Besides whistling, shouting-out famous musicians in song titles seems to be all the rage this year.
Here’s how they rank:
10.) “Marvin’s Room,”Drake
This dizzying, chilled-out tune seemingly has nothing to do with Marvin Gaye, except when you discover that the song was apparently recorded in a studio used by the late-great singer, aptly named “Marvin’s Room.”
9.) “Marvin & Chardonnay,” Big Sean (feat. Kanye West & Roscoe Dash)
Another ode to Marvin Gaye, this one, however, mentions him by name in the song’s lyrics.
8.) “The Lisa Lisa/Full Force Routine,” Beastie Boys
Not so much a song as it as an outro for the Beastie’s latest album, Hot Sauce Committee, Pt. 2. Regardless, both musical acts from the 1980’s (Full Force and Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam) are curiously shouted out.
7.) “I Need A Doctor,” Dr. Dre (feat. Eminem & Skylar Grey)
Don’t call Dr. Dre conceited for name-dropping himself in his own song title; he appears in less than a minute of the actual track.
Florence + The Machine‘s cacophonous new album, Ceremonials, is anything but light, with huge, roaring vastness and a grandness reminiscent of epic movie soundtracks. The new video for “No Light No Light” matches the tone of the song to perfection, with a twisted fairytale storyline, otherworldly, dark magic at play and the dramatic attitudes of the flame-haired Florence Welch. Consuming and pervasive, the song has a certain open-endedness, as if it were constantly chasing an elusive rainbow, racing past blurs of cities and forests on a never-ending mission. This elemental sense of infiniteness is mimicked in the video, with Florence running away from an indefinable pursuer, which is where the song and the video differ — Florence’s reverent, soaring vocals suggest a race towards something, a propelling force, a search and hope, whereas the visual suggests tumult, chaos, evasion and escape from an ambiguous, phantasmal menace.
The video introduces us to three characters: Florence, the beleaguered angel, perhaps fallen from grace in her diaphanous black gown; the voodoo master, a contorting specter, haunting Florence’s every movement as a metaphor of a broken relationship; and the choir of pre-pubescent boys inside a cavernous, medieval church, offering Florence redemption. As the voodoo master torments Florence with pokes and prods, she looks out over the iconic New York skyline, before allowing herself to fall towards the street. Luckily Flo is saved by the boys’ choir, which not only catches her but holds her high above their heads in a Christ-like motif of resurrection. The intention of the video is glaring, and, like the song itself, there are no subtleties.
Oh Beyoncé! Why do you fill our work days with so many delicious videos to distract us from our jobs? With the much anticipated release of Bey’s Live At Roseland: Elements Of 4 DVD just on the horizon (the DVD will be released on November 21 exclusively at Walmart stores and online, and then worldwide on November 29), King B has gone ahead and released two live music videos for “End Of Time” and “I Was Here.” Both videos include footage of Bey performing at the Roseland Ballroom, and both have some titillating extras — most notably, the first ever images from Beyoncé and Jay-Z‘s wedding. Blink-and-you’ll-miss-it, the quick glimpse of Bey getting into her wedding dress is gasp-inducing, as all imagery from her nuptials have (until now) been famously kept under tight wraps.
While the “End Of Time” video features clips of Bey performing at Glastonbury Festival earlier this year, the “I Was Here” clip (below) has some decidedly more nostalgic footage. With footage of Beyoncé as a child, a teenager, and during the glory days of Destiny’s Child, the clip is a moving homage to Beyoncé’s full life. It’s a touching ode to the pop-star on a mission to change the world, simply by making people smile and dance, and we had to hold back a tear or two as Bey voice over the revealing imagery gave us chills.
The Fray is back with “Heartbeat,” which picks up where their hit “You Found Me” (off their self-titled, Grammy-nominated sophomore effort) left off in 2009. With such a lag time between new albums, the October release of “Heartbeat” as the first single off their forthcoming album, Scars And Stories definitely got pulses The Fray fans racing again.
Now the Denver quartet has collaborated with director Justin Francis (Weezer, Eminem, Black Eyed Peas) to create a video companion to the Billboard Hot 100-cracking track. In the clip, the guys frolic on the beach with some lovely ladies. A bonfire, night swimming and a jam session ensues. For such a moving and sweeping song—the lyrics were inspired by the despair lead singer Isaac Slade witnessed while traveling through Rwanda and South Africa—the visuals are definitely on the lighthearted side, but the ethereal loveliness of the tune definitely shines through.
So, the good news is that we’ve got a new single and a new video. The bad news? The album doesn’t drop until Feb. 7. Way to dangle a carrot, guys!
Internet memeRebecca Black has just released a video for her third single, “Person Of Interest,” and we’re scratching our heads about what this all means. After her first single, “Friday,” literally devoured the Internet back in February and racked up 167 million views, Black found a strange sort of fame as a viral sensation. In short, Black didn’t necessarily become famous because people liked her music (although we’re sure there were some who did), but because people were intrigued by her.
In July, Black released her second single, “My Moment,” which was no “Friday,” but not exactly a sophomore slump, either. It has been viewed almost 30 million views, which is less than 20% of her “Friday” total, but still, that’s 30 MILLION VIEWS. But now that’s she’s released her 3rd single under her own label, RB Records, we’re curious to see if the Law Of Diminishing Viral Returns will hold true, or if Rebecca Black can figure out a way to truly succeed.
The main issue at hand seems to be this: Rebecca Black is not content to be William Hung. Instead of embracing (or completely retreating) from her viral infamy, Rebecca instead decided to pursue the path of becoming a “serious” artist. No, not “serious” like a Thom Yorke or PJ Harvey, but “serious” in the way that pop stars like Katy Perry are serious about their brand and the artistic choices they make. To that end, both the video and the song “Person Of Interest” are intentionally inoffensive and innocently youthful, complete with Black’s flair for overly-obvious lyrics and matching visuals. The song seems designed to appeal strictly to tweenagers, and it very well may end up doing so. It most certainly does not, though, hold any sort of appeal for the cooler-than-thou hipster quotient who embraced the over-the-top ridiculousness of “Friday” and helped propel her into the spotlight in the first place. Who knows if this gambit will end up paying off, but at this point, it seems pretty clear to us that Rebecca Black is savvy enough to recognize that in order for her to build an audience, she first has to destroy the one she already has.
Did you ever think a Christmas classic like “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” could be so sexy? We definitely didn’t; then Michael Bublé came along and made us rethink the whole entire thing. The video for the first single off his new album Christmas finds our hero singing and dancing down a snow covered street, bouncing up and down stoops in front of wreathed doorways and smiling at the present-laden folks passing him in the street. In short, Bublé is divine. In a sharp suit, he jumps about, twisting and shaking in the stylish way that only Bublé knows how, playfully throwing up snow and making us swoon at our desks. We can’t wait for Christmas now, and are going to be good girls and boys right up to the day with the hopes that Santa might pop a little Bublé into our stockings.
Like proud parents, we’re watching You Oughta Know alumna and VH1 Unplugged darling Adele attempt to maintain her chart-topping hot streak with the third single off her multiplatinum 21, “Set Fire To The Rain.” Rumor had it that “Rumor Has It” was going to be the third single, but “Fire” ended up winning out. Already a fan favorite, the mid-tempo power ballad has the potential to complete her hat trick of singles atop the Billboard Hot 100 this year.
Sadly, Adele’s recovery from vocal cord surgery kept her from shooting a concept video for “Set Fire To The Rain.” Instead, her camp released an exclusive performance from her forthcoming 90-minute concert film Live At The Royal Albert Hall (due in stores on November 29). It’s a departure from the beautiful, Jake Nava–directed “Someone Like You,” but “Set Fire To The Rain” clearly benefits from a concert setting more than it ever could from a four-minute mini-movie lip-synced on a sound stage. Watching the British belter’s chill-inducing pipes rise above the swelling sound of a full band and orchestra is a beauty all its own. It’s Adele in her element, sounding fabulous and looking, well, hot!
So, will the gamut work? Quite frankly, the road to #1 looks pretty daunting at this point. The song is currently sitting at #18 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and will have to find a way to eclipse heavy hitters like Rihanna‘s “We Found Love,” Adele’s weepy “Someone Like You,” and the red-hot David Guetta/Usher collabo “Without You” over the next few weeks to hit the top spot (not to mention Lady Gaga‘s “Marry The Night,” which promises to be a huge hit during the holidays). Additionally, the song does not benefit from its striking sonic similarities to Ke$ha‘s “Animal”; the choruses of both of these songs share virtually the same melody, and the vocal inflections of Katy and Ke$ha are also remarkably similar, which makes sense considering that Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald was a credited writer on both tracks. Nor does it benefit from covering the same thematic territory as the aforementioned “Someone Like You” in an arguably less emotionally resonant fashion.
We’re just one week and oh, say, six hours away from the premiere of VH1 Unplugged: Kelly Clarkson! Her five-song Unplugged set will debut exclusively on VH1.com at 7 p.m. ET on Thursday, November 17, but we absolutely, positively couldn’t wait that long to share the above clip with you.
As part of her set, Kelly decided to cover “I Know You Won’t,” which was originally recorded by another American Idol winner, Carrie Underwood, on her 2007 LP Carnival Ride . Carrie’s version is gorgeous, no doubt, but whereas her version is languid to the point of being passive, Kelly infuses her take—which, we should add, is brought to you by our friends at Starburst—with her trademark combination of dignity, strength, and a touch of heartbreak. Try to listen to the whole thing and not get goosebumps, we dare you.
There is a line in Bruno Mars‘s new single, “It Will Rain,” that goes like this: “There’ll be no sunlight/If I lose you baby.” A romantic line, to be sure, but one that shouldn’t be read too literally, especially considering the song’s inclusion on the Breaking Dawn soundtrack. After all, as any Twi-Hard worth their salt would tell you, Edward Cullen would probably prefer it if there were no direct sunlight ever again! That way, he and Bella could live out their days without worrying about spending money on silly things like 1000 SPF sunblock and Ray-Bans, and could instead make half-human, half-vampire babies underneath the moonlight for all eternity.
But what we REALLY wanna know is this: How did Bruno and his ladyfriend get their hands on a film canister containing a print of Breaking Dawn a full nine days before the movie hits theaters? We know some peeps down in Chinatown that would pay top dollars to get themselves a bootleg of that reel. Regardless, enjoy this video on your computer monitor for now, but be sure to tune into VH1′s Top 20 Video Countdown this weekend to be able to see it in glorious HD on your flatscreen at home!