I put a look together that I thought really went with the feel of the song. Dark tones with an edgy feel.
Key Item: Jersey top
Key Materials: Frayed denim
Shoe Situation: A simple black or solid color converse
Accessory Must: Leather snap-back hat
“I am Halsey. I will never be anything but honest. I write songs about sex and being sad” is what her Bio reads. Halsey has mastered the art of 90’s teen angst through pigtails, colored hair, and chokers, as seen in the music video for her single “Hurricane”. A sultry electro pop ode to young love. “I went down to a place in Bed Stuy, a little liquor on my lips, I let him climb inside my body, and held him captive in my kiss,” she sweetly sings from her alto/monotone-driven voice. Halsey harnesses a confident energy through the alt synths that lead the song into a mysterious story. You feel a sense of wanderlust as you listen closely. She talks about not belonging to anyone, she’s just a hurricane; wreaking havoc and then leaving for the next one. A haunting song with pretty pop undertones.
Miguel’s Wildheart is just that; unapologetic, spontaneous, and sensual. His third studio album will be released Monday (6/29) and it has easily perched Miguel on top of the R&B ladder. Miguel’s ear for electronics, vibe-y choruses, and overly sexualized lyrics keep him relevant and always on point. R&B is revitalized through the artistic eyes of Miguel, the visionary. Wildheart is a concept album focusing on West Coast influences as you hear sprinkled on every flawless track.
Several 70’s vibes are filtered throughout this album on several songs; the sultry/dance tune “deal”, the clap-happy “wave”, and the easy-going “nwa”. There’s no denying, electric guitar and a heavy drum beat guide almost every song into an endless good vibe. Miguel’s voice echoes every guitar strum as smooth as melted butter in cookie batter.
You say Miguel, I say…sexual. The amount of sexual innuendos are pretty much spilling through every song. Wildheart is definitely not an album to play in the van when you pick the kids up from school. “valley” is definitely one of the most explicit songs off the album; “I wanna f*** like we’re filming in the valley” just gives you an idea of what Miguel’s talking about here… A clear homage to the saucy side of California with racy lyrics to fit the cliché bill. Harmonies overlap near the end as Miguel leaves you in a trance-like state of mind. “Flesh” is another sexually charged anthem. Miguel’s falsetto takes shotgun as you ride through heavily sedated verses and low rumbling guitar. “I’m a slave to your flesh, woman put me right where I belong,” he sweetly sings in the 4 and a half minute tune.
The lyrics may be super racy but songs like “what’s normal anyway”, “leaves”, and “face the sun” carry more weight lyrically. “what’s normal anyway” challenges the racial boundaries that we see and hear about everyday. “I look around and I feel alone, I never feel like I belong.” A more emotional side of Miguel. A bit of 80’s synth pops into the song near the end adding more of a melancholy feel. “What’s normal anyway” quickly turns into a proclamation of self love; “don’t let them change you, just be who you are.” Miguel proves he can still write a powerful love song with the gorgeous “face the sun” featuring Lenny Kravitz on the electric guitar. “leaves” serves as another ode to California just like he promised; “sweet California, I should’ve known better, cause the leaves don’t change.” Impeccable vocals and simple lyrics flood this song with strong symbolic meaning. One of Miguel’s finest off the album.
For me, Wildheart is Miguel in his prime. He blows through everyone’s idea of R&B and creates a new age style that you can’t resist. A little bit of rock, funk, R&B, and pop thrown into a blender and you have the masterpiece that is Wildheart.
Here’s his latest music video for single, “Coffee”:
Accessory Must: Classic aviator with a lens color pop
Think of a young Stevie Nicks dancing in a kimono as fairies float out of her mouth with every lyric in true Florence Welch fashion, that’s Ryn Weaver. “The Fool” is one of the many standout tracks on her debut album The Fool, which was just released this past week. Her lyrics and metaphors are intricate and dripping in enchanting words; “So I curse my stars for a fair game, while you nurse my scars and the old flame.” Weaver recently said at her Bonnaroo performance that “The Fool” is about “Finding someone that’s too good for you once you’ve already been a little f****d up, if you know what I mean.” The music video illustrates the allure of electronic synths through the beauty of nature and a powerful emotional connection between two people. Weaver’s wavering vibrato borders between strong and petite with every twirl through the dull green woods. A powerful bridge verse near the end of the song leads the listener into a gorgeous musical awakening.
Her first album since 2007… Breathe In. Breathe Out. is Hilary as an established woman. As the simplistic black and white cover represents, her style is minimal, beautiful, and longgggggg overdue. HILARY DUFF FANS UNITE. The truth is, I grew up looking up to Hilary Duff. I sat down on my living room floor as a little girl and watched Lizzie McGuire with a big bowl of ice cream. Then I bought every album and poster and learned every word to her music. Through the years she fell off the grid but for good reason. This album shows the transition from her sort-of hibernation to her life back in the spotlight.
It’s no secret, Duff’s forte is POP, POP, and more POP. She’s good at it, it works, so why not. Nothing’s too heavy, weird, or experimental. It’s just good ole fashioned pop and I’m really ok with that. Songs like “Arms Around A Memory” and “Confetti” fit the dance/EDM trend that we hear a lot of these days. Both insanely catchy (#carjams) and two of my favorites off the album. “Confetti” is definitely radio ready, hopefully the next single! We’ve already seen the success of her first single “Sparks” a dark and sassy electro-pop tune inspired by her Tinder dates with some seriously lucky gentlemen; “I want to know what it is to connect with someone and what it is that gives you those sparks,” Duff says. “Sparks” is sure to make you whistle and clap along. Her voice sounds the same as it always has; a little whiny, smooth, and girly, just a little spunkier, which could be her newfound adult lady confidence.
The first half of Breathe In. Breathe Out. is packed with hits while the other half is slightly more sentimental and slower. Duff does manage to keep a solid beat in each song, making it last in your head for hours. “Tattoo”, “Picture This”, and “Night Like This” all pack in some saucy lovey dovey stuff. We all know Hilary recently separated from her husband and its clear “Tattoo” is about the lasting effects of love; “You’re under my skin burning in my bloodstream, I guess that you have to leave a tattoo on my skin.” Simple yet somewhat cliché lyrics surge through this album, but what Hilary Duff album would it be without some sweet as sugar lyrics.
A solid album from an artist that deserves the spotlight and the pop crown…Taylor Swift- BACK OFF.
By the way, if you haven’t watched Hilary Duff in “Younger” on TV Land, you need to catch up and watch the first season because it’s AMAZING.
Miley Cyrus’ new leaked song could be giving fans a glimpse into what we can expect from her Bangers follow-up… With Cyrus being so heavily portrayed as a crazy lady in the media, “Nightmare” does nothing to prove that. She goes back to her electronic/pop sounds with a fiery chorus and clap-happy verses; “I woke up in another life, where nothing’s really dangerous, and everything is black and white…” A song with simple lyrics most people can relate to. When Cyrus does decide to release this song, it will surely climb the music charts in no time. I prefer this style of electronic/pop on Miley Cyrus, it suits her well and she knows how to make it work. Bangers was an epic form of artistic expression and I’m positive her next album will live up to the hype.
Sultry crooner, The Weeknd recently released two new songs off his upcoming album Chapter |||; “The Hills” and “Can’t Feel My Face”. Both give fans the two things they love most about The Weeknd; that sexy falsetto and a crazy good vibe. I haven’t always been a fan of The Weeknd, some of his earlier songs are a little too racy for my liking, but this new batch of music could be changing my mind. The music is less vulgar (AKA- radio ready) and more in tune with what’s poppin’ in the music scene as of lately.
“The Hills” is a moody/darker tune, touching on a sexual relationship; “I only call you when it’s half-past, five, the only time I’d ever call you mine.” Abel’s voice drags nonchalantly through the verses as the story progresses. The chorus is sinister-like with heavy bass while Abel’s voice takes front and center. His infamous muffled vocals add a haunting element to the song, especially near the end as he sweetly sings “the hills have eyes, the hills have eyes, who are you to judge?”. “The Hills” is a slow-going song, something only certain people could enjoy listening to. Late night cruises with friends is what this is meant for.
On the other hand, “Can’t Feel My Face” is a straight up pop tune. My first thoughts while listening to this song…MICHAEL JACKSON. Abel’s voice on the verses is so so insanely similar to MJ, it’s incredible. His punchy word annunciations add to the immediate dance groove of the song. The backup vocals near the end are something you would hear off a funky greatest hits album. This is pop with a twist of modern R&B, sung by a man who is capable of harnessing so many different energies just with the wavering tone of his voice. There’s no doubt, The Weeknd, is a truly unique artist who spends time creating his music, which is essentially his art.
Safe to say, this next chapter will be glorious to listen to.
Shoe Situation: A simple sandal or any shoe of your choice
Accessory Must: Bold lense sunnie
“I got a life out there somewhere its waiting, lined with palm trees and only new faces,” sound straight out of lead singer Hayley Williams’ dream diary. Paramore added this adventurous heavy track to the deluxe version of their self titled album, Paramore. “Escape Route” follows someone as they start on a new adventure; something most people can easily relate to. “I’m moving on, cause I just want to feel for once that I belong,” are the lyrics blurted out of Williams’ mouth as she effortlessly creates her new life plan. “Route” is reminiscient of Paramore’s earlier songs (especially All We Know Is Falling), because of its emphasis on heavy guitar and drums and a fast paced/repetitive chorus. Nothing like a straight up Paramore rock jam to motivate some positive life changes, right?!