REVIEW ROUNDUP: TRAVIE MCCOY, SHINEDOWN, LA ROUX, JUSTIN NOZUKA, 3OH!3, LADY GAGA, KE$HA
3OH!3 – My First Kiss (feat. Ke$ha)
From copying Uffie to concocting pop music recalling the cringe-worthy influx of “pop punk” circa 2001 combines 3OH!3 and Ke$ha. Just like back then, ignore the lyrics; it makes swallowing this pill so good those commercialized side effects that hit you down the road make it well worth it. This single has more hooks than your father’s tackle box.
Justin Nozuka – Heartless (feat. Zaho) (iTunes France)
Released in France, this version of the Canadian-American singer features another round of guest vocals from Algerian-Canadian singer Zaho. While the sleepy hit pop holds its own with a lazy, light-as-a-cloud vocals from Justin Nozuka, the French verses and gorgeous backup add an extra soft layer to this single. The young kid holds promise and deeply rooted talent (his family is linked to Kyra Sedgwick and several singer/songwriters), particularly with such a mature near R&B singing over acoustic guitar.
Ke$ha – Your Love Is My Drug
Kesha Rose Sebert is everything Hollywood epitomizes. Blonde, a powerhouse of pop culture, and as unstoppable as a wildfire once it gets sparked. The dance-pop artist banks on the beat, and this one’s got it in spades slinging a slick build-up. Coupled with the aforementioned 3OH!3 single and Ke$ha’s putting up quite the fight for radio attention in the era of Gaga.
Lady Gaga – Alejandro
I utterly dismissed Lady Gaga until Europe brought me the LoveGame remix that held French radio in a Europop bondage. It never came Stateside, but the europop injections lacing “Alejandro” is the closest she’s getting to capturing that strobe and throbbing bass European DJs so expertly infused. Gaga continues to rampage pop music, using the serious yet obnoxious accented introduction, before her tales of ill-fated love of gay men doom her to merely performing undeniably genius pop. Alas, the latest fails to live up to “Bad Romance,” but at this point there are not many who care.
La Roux – Bulletproof
“Bulletproof,” a month ago, was far from radio in the States. She performed at the Empty Bottle’s little corner stage with Yes Giantess as the red-haired electropop singer was dominating European airwaves. The discotheque rhythms with 1970s individualist represents a beachhead in bringing in video game sampling to pop music; inescapably at that…
Shinedown – Diamond Eyes (Boom-Lay Boom-Lay Boom)
“The Crow and the Butterfly” and “Sound of Madness” brought back 2003’s Shinedown to the forefront, with Brent Smith’s arcing voice at the helm. The latest cues up the leading track to the film The Expendables begins with a ticking explosion following unique spoken poetry. Refreshing, despite overwhelming production (strings were not necessary-yet are prerequisites to be hardcore nowadays), it gives the Jacksonville-based rockers a proud launching pad to follow up 2008’s The Sound of Madness.
Travie McCoy – Billionaire (feat. Bruno Mars)
Travie’s got a massive hit on his hands, more so than the Gym Class Heroes singer had when breaking the airwaves with “Cupid’s Chokehold.” Notched behind “Taxi Driver”, drawing in reggae to perfectly complement the daydreaming summer haze. Personal request, should anyone remix this, let it be a ska band.