Monthly Archives: October 2013

Hashtag Music

Week commencing 28th Oct

Single of the week: 28th Oct

Disclosure-Help-Me-Lose-My-Mind

Disclosure, the duo who are not only work colleagues but siblings too, have been making a name for themselves with their synthpop and house beats. Settle soared to top place in the UK album charts featuring new UK talent Aluna George and Sam Smith.

London Grammar’s lead vocalist Hannah Reid carries this collaboration to a different level making it another contender for chart success from the Reigate Lads. Cleverly crafted with hypnotic tones you will always be able to lose yourself in this song no matter what vibe you are after.

Keen to watch the video? Following complaints that it contained glorified drug use this has been pulled from the internet until further notice.

Album of the week 29th Oct

skyferr

The long awaited debut album Night Time, My Time is finally here!

Keen to make an impression, Sky Ferreira revealed a steamy topless picture of herself in the shower on her Instagram page which she claimed would be her album artwork. Keeping the hype rolling she later added short snippets of her track listing using the new Instagram video function.

Controversial, provocative images and a heavy 80s sound there’s only one thing on this girls mind and that’s becoming the next Madonna.

Video of the week: OUT NOW

Enrique has never been good at dancing but his looks alone never fail to hold a music video together. Centred on Enrique heart break, the video starts with him at the edge of bridge following a break up from a gorgeous brunette played by Camilla Belle. Instantly sympathising with his pain we see shots of Camilla in bed with another man. Enrique lashes out in anger but does it all go a bit too far as it cuts back to him on the bridge?

Enrique I will be your hero!

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Jessie J: Alive Tour

Jessie J: Alive Tour

Dublin O2 Arena, 16th Oct 2013

***

Earlier in the year Jessie J was supposed to embark on her Nice To Meet You Tour. Pushing back dates and changing the tour name to Alive fans were disappointed they had to wait a further 6 months before seeing her first ever headline arena show. The tour kicked off in Ireland following dates across UK, Scotland and Wales.

Filling the stage with dry ice, Jessie J made a grand entrance as she opened with Big White Room. Written at just 17 about her time in hospital this song is very dear to Jessie’s heart.  Quick to highlight her progression next she performed Thunder taken from her new album Alive.  Dressed head to toe in white complete with a floating sheer trail attached to her bodysuit Jessie’s vision of beauty was just as striking as her vocals!

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Switching the memento Jessie performed some of her more racy material such Sexy Lady Domino and Daydreaming.  Confidently working the stage in a hot red embellished bodysuit Jessie certainly had me in the body envy stakes.  I’m sure it will be long until we see some Beyoncé bootyelicious choreography in the mist of Jessie J’s future performances.

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As an acknowledgement for the warm welcome she has gained since started out, Jessie wrote Laserlight.  Before belting out this chart-topping single, Jessie gave a humble speech thanking fans for the love and support through the years.  She joked; No matter what hairstyle or fashion disaster she would always have her heartbeats by her side.   As she continued with her most up-tempo tracks Do it like a Dude and Wild it wasn’t long until she had everyone jumping.

Throughout the show there were technical  problems with the mic and a wobble during It’s My Party when Jessie forgot her lyrics but nevertheless this show is one to watch. Always full of life and keen to spread a positive light Jessie’s finale track Alive certainly had the crowd fully converted to her way of thinking as she got the whole arena screaming “1,2,3 We’re Alive” in unison. Lucky to witness this show a few more times, I am sure these wobbles will be ironed out although and if not we must remember Nobody’s Perfect right Jessie?

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Hashtag Music

Week commencing 22nd Oct

Single of the Week: 20th Oct

lorde royals

Lorde, the name rolling off everyone’s tongue at the moment as she has crept onto the scene in such an unusually smooth fashion. No in your face promotion – this young teen has shot to the top of the US Hot 100 with ease that fans have just flocked to her captivating sound.

Royals smash hit is available to download in the UK this week and should easily score number 1 slot on the big Top40. If you haven’t heard of this New Zealand treasure you should check her out as she is quite possibly the best undiscovered artist of 2013.

Album of the week: 22nd Oct

prism

Stripped back Candy girl Katy Perry’s 4th Studio album Prism offers a darker side to our most loved Californian popstar.

Prism is a richer, deeper sound that reflects on Katy’s personal troubles of her 2011split from comedian Russell Brand.  Showing Katy’s fighting spirit Roar was the lead single from this album. A track that shows her more delicate side during this time is By the Grace of God which Katy gave an exclusive performance at last month’s iTunes Festival.  No longer a teenage dream Katy Perry has made her mark as a popstar and she is here to stay!

Video of the week: OUT NOW

You may have heard of Tanika from her appearance on Naughty Boys’ album performing one of the most known tracks of 2013 – Daft Punk’s Get Lucky. Since then Tanika has dropped her first official cut from her debut album, Bad 4 U. Produced and co-written by MNEK, Bad 4 U showcases her ability to belt out some high notes as she grinds some sexy shapes on the front of a truck!

This song is about pleading her man to leave and with Tanika underneath the truck as the parting shot, we think he got the message!  

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Hasthag Music

Week commencing 14th Oct

Single of the Week: 13th Oct

cyl iggy No Money, No Family, 16 in the middle of Miami … Iggy Azalea has worked hard to change her life. Change your life is a fitting and inspirational song about Azalea’s struggle to better herself and build the life she wants. The dulled down accent and the addition of a feature with American rapper T.I makes this song more commercial that her previous single Bounce.  This song is worthy of catapulting her to the next stage of her career and is a track she should be proud of.  

Album of the week: 14th Oct

saturdays Ginger, Sporty, Baby, Scary, Posh Spice aka the Spice Girls and girlband Girls Aloud all have had their slot as the UK biggest girls! Now it’s five piece band The Saturdays turn to capture the market share. Vanessa, Frankie, Molly, Una and Rochelle have sustained success in the industry following an array of chart-topping pop-dance tracks such as Higher, Notorious and All Fired Up. The 4th studio album Living for the Weekend includes What about Us featuring Sean Paul and their latest single Disco Love.  Sticking to what they are good at, this album is perfect for those nights out painting the town red!

Video of the week: OUT NOW

Best Be Believing is taken from the electronic duo’s debut album Body Music.  This video shows Aluna Francis being dragged into a mental hospital as she is admitted as a new patient.  Surrounded by female dancers Aluna moves around the hospital busting out some cool body shapes before cutting to a shot of George working as a lab assistant.  Offering a cooler stance on the 1975 film One flew over the Cuckoo’s nest, Aluna George reminds us that Body Music is one of the best albums of 2013.

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Ellie Goulding

Ellie Goulding

Wolverhampton Civil Hall, 6th Oct 2013

****

Scoring her first ever UK number single with Burn, Ellie Goulding has since transformed from Star to show-stopping Superstar. Last month she wowed the crowd and many critics at London’s itunes festival using no gimmicks but just her sheer talent and multi-instrumental ways. Not only can Ellie sing, play guitar and drums she is also renowned for her skills as a songwriter, writing tracks for artists such as 2008 X factor contestant Diana Vickers. Last night Ellie took to a sold-out crowd at Wolverhampton Civil Hall to show us again exactly why she was worthy of winning Brits Critic choice in 2010.

Supporting acts Chasing Grace and Lulu James both did well to sustain the crowd’s attention during their sets. Chasing Grace, marketed as ‘ones to watch’ and having already collaborated with Naughty Boy proved that they have massive potential. This young duo, consists of Philip Plested and Grace Ackerman. When in sync these guys offer a great new sound but their performance style and sound projection needs work.  Grace over sang in parts and her stage presence was uncomfortable as she spent the whole set tugging at her short skirt. Philip has as a much softer, warmer tone to his voice but with complaints to the crowd that he was unwell, it was evident the duo are ultimately capable of much better.

Next on stage was LuLu James who gave a solid and confident set.  Lulu arrived wearing an attention grabbing  black-hooded cape before revealing her slim frame in a skimpy leotard and jewelled head-piece. While this Geordie lass has guts to parade herself in risky attire, her songs seemed at times one dimensional. What wasn’t forgettable however was the sticky situation Lulu found herself in mid set as chewing gum stuck the setlist to her heels. She joked “ I would tell you the next song but it’s stuck to my shoe.” Props asides, I am not sure how effectively this act can evolve to claim her a share in a market saturated with female talent.

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Losing her traditional black/white backdrop, Ellie’s staging was full of flashing lights and sparkles much like Ellie herself as she took to the stage wearing a shimming silver top and black shorts.  Ellie performed an incredible 18 piece set-list covering tracks from Lights, Bright Lights, Halcyon and Halycon Days. Highlights of the show were Goodness Gracious and Explosions. Stripping it back to one of her early singles, Ellie performed an acoustic version of Guns and Horses showcasing the beautiful purity of her voice, her song writing ability and guitar skills.

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Bouncing around the stage and throwing some amusing lines between songs, Ellie was engaging and looked happy and extremely confident on stage as she continued her set with chart-topping rave track feat. Calvin Harris I Need Your Love. This song fully changed the atmosphere in the room as Ellie and the crowd jumped around the Civic Hall like they were at Glastonbury.  Ending her set fully content with the reception she had been given and a band that also looked so proud of Ellie’s recent achievements, she belted out a rock star performance of her current single Burn which charted at NO1 in the UK for impressive 3 weeks.

Ellie will continue her tour tonight at Newcastle’s O2 academy.

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Hashtag Music

Week commencing 7th Oct

Single of the Week: OUT NOW 

conor rucrazy

Cant Say No singer Conor Maynard is back on the scene and this time he wants to know R U Crazy?

R U Crazy is the lead single from his 2nd studio album and is co-written by British artist Labrinth.  Keeping a similar soundscape, Conor lands himself between teeny pop and light hip-hop.  The repetitive R U Crazy hook in this track will have you singing along even on a first listen. Although a contender for pop favourite of 2013, this heavily produced track does shade the soft tones that were evident in his youtube days. In the build up to this release, Conor has dropped some rather impressive acoustic medleys, which better showcase his voice. I strongly recommend checking them out on his official youtube channel.

Album of the week: OUT NOW

miley

VMAs! Love her or hate her …. hats off to Miley and her team as the controversy has her breaking records and I have fully converted to her bandwagon. Wrecking Ball is an emotionally charged song and although licking hammers is not the norm, there is no denying that the material she is bringing out is her best yet.

Bangerz is what is says on the tin.  Hit after hit this album includes troubled emotional power ballads, dancing clubbing anthems and a hot collab with the Queen of Pop Britney Spears. Miley has ripped away her Disney innocence and given herself a reputation not everyone is approving off but what is on point is the music.

Video of the week: OUT NOW

Missing out on the Video of the Week slot last week to Laura Welsh, Sons and Lovers had to score this week’s limelight! Working hard, showcasing their material on the festival circuit, headlining Sebright Arms and getting their first official airplay on BBCR1 in July, its safe to say the video of Ghosts has been worth the wait.

Dan, Tom, Tim and Josh filmed this on a small island in Ireland called Inishturk and on what looks like a very chilly day! Dressed in winter woollies surrounded by coastline shots, this location ties in beautifully with the band’s vibe. What captured me is the rock edge being used as an alternative to the wailing wall as they place coins in the gaps while making a wish. This is just the start and I personally hope these boys achieve that wish.

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Katy B

Katy B

XOYO, London  1st October 2013

**

Katy B emerged onto the dubstep scene in 2010 with her hit single On a Mission and her collaboration with Ms Dynamite Lights On. Her mission last night was to headline her first show in just over a year at XOYO London.

Katy opened with Aaliyah from her Danger EP on a cramped stage covered in fairy lights.  With bass levels ramped up so high that the floor shook, the reception didn’t get going until What Love is Made Of. Keen to spill the news she told fans her 2nd album will be called Little Red. From the 5 tracks premiered, Hot Like Fire seemed like a crowd favourite that would make a strong contender for a single choice.  Stripping back her set dubstep vibe, Crying for no reason showed the softer side of Katy’s vocals and with lyrics that everyone can relate to, this song pulls on the heart strings.

Turning up the energy, Katy performed her new single 5am before bringing the mood to a hot a sweaty close with her most familiar tracks Lights On and On a Mission which had everyone jumping.

katy b xoyo

XOYO is a great dark underground space fit for dubstep and grime acts but having seen Katy perform on the festival circuit, the tiny stage restricted the energy Katy is capable of.  She even joked that the stage made it tricky her for to do an encore!

Little Red will be out November 4th

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Katy Perry Itunes Festival

Itunes Festival

Roundhouse, London  29th September 2013

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September has seen an array of talented artists flood through the doors of London’s Roundhouse to perform at this year’s Itunes Festival. Last night it was Icona Pop, Iggy Azalea and the candy pop princess Katy Perry’s turn to show Camden their material, as they all prepared to close down the month long event in style.

Aussie rapper Iggy Azalea hit the stage in a shimmering bronze body-piece with an equally impressive fairground themed backdrop. Iggy performed a 30 minute set including her new single Change Your Life from her forthcoming album The New Classic, along with some earlier material from her mix-tapes.   Paying tribute to Ignorant Art which had its 2 year anniversary so to speak this week, she performed Pu$$y and My World.  Although the set offered cleaner shapes than previously seen by this twerk queen, she had the signature Iggytail down and still managed to work the crowd into a stir with her hit song Work.

At 9.30pm sharp Perry and her team of dancers graced the stage with an exclusive performance of her brand new single Walking on Air.  Equipped with confetti magic tricks, costume changes and a background of snazzy geometric prisms, Katy’s set demonstrates that she has every element of a pop show nailed. Quick to get the crowd involved she belted out her smash hits California Girls and I Kissed a Girl.

Following Perry’s break-up in late 2011 from ex-husband Russell Brand, it comes as no surprise that Prism, her forthcoming album reflects upon this emotional time.  By the Grace of God does not feel like the average heart break ballad, as Perry pours out lyrics such as “I thank my sister for keeping my head above water, when the truth was like swallowing sand”.

Maximising the impact of this exclusive, Perry pulled out all the stops as she presented on stage songwriter Greg Wells who helped her co-write this beauty.  Other Prism previews included Dark Horse and of course her biggest selling single to date Roar. Katy completed her set in a similar vein to her earlier VMA Roar performance with a boxing ring and skipping sequence.

Overall a brilliant performance fuelled with new and old pop songs but at only 45 minutes the set left many fans with only a taster of Katy’s great catalogue. However, we can’t be too mad really, after all it was a freebie!

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