90MUSICAlbum preview by Bénédicte Lelong Iconic American guru of pop Dick Clark once said „Music is the soundtrack of our lives“. Music IS everywhere. We eat it for breakfast, breathe it on the dance floors and live it 24/7, MP3 players firmly glued to our ears. An eclectic listener‘s paradise, our Musik Laden‘s motto is simple: „Open ears, open mind“. Satisfaction guaranteed. Interpret: Breakbot Breakbot aka Thibaut Berland has announced his debut Album: By Your Side album ‘‘By Your Side‘‘ in September 2012. For us this album is a little master piece. Breakbot takes you on a journey back Genre: Synthpop in time. Label: Warner Bros By Your Side is crammed with soulful, robo-disco and Origin: France emotive ballads. Retro/future funk at its best. Released: September 2012 I can´t stop listening to the full album. By Your Side is an album you can play from the first to the last song without Members: Thibaut Berland getting bored. “I do everything myself except the vocals. I just fiddle about, I couldn’t play a classical part, I do what I can. There are pieces of guitar samples, friends drop-in and play over my instrumentals. I love pop and funk, so I try to take that direction. That’s where that hybrid sound comes from. Breakbot is a dude in a base- ment looking for melodies”, says Thibaut. First impressions: I feel like in a 70´s porn movie or in front of the TV and wat- ching some classic 1970´s shows. LOVE IT. If you are a fan of Michael Jackson, Prince, Stevie Wonder, Air and Daft Punk, you should get this album. The track „Why“ sounds like Michael Jackson is sending us his love from heaven. The track „Fantasy“ features the vocals of L.A. based vocalist Ruckazoid - an asto- nishing discovery whose honied pipes are a dead ringer for the late, lamented King Of Pop. The perfect sound for the winter time. The perfect sound for a long night with your lovers. The perfect sound to forget reality. Must-hear tracks: Fantasy, Why, Baby I´m Yours
91 I will confess that I was kind of new to Dragonette prior to listening to Bodyparts, their new album. As a matter of fact I had only heard and downloaded one of their songs (“Okay Dolore”) many years ago just because it featured one half of my favorite indie rock band, name- ly Sara Quin of Tegan & Sara. Needless to say that I was ready for some more. If you wanted additional proof, stop right there: Cana- dians do indeed do it better. Metric, Peaches, Lights, The Organ… need I go on? What can I say, I happen to be a real sucker for good old electro-infused pop. Like many children of the eighties, I wish I was born a decade earlier: your ears might bleed the second you hear a synthesizer, I for one get an eargasm. I do need my regular fix of New Wave / synthpop. And as it happens, Bodyparts does the trick with its contagious beats and catchy lyrics, especially on songs like “Run Run Run”, “Let It Go”, “My Legs” or “Rocket Ship”. Martina Sorbara’s voice does sound a bit like Metric’s Emily Haines at times, and “Right Woman” reminds me,Interpret: The XX for some strange reason, of Kylie Minogue. Go figure.Album: Coexist In the end Dragonette is Dragonette, 100% original, andGenre: Indie pop if you’re looking to start a riot on the dance floor, look no further. Bodyparts will make you wanna tap your feet. Mis-Label: Young Turks sion accomplished.Origin: UK Must-hear tracks: Right Woman, My Legs, Rocket Ship.Released: September 2012Members: Romy Madley Croft, Oliver Sim,Jamie Smith It took them three years (some might say an eternity!)but The XX are finally back with their sophomore album,making our music-hungry hearts and ears more than just Interpret: Dragonettesatisfied. Coexist is about entangled relationships, raw emotions Album: Bodypartsdripping from its every pore. Genre: Electropop, synthpopThe dark, atmospheric beats, the spellbinding guitars, the Label: Universalsoulful and sultry voices of its leading duo: it all falls per- Origin: Canadafectly into place. Yet the success of this second album wasn’t evident from Released: September 2012the get-go. Members: Martina Sorbara, Dan Kurtz, Joel First impressions, even though they might not always be Stouffercorrect, are oftentimes lasting ones, especially in the musicindustry. When the band’s first album came out in 2009 it wasgroundbreaking because it was unlike anything else we hadever heard at the time. It sounded different, bold and new, so of course the natu-ral reaction after three years of absence was “how the hellare they going to be able to live up to their debut album?”Easier said than done, right? A bare, introductory track like “Intro” had set the toneforever and will remain one of the most beautiful songs ofthe past couple of years. Needless to say that the bar hadbeen set very high. But in the end the trademark guitar and ambient housebeat on “Swept Away” for instance achieve to remind uswhy we fell in love with these Londoners in the first place. So lie down, close your eyes and let yourself be trans-ported by the British trio’s latest musical effort. You won’tregret it. Must-hear tracks: Try, Tides, Swept Away
92 Let’s be honest: you can always count on P!nk for cal- ling a spade a spade. And her sincerity is refreshing in an industry that has taken a tendency to manufacturing artists and hits en masse. She tells it like it is. Ladies, have you ever wondered why when a guy sleeps around he’s just a guy, and when a girl does she’s a slut? We’ve got news for you gentlemen! If you sleep around and I do too, I’m a “Slut Like You”. Some will say that P!nk’s nothing but an obnoxious loud mouth … the truth is, she’s one of the most consistent artists in the biz and her new album is definitely testament to that. The Truth About Love is solid, pop rock goodness that will seriously make your ears beg for more. Turn it up loud. Real loud. And yet it could have gone either way. Why? She’s got a baby now, haven’t you heard? Ask around, it changes a woman. Alanis Morissette just released what might be the most boring album of the decade. Apparently that’s what becoming a mom can do to you. Unless you’re P!nk. Phew. So welcome to Love / Relationship 101 courtesy of theInterpret: Carly Rae Jepsen absolute Queen of Badassery herself. It hurts SO good. Who else was gonna have the balls to tell you “TheAlbum: Kiss (whole) Truth About Love”? It’s “the smelling of armpits”.Genre: Disco pop There. You’ve been warned.Label: 604, Schoolboy, Interscope This album’s a killer that makes us pine for her Euro-Origin: Canada pean Tour. Hurry. Please? Must-hear tracks: Are We All We Are, Slut Like You,Released: September 2012 Where Did The Beat Go? First off, let me answer THE burning question that’son everyone’s minds: does the album live up to Call MeMaybe? Interpret: P!nk Does it live up to that (annoyingly catchy) song that’s Album: The Truth About Lovebeen pursuing us all summer, the song that’s been played to Genre: Pop rock, dance rockno end over and over again on radios everywhere, the song Label:RCAthat you’d have to be living on Mars not to have heard?Short answer? Yes, it sure does. Origin: USA The saying “third time’s the charm” never rang quite so Released: September 2012true than in Carly Rae Jepsen’s case. After releasing herfirst full-length Tug Of War in 2008 and an EP earlier thisyear mainly to announce her album, Kiss does hit the spot. I confess I approached this album with open ears and anopen-mind. I didn’t know what to expect. Britney? Katy?Miley? As it turns out, she’s a bit different. True, her sound is polished with simple lyrics and teensensibilities. Nothing new here. It’s about bows and arrows,crushes and heart strings (but then isn’t every album?) The thing with Kiss is that it’s girly bubblegum pop butwith a little twist called “electro”. Indeed adding a bit of electro to that mix really tickledmy inner Guetta fan, especially on songs like “Tonight I’mGetting Over You” that’s most assuredly dance floor anthemmaterial. We should keep an ear out for Carly Rae Jepsen. I cantotally picture her in a couple of years, doing featurings forbig shots like Tiesto or Guetta. She’s got the pipes for it. Must-hear tracks: Tiny Little Bows, Beautiful, TonightI’m getting Over You
93 If you’re feeling a wee bit depressed or blue, I wouldn’trecommend this EP… unless of course sad songs are acatharsis for you. Which, come to think of it, is probablywhat End Of Daze is all about. This being said one (obvious) question remains onceyou’ve listened to the 5 tracks that comprise the 4th EPof this California noise pop band: End of Daze or End ofDays? I won’t lie to you, this here is a pretty depressing album.No bows and arrows. It’s about numbness, emptiness, tears,and hell. There’s even talk of a eulogy. It’s humanly impossible not to feel the deep sadness be-hind lyrics like “There’s nothing left, there is no light / Pullme out to the other side” or “What can I do, now withoutyou / I feel nothing”. We’ve all felt that low at one point oranother. And so if you’ve suffered a break up or have been hurt inthe name of love recently, you’ll feel (rightfully so) that EndOf Daze hits close to home. Crying guitar, slow, burning, insistent rhythm reminis-cent of the shooting pain you might feel when the blade ofdeception penetrates your lovesick soul. It hurts. But in a Interpret: Michael Jacksongood way. The magic of this EP is that you’re completely hanging Album: Bad 25th anniversary editionon Dee Dee Penny, the lead singer’s every word. Something Genre: Pop, dance, rockabout her voice really draws you in. Label: Sony Legacy Not surprisingly, the band’s cover of Strawberry Origin: USASwitchblade’s “Trees and Flowers” sounds less cheesy thanthe original (released almost 30 years ago), but also a lot Released: September 2012more heartfelt and yes, painful, like the rest of this verygood EP. Must-hear tracks: Mine Tonight, I Got Nothing, LordKnows Writing this review, I promised myself one thing: that I would stay the hell away from clichéd superlatives like Interpret: Dum Dum Girls “legend” and “classic”. Album: End of Daze But hey, you know something? Michael Jackson IS a Genre: Indie rock, shoegaze freaking’ legend and “Bad” is an all-time classic. So there. Label: Sub Pop My bad (pun intended). They sure went all out on this release, with no less than Origin: USA 3 CD’s (40 songs total), shock full of Michael Jackson Released: September 2012 gems, AND a Deluxe version that includes a DVD. Members: Dee Dee, Jules, Sandy, Malia On CD 1 you’ll find 11 newly remastered tracks. I guess the die-hard fans will hear the difference, I will admit that I really didn’t, but it’s always a good excuse to listen to MJ for the thousandth time, am I right? I, for one, can never get enough of songs like “Dirty Diana”. CD 2 comprises 13 tracks, most of which you’ve pro- bably never heard before, including one song about abor- tion that’s bound to be talked about for years to come and “Je Ne Veux Pas La Fin De Nous” (the French version of “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You”), which by the way for the French-speaking music fans among us, is a pretty awkward-sounding title. Whatever. It’s Michael singing in French. Did you say sexy? As for the third CD, it’s Michael’s 1988 live show at Wembley (16 songs). Those were the good times, when he was at the height of his fame. Before things went a little south. If you’re a self-proclaimed “true” fan, you’ll want the Deluxe box set which includes a 40-track DVD of his Wembley performance. You know what they say, go big or go home. Must-hear tracks: Song Groove, Je Ne Veux Pas La Fin De Nous, Dirty Diana (Live at Wembley).