flores-visuals. There are kaleidoscopes, colorful backdrops, fun props (a giant ice cream cone to cover the naked ladies) and sexy fashion.

“We won’t wake up, the dream is never done,” the ladies sing repetitively during the song, which was co-written by Aubrey O’Day’s ex boyfriend Travis Garland.

Dumblonde is scheduled to release their self-titled debut album on Sept. 25.

If they keep releasing songs like this, I think the duo could actually have a chance in the indie dance/pop lane. Continue reading

Jess Glynne in "Why Me' video

Jess Glynne in “Why Me’ video

Jess Glynne has been dealing with one of those men that takes and never gives and then one day just disappears into thin air. And she’s pretty upset about it.

Her latest offering from her forthcoming debut album isn’t as joyous previous songs we’ve heard from her such as “Hold My Hand,” “Right Here” and “Real Love.”

“You stole my happiness from up under my nose,” Glynne sings bitterly during the song.

The raspy texture and weight of her voice matches the heavy lyrics. The song shows that Glynne can be versatile in lyrical content without straying to far away from the harmonious melodies and electronic sound she’s become known for.

The video shows Glynne wondering around town and performing. The concept is simple, but where Carly Rae Jepsen’s recent attempt at this fell short, Glynne’s succeeds thanks to moody lighting and editing.

Glynne’s album I Cry When I Laugh is scheduled to be released later this year. Continue reading

Def Jam

Def Jam

“You belong here.”

Jimmy Fallon seems to be thinking what everyone who has heard of Alessia Cara is thinking at the moment. The 18-year-old newcommer may not belong at a party, but she absolutely belongs in the music industry. On the radio. On our phones. On repeat.

She proved it with her debut single Here,” and with her amazing cover of Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” and again with her national television debut.

Cara appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon last night (July 29) and she absolutely nailed it.

Backed by The Roots, the singer performed her ode to wallflowers wearing a 90s choker, jeans, sneakers and an ironic “Life of the Party” t-shirt.

Cara is scheduled to release her debut EP Four Pink Walls on August 28. Continue reading

Carly Rae Jepsen in "Run Away with Me" video

Carly Rae Jepsen in “Run Away with Me” video

…but it probably won’t be.

Canadian singer Carly Rae Jepsen released the music video for the second single off her new album today, which excited me because the new single is really good.

It’s obvious Jepesn’s team is trying to push “Run Away with Me” ahead of the album’s U.S. release date (August 21) in order to spark some interest for the project.

The video is pretty standard, though. Jepsen runs around various cities twirling around gleefully and doing karaoke with friends in the footage.

As far as the single goes, it’s amazing. The horn refrain. The suggestive chorus (“Baby, take me to the feeling. I’ll be your sinner and secret when the lights go out. Run away with me.”). The catchy chorus. It’s everything you expect from a Carly Rae Jepsen single.

The unfortunate thing is the album has been out overseas for weeks now, meaning anyone who really wanted to hear the album probably already has.

Still, the cards may not be stacked in her favor but I will remain team #JusticeforCarlyRaeJepsen. Continue reading

Shawn Mendes (Instagram)

Shawn Mendes (Instagram)

“And now that I’m without your kisses, I’ll be needed stitches.”

I know that 16-year old Shawn Mendes was not writing for my age group when he wrote it, but “Stitches” is my guilty pleasure and there have been moments where I’ve shouted those lyrics and I refuse to be ashamed.

If you’re not familiar with Mendes, he’s one of the opening acts on Taylor Swift’s current 1989 tour. He got his start on vine before releasing his debut album Handwritten earlier this year.

The Canadian star hasn’t snagged a hit big enough to become the next Bieber, yet, but I’m still pretty intrigued by him.

Songs such as “Something Big” and “Life of the Party” are very catchy, but “Stitches” is his best single yet.

It’s dramatic enough for teenage girls everywhere to be able to relate to it (“needle in the thread, gotta get you out of my head. needle in the thread, going to wind up dead.) and melodic enough that it will get stuck in everyone else’s heads and they, too, will become fans.

Mendes performed the single on Live With Kelly & Michael this morning, adding to my hope that this song will gain some attention and turn into a huge hit.

The performance was a bit shaky and not as good as the studio version, but Mendes is playing a guitar and that’s enough to make young girls swoon.

Something big, I feel it happening… Continue reading

Sevyn Streeter in “B.A.N.S.” video

Sevyn Streeter in “B.A.N.S.” video

Sevyn Streeter and B.o.B have been taking over Instagram on Mondays and Wednesdays for a few months now.

Now they’re taking their Man Crush Monday and Woman Crush Wednesday posts to YouTube.

Streeter tapped her boyfriend for her new song “Should Been There” and uses her social media posts for the lyric video.

The video follows the singer’s social media posts as she breaks up with her ex who isn’t treating her right and gets with Bobby Ray. In between there is a very cute scene of the two rehearsing the song together.

The song itself is one of the weaker offerings lyrically from Streeter, but it’s a great choice if you’re looking for something to listen to when you’re headed out with your friends after a fight with your significant other.

Just don’t watch the lyric video or you’ll be #salty.

This isn’t the first time Streeter and B.o.B have worked together. They remade K.P. and Envyi’s “Shorty Swing My Way” in 2014.

Streeter still hasn’t revealed a release date for her debut album, but she will release a new project, Shoulda Been There Pt. 1, this Friday, July 17.

(In case you missed it, new music is released globally on Fridays now.)

Shoulda Been There Pt. 1 will feature 13 tracks, including the Chris Brown-assisted single “Don’t Kill the Fun.” Continue reading

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.

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