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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Limmy’s Hot Take: Kanye and M.I.A. come for Beyoncé, and New Music by Bruno Mars, ZAE and Kate Miller-Heidke

This week on Limmy’s Hot Take: Kanye simply living his truth – hashtag no filter – continues to be one of the most entertaining things happening in music right now. It’s so rock and roll.

Yesterday he arrived at his Sacramento show reportedly an hour and a half late, only to scrap the whole thing after performing just two songs. But not before adding some real value to the evening with an epic rant aimed at pals Beyoncé and Jay Z.

As NME reports, he called out Bey over her alleged condition that she would only perform at the MTV Video Music Awards if she was awarded Video of The Year over rivals Kanye and Drake.

He tells the crowd: “Beyoncé, I was hurt! ‘Cause I heard that you said you wouldn’t perform unless you won Video of the Year over me, and over ‘Hotline Bling.’ In my opinion — now, don’t go tryin’ to diss Beyoncé, she is great. Taylor Swift is great. We are all great people, we are all equal. But sometimes, we be playing the politics too much and forgetting who we are — just to win. Fuck winning! Fuck looking cool! Fuck looking cool! Fuck being cool! Fuck all that!”

I mean I do see a few points here that aren’t at the end of a finger. But fuck that, everybody wants to win, everybody wants to be cool. I don’t think Beyoncé’s alleged request is that outrageous, do you? You’d almost expect it. I definitely would if I were her. I mean, you won’t see it come from me via email, text or DM but I’d definitely make sure someone in my team gets on the phone and takes care of that. Also, how you gon’ have Beyoncé bring the kind of elaborate performance she always does to your show and not honour her in some way?

I know she was up for 11 VMAs this year, which by the way is the most amount of nominations she’s ever gotten in a single year, but let’s face it Video of The Year is the one. Also, let’s be real, out of Adele’s ‘Hello’, Bieber’s ‘Sorry’, Kanye’s ‘Famous’ and Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’, ‘Formation’ was surely hands down Video of The Goddamn Year, mate.

Ye’s rant trying to expose Beyoncé as a greedy, game-playing, scheming corporation is not exactly a new angle. And better yet, the reality of that is not something you can change by being mad about it either. There are tons of super talented musicians and entertainers that fall to the wayside. Talent is not enough. You need more to slay in the game. You need great business acumen (thank you Mathew Knowles), power and influence. This empire was not built in a day. And it sure as hell wasn’t built on unprofessionalism and cancelling shows 10 minutes into it. But you know what, they’re both different artists and Kanye has real moments of greatness that is undeniable. What he does have, in place of Video of The Year, is a real candid quality about him. For better or worst he is himself, and that is actually really entertaining and refreshing in a world of heavily media-trained and overly cautious stars.

In other news, M.I.A. has also called out Beyoncé (and other A-listers like Madonna  and Rihanna) for stealing from her. According to Idolator, here’s what the British rapper and producer told Q Magazine:

“I’m fine with Madonna or Beyoncé or Rihanna being ‘inspired’ by my work. But I would like them to then go, ‘Yeah, this immigrant who came out of nowhere influenced us, so maybe not all of them are fucking terrible’. They don’t even think like that. They go ‘Yeah, maybe me stealing the stuff says she’s all right. She should be thankful we’re stealing it’. But sometimes you just think, ‘Fuck, I have to pay some bills,’ you know? Beyoncé comes from the school of Michael Jackson-ness. Where the family built an entire world to support you. From when you were a child. I never had that luxury. If you’re working class, music doesn’t belong to you like it used to – it would be really hard for Oasis to happen now. I’m just fodder. A template for pop stars to create more content. We constantly feed the top of the pyramid.”

I’m dead curious to know which tracks she is specifically referring to now. But overall, this is giving me pains circa Kat Deluna when J.Lo hooked up with RedOne and started jacking her sound for the very lucrative, career CPR-ing ‘On The Floor’/Love? era.

We’ve seen this happen over and over again, and it isn’t fair. It must be hard for an artist who is, I suppose, ‘not mainstream’ by nature, with very brilliant and occasional commercial crossovers, to straddle those worlds. It must be soul-crushing to be in those circles and see the money and opportunity, and be on the radar where people are watching, listening and having their creative team pin your shit to Pinterest boards, and you are not getting any recognition for it. It is also shit when you’re repeatedly told you’re ‘underrated’. That shit can take a toll – case in action, aforementioned Kat Deluna and the artist formerly known as Wynter Gordon, now relaunched under her real name Diana Gordon, who I’m very happy is winning now (you should read her interview with Fader).

I know this won’t help pay the bills but I take comfort in knowing that the age of the internet has opened so many more doors for artists. Real talent always shines, and I believe when you’re creating something of great quality that is also truthful to you, there will be an audience there. In a time where genres are breaking down and listeners are more guided by recommendations and artists that sound similar to the ones they like, things like playlists and those ‘Related Artists’ steer our consumption a lot. Perhaps there might be something in fostering a network of like-minded artists on your level that respect your craft and complement your artistry and brand, and pull each other up together. Collaborate! Create cool shit together! Do promo together! Go on tour together! Unite your fanbase! People seem to only be out for themselves now, trying to be the next mononym star. But seriously, come together!

Update: This thread by a songwriter, which came into my periphery after Guyliner retweeted it, is a good read.

 

Top tunes of the week

Bruno Mars’ entire 24K Magic album

I’m genuinely surprised I’ve chosen the new Bruno Mars album over Little Mix‘s. You know I love my pop girl bands. But to be honest, Bruno’s 24K Magic is everything. Nine tracks of hedonistic, solid 90s R&B and funk. I went through a phase of immersing myself in lots of New Jack Swing earlier this year so this couldn’t have come at a better time.

ZAE ‘Letting Go’

If you like Banks, chances are you’re gonna enjoy West London singer ZAE‘s ‘Letting Go’. She told The Line of Best Fit that the song was directly influenced by the singer and was in fact the very first song she wrote. Not a bad place to start, mate. Although that story is almost too good to be true. But what is good and certifiable true though is the intimate music video that comes with it, portraying a two young men in a volatile and emotionally-fraying stage of their relationship.

Kate Miller-Heidke ‘You’ve Underestimated Me, Dude’

I’ve always loved me some Kate Miller-Heidke. Unquestionably, the Professor Dumbledore of what she does, which is cleverly observant and sensitive lyrics and, every now and then when the mood calls for it, a theatrical performance like this one. ‘You’ve Underestimated Me, Dude’ is a nails down the back, bluesy rock clapback at misogyny.

Jhene Aiko ‘Maniac’

The camp-as-tinsel-on-Alan-Carr kid in me immediately thought of the Michael Sembello/Flashdance song but no this is something more of a sexier outing. ‘Maniac’ could have easily been mistaken for a Tinashe banger or a very slick Kelly Rowland comeback single (Sis, take notes!). It doesn’t sound like the Jhene Aiko I know but it’s definitely closer aligned to her joint album with Big Sean as Twenty88. “I’m a low-key freak you don’t know me yet”, she coolly sings over crystalline trap beats. That may be the case.

For more of my favourite tunes, check out my NEWEST playlist.

And finally…

Quite a few tweets this week reminiscing on the great pop songwriting output of Cathy Dennis, who of course, is responsible for Britney‘s ‘Toxic’, Kylie‘s ‘Can’t Get You Out of My Head’, Sugababes ‘About You Now’, and a couple of good Heidi Montag tracks you should not be ashamed to say you like (this is a safe space). So here’s a playlist of songs she has written for other artists and some performed by Cathy herself.

Tweet me your fave pop songwriters over at @feedlimmy.

Chart Feed – 13.08.12

The Olympic Games is doing nothing to stimulate Britain’s album buying habits as the nation hits its lowest weekly album sales in 16 years. Rihanna‘s Talk That Talk has returned to #1 on the UK charts with just over 9,500 copies sold – making it the lowest weekly sale for a UK #1 album in the 21st century.

CHARTFEED

Elsewhere, American Idol winner Phillip Phillips scores big on the digital charts thanks to a placement in NBC’s Olympic broadcast, the Pet Shop Boys cops a chart fail with ‘Winner’, and J.Lo now ties with Katy Perry for most consecutive US #1 dance/club play singles.

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Quick Feed: J.Lo announces Australian tour, Lana Del Rey, Elen Levon and Robbie Rivera

So what did I do with the rest of my day after I found out that J.Lo was touring Australia? Honestly, does it even matter. I mean, really. The immensity of Jenny finally coming to my block was too much for my basic being to handle.

Fire up the smoke machine and throw on your Louboutins.

JENNIFER LOPEZ DANCE AGAIN TOUR AUSTRALIA

News broke this morning while I was on air that Jennifer Lopez is bringing her Dance Again greatest hits tour to Australian shores this December. The announcement was echoed with much rejoicing in caps locked tweets from my fellow Australian Love?rs.

Seven studio albums deep in a discography glittering with hits, and the 43-year old has never done a world tour before.

Here Down Under, J.Lo has secured two #1 singles with ‘If You Had My Love’ and more recently ‘On The Floor’ (featuring Pitbull) – however, all up she has had 17 Top 30 hits in this country. Needless to say, a few of us would know the words to at least a dozen of her songs.

Australian tour dates announced so far:

Perth Arena, Perth – 6 December
Adelaide Entertainment Centre, Adelaide – 9 December
Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne – 11 December
Allphones Arena, Sydney – 14 December
Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Brisbane – 18 December

Tickets go on sale on 21 August, so start gathering up your coins.

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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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Jennifer Lopez ‘Goin’ In’ Music Video

There are only two types of music fans in the world – ones who know they are J.Lo apologisers and ones who are only just waking to realise that they are.

JENNIFER LOPEZ GOIN' IN

I think there should be a research team out there studying Jennifer Lopez‘s recent singles approval ratings before and after the music video is launched because I swear I felt the tide turn a little with ‘Goin’ In’.

After letting out a torrential amount of piss on her last effort ‘Dance Again’ (featuring the omnipresent Pitbull), I really had no excuses left to make for my favourite Latin pop diva.

By the time ‘Goin’ In’ surfaced on the interwebs, I was already packing my suitcase with thoughts of leaving the blogosphere and, in a more literal sense, the country. I was not going to be available in anyway to defend her crass and disposable new track.

Jennifer Lopez Goin' In

Director Ace Norton (who served us the spectacular Scissor Sisters clip ‘Any Which Way’) rams a visually bonkers collision of high energy dance, colour and action onto your screen. So captivating it is, that you’re not even sure how you’ve just sat through one of the most irritating J.Lo singles to date without blinking and then rousing to find a discreet discharge of glitter in your panties.

The majority of the action shots like slow motion of paint clashing mid-air, people smashing through glass and shit exploding were already piloted on the aforementioned Scissor Sisters clip.

However, this being the single to usher in the Step Up Revolution movie, there was an abundance of choreography and laser lights present, coupled with street elements like brightly coloured fire hydrants shooting out paint.

FUCK YEAH J.LO STRUTTING.

I mean, look at the above. Is this real life? We are not worthy.

I’m glad the video wasn’t a mindless surrender to the movie’s themes. J.Lo still appropriately commands the clip with her own moments in that reinvention of Little Red Riding Hood with diamond-encrusted lips, and that devastating strut she did in front of the wind machine, which mind you is precisely how I look on the treadmill at Fitness First every other morning – so gag, bitches!

‘Goin’ In’ – produced by GoonRock, the man who had a hand in co-writing and co-producing several of LMFAO‘s Sorry For Party Rocking jams – is a damaging blend of present day crunk and Europop synths.

The presence of rapper Flo Rida and an uncredited Lil Jon adds some street heat to ‘Goin’ In’, and this point I’m prepared to concede that their contribution is rather necessary to the overall experience of the track – which is not something I would say for every J.Lo single that has featured a rent-a-rapper.

Look, put it this way. If this is a signifier of the kind of hectic uptempo to come on some future J.Lo album that she may or may not be working towards, then it’s not a completely bad thing. I think we gotta acknowledge that Mami Lopez has always had her feet firmly in both urban and dance sides of the pop arena and the time has never been better to combine the two.

Watch the eye-popping video for ‘Goin’ In’:



Footnotes:

Jennifer Lopez‘s ‘Goin’ In’ has to date climbed up to #3 on the US Billboard Dance/Club charts. I would highly recommend the aggressive Jacob Plant dub step remix and mildly tribal Gustavo Scorpio remix.

Do you think she will extend her Dance Again world tour down to Australia in the new year? I am desperate for this to happen.