No music post today, but I've got something very cool for you to check out! In honor of Halloween, a bunch of great YA authors (including yours truly) have written a choose your own adventure type story that's being featured across a number of blogs these next few days.
I was in charge of starting the story, and you can read the beginning here. Then choose where to go next and see if you live or die. Plus, there are tons of prizes available throughout the story!
So check it out! It's called "The Corn Stalker" (see what I did there?) and it's pretty fantastic.
When I hear studio tracks from folks like Cher Lloyd and One Direction (not so much Matt Cardle), it makes me realize that, while still super entertaining, this year's UK X-Factor doesn't have a hope of becoming as relevant as last year's. Especially if the public keeps voting for snooze-fest, anti-charisma performers like Craig and Sophie over contestants like Kitty and Misha. At the very least, let's hope that this year's series gives us a performance as perfect as Cher Lloyd's Stay. Even if it doesn't, we've got the track in studio form to enjoy for years to come. It's better than I could have imagined. Cher's problems in the competition were peaking too early and having a (gulp) personality. Out of the context of a reality show competition, everything that held her back is working in her favor. She's an incredibly relevant new talent and, despite releasing a dire first single, has done everything else right. I can't wait for the album and her inevitable X-Factor return performance (this weekend, right?). We need people like her to come in and show this year's crop how it's done!
And while on the subject of X-Factor, I'm totally behind Kitty, Johnny and Misha. In other words, the three contestants that are actually entertaining. For US audiences, it's all about Drew, Intensity and the Stereo Hoggz for me. And Australia? Well, I'm still reeling from Audio Vixen's undeserved boot (WTF?), but my favorites are definitely Reece and Christina (I haven't yet watched this week's eps yet, so if you're watching, no spoilers please!)
Too much X-Factor? Yeah, but it's the season for it. And I do have a reputation to uphold.
(Music posted for evaluation purposes only. If you like what you hear, support the artists. Preorder the album here. Follow me on twitter and facebook.
One Direction - Got To Be You Not as strong as their last single, but this is pretty much everything you'd hope a boy band ballad would be. Bonus points for the interesting choice of harmonies in the chorus. It's a very winter-sounding track. A-
Olly Murs - Dance With Me Tonight His last single was the single best thing he's done. This isn't, but it's still better than the tracks they chose to release off his debut. It's certainly catchy, but I feel it has a very limited shelf life. B-
Professor Green - Read All About It His voice is like nails on a chalkboard to me. It's like everything that bugs me about Eminem amped up even further. The hook is alright, I suppose. C
Will Young - Come On That's two great singles in a row from Mr. Young. This is excellent stuff. Not quite as excellent as Jealousy, but very enjoyable. A-
Rizzle Kicks - When I Was A Youngster Their ascent to total domination continues unabated. It's not necessarily my thing, but I can appreciate this. I really like these guys, and this may be even better than their last single. B+
Yolanda Be Cool - Le Bump I was a huge fan of the deliriously We No Speak Americano. This is not up to that level, even though it tries to be. In fact, I'm finding the hooks pretty forgettable. C+
Coldplay & Rihanna - Princess Of China It's a neat collaboration in theory, and this isn't bad. However, I think I was expecting more from the caliber of stars involved. Like Coldplay's past few singles, it just doesn't go anywhere. Still, it's much better than Paradise. B-
Your Choice: What's your favorite Pop Blitz song this week?
Surprisingly, I've been listening to Patrick Stump's new album this past week. I say "surprisingly" because I really did not care for Fall Out Boy and Stump's emo-styled vocals were a huge part of that. But now he's reinvented himself as a new wave soul singer and proven that the whole screechy emo thing really was an act. The new album is very hit and miss, but the best tracks are really stunning. I love the sound he's going for--sort of a mix between Michael Jackson, Prince and The Cars. Too often the songwriting isn't as memorable as I'd like, but the styling and production is spot on. This track, the longest on the album by a mile, is the definite standout. It is SO good that it eclipses everything else. Essentially two songs melded into one, the track builds to an absolutely massive crescendo. The confessional lyrics work, the chorus has impact and it never gets old despite being over eight minutes long. If I worked at it, I could probably take the deluxe version of the album and the EP and whittle the tracks down to an album's worth of good material, but this would always remain the best of the bunch.
...Transmissions come in from outposts all over the universe... Unfamiliar melodies stream into our radios... Fronted by colorful aliens with big voices... The music begins to catch on ... It's in our heads and it refuses to leave... And we like it...
I post music on this blog out of love for the artists and in the hope that I can promote the singers and bands that I am so passionate about. If you are (or represent) an artist and would like any content taken down, don't hesitate to email me at the link above and it will be removed immediately.