Archive for the ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’ Category


Pop singer Britney Spears gained her second U....

Britney Spears (Image via Wikipedia)

Even though I strongly associate with rock music, I can’t deny that growing up, I used to obsess over every little thing that Britney Spears used to, wear, or say. Her breaking-up with Justin Timberlake had to be one of the saddest moments of my young life-no kidding. And so, even though I don’t want to admit it, I’ve always been a fan of Britney’s even though her latest efforts can never compare to what she used to do in the 90s- maybe it’s all her familial and personal problems, but that’s another topic for another day.

Till the World Ends, Brit’s second single from her seventh album Femme Fatale, and is one of her better songs as of late. Catchy, danceable, and written by people who know how to do this best (Max Martin, Dr. Luke, and not-so-surprisingly Ke$ha), it’s no surprise that this song will be a hit in no time.

The video, directed by Ray Kay of Bieber’s Baby fame, simply takes on the premise of the world ending-as shown by the opening screenshot of December 21, 2012 and has a whole lot of dancing and energy going on while the whole universe as we know it comes to a halt. It was only made available on Vevo 2 days ago, and yet has over a million views.

DISLIKES:

  1. Playing on the world ending in 2012. Okay guys, this whole thing has been blown out proportion. None of us knows when the world is going to end or anything of the like-we can’t even tell if the Mayans are right are not. I’ll admit it’s a very smart move to use because now everyone associates the date with the world ending, but for someone whose known to be creative, I would’ve liked to see something else.

    No words can describe this awful mess! (Via Socypath)

  2. Barely there clothes. It’s Britney and Britney is known for not holding it back when it comes to her clothes. Case in point, what she wore to the Grammys in 2010. Here it’s no exception. Neither her or her dancers are wearing anything decent, but then again, this does serve a “purpose” that isn’t clear to me. If the world was ending, I would choose to wear something I’m comfortable in, not that.
  3. Poorly placed cuts. When I was growing up, all I wanted to do was watch pop videos and learn every single dance move. But it never actually happened because a-I’m a bad dancer and b-there’s always a scene that comes right in the middle of a major move. The case is actually true here. Okay, so the world is ending and stuff are falling. Great. What does this have to do with the whole concept? I want to see more dancing (probably the best thing about this video) without random stuff that just doesn’t make sense. There’s supposedly a choreographer’s cut that should be out soon, so if it doesn’t end up the way it’s supposed to, I am going to be very disappointed.
  4. Highly sexualized scenes. Though nothing really happens, and in the end, sex sells, it just takes away from all the dancing. Maybe it would’ve worked with another concept, but it’s not really fitting here.

LIKES

  1. Britney has never looked better! I don’t know about her live performances, but she wasn’t really nailing her videos before Femme Fatale. Not the case here. She looks so radiant and energetic, and it can’t just be the makeup. I think things are finally picking up for her and it’s showing in her work.
  2. The Choreography. Brian Friedman might be mostly known for his appearances on So You Think You Can Dance but he should equally be recognized for his amazing work on video clips. Of course, we have to give credit to Brit for still having such a lithe body to pull off almost all the moves that are thrown her way, and the supporting dancers who elevate the standard.
  3. References to old Britney Videos. When you’ve been in the business as long as Spears has, it’s only fair to dig up elements that have made you famous, especially when they’re so iconic like the red jumpsuit she wore in Oops… I Did It Again. Of course,  there’s a modern twist on it, with the jumpsuit being all sparkled out. The whole clip is an homage to the I’m a Slave 4 U video, and I really love it. I always love taking the old stuff and using them in a new way, and with all the dancing going on, this is a subtle reference that Britney’s career has always been bright despite all the speed bumps she’d hit and all the competition she’s facing from different artists.

All in all, this is a very good video and an equally catchy song. I guarantee that it’s gonna be one of those “summer songs” despite its release in April. It’s also a strong follow-up to the wonderful Hold It Against Me.


Shannon, Jared, and Tomo on the set of This Is War (Image via Ace Showbiz)

In June 2010, a teaser trailer for the title track from 30 Seconds to Mars’ second single from their album This is War was released onto Youtube showing the band decked out in military gear and carrying weapons, as inspired by the song’s central theme of war and peace. For almost a year, the very fate of that video was unknown and fans anxiously waited for any news about it. The wait, however, is now over.

On April 1st, the band, and through their social media sites, asked all their fans to refrain from watching any leaked videos and that they would be posting the official clip very soon. That came true on April 6th, when the full-fledged video was uploaded to their Vevo channel, and has already managed to garner an impressive number of views.

After watching it extensively over the past few days, here’s what I like and do not like about the video. [SPOILER ALERTS]

DISLIKES:

  1. Where are Shannon and Tomo exactly? Although they’re in the video, it’s at rare instances that you see their faces, and even then, they’re wearing sunglasses/goggle. I would’ve loved to see more of them because the dynamic that this trio have-in terms of their music-is beyond incredible.
  2. Where do all the flying objects come from? I know I know, this all serves an eventual purpose, but it just seems so random!
    Jared Leto at the 66th Venice International Fi...

    Bartholomew Cubbins (Image via Wikipedia)

    They’re in a very deserted area and out of nowhere, tanks d are flying. This would’ve been so much more believable if we see whose launching these things at them. I know most, if not all, of the Echelon would’ve loved to play a small part in the video.

  3. The typeface. I can tell its a Bartholomew Cubbins “movie” just by the lettering he uses in the historical scene. He doesn’t have to include the opening or end credits for us to know that it’s his work of art. For those of you who don’t know, Bartholomew Cubbins is nothing but a pseudonym for Jared Leto. On a side note, this isn’t a Cubbins film, but rather was directed by Edouard Salier- something that Leto isn’t keen on repeating in the future.
  4. Why is there a censored and uncensored version? Unlike Hurricane, where an uncensored version for the more sensitive/conservative viewers was needed,there’s nothing in This is War that needs censoring, not even blood.

LIKES:

  1. The theme. Definitely spot-on. For a song with such powerful lyrics and obvious discontent at the state of the world, there would’ve been no better theme to use than fighting in Afghanistan. Although, I do have a hard time believing that pretty-boy Jared would ever be engaged in such kind of combat.
  2. A Screenshot from the video (Via Tom and Tal)

    The historical shots. Because the issue is so contemporary, it would completely make sense to use images and clips from the huge historical archive available. What I like the most about this is that it’s very blunt, like putting the image of George W. Bush with the words “moment to lie” set on it. There’s no doubt about what the group thinks about the state of current affairs.

  3. Incorporating little elements: If you look very closely, you’ll see that each of the helmets has a little inscription it. Jared’s has This is War, the name of the album and the very song, Tomo has the very inventive Mars logo, while Shannon has L490, the one track on the album he wrote, and also says that in the short break from the song scene. No real idea what it signifies, but if you do, do tell!
  4. The cinematography. Wow! This is a common thread in all of Mars’ videos- they’re just a spectacle. Whether it’s the chilling Hurricane, the inspiring Kings+Queens, or the for-the-fans Closer to the Edge, there’s always something that draws you into their videos. Here, they take something so bare as a battleground and turn into more than just an area of discourse and disruption: it’s more of a beautiful chaos. In the end, the coming together of the triad and the guys observing it, it’s only a thing you can fully comprehend if you watch the entire video.

These are my thoughts on this video. I am very much enjoying the whole 30 Seconds to Mars fandom, especially when they’re making such great videos (excluding the very strange but beautifully shot Hurricane). I only wonder what they’re going to do next.


I understand that Rebecca Black has been getting a lot of heat lately for what has come to be known as the most-hated song on YouTube and probably in the entire recording industry. But focusing all our energy on her is just a waste because music is constantly evolving (or not) and there’s always something new. I am by no means saying that Friday is a good song-that’s far from it, but rather, let’s focus our energy on things that matter. Like Katy Perry.

Katy Perry has been on a roll as of late. Since she came onto the scene with the epically-controversial I Kissed  A Boy, her career has only been going upwards.  2010 saw the release of her hit-album Teenage Dream with songs like California Girl,  Firework and the title track going on to top the charts and feature prominently on the famous TV musical dramadey Glee.

Black-and-white head and upper body side shot of a woman, with straight bangs and cat-like eye make-up, looking to her right. She holds her hands close to her face in a prayer-like manner and wears a shiny sleveless top and multiple finger rings. The word "E.T." appears centered near the bottom, with "Katy Perry" above and "Ft. Kanye West" below, all in majuscule pink dashed font.

Single Cover for Katy Perry's E.T. (Image via Wikipedia)

Her first venture in 2011 is a collaboration with Kanye West, who seems to be everywhere lately, named E.T. Yes, that E.T.

Apparently, the whole song is about being in love with a foreigner- something  that is true in Perry’s case, as she married British comedian Russel Brand late last year. But if you happen to hear this song on the radio without consulting Wikipedia, you’re just going to think the song is about alien sex- and West does nothing to dispel that notion with his few rap verses.

I’ll admit, the beat is very catchy, especially at the breakdown verse  where she says ” You’re  from a whole other world, a different dimension, You open my eyes, And I’m ready to go, Lead me into the light” but the rest of the song is very shallow (hence the reason why I brought up Friday in the opening paragraph).  I’m very disappointed because one of the writers of this track is Max Martin , whose almost legendary in the world of good pop music.

But if vocal-enhancers are being used, it doesn’t show, because the 26 year-old singer is actually able to carry a note (and a very high one).

The video also just recently came out, and features the two collaborators in, what else, an extra terrestrial setting. Though I really don’t want to get this video, especially since this seems to be the craze  (see Gaga’s Born this Way video for further proof), I am going to applaud the hard work that went into making Perry into an alien. She’s not strikingly pretty but she’s not ugly either and I really loved her look in Teenage Dream. Anyways, this excess does serve a purpose here and I like it.

Everything else? No just no, no, no! Kanye looks like a fish out of water, the whole robot coming to life in the end sequence is creepy, and I really don’t understand the very obvious sunglasses product placement and the walking into the sunlight thing. Maybe I just don’t want to…  Maybe Perry should just focus her next projects on more Earthly things (and stop banishing Adele from the top of the charts)

Here’s the video for your viewing enjoyment. What do you think?


As you all know, Eminem’s third music video off his latest album Recovery has been released 10 days ago. As was the second single, it was also a collaboration. This time, his latest song is No Love, featuring Lil Wayne. This is the second single they do together, after Drop The World on Lil Wayne’s album Rebirth. No Love was released on Eminem’s VEVO channel on YouTube 9:30 PM EST on the last day of September. It has been released officially as Eminem’s third single on October 5th.

The  music video starts off with a young schoolkid having three balls thrown at by three kids in the school gym, which pretty much sets the tone and theme of the music video. Lil Wayne starts off with his impressive rap verse, which was recorded before he got sent to prison, including ending a memorable “You can keep knocking/ won’t knock me down/ no love lost/ no love found”, where at this stage the bullied boy is moaning the fact that his cap was placed in the toilet and at this moment you can feel the momentum is all about to change because…

EMINEM’s verse comes up and as he starts, you can just feel that turnaround coming up and sense that the bullied kid is going to just kick the fucking shit out of those 3 bullies, especially after the scene where the step dad doesn’t seem to give two shits that his kid got punched in the eye. As Eminem’s rapping goes on, you get pumped up as much he is and just wondering when the hell is this kid going to beat the crap out of those three. And then the moment comes, where his skateboard is out of the way, and he punches the first kid, shoves the second and punches the third to set the record straight.

A lot of people seem to think that Eminem is trying to promote fighting in this music video (after all, everyone thinks he is no Mr. Nice Guy). As his Love the Way You Lie music video was bringing light to the effects of domestic violence, Eminem is sending a message about bullying and that you must stand up for yourself and fight only if you need to, as the case of the bullied boy. After all, would you like to see any of your kid being in that situation.

If you listen to Eminem’s verse carefully, you’d notice that he is ready to get the crown back (although he never really lost it, come to think of it) when he says “I ain’t never giving in again / Caution to the wind / Complete freedom / Look at these rappers, how I treat ‘em / So why the fuck would I join ‘em, when I beat ‘em?” And seriously, it was about time someone used that “Imma let you finish” quote in a rap verse. Who other than Eminem would be perfect to use Kanye’s infamous statement of intervention?

Overall, the song was easily one of the best on Recovery and the music video seems to fit the song to show that despite Eminem’s disappearance, he is not letting down his fans nor giving up what he does best that easy. The music video is as of great quality as Not Afraid and Love the Way You Lie. Expect this single to last on the air and gain popularity as much as Love the Way You Lie, since you have two big mainstream artists collaborating on a great song.

 


Finally!

It’s been 20 days, but I had been going through a lot regarding a death in the family and getting ready to come back to AUB. So I apologize for the long absence.

But now…

I’M BACK!

A quick summary of what I was planning on blogging about but never got the chance to do so:

FIBA World Championship 2010: The semifinals took place on the day before last, with USA crushing Lithuania behind Kevin Durant’s stunning play, while Turkey beat Serbia in easily what was known as the Game of the Cup as it ended on the last few seconds. The final was played in front of a full house, but the hosts Turkey were unable to finish their amazing run in the World Cup, as they lost a well deserved decision to the U.S.A 81-64, with Kevin Durant taking over and giving back the long awaited World Cup back to the Americans, who haven’t won it since 1994.

10th Arab National Championship: After playing in multiple tournaments throughout the summer, Lebanon had to host one more, and despite the wear and tear, made an amazing run to reach the final. But it lost focus and luck at the end, and was unable to to pull it off, losing to the Egyptians in the finals seconds 60-57.

Expect a review of the new Phil Collins album “Going Back” when I get time to write one. Also, the new music video for Eminem and Lil Wayne is out, coming off Eminem’s latest album “Recovery” with the song titled “No Love”.


Single Cover

In 2005, Australian songstress Delta Goodrem paired with former Westlife member Brian McFadden to release Almost Here, a sort-of-ballad, that managed to do considerably well in the countries where it was released. The song, however,

would only mark the start of Goodrem and McFadden’s professional and personal (the two are engaged to be married) collaboration. After writing Together We Are One, a song Goodrem performed at the Opening Ceremony of the  Commonwealth Games in 2006, they went on to write several songs for Goodrem’s third album Delta. 

Now in 2010, McFadden has released his third solo album, entitled Wall of Soundz, a distinctly electro-pop offering that diverts from what he’s been known to offer. Despite that, the third single,  from the album, Mistakes featuring his leading lady, should not be missed. (more…)


Note: This is a special blog collaboration [SBC] by both Tom and Tal. Hope you enjoy :) :

Eminem’s second music video of his new album Recovery was released last night.  Love the Way You Lie, which features Rihanna as well, is at top of the U.S. single charts for the third straight week.

With one of the hottest actresses out there, Megan Fox and Lost star Dominic Monaghan are the couple of focus in this video, where they are going through an abusive relationship as the video shows. Directed by Joseph Kahn, the music video is great but not as strong as the single’s lyrics depict. Inspired by Eminem’s relationship with his ex-wife Kim, according to Monaghan, a lot of domestic violence and abuse, prettified by sex images, takes place in addition to make-up sex. Fox and Monaghan’s characters are mostly shown in their motel room in addition to scenes shot in a supermarket, where Monaghan’s character steals a bottle of vodka and in a bar where he also attacks a guy talking to Fox’s character.  Meanwhile, Rihanna is shown singing in front of a burning house (assumed to be the couple’s place) and Eminem is rapping on a desolate field before eventually joining Rihanna.

Talk about just "all right" kissing for Monaghan

Rihanna, in an interview with Access Hollywood, said it was “something needed to be done” about recording the song, since it was something both her “and Eminem have experienced on different sides, different ends of the table.”

On an unrelated note, Dominic Monaghan said Megan Fox is an “all right kisser,” and tried not to cross the line with the brunette, as she just got married to actor Brian Austin Green. Monaghan enjoyed doing the video with Fox, as both got along well.

Megan Fox donated her music video fee to Sojourn House charity. (more…)