July 24, 2008

Rihanna gone Disturbed!

What has Rihanna got up her sleeve this time? It seems the unstoppable Queen of RnB is trying to scare us with her new video, 'Disturbia'.
Last week, the video premiered for $1.49 on US iTunes, swiftly followed by the release in the UK. This is the third single to be released from the re-release of 'Good Girl Gone Bad, Reloaded' and this is another sure fire hit, just like most the other songs on the album.
The song went straight to the top of the iTunes chart and no wonder, she follows up her Maroon 5 duet of 'If I Never See Your Face Again' with another song that will get your feet tapping, opening up the web to get the lyrics and another catchy chorus.
After doing exactly that, I opened the lyrics and found that although they don't mean particularly much, you forgive her after watching the video.

"Your mind is in disturbia
It's like the darkness is the light
Am I scaring you tonight
Your mind is in disturbia
Ain't used to what you like"

Whatever you make of the lyrics let it be because after watching the appropriately shiny yet horrifying video, I just kept wanting to listen to the song. Mainly a variety of guises for Rihanna including SpiderGirl, Zombie Rihanna and S&M Rihanna, it leaves us wondering was she trying a new style of video or she is practising for a man's fantasy?
But after watching the video for a second time, I realised it's exactly what I would have wanted to watch, despite the whole male connotations. This video is surreal, it's weird and it's different, exactly what we wanted from the artists who are starting to sound generic. What appeals to me is that this video reminds me of a mix between a horror film and a David Lynch movie, what is real and what is surreal. I am sure that after watching the video several times, none of us will be any wiser but if the demand is there, then the product is produced.
Well done to Rihanna, who is still, a year on from 'Umbrella' proving she has more tricks ready for us. Look out for any of her new singles, is it going to be 'Disturbia' or 'Rehab'? More sources have found that after those, she is set to release 'Breakin Dishes'.
Here is the video-

Next on the agenda is to plug one of those cover singers on YouTube. Occasionally I browse through in the hope that I will stumble across a really singer who covers some of my favourite songs and instead I found an amazing singer.
Her name is Alyssa Brianne and this from her page, "I am 18 years old and I lovee to sing! I just finished my last year in high school and will attend college in the fall. I am still recording in Houston whenever I get the chance."
The page ranges from Katy Perry's 'I Kissed a Girl' to Natasha Bedingfield's 'Unwritten'. If you look close enough, there is amazing similarities between her and Vanessa Hudgens from High School Musical.
Her pages is here

July 16, 2008

Music to Listen 2

So as the summer months lure us into a sense of relaxation, its time to get the deck chairs out, plug the iPod in and listen to the latest releases.
Some of the best includes-

1. Gavin DeGraw- In Love With A Girl
The first release from his sophomore album, 'Gavin DeGraw', sees the already popular pop rock singer tell us about a 'girl that understands' and through the distorted guitar riffs and the rhythmic piano lines, this is a sure fire hit for the summer.

2. Jonas Brothers- SOS
What can be said about the Jonas Brothers that most people don't already know? The brothers from New Jersey are now in the UK after being readily available in the USA for the last three years. From their early days on Disney Radio, doing Busted covers (What I Go To School For & Year 3000) and changing record labels. They have now found their home at Hollywood Records and although sometimes they remind us of Hanson (90's 'Mmmbop' Era), with the right amount of guitar, vocal and drums the result is surpirsingly fresh.
SOS, the first single in the UK to come from their debut 'Jonas Brothers' (released last August in USA) is a fun, poppy record, ironically about troubled relationships.
Watch out for the quick turn around as their third USA album, 'A Little Bit Longer' is due for release this August with the UK release shorty after.

3. The Music- Strength In Numbers
The Music return with their first release for four years and truly show what indie dance rock means. The album will please the old fans and will bring in new ones as well. A mixture between Pendulum and Oasis, shows that you will no doubt be moving to his song whether you like it or not. The beat is strong and there is now slowing down The Music as they will be performing through summer festivals this year.

4. Five O'Clock Heroes ft. Agness Dean- Who
A step in a new direction for Five O'Clock Heroes as their first album was truly punk indie but they are trying to move towards the mainstream with their new effort, a mixture of new wave with pop. The first single from the album, 'Speak Your Language', features the model Agness Dean who shows that she is multi talented as her voice is a great contrast to that of Antony Ellis (vocals). Their performance on 'The Sunday Night Project' showed charisma and charm as this New York band try to break the UK.

5. MGMT- Electric Feel
The best summer song yet comes from the American based music group, MGMT (formerly Management) as they release the second single from their bestselling, 'Oracular Spectacular'. This song has so much going for it in the way of it's sound (think Gary Numan, Scissor Sisters and Timo Mass mixed together) and it's video which features the Rock-afire Explosion who were an animatronic animal band that played in Showbiz Pizza Place in the 1980s and 1990s. Pitchfork Media described the video as "a krazy, kandy-kolored, loud neon thingamajig video" and there is always something more to see within it.
Visit here for the Hi-Res version of the video.

July 02, 2008

Criminal Justice, A Debate to Far?

'We've the best criminal justice system, in the world,' the immortal words spoken by the father of Ben Coulter, the protagonist of BBC's newest drama, Criminal Justice.

With the recent recession for good quality legal drama, the US produced Damages, every action and every thought were bought into question, trust no one. The BBC are back with another hard hitting drama which is playing out over a week. After last years, 'Five Days', which saw the story of a police investigation into the disappearance of a young mother and her two children, the BBC have done it again, never for one second letting common knowledge be left, this sees the justice system in it's boldest yet, constantly questioning the facts.

The story revolves around Ben Coulter (Whishaw) and one night out, spent with a mysterious girl. One minute their doing vodka shots and being lead to the bedroom and the next, Ben wakes up with blood on his hands and a dead body upstairs. What happened in between these events? Criminal Justice works though the labyrinth of law to find out.

With all the twists and turns along the ways, this show begs all the questions that the public wants the answers to. Everyday, we open our newspapers and see articles about criminals, the mistakes within our government and treatment of prisoners. Without leaving any gritty detail, CJ aims to present an argument to it's audience and oblivious to gender, race or nationality, former barrister, Peter Moffat writes a beautifully constructed, relevant piece of drama which leaves it's audience wanting more.

At the end of day two we are left with questions about the story and about our justice system. Does this represent the reality that is hidden away from us? No longer are being told to mind our own business but instead develop an emotional connection with those on the other side. The violence, the betrayal and the system at it's best and worst are all shown in this five part drama starring some amazing British talent.

Ben Whishaw, performs to the highest standards and after his performance in the box office smash, Perfume, why not? The emotional rollarcoaster we are taken on as a man unsure of his innocence tries to fill in the gaps without being bought down by the system, not only leaves the audience wanting more for the story, the drama and the construction but leaves the audience with a thought, a taste in their mouths. What can be done? Is this the truth? Can a dramatic construction of the justice system bring us closer to solving the problem that lays behind bars?

Direction by Otto Bathurst and Luke Watson, the former having credits with last years 'Five Days' and the popular 'Hustle' we are taken somewhere other law shows have not dared to tread. A bit of law, some prison drama, a man's own mental state being bought into question, Criminal Justice, certainly has gripped and with another three episodes to go, it looks like very soon we shall be having answers.