Madonna‘s MDNA is set to take the top spot on Billboard next week by selling an estimated 300,000 to 350,000 copies. This will be her fifth consecutive album to debut at No. 1 and her eighth overall. According to Billboard, MDNA‘s sales have been bolstered by a promotion tied to her world tour — fans who buy concert tickets in the U.S. may also buy the album as part of their purchase. But we wonder whether controversies tied to MDNA — albeit, relatively small on the Madonna Controversy Scale — have helped with the sales spike.
If anything is in Madonna’s “DNA” (the stated inspiration for her album title), it’s stoking controversy and using the press as a marketing machine. This time around, the pop provocateur had her “Girls Gone Wild” video, featuring shirtless men grinding in mantyhose, age restricted by YouTube for nudity and implied masturbation.
Katy Perry’s video for “Part Of Me” is a stark departure from the candy-coated fluff of “California Gurls” and the Eighties-tastic silliness of “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.).” There are no scenes of whipped cream or fireworks or ANYTHING shooting out of her boobs; instead, a break-up leads our heroine to enroll for active duty as a Marine, and she spends the rest of the video training for battle. The last shot of the video is a semi-harrowing one, as Katy peers directly into the camera with what seems to be a thousand-yard stare, generally associated with people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorders.
Now, Katy is taking some guff from people who feel like her video was done in poor taste. Feminist author/theorist Naomi Wolf (pictured above, lower right) took Perry to task on her Facebook page for creating what she feels like is little more than a 4-minute recruitment video. “Have you all seen the Katy Perry Marines video?” Wolf wrote. “It is a total piece of propaganda for the Marines … I really want to find out if she was paid by them for making it … I would suggest a boycott of this singer whom I really liked — if you are as offended at this glorification of violence as I am.”
F****d Up lead singer Damian Abraham (pictured above, lower left) then decided to pile on using Twitter, writing that “Seeing Katy Perry as a soldier in ‘Part Of Me’ really makes me think that we need to start a war so she can go die,” which he followed up with “Yes I’m aware my last tweet was kinda dumb but so is glamorizing war to sell records to idiots. Katy Perry Still Sucks.”
The-Dream‘s highly anticipated Love IV LP was originally scheduled to come out last fall, but thanks to some beef with his label Def Jam, the record’s release has been significantly delayed. The Radio Killa’s passionate (and exceedingly patient) fanbase was temporarily satiated when The-Dream released his 1977 mixtape last fall using his birthname, Terius Nash. And now, there’s seemingly more evidence to suggest that Love IV is on the way, as an official video for “Kill The Lights,” presumably the first single off the album, has just dropped.
In it, The-Dream teams up with his new(ish) protégé Casha (not to be confused with Ke$ha) for a video treatment that takes the song’s title quite literally. For the video’s four-minute-and-seven-second run time, we see dozens of light bulbs explode, filaments flying around the screen like shrapnel. However, when paired with The-Dream’s falsetto and luxurious synths, it certainly succeeds in its mission — By the end of the video, even the most Green-conscious eco-warriors won’t find that their panties are in a bunch; rather, they’ll be dropping to the floor.
Somehow, we had missed the January release of First Aid Kit‘s new album, The Lion’s Roar. The Swedish folk duo made up of sisters Johanna and Klara Soderberg (age 21 and 18, respectively) have scored great reviews for their sophomore LP, including a 7.6 from the notoriously persnickety folks at Pitchfork. That album’s lead single, “Emmylou”, is a bittersweet, slide-guitar driven slice of Americana, one that envelops you upon your first listen and feels instantly familiar. The song’s refrain of “I’ll be your Emmylou/And I’ll be your June/And you’ll be my Gram/And my Johnny, too” evokes a particularly warm sense of romance and nostalgia with its references to timeless American musical couples, and also features the most exquisite harmonizing that we’ve heard in some time. And the video, which was shot during magic hour conditions in California’s famed Joshua Tree national park and is steeped with Native American mysticism, is quite perfect, too. Try this song on for size and let us know if it doesn’t make you feel like you just curled up on the couch underneath your favorite warm blanket.
If it’s grand romance you want, then here it is, courtesy of The Lumineers. Surrounded by flashing fairy lights and bursting in and out of shadow, The Lumineers give what can only be described as a completely joy filled performance in their new video for “Ho Hey.” Bringing life to a dank setting in what appears to be a run down, abandoned house, flowers bloom against the stodgy background, and magically a crowd forms to join the band in chorus. Stomping, strumming, dancing and chanting, The Lumineers, with their supporters in tow, create an explosive moment where amidst the flashing lights, confetti begins to rain down on the celebration. The proclamation of love in the song isn’t melancholy at all, and it’s given the romantic inside us a cause to toe tap and stare whimsically out the window as we’re buoyed by the jubilance of The Lumineers’ “Ho Hey.”
Log off your Facebook, it’s time to watch the brand new video from Brandy and Monica, “It All Belongs To Me”! We’re super psyched to debut the first video from this pair of superstar ladies since 1998′s “The Boy Is Mine.”
Lensed by A-List hip hop video director Chris Robinson, the clip shows the one-time rivals teaming up together to exact revenge on a couple of guys that did them dirty. Thematically, the song recalls Beyoncé’s “Irreplaceable”, but “It Belongs To Me” ups the ante significantly; instead of encouraging their exes to put their ish in a box “to the left, to the left”, Brandy and Monica instead instruct their men to leave all of the things they were gifted —their cars, their clothes, those rings, and, most importantly, THAT MACBOOK!— exactly right where it is. And the video takes it even one step further when the girls load up a vintage Porsche that Monica had bought her man with …wait for it… explosives (and then, of course, blow that piece sky high). Hell hath no fury, indeed!
On Monday night at 11 p.m. on VH1 and right here on VH1 Tuner, we will be premiering the brand new music video for Brandy & Monica‘s “It All Belongs To Me.” The video was directed by veteran hip hip auteur Chris Robinson and, as the women describe it, has a Waiting To Exhale and Thelma And Louise vibe to it.
In this exclusive interview, Brandy and Monica discuss shooting the video for the pair’s first song together since 1998. “I love how the video represents a friendship between the two of us,” Monica tells us. “Just us being there for each other in both of our circumstances.”
On Monday night at 11 p.m. on VH1 and right here on VH1 Tuner, we will be premiering the brand new music video for Brandy & Monica‘s “It All Belongs To Me.” This marks the first time that Brandy and Monica have paired up on the same track since 1998, but this time around, the ladies are allies, not enemies.
In this exclusive interview, the two vocal heavyweights discuss how the track came together, as well as the message that they’re hoping to send to young women. “It’s empowering,” Monica tells us. “It should make you feel good. Even if he made you feel wrong, we’ll make you feel right.”
Big news! On March 5, VH1 and VH1 Tuner will be exclusively premiering the brand new video from Brandy and Monica, entitled “It All Belongs To Me”, at 11 p.m. ET. The song is the duo’s first since the 1998 smash, “The Boy Is Mine”, which, according to the Billboard charts, was the #7 song of the 1990s. That song was all about the girls battling, but this time around, the girls are teaming up to take on a no good dirty Lothario type. You’ll have to wait until Monday to see the whole thing, but we were able to get our hands on this :30 sneak preview as something to whet your appetite. Bon appetit!
Full press release, which just hit the wires, is below:
IT BELONGS TO US! VH1 PRESENTS THE EXCLUSIVE WORLD PREMIERE MUSIC VIDEO OF MONICA AND BRANDY’S NEW HIT SINGLE “IT ALL BELONGS TO ME”
First Video Collaboration For The Pair Since Their 1998 Grammy Award-Winning Hit Single “The Boy Is Mine”
Premieres on VH1 and VH1.com on Monday, March 5 At 11PM EST ET/PT
NEW YORK, NY– March 2, 2012 – Grammy-Award winning R&B songstresses Monica and Brandy belong to VH1 on Monday, March 5 with the exclusive premiere of the music video for their new single, “It All Belongs To Me” Monday, March 5 at 11PM ET/PT on VH1 and VH1.com. This premiere commemorates the first time the R&B superstars Monica and Brandy have reunited for a video since their 1998 Grammy Award-Winning hit collaboration “The Boy is Mine.” “The Boy Is Mine” held the #1 spot on the Hot 100 Chart for 13 weeks and won the Grammy for R&B Performance by A Duo or Group. It was declared the best-selling song of 1998.
In honor of Bob Dylan‘s career and to raise funds for Amnesty International comes Chimes Of Freedom, an album full of covers of classic Dylan songs by contemporary artists. We already love Miley Cyrus’ cover of “You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go,” and now we’re really getting into Rise Against‘s heavy metal cover of “The Ballad Of Hollis Brown.” The metal genre fits the angry mood of the track perfectly, and the folksy guitar riffs remain true to the Dylan style. The video shows the plight of farmers and rural workers in America, with written statistics and actual sound bites from the weathered faces on the screen. It’s a call to arms — and Rise Against’s rendition really gets to the bottom of the frustrated and desperate emotions depicted in the documentary style video.