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.

Feed Limmy Songs of 2012: #30 – #21

Fact. There were more really, really good songs than really, really good albums in 2012. At least, that’s how my general listening experience infers, anyway.

Feed Limmy Top 30 Songs of 2012

I think that’s a pretty common conclusion from anyone who’s obsessed with making playlists and generally prefer a customised listening experience. (See also: “meticulous” and “anal” pop music gayz).

Here comes are some choons that made the Top 30 cut this year, starting from #30 to #21:

Continue reading

Kat Deluna ‘Drop It Low’ Music Video

Hold my drink, gurl. It’s about to get tribal up in this club.

Latin pop sensation Kat Deluna is finally bringing the heat to the screens with her new video ‘Drop It Low’ months after the track had struck us down with Kat fever. The single was well-received on the blogosphere when it first premiered and last time I checked, ‘Drop It Low’ is still one of the wildest and most carnal underground dance tracks I’ve heard all year. No power bottom can resist that beat.

The Dominican diva and her stans – affectionately dubbed Lunatics – are still going hard, trying to make this Stateside domination work with ‘Drop It Low’. There’s no question that Kat has a stronger following in certain regions like South America and parts of Europe – the latter really came on board after her fabulous Inside Out era – but America is where she wants to be building her bank right now.


 

It’s safe to say that there is still some buzz left in the single, especially now with that the video has arrived. Hat tip to her team for the strategic premiere on Nick Cannon‘s website. As for the video itself? You really gotta pan the camera over to Mrs Cannon when I say, this production gives us “moments”. There is no specific look or theme threading through other than the obvious ones about dancing and flaunting Kat’s heart-arresting curves.

We’re treated to a dance off between two tribes – Lunatics vs Uptown Boyz – juxtaposed with different scenes of Kat in various modes of ferocity. There’s a taste of swimsuit model realness, some classic-looking black and white shots of Kat and her male dancers, and an abundance of booty jiggling in tights and jeans shorts. Is it the monsoonal where you are right now? Because this bitch is about to make it rain.

Footnote:

Kat DeLuna‘s ‘Drop It Low’ is out here in Australia via iTunes. Expect for her new album ViVa to be unveiled soon.

Chart Feed – 02.05.11

Adele’s legendary 21 has finally stepped up to the #1 position here in Australia after 14 weeks on our charts holding tight to second-best seller for most of it. Looks like mainstream radios are finally ready to embrace the soul siren – ‘Rolling In The Deep’ is second most added new track to Aussie airwaves this week. 21 is already one of the biggest records of 2011, having sold over 1.2 million copies in the US and shipped 2.1 million units in the UK.

Beyonce’s ‘Run The World (Girls)’ is the highest charting new entry on our Australian singles chart this week, coming in at #12. The next Top 50 debut in sight is Avril Lavigne’s ‘Smile’, which sits at #42, and our home grown Justice Crew (featuring Flo Rida) ‘Dance With Me’ at #44. Back to B, this track has seriously parted the fan base like the Red Sea. ‘Run The World (Girls)’ is the most added new song to Australian radios this week but I’m not convinced that the Aussie masses will lap this up. I personally won’t stan for it but I’m also sure that I will not – for one second – hesitate to drop it if I hear this up in the clubs.

Back in the States, ‘Run The World (Girls)’ debuted at #33 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and #41 on the R&B charts. Who would’ve thought that former Child of Destiny Kelly Rowland would be outdoing Queen B on the American R&B and iTunes charts? Ms Kelly’s ‘Motivation’ is taking over like a quiet storm! The song moves up to #11 on the US R&B charts, thanks to increased radio airplays, and here on our Australian iTunes – the track is currently charting at #190 with absolutely no promo or radio support. [Editor’s note: Limmy are we supposed to be impressed with that placement?]

Lady Gaga’s ‘Judas’ plummets from its #6 debut here last week to #20. Ba-bow! Over in the UK, the single drops from #9 to #23 and takes a slight dip on the US Billboard Hot 100 from #10 to #12. Every time I’ve clocked our Aussie iTunes of late, I’ve noticed ‘Born This Way’ outselling ‘Judas’. I mean, really? The ‘Judas’ video is now set to premiere exclusively on E! News this Thursday. Get ready for the new Jerusalem, heathens!

Wynter Gordon’s ‘Til Death (Denzal Park Edit)’ moves up to #21 on the ARIA singles chart this week. So close to securing another Top 20 smash. Queens, make it happen! Over on the Australian club chart, them ‘Til Death’ remixes move to a new peak of #7. Meanwhile, ‘Dirty Talk’ has officially arrived on the UK singles chart this week – debuting at #34 despite having no promo happening there. I caught up with the super talented Ms Gordon last week to talk about the new single, her forthcoming debut album and why she wants to work with Zoe Badwi. You can read the full interview here after 10pm on Wednesday 4 May.

Jessie J had her new single ‘Nobody’s Perfect’ rushed to Aussie media yesterday, where it soon became this week’s third most added new song to radios. Earth to Australians who only discovered her yesterday when she warbled at the Logies! I felt so appalled reading most of the tweets on my timeline last night from fellow Aussies who either didn’t know Jessie J or had nasty shit to say about her appearance. You guys are the worst, seriously. ‘Nobody’s Perfect’ jumps to #18 in the UK this week while over in the US, the global smash ‘Price Tag’ edges to a new peak of #23 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The Wombats’ exciting new album This Modern Glitch enters at #2 in Australia and #3 in the UK this week. It’s the highest-selling new LP in both territories. Glee’s The Warblers album debuts at #6 in Australia this week while over in the UK, the two new original recordings from Glee Cast‘s The Music Volume 5 compilation start charting: ‘Loser Like Me’ shoots from #140 to #27 and ‘Get It Right’ debuts at #31.

Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream LP cops a sales boost thanks to the current Australian tour. The record moves from #23 to #17 but I reckon we haven’t seen the last of this tour-related sale surge. Keep an eye on next week’s chart position. Likewise for any Bieber related records. Such a shame about the egg pelting incident! I was so embarrassed for us as a nation for this immature fuckery. Regardless of what I think of his music or his stans, Justin Bieber is a talented performer and he never fails to deliver it live. It’s complete and utter disrespect to be subjected to this kind of abuse. Yet another example of Australian concert goers not acting right with international pop stars – see other: Whitney concert whines and Britney mime-gate foolery.

Junior Caldera and Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s divine ‘Can’t Fight This Feeling’ is actually making a bleep on the Australian club charts – albeit placed at #47. If this is Sophie’s only presence in the country then we need to get behind it. The original version would be perfect for commercial radios if we weren’t so fixated on a specific brand of party-starter dance/urban hybrid right now. My theory is, if Australian radios can embrace Cascada, they are more than able to handle ‘Can’t Fight This Feeling’. Give it a chance.

Jennifer Hudson’s I Remember Me album debuts at #20 in the UK this week – the title track starts charting at #89 there. The record got a surprise rush-release to Aussie retailers last Friday despite us being told that it wasn’t due ’til her promo visit later this month. The Aussie tracklisting features the radio mix of ‘I Remember Me’ and two bonus tracks: ‘Spotlight’ and that beige Leona Lewis duet for Sex & the City 2 ‘Love Is Your Colour’.

Clare Maguire‘s Light After Dark album re-enters the UK Top 100 this week, shooting to #53. The record’s third single ‘The Shield and The Sword’ will be launched in the UK on 9 May. Ho-hum!

Dev featuring The Cataracs‘ single ‘Bass Down Low’ debuts at #66 in the UK this week. Yes, it is the gang who famously teamed up with Far East Movement on the #1 smash ‘Like A G6’. Expect to hear more from Californian electro-crunk diva Dev in the coming months as she takes her solo single ‘In The Dark’ beyond the reaches of the pop music blogosphere.

Britney Spears’ stunning anthem ‘Till The World Ends’ is slated to propel up the US Billboard charts this Wednesday when figures finally come in with the new “Femme Fatale” remix (featuring Nicki Minaj and Ke$ha). Industry chin-strokers are predicting all that versions of ‘TTWE’ should amass around 210,000 sales. The guest star remix worked a charm for Rihanna last week when her Britney Rih-mix of ‘S&M’ pushed the single to #1. With triple the star power, can ‘Till The World Ends’ finally go Top 5? The Femme Fatale remix of ‘Till The World Ends’ is currently charting at #73 on our Aussie iTunes chart.

Selena Gomez’s new single ‘Who Says’ copped a decent gain on the US Billboard charts this week, moving from #25 to #37. Other tracks of interest making a move on up include Jill Scott’s ‘So In Love’, rising to #38 on the US R&B charts this week.

Estonian pop sensation Kerli nabs her first ever US #1 with ‘Army of Love’ topping the dance charts this week. Next in line is Kat DeLuna’s ‘Dancing Alone’, reaching a new peak of #2. Jessie and The Toy Boys’ ‘Push It’ is enjoying more club spins, taking it to a new peak of #12 on the US dance charts.

Leak Report: Kat DeLuna ‘Drop It Low’

Alright, America. It’s your turn now. Get correct for Kat DeLuna.

The Dominican debutantess of pop is finally ready to let the US market have a taste of what she’s working with after thrilling European fans with her RedOne-produced Inside Out album.

While I’m all for Kat launching Inside Out as it is worldwide, I understand how difficult it must be for the the American urban community to re-embrace the diva and not clock any rent-a-rappers on board. So while the US-version of ‘Dancing Tonight’ (rapper included) is faring well on the dance charts, here she is with a promise of a new sound and re-worked album.

ViVa is what she’s dubbed the American version of Inside Out and one of the newest offerings on board is this here ‘Drop It Low’:

 

How do you guys rate it?

Sonically, it doesn’t grab me in the way that her previous singles – ‘Push Push’, ‘Party O’Clock’ and ‘Dancing Tonight’ – have, but I reckon she’s ascending with a new sound now. Think: sweaty Spanglish dance for the AM o’clock, straying into tribal trance territory.

Feed Limmy verdict: Lightbulb snap.

Mighty snap = this is a hit.
Bounce snap = instantly likeable.
Lightbulb snap = you will need a moment to get into this.
Nonchalant snap = need I say more?
No snap = please cease and decease.

Kat had said in an interview with Ralphie Aversa that the US album won’t contain as many RedOne tracks and that she’s releasing all new singles. Boom! That’s something new everyone can look forward to, right?

Footnotes:

Kat DeLuna‘s current US single ‘Dancing Tonight’ moves to a new peak of #3 on the Billboard Dance/Club charts.

Leak Report: Jennifer Lopez ‘Papi’

Y’know what? Bitch will mop up the competition with every last drop of Kat DeLuna‘s swag if she has to. And there’s nothing you can do about it.

Glam ma Jennifer Lopez pulls another winning Latin-infused dance number from the Love? bag and just like it was with her hit single ‘On The Floor’, everyone’s clocking RedOne for reupholstering the magic he first created with Kat.

‘Papi’ is completely what J.Lo needs right now and I’ll even go one further to say that it’s better than ‘I’m Into You’. The track was released on US iTunes today, serving as a digital promo single for J.Lo‘s forthcoming album.

Take a listen and tell us what you think:

 

“My rock is shining bright, even if he ain’t by my side… dance for your papi! Put your hands up in the air, dance for your man if you care!”

Pause the tape for a sec. Is this an anthem for all the ladies in loving committed relationships? Gag.

Feed Limmy verdict: Mighty snap.

Mighty snap = this is a hit.
Bounce snap = instantly likeable.
Lightbulb snap = you will need a moment to get into this.
Nonchalant snap = need I say more?
No snap = please cease and decease.

Footnotes:

Jennifer Lopez‘s Love? arrives in Australia on 29 April.

The next digital promo single expected to be “unlocked” is the brilliant title track, co-penned by Wynter Gordon.

Kat Deluna ‘Dancing Tonight’ Music Video

Our favourite debutantess of Europop – Kat Deluna – is back with a new video purveying more genres of dance than you can fit into an episode of Strictly Come Dancing.

It’s back to business as usual for the Dominicana diva after the interwebs whisked up some controversy about the blatantly obvious similarities between Kat‘s previous single ‘Party O’Clock’ and J.Lo‘s new global smash ‘On The Floor’.

Smug smiles all around for Kat stans, it won’t be long before the world recognises the true game changer in the midst of this. Meanwhile, it’s onto single numero trois from her European album Inside Out, which will serve as the project’s first US single.

 

Here are three points to be made of the ‘Dancing Tonight’ video:

1) Eye patch.

Relentless eleganza oozing forth from this bath tub scene.

2) Strictly dancing.

There’s ballet, there’s salsa, there’s a swag of hip hop dancing, and even a bit of ‘Single Ladies’ leotarded realness here. Kat is letting you have it.

3) Insert rap for the American audience.

You do what you gotta do to fit the US market. A girl’s gotta eat! But having said that, I am not completely opposed to the newly revamped rap version of ‘Dancing Tonight’.

Footnotes:

Kat Deluna has served ‘Dancing Tonight’ as her first US single from this project. The track is now available on iTunes over in the States.