dispatches from the pop scene...minus the corn syrup.

Monday, October 05, 2015

My (Second) Duke Dumont Interview

I absolutely love Duke Dumont's brand of house music. And having spoken with him twice now for interviews on Idolator, I can say he's one of the smartest, and most down to earth, artists/producers in the game right now.

His new EP, Blasé Boys Club, Pt. 1, was released this past Friday (October 2). He's also on tour in the States through the rest of the month. You can catch my latest chat with him here, and the previous one I did with him last October here.


Thursday, October 01, 2015

'The X-Files' 2016 Series Extended Trailer: I Think Someone Needs To Hold Me

Any longtime reader of Chart Rigger will remember that I'm a diehard X-phile. (See, for instance, this rather brilliant post I did back in 2007.) And so this week's reveal of the extended, two-minute trailer for January's upcoming six-episode revival series of Fox's The X-Files has me astral-projecting my D sauce all over the walls. (Sorry, Yolanda — I'll tip you an extra fiver to scrub that trash on your next visit.)

I watched the series during its original run here and there throughout the '90s — mostly Seasons 3 (1995) through 8 (2000). Then I re-watched every single episode on DVD in 2007 between February and October that year, averaging about a season a month.

I've now been re-re-watching all the episodes since July, and I'm halfway through Season 4. Scully's about to find out she has cancer. Shit's about to get deep.

Anyway, roll on January 24, 2016!


Big Black Delta Featuring Debbie Gibson, "RCVR": You're Going To Thank Me For This One

Out of the ether (or, perhaps more appropriately, out of the blue), Big Black Delta premiered band new track "RCVR" today over at Stereogum, and the song features the woman BBD (aka James Bates) calls his hero as a duet partner: Debbie Gibson.

No joke, this song is synth-pop drama frenzy heaven, and you should drop to your knees and start gumming Big Black Delta's monster knob for recording this. And Deb's left tit.

There's a PledgeMusic page set up to help fund BBD's upcoming album (due out early in 2016), and one of the items up for grabs is a limited edition 7" of "RCVR." Grab it before I do, you little bitch.

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JoJo's "When Love Hurts": Watch The Video For One Of The Year's Classiest Jams

Now, usually when love hurts, it's because someone jammed their D up the wrong entrata or uscita, kids — without using spit. But in JoJo's case, she's referring to the pain of two people at odds in their relationship here on "When Love Hurts," the main single off her, um, #tringle, III.

Now, the video looks like it was made for six bucks and a pack of Tic Tacs that were used to bribed the night guard down at the recycling center, so he'd let JoJo and her friends pile in and vogue in front of two cameras and a wind machine for an hour.

BUT NO MATTER! This '90s throwback jam is the best major-label thing JoJo's done in years! Well, okay, it's the only major-label thing she's done in nine years. But anyway...


Monday, July 27, 2015

Disclosure & Sam Smith Reunite For "Omen": Watch The Video

The truth — well, my truth — about Sam Smith is, I can't stand his dull ballads. Sorry, folks...it's just snooze central to me. What I have loved from him is his features on Disclosure's "Latch" and Naughty Boy's "Latch," plus "Like I Can" and "Reminds Me Of You" off Smith's own album (the latter being a lovely, synthy bonus track done with Lorde's producer, Joel Little).

So here we are with the reunion of Disclosure and Smith (not to mention "Latch" songwriter Jimmy Napes), "Omen." It's the second single off Guy and Howard's upcoming sophomore LP Caracal (out September 25), and I think it's pretty fantastic. The first person I played it for this morning said, "It's not as immediately catchy as 'Latch'" — a sentiment I don't quite agree with, but you say tomato, I say tomahto; I think it's the same pleasantly-lazy house beat, and a slightly more instantly memorable chorus.

Anyway, as for the video, it was directed by Ryan Hope and is the second in a series of four clips coming from Disclosure that tell some type of story or other about a man and a woman on the run in Mexico City during what appears to be some futuristic, military-state type takeover.

The first in the series was "Holding On," which premiered earlier this month.

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

U.S. Chart Roundup: "Lean On" Is My Jam

I feel like Major Lazer, DJ Snake and 's "Lean On" is the best song of the summer, as far as overplayed Top 40 nonsense goes, and so I'm thrilled to see it jump into the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 this week (at #9). It's the first Top 10 single for all involved except DJ Snake, who had that painfully obnoxious "Turn Down For What" trash last year that somehow slithered its way to #4.

Everything else on the Hot 100 is kind of super butt this week — especially the fact that my other favorite jam of the summer, Demi Lovato's "Cool For The Summer," has slid down to #30. That's, chyldryn, is a crime. But the video premiere is right around the corner, so hopefully the song will get somewhat of a bump after that.

Down in the nether regions, Adam Lambert's "Ghost Town" moves back up from #80 to #74, one notch lower than its original #73 peak position.

Geez, between Demi and Adam, Max Martin is losing his touch.

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix)" - OMI *2 weeks*
2. "Can't Feel My Face" - The Weeknd
3. "See You Again" - Wiz Khalifa feat. Charlie Puth
4. "Bad Blood" - Taylor Swift feat. Kendrick Lamar
5. "Watch Me" - Silento
6. "Trap Queen" - Fetty Wap
7. "Shut Up And Dance" - Walk The Moon
8. "Fight Song" - Rachel Platten
9. "Lean On" - Major Lazer & DJ Snake feat. MØ
10. "The Hills" - The Weeknd

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Monday, July 20, 2015

UK Chart Roundup: Little Mix Work Their "Black Magic"

Back in May, Britney Spears and Iggy Azalea released their colossal flop "Pretty Girls," a song that girl group Little Mix wrote but ultimately opted to scrap. Instead, the broads went with the far catchier "Black Magic" as the lead single from their upcoming third LP Get Weird (out in November), and the result is their first UK #1 since 2012's "Wings."

Meanwhile, I can't believe it's already been three years since "Wings." I remember driving around Dallas, Texas with that song playing on the radio. Dark moments in life, chyldryn. Dark moments in life we must continue to try to block out.

Elsewhere, the umpteenth version of Robin S' house classic "Show Me Love" to come along in the past year, this time from Sam Feldt and vocalist Kimberly Anne, makes its debut on the UK chart at #4. Kudos to Sam for at least making this a complete melodic overhaul of the track.

Elsewhere, poor Nathan Sykes plunges from his #14 debut last week with "Kiss Me Quick" to #58. Those Wanted guys are just basically doomed, aren't they...?

The UK Top 10:

1. "Black Magic" - Little Mix *new* *1 week*
2. "Shine" - Years & Years 
3. "Are You With Me" - Lost Frequencies
4. "Show Me Love" - Sam Feldt feat. Kimberly Anne *new*
5. "House Every Weekend" - David Zowie
6. "Waiting For Love" - Avicii
7. "Not Letting Go" - Tinie Tempah feat. Jess Glynne
8. "Shut Up & Dance" - Walk The Moon
9. "Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix)" - OMI
10. "Worth It" - Fifth Harmony feat. Kid Ink

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

US Chart Roundup: "Cheerleader" Is #1

Much as its already done in nearly 20 other countries throughout the world, OMI's "Cheerleader" takes over the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 this week. Yay? This ends the nonconsecutive 12-week reign of Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth's "See You Again," a song that, quite frankly, that I was going to launch a bomb into my mouth with a mortar if it spent another another week at #1.

"Cheerleader" has already worn out its welcome, too — brace yourselves for its inevitable 13-week stint at #1 — and it's now only the fourth single (after "Uptown Funk," "Bad Blood" and "See You Again") to climb to the top of the singles chart in 2015. Taylor Swift's "Blank Space" was #1 in the first couple weeks of the year, but it first reached the top last November.

Do any of these above-mentioned songs not make you want to eat glass?

The U.S. Top 10:

1. "Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix)" - OMI *1 week*
2. "See You Again" - Wiz Khalifa feat. Charlie Puth
3. "Can't Feel My Face" - The Weeknd
4. "Bad Blood" - Taylor Swift feat. Kendrick Lamar
5. "Watch Me" - Silento
6. "Trap Queen" - Fetty Wap
7. "Shut Up And Dance" - Walk The Moon
8. "Fight Song" - Rachel Platten
9. "Where Are Ü Now" - Skrillex & Diplo with Justin Bieber
10. "Hey Mama" - David Guetta feat. Nicki Minaj, Bebe Rexha & Afrojack

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Monday, July 13, 2015

Jess Glynne's "Don't Be So Hard On Yourself" Video Looks Much Like A Jess Glynne Video

Ginger belter Jess Glynne has now managed to rack up four chart-topping songs in the UK over the past year-and-a-half (plus six overall Top 10 singles) and win a Grammy. Basically, she's become the First Lady Of House Music in this latest era of pop we're all drifting through.

And so it's a safe bet that her latest release, "Don't Be So Hard On Yourself" — the second official single off her upcoming debut album I Cry When I Laugh (out in the UK August 14 and September 11 in the US) — will effortlessly become her umpteenth hit.

After all, drum and house cut sounds much as you'd expect a Jess Glynne single to sound, and the public's heart wants what it wants.


UK Chart Roundup: David Zowie's "House Every Weekend" Is First #1 Of The New Friday Chart Day

Chatham DJ David Zowie takes his debut single "House Every Weekend" to the top of the first UK singles chart to be published on a Friday, as opposed the previously-traditional Sunday. Of the nine single to top the chart in England so far in 2015, this is the third house jam — with the others being Jess Glynne's "Hold My Hand" and last week's #1, "Are You With Me" by Lost Frequencies.

This leaves Years & Years to miss out on their second consecutive chart-topping single, as "Shine" goes in at #2. The Greg Kurstin-co-written synth gem follows the band's winter #1 "King" and last year's "Desire," which peaked at #22.

So where does all this leave former Wanted member Nathan Sykes and his debut solo single, the soul throwback "Kiss Me Quick"? At a so-so #14. You can catch my recent interview with Nathan over on Idolator.

And that, as they say, is that.

The UK Top 10:

1. "House Every Weekend" - David Zowie *new* *1 week*
2. "Shine" - Years & Years *new*
3. "Worth It" - Fifth Harmony feat. Kid Ink
4."Are You With Me" - Lost Frequencies
5. "Not Letting Go" - Tinie Tempah feat. Jess Glynne
6. "Shut Up & Dance" - Walk The Moon
7. "Poison" - Rita Ora
8. "Wings" - Birdy
9. "Freak Of The Week" - Krept & Konan feat. Jeremih
10. "Let It Go" - James Bay

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