Archive for April, 2013

EMELI SANDE GORGEOUSNESS

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

It’s not a coincidence when a song finds you at the exact moment it’s needed. That’s precisely what happened to me with this stunning gem. Emeli Sande’s stripped-down/piano-drenched Read All About It Pt. III.

This track is gorgeous and its words bleed a vulnerability that’s nothing short of naked. Painfully honest. Sincere.

Watch + listen to a live version of the track below.

MY WOSHIN MASHIN

By: Caitlin Hoffman
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

I’ve got my fingernails stuck in this sound.

I know I’m not the person you’d expect to see chugging a Russian/German electronic rush. (Especially from a band so distractively badass!) What can I say? Talent’s talent, regardless of genre affiliation.

My Woshin Mashin (yes, you read that right) is a three-man set, each member more crammed with skill than the last. At first the sound came off almost too dangerous for my unprepared ears, but I quickly grew to love the chaos.

The feedback hits hard, screaming of underground clubs and violent dreams. You may think this group’s only prerogative is to fill up all respective dance floors, but I assure you there’s more than meets the dehydrated eye. If you listen, you’ll find a message in between remixes.

When it comes to social commentary, Evil Must Die (their 2013 album) has its bases covered. The band members themselves explain it best:

“Our first album was… hard beats, funny lyrics, dance tunes… a very funny album. But when we were working on Evil Must Die, we decided to concentrate on things from the real world- degradation of the television, money as a modern god, animal rights, really bad people we know and their behaviour, the loneliness of true heroes, etc. By this album we’re trying to say that people must be more intelligent and simple; they must try to change themselves into a better way and try to find the real values of life. It’s not about the money, a good job, democracy, power, expensive stuff, social networks or television. It’s about the inner God who can be described simply: Love.”

In other words, these blokes will compel you to rave and philosophize simultaneously. Magic.

Get a sampler of the album below, and prepare to be dosed!

ON HEAVY ROTATION: KELLY CLARKSON – ‘HONESTLY’

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Her best work is the darker stuff that never gets attention.

This song is everything.

Truth be told, it should’ve been placed at the center of the promotional efforts for her album. But of course, it’s too “edgy” for mainstream listeners and was never released as a single or given the proper credit it deserves. Which is not surprising, since corporate record labels are stupid and are only driven by the concept of making money.

Regardless, this track is undeniable, and puts every Kelly song you’ve ever heard on the radio to shame.

Bask in the glory of Honestly below.

Gorgeous!

LUKE JAMES COMES #BEYONCE-APPROVED

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Meet Beyonce’s opening act for the European leg of the Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, R&B crooner Luke James. This isn’t his first time at the rodeo though. The New Orleans-based artist actually joined Queen B onstage once before, opening for her in Atlantic City last year.

Getting his start singing background for Tyrese, and later, writing songs for the likes of Chris Brown, Britney Spears, Keri Hilson, and Justin Bieber (among others), Luke signed with super producer Danja and released his mixtape, #Luke, in 2011. His mixtape single I Want You earned him a Best R&B Performance nomination at the 2013 Grammy Awards.

Recently, Luke released a track called I.O.U., which serves as the second single off his forthcoming Made To Love disc, which drops later this year.

Video for I.O.U. below.

I suspect big things from this dude!

(That sounded dirty, and for once, I totally didn’t mean it that way!)

SLIM LORIS

By: Caitlin Hoffman
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Slim Loris is here to mix the cloud with sun. An Americana indie band, they’ve pulled all the plugs on expectation. Instead of playing purveyor to chipper lyrics commonly associated with indie pop, they spike their performance with emotional sobriety. This does nothing to stop me from hitting repeat!

I’m glad I came to know them upon their second release, Future Echoes and Past Replays. You can learn a lot about a band from their second album. A follow-up delivery means they’ve had a chance to mellow down/grow up and garner a group identity. It’s when their true colours start to show.

Slim Loris’ shades are nothing short of striking. This Swedish band has a high musical IQ. With wisdom comes sadness, but I don’t begrudge them for that.

I like them. Those three words hardly do my feelings justice, but it’s all I’m left with! They give me rainy days overcast with rainbows, sad smiles, peaceful goodbyes, sweat from the earth and hugs from the heart.

If craving nutritious soul-food, press play immediately.

Slim Loris – Fear of Flying (Audio)

ADAM LAMBERT TAKES ON RIHANNA + SUPPORTS THE TREVOR PROJECT

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Adam Lambert has joined forces with AT&T + the Trevor Project for Live Proud, a campaign created to empower the LGBTQ community.

Glambert is currently offering a small group of contest winners the chance to enjoy a killer VIP experience, seeing him perform in an intimate setting in Los Angeles. To enter, fans must submit an image or story that represents an AT&T Live Proud moment.

In addition, AT&T will contribute $25,000 to $50,000 to the Trevor Project, an organization that focuses on both crisis intervention and suicide prevention for LGBTQ youth.

The contest runs through June 30th.

Participants are encouraged to like the AT&T Live Proud Facebook, which will lead to AT&T donating a dollar to the Project. They can also RT @ATT, @TrevorProject or @adamlambert in tweet that mentions #attliveproud and AT&T will donate 50 cents to The Trevor Project.

Have at it, folks! And may the fierce be with you!

+ Enjoy Adam’s recent, gorgeous cover of Rihanna’s Stay below.

Incredible.

SAID THE WHALE

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Hailing from Vancouver, indie rockers Said The Whale are bursting with addictive flare. Having already made a dent in their Canadian homeland, the band (who won a JUNO Award for New Group Of The Year in 2011) is now aiming to leave a mark on the US and filming their attempt along the way (with a documentary properly titled Winning America).

Although the goal is to win over American listeners, co-founder Tyler Bancroft’s main focus is keeping it real (via Consequence Of Sound): “This time I went into the writing process with a mindset of ‘F*** everything, I’m just going to write what makes me happy.’”

Rock on!

The track on focus is the super fresh I Love You, an electric jam that’s perfect for bobbin’ the skull with the windows rolled down. Just in time for summer…

Said The Whale’s I Love You EP drops June 18th.

ONE TO WATCH: ALEX AIONO

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Cutie alert!

Craving a slice of bubblegum pop? Budding artist Alex Aiono will satisfy your fix. His new video for Doesn’t Get Better is high in sugar content. And although it’s apparent that he’s trying to reach a certain niche (*cough* teen girls *cough*), don’t let his infectious sound fool ya. He’s spent time writing songs with Grammy writers/producers like John Legend, Billy Mann and Babyface.

Check out Doesn’t Get Better + the hilarious Horny Unicorns following.

I’m likin’ this guy!

LOUISE AUBRIE

By: Caitlin Hoffman
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


Louise Aubrie is the perfect blend for BTB! She has pop, indie and post-punk influence under her soft rock belt, culminating in a soulful, symphonic splash. Her look channels a vintage vibe, but I assure you her music is nothing but timely. It’s raw without being too rough, a true inspiration for anyone going through a hard time.

It’s the lyrics that hit me. Time Honoured Alibi (her 2013 album) is especially rife with poetic pains. Anyone could relate to the heartache of In Honour or the relational struggle in Keep It Coming. Her words are so fluid, anyone’s head could burn in commissary.

This isn’t just another chick with a guitar. Louise is a serious musician with the heart of a punk and soul of a poet, cut between tenacity and sensitivity. And her music has taken her across continents. She first began recording music in London only to relocate to New York where she soaked up the creative influence of the city, surrounding herself with other musicians.

Though she rocks the speakers by her lonesome, she’s been lucky to garner support from some mad powerhouses. Boz Boorer (long time musical director and co-writer for Morrissey) has brought Louise’s gleam to a shine, producing both of her albums and co-writing Where Are You.

And that’s the song I leave you with. Not because it was my favourite, but simply because the romantic angst therein is about as honest as an artist can get.

JAKE BUGG

By: Maria Ciezak
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

iTunes has placed the spotlight this week on an artist by the name of Jake Bugg. I’m thrilled that his work is receiving attention, for he is the definition of a true musician. Single Lightning Bolt puts many artists on the charts to shame, showcasing raw talent.

His music style is very old-fashioned and vintage-sounding, which makes it even more intriguing for genuine music lovers like myself.

Take a listen to Lightning Bolt and judge for yourself.

‘HEART ATTACK’ CLIP CEMENTS DEMI LOVATO AS UNDENIABLE POP PRESENCE

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


“Puttin’ my defenses up, ’cause I don’t wanna fall in love; If I ever did that, I think I’d have a heart attack,” the 20-year-old pop star sings on the first single taken from her forthcoming album, Demi. Adorning an edgy look for the Chris Applebaum-directed video, the track stylistically pours over cool visuals to further cement Lovato as an undeniable pop presence.

“I think for fans or friends or anybody who’s afraid to fall in love, I’d rather live my life with my arms open than closed off the entire time,” Lovato told E! News.

Check out the premiere of Lovato’s Heart Attack below.

I f*cking love!

ON HEAVY ROTATION: EVE FEAT. GABE SAPORTA – ‘MAKE IT OUT THIS TOWN’

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


To anyone who’s ever felt trapped, this one’s for you.

[Intro hook: Gabe Saporta of Cobra Starship]

When I close my eyes
I can see me fly in the hope
High above the clouds
Swear I won’t look back if I get chance
Oh – I won’t come back around

[Verse 1: Eve]

Yo, have you ever laid in bed and it’s late in the night
Staring at the ceiling talking to God about life?
Asking when it’s gonna happen, just maybe it might
Made a lot of life turns, some wrong and some right
Wanna know when it’s your second, your minute, your time
Sick of dreaming, wanna lay the pictures in your mind
Never been like all the others, you’re one of a kind
I know you’re feeling like you wanna break free, it’s a sign
Just wanna fly above it all, see where you can land
Know that you can do it on your own cause you can
Know that you can conquer all with a plan
Forget about the negatives buried in the sand
Yeah, never forget this is your life
Your path, your dream, this is your fight
Victory you’ll see, you’ll be alright
Get through the darkness, on the other end is pure light

[Hook]

When I close my eyes
I can see me fly in the hope
High above the clouds
Swear I won’t look back
If I get chance
I will come back around
If I make it out this time, yeah
I gotta make it out this time, yeah
I’m gonna make it out this time, yeah
I’m gonna roll the dice
And take a risk tonight
Gotta make it out this time

[Verse 2: Eve]

Have you ever felt alone like the whole world was missing?
And when you prayed it seemed like no one was listening
You try to keep the faith and keep on living
But when you struggling the future looks distant
All your hope seem to be just pipe dreams
And you really gotta wonder what your life means
That’s when you gotta pick yourself up out the dust
Make a change and find a place in your heart you trust
You ain’t always gotta take the first card your dealt
In this life only you can represent yourself
Never let your circumstances hold you back
You were born free, never gotta feel trapped
And on the pursuit to happiness you’re gonna feel pain
But the only way to win is to stay in the game
The naysayers they’re gonna try and embarrass ya
But I’ve learned that the struggle builds character

[Hook]

[Bridge: Eve]

Put your hands in the air now
If you feel it let me hear you loud
Put your hands in the air now
Yeah, ain’t nobody gonna hold you down
Yeah, come on, come on

[Hook]

Eve’s first studio album in ten years, Lip Lock, will drop on May 14th!

[Related Post: New Eve Featuring Gabe Saporta of Cobra Starship]

WE THE KINGS RELEASE ANTHEMIC NEW SINGLE ‘JUST KEEP BREATHING’

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com


Music > Prozac.

We The Kings get it. They understand your struggles. On the band’s new single, Just Keep Breathing, frontman Travis Clark belts: “Just take a breath and let it go.”

An anthemic track with a stadium sing-along chorus, the inspirational song seems to mark a new direction for the band, after 2011’s sunnier release, Sunshine State of Mind. Yet the track still gives listeners a positive push, hitting the heart and the gut with its pop rock layers.

We the Kings are gearing up for their fourth studio album, which will drop sometime later this year.

Just Keep Breathing is available on iTunes now.

Listen below!

[Related Post: Exclusive Interview w/ We The Kings]

NEW HANSON!

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

This is such a fun video!

No one does pop quite like blonde brothers Taylor, Zac, and Isaac. Which is why I’m stoked about their just-released Get The Girl Back video, which serves as the first single off their forthcoming ninth studio album.

Starring friends Kat Dennings + Nikki Reed + Drake Bell + Drew Seeley, the video features Hanson at their finest- fusing blues/pop with an undeniable feel-good hook.

Welcome back, fellas!

ON REPEAT: LINDSAY LOHAN’S ‘STUCK’

By: Rob Brayl
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Sticky fingers, sticky hands!

Though this track was never released, it’s one of my favorite LiLo jams. Lyrics mirroring life, Lindsay pours her raspy vocals over a dark/sexy beat, creating perfect, girl pop material.

(I’m still pissed this album never saw the light of day.)

Listen to the addictive track below.

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