Archive for the ‘Lists’ Category

2013′s Best Albums (So Far): Idolator Editors Pick Their Favorite 10

Jun 28th, 2013 // 6 Comments

Somehow, with June winding to a close, we are once more here at the halfway point in the year. It’s a time when we at Idolator like to look back and reflect on certain aspects of our lives: Did we remember to file our taxes? Have we been wearing enough sunblock? Has Beyonce really not released a new single yet?!

Collectively, we also like to put our heads together and pore over our favorite music from the first six months of the year. As we considered our early 2013 picks, big-budget major label albums made the cut, as did small, indie releases by acts you perhaps heard about for the very first time on Idolator. Speaking of which, the selection of artists you’ll find below hail from far and wide — Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, the United Kingdom and the United States are all represented. Oh, and one of the 10 albums is actually an EP. So there.

So let’s just get right to it! Head below to catch the albums (and the EP) that took up residence in our ears (and maybe yours too) in the first half of 2013. Note: They’re ordered alphabetically by artist’s name. We’ll save the meticulous, deeply scientific ranking for our final Best Albums list at the end of the year. More »

Miley Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop” Becomes Her 7th Top 10 Single: Here’s A Refresher On The Other 6

Jun 27th, 2013 // 1 Comment

Miley Cyrus has established herself as one of the hardest twerking players in the pop game throughout the past seven years, and if you’re not yet hip to her summertime ode to all things carefree and turnt-up, “We Can’t Stop,” then it’s time to open your ears. First of all, the song’s music video is insane. It’s also one of the five contenders in our Song Of The Summer poll (hurry up and vote — we’re announcing a winner tomorrow, pop pickers!). And did we mention that the video is absolutely bonkers? We did? Okay. Finally, “We Can’t Stop” just gyrated into the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 this week (it’s at #5), thus marking Miley’s seventh trip into the upper tier of the main singles chart.

This feat calls for a good ol’ party in the U.S.A. Our way of celebrating: looking back at Miley’s six previous Top 10 jams. From “See You Again” to “Can’t Be Tamed,” this is your refresher on saucy Cyrus’ biggest hits. So grab your Hannah Montana wig — oh, we see you’ve, um, been wearing it all along — and climb below for stroll down memory lane. More »

‘The Voice’: 10 Life Lessons We All Learned From Season 4

Jun 20th, 2013 // Comment

Since Danielle Bradbery was announced as The Voice champ on Tuesday, we’ve taken the appropriate time to mourn for the other contestants, store our Team Michelle Chamuel glasses until her world tour and write no less than 10 unanswered letters to Xtina confirming that she will, indeed, be returning next season (because if this is all some cruel joke…).

We’ve also had a moment to reflect upon the countless lessons that can be gleaned from Season 4.

Did we say countless? We totally meant countable (10), and countdown-able.

Before Shakira and Usher abdicate their red chairs officially, take a look back on the season and — just like the eager contestants — learn and grow from the infinite wisdom of the coaches, contestants and voters alike. More »

Kanye West’s 7 Best Collaborations: Relive Yeezus’ Best Moments Assisting Rihanna, T.I. & More

Jun 13th, 2013 // 1 Comment

When accessorizing, it’s typically en vogue to pair a decent outfit with an extremely expensive accessory. That’s the same function of having Kanye West as a feature on a track. Yeezy adds the necessary something needed to upgrade any hit single. The Chicago-bred rapping-producing-ranting wunderkind spent his early days playing the assist for none other than his now-peer Jay-Z. While that could have arguably been Kanye’s collaborative ceiling, he has since gone on to work with some of rap’s heavyweights while forging a career of his own. Of course Kanye’s musical trajectory isn’t without a little randomness.

Collaborations-wise, Yeezy tends to pick and choose who to work with based on a vibe, not a status. Remember his track “I Still Love H.E.R.” with Asian rap outfit Teriyaki Boyz? Sometimes the tracks he jumps on raise several eyebrows; other times they’re expected — especially when a verse by the Yeezus MC can take a song to the next level. Here are seven of Kanye West’s best collaborative moments. From the super well-known to the hyper-underground, Kanye West knows how to show up for an occasion. Check out hip-hop’s favorite accessory below. More »

Father’s Day Playlist: 10 Songs That Offer Dad-Like Advice

Jun 10th, 2013 // Comment

It’s that time of year again, Idolofans: time to celebrate fathers! Well, not just fathers, but grandfathers, male guardians, or any man who played a part in raising us. And when one thinks of Father’s Day (it’s June 16th this year — you’ve still got time to buy a card), don’t a good number of pop songs pop into your head? Of course they do. But if they don’t, don’t worry — we’ve got you covered. You didn’t think we’d let a holiday go by without commemorating it in song, did you?

As is our usual wont, we’ve spent hours combing through various research materials (YouTube) for pop hits that reflect fatherhood and the unique brand of wisdom that can only come from a man who finds interesting things to do in a garage for an entire weekend. Or maybe yours likes crosswords? Fathers are a species all their own, aren’t they?

So in the spirit of celebrating the paternal bond, we present 10 classic songs in which male vocalists (father figures, if you will) dole out helpful advice, words of encouragement or just plain old common sense to the young people in their lives. Play it for your dad and see what kind of witty gems he comes up with. If it’s something along the lines of “turn up that fabulous playlist, child!” then our work here is done. More »

Kanye West: 5 Highly Artistic Videos From Yeezus Christ Himself

Jun 7th, 2013 // 1 Comment

Sometimes his videos start a party; other times they cause seizures. Kanye West, hip hop’s resident art nerd, has crafted a sizable niche for himself based upon always pushing the artistic envelope in both his music and the visuals attached to it.

From his first video, 2003′s “Through The Wire,” West kept things high in art. He was in a near-fatal car accident a year prior (2002), forcing him to have his mouth wired shut. He documented that entire experience, filming it every step of the way. He then wrote and recorded “Through the Wire,” and by the time the clip was released, he had a video full of animated Polaroids detailing everything that happened.

Ten years later, Kanye is shutting down whole cities across the globe with residents gathering to watch his video “New Slaves” projected on the sides of buildings. It’s that level of artistry (and way of wild thinking) that has allowed Kanye West to continuously be regarded as one of rap’s forward thinkers.

Arguably, all of ‘Ye’s videos are artistic. From the minute-and-a-half video for “Power” directed by visual artist Marco Brambilla to the string of vids directed by Hype Williams, there is always something to take away from a Kanye West video. Some he even directs himself, and with multiple versions (i.e. “Jesus Walks,” “Heard Em Say,” “Can’t Tell Me Nothing,” etc.). With West’s sixth studio album Yeezus dropping just around the corner, there will more than likely be several new videos to add to Ye’s visual arsenal. So let’s take a look back in time at five of Kanye West’s most artistic visuals. From metaphorical clips to straight up cartoons, Yeezy always has something up his sleeve. Check out the selections below.

More »

Behind The Candelabra: 15 Great Piano-Driven Pop Songs

May 27th, 2013 // 1 Comment

HBO’s Behind the Candelabra, Steven Soderbergh’s highly anticipated biopic on Liberace, debuted this past weekend to much critical fanfare, with many critics praising Soderbergh for approaching his subject with a modicum of humanity (as opposed to mean-spirited camp). Although Liberace never openly pined to be taken seriously, we think he’d appreciate the film’s attempt to go behind the caricature and laud him for his ivory-tickling talents. Not to mention his other talents, demonstrated mostly on lover Scott Thorson, played by Matt Damon.

In the spirit of reviving all things Lee, we’ve compiled this playlist of piano-packing pop stars, all of whom — whether they want to admit it in their cool little hearts or not — owe a debt of gratitude to the first man to make pianos hip since Tchaikovsky. Well, may “hip” isn’t the right word for the rhinestone encrusted, old-lady-arousing Lee…. perhaps we should say, Leee-gorgeous! More »

Random Access Memories: Your Ultimate Memorial Day 2013 Playlist

May 27th, 2013 // Comment

Memorial Day is sort of about remembrance, but mostly about getting an extra day of avoiding work or school which you probably won’t remember. And since this year it falls so close to the release of Daft Punk‘s Random Access Memories, we decided to throw together a Memorial Day 2013 playlist comprising some of our favorite memory-themed songs.

There’s something for everyone here: 80s classics, past legends like Michael Jackson and David Bowie, current legends like Jay-Z and Madonna, pop queens like Demi Lovato and Adele. So fire up the grill (can we finally say warm weather is here to stay?) and fire up the below 25-track playlist to cap off your three-day weekend. More »

Daft Punk & 7 Other Great French House Acts: From Dmitri From Paris To Justice

May 20th, 2013 // Comment
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With all the fanfare surrounding their comeback smash “Get Lucky” and this week’s release of Random Access Memories, it’s easy to forget that French house ambassadors Daft Punk have been around for nearly two decades. Thanks to a sound that’s always been ahead of the curve (and robot helmets to mask any wrinkles), the duo of Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter seem positively ageless more than 15 years after they first wowed us with their debut, Homework. That they’re still managing to surprise and influence the international pop scene is a testament to their distinctive retro-futuristic groove!

That groove, however, wasn’t created by Daft Punk alone. French House (or French Touch, as the sexy call it) has its roots in the clubs of Paris, where DJs and dance music disciples found inspiration in old Europop and space-disco records and mashed them up with state-of-the-art beats. Basically, when it came to making booties bounce along the Champs Elysee, Daft Punk didn’t act alone! So get your Gallic groove on and pay tribute to the forebears of French Funk with our terribly chic playlist below. Tout le monde danse maintenant! More »

Daft Punk: The 5 Best Rap & R&B Songs That Sample The “Get Lucky” Duo

May 10th, 2013 // Comment

As the release date for Daft Punk’s highly anticipated new album Random Access Memories draws nearer, we’re reminded of all those rappers who’ve borrowed the French electro duo’s sounds in the past. (Ten bucks says is currently trying to figure out how to make his own version of “Get Lucky” titled “#GetPower”). Some have been more successful uses of their samples than others, but one thing’s for sure: Hip-hop loves Daft Punk. Everyone from Kanye West to Janet Jackson has aped their beats and verses, and we’ve narrowed it down to the top five.

Earlier this week we gave you a roundup of Thomas and Guy-Manuel‘s most groundbreaking videos. Now head below to hear Daft Punk reinterpreted. More »