Reactions to My 2017 Predictions

I had completely forgotten that I had done a 2017 predictions in music post at the start of the year. A Raven Symoné-esque gaze into the future, it was not. Upon reflection, some of the themes I had expected to come true have, while others, just like my diminishing annual promise to get in shape, have not.

Let’s recap, shall we?

“Sombre vibes and alternative sounds to the front”

‘Pure pop is over’, I declared, with the blow of a whistle and precise waving of arms like a referee in a boxing ring. I had said that in light of a post-Brexit Britain and Trump-reigned America, music was going to reflect the harsher socio and political climate. This was clearly written before I learned about “woke”, a widespread sun-blotting ‘movement’, fortified through social media, and peaking at its glossiest, most marketable zenith when Katy Perry hopped out with ‘Chained to The Rhythm‘ and Kendal Jenner with a Pepsi commercial she’d rather forget.

Grime and hip hop have certainly charted healthily in 2017 – any broadsheet would tell you that. This year saw Stormzy become the first ever grime artist to score a #1 album to a chorus of critical acclaim and screaming fans at sold out shows. We’d all soon stan Stefflon Don if ‘Hurtin’ Me’ or her feature on Jax Jones and Demi Lovato‘s bossy ‘Instruction’ haven’t already put her on your radar.

In the same gaze where I had pointed out artists such as Ray BLK would prosper, this year saw heads turned by the likes of alt-R&B dreamcatchers like Kelela, SZA, Sampha and Kehlani.

To say that the heartbeat of pure pop dimmed this year would be a reach, even for someone as naturally over-dramatic as me. The party raged on. The blood cells of eager-to-please Western pop fused with the viral sensation of its infectious, rhythmic Spanish cousins and out came cross-polinations of artists growing in different nurseries of major label divisions across the world, spawning global hits such as ‘Despacito‘ (Puerto Ricans Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee with Canadian Justin Bieber), ‘Reggaeton Lento‘ (Miami-founded CNCO with Britain’s pride Little Mix), ‘Mi Gente’ (Colombian J Balvin and French Willy William with Texas’ most prolific hot sauce carrier, Beyoncé).

Stan Twitter gurgled over Dua LipaRita Ora and Camila Cabello in the same breath as Taylor Swift and Little Mix. And whether you were checking for it or not, we’ve had a record number of solo One Direction records flood the market. 2017 is to the solo 1D harvest what 1999 was for the Spice Girls. Marinade on that fact.

“Nostalgic re-issues of classic 90s albums on vinyl will be a thing”

According to the Official Charts Company’s October publishing of the 40 biggest selling vinyl albums of 2017 so far… this was not what I had in mind. I am seeing Ed Sheeran, Radiohead, Amy Winehouse, Beatles, David Bowie, Fleetwood Mac, even Rag ‘N’ Bone Man. There’s a still lot of nostalgia, alright, but not the kind I’m here for. Dondé está Shania Twain “Come On Over”, Alanis Morissette “Jagged Little Pill”, Janet Jackson “The Velvet Rope”, Spice Girls “Spice”, Madonna “The Immaculate Collection” etc. etc.? If you are a hipster vinyl hound, find yourself a pop friend this Christmas and gift them a legendary 90s album of their liking this season. If you want to be a true friend – the kind of friend they sing about in the Golden Girls theme tune – I have seen Lisa Scott-Lee‘s ‘Lately’ and Nicole Scherzinger’s scrapped ‘Puakenikeni’ lying unclaimed in a bargain crate out in East London somewhere. You are welcome.

Speaking of pop nostalgia, take a huge fucking bow Team Steps and Bananarama for staging absolutely solid gold comebacks this year. Especially you, Steps. New music in 2017 that was on brand, on point and on the top of the bloody iTunes charts.

“Expect unexpected collaborations”

Well, that’s a fucking given. I was not exactly the Book of Revelations now, was I? This was a pointless prediction. A piece of recycled oxygen. Like the breath you just exhaled while you were diving deep into your car boot to fetch an oversized Ikea bag for your shopping.

I wasn’t completely off the mark here though. One certainly did not see the returned popularity of Spanglish pop. Not since Ricky Martin‘s hip-twisting World Cup anthem ‘The Cup of Life’ have we seen such unity of the two languages on a global spread – thanks to the aforementioned rather exciting and unexpected collaborations.

Where I was expecting more vibrant gumbos a la Cambridge classical-electronic band Clean Bandit meets Jamaican dancehall sire Sean Paul and karate-chopping Essex pop newbie Anne-Marie, it seems like what works is sticking with your peers. Calvin Harris grouped artists on the same eye-level of success for ‘Feels’ – Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry and Big Sean. Similarly, DJ Khaled drafted Justin Bieber and Rihanna for the respective hits. It just makes good commercial sense. So until there is a verifiable market for a Chainsmokers featuring Shirley BasseyLindsey Stirling and Mr Eazi collab, then I will just stay put.

At some point over the next couple of weeks I will be sharing my fave tracks of 2017 and my predictions for the state of pop in 2018. Now if that isn’t something to look forward to, I don’t know what is.

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Feed Limmy’s 40 Songs of 2016

In keeping with this annual tradition that stretches back to a land before Snapchat and Gigi Hadid, I am here to present you Feed Limmy’s Songs of The Year.

Over the years it has become more of a documentation of songs released in the past 12 months that I have really enjoyed or have soundtracked a special memory. I think for that reason, these lists of the more intimate nature perhaps carry a bit more meaning and weight, as they’re not critically-inclined but are measured by the standard of one’s enjoyment and personal connection. Which after all, is what music is all about.

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Chart Feed – 12.11.12

I left y’all scratching at the post a little last week because I took my ass on a little vacaycay to Brisbane.

Chart Feed

Bitch, you should’ve seen me lounging on the beach in an island that was practically deserted on a Monday arvo. I was having a Mariah moment frolicking in the sand, trying to look cute for my Instagram photos. But hey, I am back now and here comes your chart feed – which might cover some things I didn’t get to touch on last week.

This has been a good week for Robbie Williams who scored his first simulatenous UK #1 album-and-single action in 11 years. Elsewhere, the following chart showboaters can’t complain either: Taylor SwiftCalvin Harris, Little Mix, Of Monsters and Men, The Wanted, and to a certain extent, Christina Aguilera. SAY!

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Quick Feed: Calvin Harris, Leona Lewis and Colton Haynes, Vanessa Amorosi and Nelly Furtado

Who isn’t on the new Calvin Harris album?

CALVIN HARRIS

After four consecutive UK #2 hits in the last 14 months and a string of smash productions for other artists, it dance/pop producer Calvin Harris is finally ready to unveil his third studio album.

The Scottish DJ announced over Twitter that the new album titled 18 Months will arrive on 29 October, which would be preceded closely by the project’s fifth single ‘Sweet Nothing’ (featuring Florence + The Machine).

Harris also confirmed that the album will feature collaborations with Kelis, Rihanna, Example, Nicky Romero, Ellie Goulding, Tinie Tempah, Florence Welch, Dizzee Rascal, Ne-Yo, Ayah and Dillon Francis.

Make no mistake about it – 2012 and 2013 is definitely the era of Calvin Harris. This rising super producer is totally gonna be the authority on dance/pop sounds in the same influential manner as past hitmakers David Guetta and RedOne.

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Chart Feed – 06.08.12

A whole season must’ve passed beneath our feet, moons come and gone, colours of the wind changed, since our last Chart Feed – but I’m now ready to immerse myself back into a regime of tireless research on Monday nights.

Chart Feed

Perhaps once the choir of angels performing their celebratory rendition of ‘You Bring Me Joy’ has ascended back to heaven, we can begin this week’s pickings of the ARIA, UK Official and US Billboard charts.

This was a particularly rosy week for Justice Crew and Conor Maynard, featuring new entries also from The Veronicas, Kelendria Trene Rowland and Scissor Sisters.

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Cheryl Cole ‘Call My Name’ Music Video

Forget how Cheryl Cole feels when we call her name – isn’t it time somebody assigned a name to that wandering mole we last saw touring all over Kelly Rowland’s face? That shit is now getting viewed more times than Nadine Coyle because it just found itself a sweet spot on our Geordie Goddess’ right cheek.

Seriously, though. If the cosmetically-bestowed mole was the only subject of your fixation throughout this 4:29 production then I suggest you reassess your life choices.

Cheryl Cole serves an endless reel of fashion editorial realness in her brand new video ‘Call My Name’ that really could have doubled as a commercial for a number of top-end designer labels. What’s up, D&G?

Lady of the concrete jungle.

Director Anthony Mandler, who has hemmed quality videos for Rihanna and Jennifer Hudson, made such a sensible juxtaposition of Cheryl‘s alluring feminine movements with these cold, urban and structured streetscapes.

I really enjoyed Cheryl‘s visual presentation here – the full voluminous hair giving us movement in the wind, those stunning display of legs and womanly silhouette? Excuse her beauty but it truly was the main attraction of every scene in this video.

Hard and soft.

The well-groomed contrast I mentioned didn’t just start and end with the visual make-up of the outdoor shots, but also extends to the kind of energies mixed throughout the whole ‘Call My Name’ video.

You see some seriously on-point choreography delivered with slick precision mixed in with these really glamorous and almost ethereal movements in the mirror scenes, where it’s just Cheryl giving face to the camera.

It’s just the kind of pace this video needs to reflect – especially for a song like ‘Call My Name’, where there are massive fairground synths pounding the chorus, offset by a pair of very sensual, alluring verses.

You almost can’t go too hard by heavily featuring dance moves in every single shot for the entire video.

“You got me confused by the way I changed…”

‘Call My Name’ – concocted by pop’s it producer of the moment Calvin Harris – isn’t a defining smash by any stretch of the imagination. But just like a lot of the music Cheryl has handed me before, however heavily soaked in mediocrity, I’m gonna eat this shit up like it’s the last goddamn box of KFC Wicked Wings on earth. I am full-blown obsessed and am in dire need of help when it comes to weaning myself off this basic pop event.

Watch Cheryl‘s ‘Call My Name’ video:



Footnotes:

Cheryl Cole will release ‘Call My Name’ on 11 June in the UK. Her third solo album A Million Lights hits shelves the following week.

Chart Feed – 23.04.12

Carly Rae Jepsen, you can’t shake this bitch. Her mega pop hit ‘Call Me Maybe’ continues to reign on the Australian and UK singles chart, beating down heavyweights like Delta Goodrem and Florence + The Machine.

New albums by Kate Miller-HeidkeJason Mraz and Monica blow up the Australian, UK and US charts.

We trace the first imprints of The Voice Australia‘s impact on our ARIA Top 100 and look ahead to new releases from Reece MastinMaroon 5 and Alexandra Burke.

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