Beyoncé || Beyoncé

mmlmojhLast Friday, at midnight, Beyoncé stunned the world. The pop icon dropped a brand-new self-titled album—14 songs and 17 accompanying music videos—all without a hint of prior promotion. It marked something of a music-industry coup. Apple is reporting that “Beyoncé” is iTunes’ fastest-selling digital album, with more than 800,000 sold in just three days. More importantly, the album is the culmination of a more than a year-long, globe-trotting, top-secret undertaking—one that drove Beyoncé’s team to its personal and professional limits.

What we could never have predicted was the sheer size of the wrecking ball she slammed into the industry. No promotion, no single release weeks, nothing; she must’ve been sitting at home with Blue, thinking “tonight’s the night,” hit some approval button, and watched as the Internet exploded (or as one clever Facebook user put it, “exployoncé’d”) before her. Jay probably nodded, whispered a sweet “yes, baby,” before dozing off while the world tried to collect itself. 

Beyoncé combines the raw honesty of 4 with I Am…Sasha Fierce’s bold as love, I-don’t-care-if-anyone-sees attitude. Speaking of Sasha Fierce, she called up Beyoncé’s new ego, Yoncé, and asked why she had to go and steal her light. Anyway, Bey has concocted a new sound that’s different enough to be progressive, but comfortable enough to let her audience know that she’s still the queen they’ve come to dub her. It’s an album of femininity, an album of womanhood. BEYONCÉ will rock you, uplift you, and bring the fierce, sexually empowered being that lives inside of you out. 

The surprise project was a notable milestone even with the previously reported number. It’s the highest-selling album from a female artist to come out this year by far. It’s also the highest-selling project since Taylor Swift’s ‘Red’ sold 1.2 million in 2012.

Best Albums Of 2013

bbbb111111111111Here’s my list of “Best Albums of 2013″, for what it’s worth. Some of my favorite artists released superb albums this year, so much of this list will look pretty familiar if you’ve been following my posts for a while on Facebook. There was also some amazing debuts like “Lorde, Thief, Ejecta, Chvrches…” and some very welcome comebacks “Bowie, Daft Punk”. Check out the list below:

✓Blood Orange – Cupid Deluxe
✓Lorde – Pure Heroine
✓Lover Lover – There Is a Place
✓The Mary Onettes – Hit The Waves
✓Postiljonen – Skyer
✓Chvrches – The Bones of What You Believe
✓Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
✓White Lies – Big Tv
✓Haim – Days Are Gone
✓Body Language – Grammar
✓Arcade Fire – Reflektor
✓Fenech-Soler – Rituals
✓Empire of The Sun – Ice on The Dune
✓M.I.A. – Matangi
✓The Colourist – Lido
✓Portugan The Man – Evil Friends
✓Leagues – Spotlight ‘Ep’
✓The 1975 – The 1975
✓Dungeonesse – Dungeonesse
✓Rhye – Woman
✓Phoenix – Bankrupt!
✓St. Lucia – When The Night
✓Foxygen – We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic
✓The National – Trouble Will Find Me
✓Miley Cyrus – Bangerz

We Are Magnetic || You Say We Don’t

We Are Magnetic are an indie-pop band hailing from Bern, Switzerland. The group just released their debut single ‘you say we don’t’ with a beautiful music video, introduced their own sound of electric pop and melodic harmony. They’re currently working on their first album, so keep an eye out for these guys! If you’re a fan of bands like Phoenix, Two Door Cinema Club or The Royal Concept, you’ll definitely enjoy their tunes!

St. Lucia || When The Night

Hailing from Brooklyn, NY and raised in the mountains of Johannesburg, South Africa, Jean-Philip Grobler a.k.a. St. Lucia has quickly established a reputation for crafting cruisey, emotive synth-pop. The atmospheric quality of St. Lucia’s electronic pop is powerful, with the musician’s global travels and history of exotic hideaways effortlessly passed onto the audience through his dreamy, shimmering synths, and multi-layered arrangements. The listener is transfixed and transported into some collective memory of childhood summer.

When The Night is said to expand on the dreamy synth-pop sound St Lucia established on their first two EPs, St Lucia. and September. Self-produced by the band’s singer Jean-Philip Grobler, with help from Chris Zane (Passion Pit), Rich Costey (Muse) and Andy Baldwin.

The album also features some pretty cool artwork from Leif Podhajsky, who’s worked with the likes of Tame Impala and Foals in the past. St. Lucia’s debut LP will be out Tuesday, 8th October. You can check out ‘Elevate’ & ‘Too Close’, the first two singles from When The Night, and the track listing below. don’t miss your chance to hear one of the most anticipated indie releases of the year in this unique environment.

When the Night track list:

1. The Night Comes Again
2. The Way You Remember Me
3. Elevate
4. Wait For Love
5. All Eyes On You
6. Closer Than This
7. Call Me Up
8. We Got It Wrong
9. September
10. Too Close
11. When The Night

CHVRCHES || The Bones Of What You Believe

Scottish trio CHVRCHES has been very busy this year. They made it to the top 5 on BBC’s list of new music talents of 2013, released the ”The Recover EP” in March, played a fair amount of summer festival gigs followed by a US tour, and are currently celebrating the release of The Bones Of What You Believe, their awaited debut album which is out this week on Glassnote.

The band, consisting of vocalist Lauren Mayberry, guitar player Iain Cook and synth man Martin Doherty, started recording in a Glasgow basement about two years ago after Cook and Doherty had left their previous band commitments to start afresh.

BBC describes their music as ”electro-pop that shimmers only when the tears are washed from its speaker cones”. Although the sound is rather pure pop, like a synth version of Robyn, CHVRCHES do channel a rather dark aura.

On ”Lies”, one of the album’s best tracks, the trio proves the perfection of the marriage between Mayberry’s soft voice, the fresh lyrics and the heavy synth sound. ”The Mother We Share” may be the album’s most commercial yet memorable track, “You Caught The Light” has a slight 80s power ballad touch whereas “The Gun” is a manifestation to empowerment and self-respect.
All in all a solid consistent album which certainly lives up to the expectations following the hype around CHVRCHES. CHVRCHES may produce music which falls more under the pop than indie category, but if the band’s success continues, this album might do pretty well on a big stage too. Given the many sold out dates on their European tour this fall, something tells me, this might be the last chance to see them play a club gig.

HAIM || The Wire

haim111111As promised, HAIM drops off the hilarious visuals assisiting their latest single, “The Wire.” Featuring a few familiar faces, watch the clip above as we see some heartbroken gents who just simply can’t get over the hardship of losing their significant others. Definitely a different, more comedic route for HAIM as they gear up to drop of their highly anticipated debut album, Days Are Gone, which arrives September 30 (available for pre-orderhere). 

HAIM || Days Are Gone

LA sister trio HAIM are finally ready to release their first full length album, Days Are Gone, on September 30th. The album features fan favorites “Falling,” “Don’t Save Me,” “Go Slow,” “Forever” and new single “The Wire.” In other words, almost half of the album is something we’ve been listening to for months now. Below you will find the familiar tracklist and a stream for album track “Let Me Go,” which has become one of several high points in their badass live show.  

1. Falling
2. Forever
3. The Wire
4. If I Could Change Your Mind
5. Honey & I
6. Don’t Save Me
7. Days Are Gone
8. My Song 5
9. Go Slow
10. Let Me Go
11. Running If You Call My Name

MGMT || Your Life Is A Lie

Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden aka MGMT‘s new self-titled album is out September 17th on Columbia Records. The first video out of the new album was released today and it is pretty dope: crazy, surreal and one of those videos, where the sound perfectly goes with the actual visuals. A pleasure to watch! “Your Life is a Lie” was directed by Tom Kuntz, who is known for his work with artists such as LCD Soundsystem, Electric 6, Avalanches as well as with MGMT in the past for their “Congratulations” video. 

Portugal. The Man || Evil Friends

30303030Portugal. The Man have made their new album, Evil Friends, available for streaming on Tumblr, ahead of its June 4 release on Atlantic.

Produced by Danger Mouse (Gnarls Barkley, The Black Keys, Broken Bells), Evil Friends showcases an even stronger psych-rock influence than the group’s previous work. It also marks the band’s second release on a major label. The album is currently available for pre-order in a variety of packages and formats. 

In addition to streaming Evil Friends, Portugal. The Man’s Tumblr currently features the artwork of The Fantastic The, in collaboration with INSA and photography by Danger Mouse to help promote the record’s release. Several music videos have also been released ahead of the album, which are available on the band’s Youtube channel. Check out the latest, for “Atomic Man,” below.

 Portugal. The Man are set to kick off an extensive world tour in June. Head to their site for a full list of dates.

Evil Friends Tracklist:
01. Plastic Soldiers
02. Creep In A T-Shirt
03. Evil Friends
04. Modern Jesus
05. Hip Hop Kids
06. Atomic Man
07. Sea of Air
08. Waves
09. Holy Roller (Hallelujah)
10. Someday Believers
11. Purple Yellow Red and Blue
12. Smile

MANS || Various Lovers

Here’s a new track from MANS, the London-based indie-rock project of (Max Luthy & Muz Azar). After releasing “Strict Face” / “Mellow Magic Marker” 7″ earlier this year, their back with new single “Various Lovers”. It’s a groovy/funky disco strut, Prince-esque vocals with some heavy keys and scratchy guitars. Check it out below and stay tuned for their debut LP which is due later this year.


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