When it was announced that Lorde would be curating the soundtrack for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1, it seemed to be a perfect fit. The Pure Heroine singer and the film’s main character, Katniss Everdeen, are both a little dark, mature for their ages and very confident. Once the album’s guest artists were revealed, the OST became quite anticipated — and it has proven itself to be an awesome record.
From the mega-tracks like the Stromae/Pusha T/HAIM/Q-Tip/Lorde feature on “Meltdown,” Charli XCX‘s showing her delicate side on “Kingdom” and Lorde’s haunting “Yellow Flicker Beat,” the Mockingjay soundtrack is incredibly versatile while remaining true to the movie’s plot. But did the soundtrack appease the music critics? Read on after the jump to see what they all had to say! More »
Sir Bob Geldof and Midge Ure assembled a Who’s Who of British and Irish pop this past weekend to record a slightly revised version of holiday charity single “Do They Know It’s Christmas,” this time to provide aid to the ebola crisis in Africa. Billed as Band Aid 30 and featuring such artists as One Direction, Ellie Goulding, Ed Sheeran, Bono, Sam Smith, Rita Ora, Emeli Sande, Paloma Faith, Sinead O’Connor, Chris Martin and Seal, this marks the fourth rendition of the song to be made since 1984 (with Bono being the only singer from the original to take part).
Below, we’ve rounded up a smattering of critics’ opinions on the new (and improved?) “Do They Know It’s Christmas,” a single that’s now riding high on iTunes around the globe (it’s #1 in England and #2 in the States) and raising funds to battle the deadly ebola disease. More »
When Gwen Stefani and Fergie announced their return to music as solo artists a few months ago, the pop world shook with excitement. While Fergie’s bland “L.A. Love (La LA)” wasn’t the banger we expected, Stefani’s new single “Baby Don’t Lie” finds the singer embracing the reggae-inspired sound that we’ve all come to love over the years.
The song officially premiered yesterday (October 19), and we wrote “‘Uh huh, here we go,’ Stefani says, and to this rubbery bass line and hand claps – this club-ready setting suggesting a sequel to the Pharrell-produced smash ‘Hollaback Girl.‘ Instead, ‘Baby Don’t Lie’ mellows out into a mid-tempo pop song.” Did other music critics enjoy Stefani’s comeback single? Read on below to find out! More »
Jessie J reigned in her career by focusing on dominating the U.S. market, with her latest album Sweet Talker (out today, October 14). The singer’s third studio LP is her attempt to breaking into the Top 40, which was a harder feat for her since she mainly gained traction in the UK. But does the album live up to its expectations of being an eye-catching pop masterpiece?
In our review, we wrote “‘Bang Bang’ was effective enough to help the singer stage a stateside comeback. But the all-star team (Diplo, The-Dream, Tricky Stewart) behind the toned-down Sweet Talker failed to tackle the problem that first pervaded her schizophrenic 2011 debut, Who You Are: Vocal tricks aside, Jessie J doesn’t have a clear sense of identity.
So did other music critics agree with our sentiments? Read on after the jump to see their commentary. More »
Pink threw her fans a curveball back in early September, when she announced she’ll be recording a folk album with City and Colour‘s Dallas Green. Calling themselves You + Me, the duo has a stripped-down, pastoral sound that is completely different that what we’re used to hearing from the pop rocker. Their debut album, rose ave., was released today (October 14) via Pink’s record label – RCA.
But on this project, she is strictly going by her given name (Alecia Moore) so that people can separate her known persona from this new venture. Our own Robbie Daw commented on the LP, stating “And as you might have gathered from previously-released tracks “You And Me,” “Break The Cycle”and “Capsized,” this is Pink in full-on folk mode — in other words, it’s miles away from the glossy pop you’ve come to know the brash, outspoken singer for.”
So what did music critics think about the album? Read on after the jump to find out! More »
When Fergie announced her return to the music industry after eight long years, we all were elated to hear new music from The Dutchess. Yesterday (September 28), she finally released her new single “L.A. Love (La La)” – but it was quite the letdown.
Our own Robbie Daw stated, “The DJ Mustard-produced track finds the 39-year-old Black Eyed Peas diva surprisingly stuck in creative rut, spouting out a slew of hip-hop-lite cliches that, to be honest, we would have expected her to have left behind sometime around The E.N.D.”
Did other music critics agree? Read what they had to say after the jump. More »
Jennifer Hudson has become known for her powerhouse voice that is usually showcased with over-the-top ballads. Yet her third album JHUD (released today, September 23rd) shows a different side of the singer. Instead of moody tearjerkers, Hudson opts for a more danceable, disco-inspired vibe on the new LP.
JHUD features songs like “Dangerous” and the Iggy Azalea-assisted “He Ain’t Going Nowhere” - making it clear that Hudson wanted to stray away from her typical sound, and dive into a lighter fare that is more suited for the dance floor.
But what did music critics think of Hudson’s latest effort? Read on after the jump to find out! More »
Lady Gaga has shown signs of her love for Jazz throughout her career, but with her latest project she dives into the genre at full speed! Cheek To Cheek, her collaborative album with the legendary Tony Bennett, was released today (September 23). The album finds the usually over-the-top singer putting her vocals to the forefront, and displaying a more soulful personality – not to mention that she manages to hold her own next to one of the biggest musical greats of our time.
Featuring classic ditties like “Nature Boy” and “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” Cheek To Cheek is a refreshing listen that highlights the undeniable talent of both Gaga and Bennett and how well they work together.
But what did the music critics think of Cheek To Cheek? Keep reading to see what they had to say about the duet’s album. More »
With the dust now settling on the 31st MTV Video Music Awards, various sites have been dissecting the night’s performances
and the overall spectacle in general
. For instance, Beyonce
‘s eye-popping finale, not to mention her touching on-stage moment with husband Jay Z
and daughter Blue Ivy
while accepting the Video Vanguard Award, seemed to have captured the attention of most critics. Also being singled out is Miley Cyrus
, for bringing a homeless 22-year-old as her date to the event.
The show was also shorter in time-length than usual, and a lot more tame when compared to recent years. So how did this all pan out as far as quality entertainment? Head below for our roundup of VMAs reviews. More »
She did it, Arianators: She’s finally gone and broken free.
Ariana Grande‘s highly anticipated, much-hyped second studio album My Everything is finally upon us.
After dishing out her horn-heavy summer smash “Problem” with Iggy Azalea, her EDM-tastic Zedd banger “Break Free” and “Bang Bang,” her powerhouse collaboration with Jessie J and Nicki Minaj, as well as an opening performance on last night’s 2014 MTV Video Music Awards, the pint-sized pop diva’s finally ready to give us all her love on her feature-filled follow-up to her critically acclaimed 2013 debut, Yours Truly.
Our own Kathy Iandoli concluded that Ari’s new album “diminishes any theory of a sophomore curse, as Ariana delivers a solid enough work — however, it’s done with the help of many,” giving the album a four out of five. But what did the rest of the critics have to say? More »