Hey guys, I’m going to only review bands/artists this week that I haven’t before. However, I will briefly mention songs that people should check out by previously covered artists, such as “Dead Inside” by Muse, “All That” by Carly Rae Jepsen (awesome song) and” ‘Cause I’m a Man” by Tame Impala. In many ways, those are even better tracks then the ones I initially reviewed by those artists, so check them out. Now, for the new stuff!
“Peaches N Cream” – Snoop Dogg ft. Charlie Wilson and Pharrell
Charlie Wilson is the lead singer of the underrated 70s/80s funk group The Gap Band. The old star fits in perfectly with the Snoop Dogg/Pharrell partnership, and together they’ve crafted a throwback hit which, ironically, seems poised to announce Snoop’s return to the mainstream. He’s dabbled in funk and reggae, but this smooth club-rap songs showcases why he was such a rap-star in the first place: flow. Snoop’s sneering, self assured delivery anchors the entire beat. Pharrell and the Neptunes keep their touch light and everything hits like a sweet taste of the title dessert.
“Destruction” – Joywave
I heard this song performed live the day after it was released. Joywave played the track and then, disappointed with the audience reaction, explained how much they loved the song and played it again. On the surface, that sounds vain, but the response was electric. Rather than satisfy the audience with a song they were familiar with, they were able to take this new song and get everyone in the house to bounce. Between the dance-hall drum groove, whistle hook, and crunchy synths, Joywave is positioning themselves as a sort of indie-pop Linkin Park. I’m a fan of this track and very excited for their April album.
“Yoga” – Janelle Monae
I’m a big fan of her 2013 album The Electric Lady, so I was excited to listen to her latest single. While he previous works drew on funk, soul, and R&B in addition to straight up hip-hop, this one seems like a more straightforward pop song. I’m reminded of “Dark Horse” by Katy Perry a lot, because of the pitch-lowered, distorted voices and semi-island inspired beat, and rap verse for a bridge. Frankly lyrics like “Baby bend over/Let me see do that yoga” aren’t great and I’m fairly disinterested in the song. Hopefully this isn’t indicative of her new style.
“Sparks” – Hilary Duff
I had to review this one! Hilary Duff is trying to making a comeback it seems. It’s fairly generic stuff, somewhat reminiscent of Brittany Spears latest output. Sadly, she doesn’t seem to posses a noteworthy voice. Despite what you may think of the top-tier female pop stars – Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Ellie Goulding – they all have unique voices. Taylor Swift is the exception (she’s passable at best) but her stellar production and songwriting make up for it. Sadly, this song isn’t written well enough to compensate for anything. The whistle chorus is a slight redeemer, but really do we need Hilary Duff to matter again?
“Tear in My Heart” – Twenty One Pilots
Piano, gents. What a great way to engage. Twenty One Pilots continues to craft fun pop rock, including this jam which starts with a Billy Joel-esque opening and slyly builds to a big indie pop song including big drums, synths and a great chorus. This one deserves repeat play on the charts!