“Rum and Raybans” – Sean Kingston ft. Cher Lloyd
One again, Sean Kingston has a hit on his hands with “Rum and Raybans,” the new single off his latest album Back 2 Life. The premise of the song is simple: All Mr. Kingston needs to have fun on the dance floor is a glass of rum in his hand and Raybans on his face (you know, to protect his eyes from all the bright lights and such). And all I need to have fun is this song pounding on the speakers…and some rum would be nice too. There’s a ton of synth, a robot voice, hard beat, Kingston’s signature reggae type vocals, and the one and only Cher Lloyd lending her sauciness to the mix. If you’re looking for some new party tracks I definitely recommend this one.
“How” – Regina Spektor
Regina Spektor gets dark and emotional in her new single “How.” The somber track is about breaking up and wondering how she can ever live without her ex-beau. It’s all quite heartbreaking and Spektor’s powerful pipes will give you chills. The beauty of the song shines through the video, which is shot with a combination of animation and live action. Directed by Margo Weathers, Spektor is impeccably styled with quirky violin-inspired makeup, feathers, and butterfly wings. Spektor’s new album What We Saw From the Cheap Seats is out now.
“The Boys” – Nicki Minaj ft. Cassie
All righty people. If you’re at work right now I would suggest turning your laptop away so your boss can’t see you computer screen because things are about to get pretty raunchy. But what else can you expect from a collaboration with bombshells Nicki Minaj and Cassie right? The track itself is catchy as hell alternating between fast rapping from Nicki and then slowing it down with an acoustic guitar and slow singing from Cassie. The ladies strut their stuff in leotards, hang out in a very pink barbershop, and pretty much just remind everyone that they’re sexy and they know it. Then things get a little weird and Nicki kills everyone. Check it out, you won’t be disappointed.
“F**kin’ Problem” – A$AP Rocky ft. Drake, 2 Chainz, Kendrick Lamar Read more…
Cher Lloyd – Want U Back
“Want U Back” is British pop star Cher Lloyd’s first single in the US and is a great, feisty debut for the 18-year old who competed on The X Factor UK two years ago. The song was originally released as Lloyd’s third single off her album Sticks + Stones, and was re-cut and re-released for her introduction to the US. The music video shows Lloyd confronting her ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend in a diner while wreaking havoc all over the place. Apart from looking like an American Apparel advertisement, Lloyd shows off her serious sass and has a great “don’t care” attitude while keeping things PG for the young ones.
Lykke Li – Come Near
Lykke Li’s label Ingrid released a compilation called Volym 1 for international Record Store Day on April 21. The compilation featured Scandinavian artists including Miike Snow, Starlight Serenade, and a brand new track by Lykke Li. “Come Near” is an ethereal tribal inspired track with no apparent hook or chorus, but shows Lykke Li’s raw talent with some creative African inspired wails and drums. Those Swedes are a talented bunch.
Kanye West – Lost in the World
Even though Kanye West’s last album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasies was released over a year ago, the rap superstar teamed up with fashion filmmaker Ruth Hogben to create this video masterpiece. His video for Kanye’s “Lost in the World,” which features Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, is stunning and goes far beyond the norm of usual rap aesthetics. It’s an art piece shot in black and white featuring anguished dancing, layering effects, and strobe. Lots of strobe. Whether you’re a Kanye fan or not, this creative video is definitely worth checking out.
Young London – Someone Like You Read more…
It’s been so long since we’ve heard a good Regina Spektor song — 2009 to be exact — but she’s finally back with “All the Rowboats” from her forthcoming album “What We Saw From The Cheap Seats.”
The song gives life to rowboats that are trapped in masterpiece oil paintings, trying to escape : “Masterpieces serving maximum sentences, It’s their own fault for being timeless.” Spektor wrote the song herself and the piano score gives me something else to look forward to. I was so obsessed with Regina Spektor’s songs in university I bought the piano sheet music so I could indulge in it myself. The song is slightly dark but thoughtful, nothing less than I’d expect from her.
In the meantime, you can buy the song online today and start a countdown for the album’s release date, May 12.
Quirky pop singer Regina Spektor has covered Radiohead’s “No Surprises” off of their hit OK Computer with all proceeds going to relief efforts in Haiti and Chile, reports Stereogum.
Her haunting take on the song is definitely worth a listen, which you can do here.
Spektor blogged, “i LOVE [Radiohead], and thank them for donating their proceeds too!!! they are the best!”
The song can be bought on iTunes. All proceeds will go to Doctors Without Borders, who will then distribute the money to various aid projects for the earthquake victims in Chile and Haiti. On March 23, Spektor played at New York City’s Irving Plaza for a special Doctors Without Borders benefit concert.
It’s been a long time since I’ve purchased a brand new album on a whim. As a student, I have little disposable income so you had better believe I expect purchases such as this to pay off.
Well, my friends, I may have hit the proverbial jackpot. In the last two weeks or so, I’ve been carelessly shelling out my rent money for records, yet the return turned out to mean more to me than a roof over my head.
Regina Spektor’s Far. Manchester Orchestra’s Everything to Nothing. Grizzly Bear’s Veckatimest.
It wasn’t planned in advance, I didn’t wait in line outside the doors of HMV the day Grizzly Bear’s third album was released, and I actually didn’t even know Regina had been in the studio. As for Manchester Orchestra, it was more peer pressure that led me to buy it. Peer pressure and a steal of a deal at Sonic Boom.
The moral of the story, though, is the pleasant surprise that quickly followed the first few listens of each.
Piano songstress Regina Spektor is set to release her third major-label album, “Far,” early this summer.
The 13-track album, the follow-up to 2006′s “Begin To Hope,” will hit store shelves on June 23 via Sire Records. The first single will be a track called “Laughing With.”
Spektor sought the talents of four different producers for the new album: Jeff Lynne (ELO, The Traveling Wilburys), Mike Elizondo (Dr. Dre, Eminem), David Kahne (Paul McCartney, The Strokes) and Garret “Jacknife” Lee (Weezer, REM). In a recent interview with Pitchfork, the singer/songwriter/pianist was asked if she was worried about creating a cohesive sound with such varied producers.
Regina Spektor used to reply when people left comments on her MySpace page. Now, with a busy touring schedule, she barely has time to write e-mails to her good friends. She doesn’t even have time to approve her ongoing friend requests. “Now my dad checks them in. He’s on there up to three hours a day,” Spektor said during a recent stop in Toronto.
She now has over 118,000 MySpace friends. To put things in perspective, Alanis Morissette has about 58,000 and Jay-Z has less than 15,000. “To see such a response is encouraging. It makes musicians happy to know their music is being listened to,” she said. And people are definitely listening.
Spektor’s most recent album, “Begin to Hope,” released in June, is still gaining a lot of attention. Her music has recently appeared on the hit shows “Grey’s Anatomy” and “CSI,” her music videos are in rotation on MTV, and VH1 labelled her an “artist on the rise.”
Because of the recent attention, you may have just heard of her. But don’t think for a second that she’s an overnight success.
Spektor’s music career started in the Bronx, New York, after moving from Russia when she was nine. She spent years self-promoting and playing small venues in what some have called the “anti-folk” scene of New York City.
“I used to just give out burned CDs to whoever was at the bar that night, and they would give it to their friends,” she said in her quiet, innocent voice.
Although she’s signed to a large label now (Sire), she is a musician who resists conforming under industry pressure. Before leaving her days of playing coffee houses and being her own manager, she stepped lightly into the music industry. “It feels good to work hard for a long time and have it slowly come together… not being pimped out or manufactured,” she said.
Spektor brags about having a great lawyer in her corner when it came time to signing the big record deal. “My lawyer is one of a small group of lawyers that really cares for the artist,” she said, explaining how she “tortured” the label executives before signing anything. “I kept saying, ‘I’m an artist! I’m an artist!’” she said, painting a portrait of her views on artistic control. “If you’re doing it [making music] for the money, you might as well open a store. You shouldn’t bother with art. You don’t fuck around with that stuff, it’s sacred,” she said in a miniature outburst, before ending her rant with a gentle giggle, something she tends to do when speaking about her music.
Her particular brand of art — at times comparable to Feist and Joni Mitchell — is based around her soft voice and piano playing. On this album, she experiments with genre and with degrees of instrumentation. One of the most effective tracks on the album is “Samson,” a track with little more than Spektor’s piano and her voice. Other tracks use drums and other instruments for depth and variety.
“Every song on this album has been my favourite at some time,” she said, comparing the difficult task to choosing one’s favourite child. She likes them all, which comes out in her live performances. A show back in New York reportedly went on for more than three hours.
For the next few months, her life is on the road, finishing up her North American tour.
You can hear some of Regina Spektor’s music, watch music videos or become her friend at myspace.com/reginaspektor
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