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Friday, July 24, 2015

Nervo - The Other Boys (ft. Jake Shears, Kylie Minogue and Nile Rogers)

What a fantastic surprise this is! We haven't heard from Scissor Sisters' Jake Shears for quite awhile, and to see his name alongside Kylie Minogue on this Nervo track nearly made me jump out of my seat. Then I played the song and realized that it's actually even more brilliantly fun than I'd imagined. What a beat! It makes me wish that Jake and Kylie would record an entire album with Nervo producing. Their synergy is electric, and feels like one of those team-ups that was just always meant to happen. And then Nile Rogers comes in with that guitar at the end and... well, can you tell I'm excited?

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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Gfriend - Me Gustas Tu

If you can't stomach a little cutesy sugar rush, you should probably stop reading now. It's not usually my thing either, but the ridiculously names Gfriend do one thing and they do it very, very well. It felt like they came out of absolutely nowhere earlier this year, and are now back with a song that sounds a lot like their last one. Luckily, that's exactly what I wanted from them. Me Gustas Tu is a sinfully catchy piece of pop music. It's something that Korean girl groups do especially well, and I'd put Gfriend right at the top of the heap, despite not being around very long at all. It's the little bursts of electric guitars and strings that send this over the top. That, and the hook directly after the main chorus, create a powerful bubblegum confection that's really hard to resist. These girls are going places, and quickly.

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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

KAT-TUN - Come Here

I'm kind of on a mission. Not that there isn't enough awesome K-Pop to keep me going forever, but I'm also trying to dip a toe into the gigantic and sometimes very weird pool that is J-Pop. I don't think I'll ever be a massive fan for a number of reasons, including aural aesthetics that just don't completely align with my personal taste, but I want to get familiar. In my brief studies, I ran into a group called KAT-TUN that sounds a bit more on the K-Pop side. In particular, I've been giving a lot of love to their most recent full-length album. The title track reminded me of a Shinee single the first time I heard it. Then I went on wikipedia and, lo and behold, it's because it shares some writers that have worked on Shinee material in the past. Even so, Come Here is a dynamite slice of hyper active power pop. More than anything, it's a great bridge that will hopefully give me some confidence to continue exploring. I'm wondering, are any of my readers J-Pop fans? If so, what would you recommend? I'm dreaming of finding something that sounds like Infinite, but I'm doubtful that it exists.

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Romeo - Give Me Your Heart

We're going to travel back in time a couple of years today. Over the weekend, I started familiarizing with one of Korea's most popular second generation idol groups, SS501. They were active as a group until 2010, at which point the members started embarking on solo careers. I was already familiar with member Heo Young-saeng, because he did some awesome work with my favorite production team, Sweetune. But on Saturday, I started to get obsessed with the more theatrical work of Park Jung-min, who released his best recordings in Japan under the moniker Romeo. His album Midnight Theatre, in particular, is filled with extremely propulsive, well-produced dramatic pop/dance music. The soaring chorus of Give Me Your Heart is undeniable. The melody is gargantuan in scope, sung with a palpable sense of urgency and desperation. It's the kind of track I fell in love with based only on a 30-second clip. But lucky you! Because you've got the whole thing to enjoy below. I'd especially urge my fellow Melodifestivalen/Eurovision fans to give this a lesson, because it would fit right in on either of those programs.

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