15 Songs You Should Hear Before January Ends

If you’re like me, you can spend hours making playlists for different occasions. To be honest, I pay more attention to my Spotify and iTunes than I did my Neopets back in 2008 and that is saying something. (kudos if you had a Neopet) Whether old, new, over played or unheard of…check out these 15 songs that have consumed my January!

Clean – Taylor Swift

By far my favorite song from Taylor Swift’s 1989 album.

One Last Time – Ariana Grande

Track 3 from Ariana Grande’s “My Everything” album was…my everything.

 OctaHate – Ryn Weaver

How many times do you roll eyes when you have to watch an advertisement before watching a YouTube video? “OctaHate” played as an advertisement and they got me; I watched the entire thing and became obsessed with Ryn Weaver.

Youtube: 1

Rae: 0

Ghost – Ella Henderson

Home To Mama – Justin Bieber and Cody Simpson

Although my Justin Bieber merchandise is shrinking by the scandal, I can’t deny how precious this duet with Cody Simpson is.

Cheerleader – Felix Jaehn Remix Radio Edit

..”and they say
do you need me
do you think I’m pretty
do I make you feel like cheating –
And I’m like no, not really…”

Bad Intentions – Niykee Heaton

One More – Elliphant and MO

I’m an Albatraoz – AronChupa 

I’m not 100% sure what exactly is going on in this song but…the beat is everything to me.

Electric Love- BORNS

Reflections – MisterWives

Gooey – Glass Animals

Real Love – Clean Bandit and Jess Glynne

Bed Of Lies – Nicki Minaj and Skylar Grey

So Far (It’s Alright) – The 1975

 

Comment below and let us know what you were jammin’ to in January!

Posted in Artists, Music, Staff Picks

Big Sean Announces Album: “Dark Sky Paradise”

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Native Detroit rapper, Big Sean is about to drop his third studio album and no one was prepared for its announcement last night. If you follow the artist on Twitter, you might have noticed a cryptic tweet on his account saying just one word: “done.” Later Sunday evening, Sean announced his follow-up to 2013′s “Hall Of Fame” with the picture shown above on his Instagram account. A little while later, Drake, Jhene Aiko, PARTYNEXTDOOR, DJ Khaled, Travi$ Scott, and other artists posted the same picture on their personal accounts.

Although we have no official release date for the album, we at least have the tentative album artwork and know who is featured on the project. Until then, we’ll have to stick with his previously released singles “IDFWU” and “Paradise” and wait for this highly anticipated album to drop.

 

Posted in Artists, Music, New Releases

Sleeping With Sirens Announces New Album, “Madness” + First Single “Go Go Go”

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 Sleeping With Sirens have announced details on their fourth studio album, “Madness.” The new album is scheduled to release March, 17, 2015 via Epitaph Records! In excitement of the release of their first album with their new record label, Sleeping with Sirens have also released the video to their first single,  “GO GO GO.”  Check out the video below!!

To pre-order “Madness,” visit www.sleepingwithsirens.net

Posted in Artists, Music, New Releases

The New Kids On The Block Bring Nostalgia To A City Near You

Gather ’round children. Gather ’round. Although 2015 has just started…it’s about start feeling like the ’90s again. The New Kids on the Block stopped by Good Morning America on Monday to announce plans for a summer headlining tour featuring girl group TLC and rapper Nelly. I’ll give you a moment to let all of the nostalgia settle in.

main-event-tour

This is not the first time the NKOTB decided to step back in time. After reuniting in 2008 and consistently selling out arenas, venues and even a few cruises, the band embarked on a summer tour in 2013 along with Boys II Men and 98 Degrees. While The New Kids on the Block rose to fame in the late eighties, TLC climbed the charts in the nineties and Nelly dominated in the early 2000s; this tour is sure to unite a variety of age groups for the ultimate throwback. “The Main Event” summer tour performances will take place “in the round” meaning a center stage allowing for full visual access. The band plans to add this 360-degree stage setup with a perimeter of bar seats reserved for fans in order for them to be up close and personal during the tour.

TLC’s announcement of joining the tour came with the news of hoping to fund a final album through their Kickstarter sending fans into a frenzy. Nelly, who is currently overseas with the armed forces, has recently invited the public into his personal life with his new show “Nellyville” on BET. While the groups plan to perform crowd favorites, all performers promise all new production elements and more recent songs for the crowd to enjoy.

All three acts are scheduled to kick off the tour on May 1st in Las Vegas with plans to stop by the Houston Toyota Center on Saturday, May 16. If you don’t want to miss this once and a lifetime performance, you can visit www.nkotb.com or www.livenation.com for more information on presales and ticket prices!

Tell us if you’re planning on going and what you think! Meanwhile, here’s a DJ Earworm mashup and some of my favorites!

 

Posted in Bands, Concert Promo

Album Review: Fall Out Boy’s “American Beauty/American Psycho”

The band that many 90’s kids channeled their early teenage angst through has come back, and like many of us, the band changed in their Hot Topic skinny jeans for cooler, trendy Urban Outfitter jeans.  I can only compare it to seeing a friend/relative after they’ve grown up and come back from college. Sure they’ve grown a couple feet, grown an interest in collecting vinyls and collect aura cleansing crystals, but they still look like the person you knew.

2015 is also important because it marks the 10th anniversary of the album that put them on the map, “From Under the Cork Tree.” Their new album “American Beauty/American Psycho” does not ditch the vibe and style of music the pop-punk rock style they originally built from, they’ve simply just decided to make a pop album. By all definitions of the word, this album definitely gears towards the pop scene. Repetitive rhythms influenced by more electronic sounds and building on their fair share of samples. “Uma Therman,” “Centuries” and the title track “American Beauty/American Psycho, all contain samples, yet these are some of the best tracks on the albums.

 

In the end, Fall Out Boy has grown and their style has grown with them. They’ve created a pop album, it is what it is. Many artists have changed their style throughout the years, and this group of musicians are no different. It has catchy hooks and great beats that will have you singing along by the second or third listen.

Favorite Tracks: Irresistable, American Beauty/American Psycho, Uma Therman, Fourth of July, Immortals

Least Favorite Tracks: The Kids Aren’t Alright, Novacaine, Favorite Record

Ratings: 4.5/5

Posted in Artists, Music, New Releases, Reviews

Mixtape Review: Lil’ Wayne’s “Sorry 4 The Wait 2″

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“I’m sorry for the wait. Tha Carter gon’ be late, so I cooked up a tape.” -Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr.

After a little hiatus, we finally get substance from Mr. Carter aka Lil’ Wayne. The artist’s 2011 mixtape Sorry 4 the Wait was released as a sort of apology for Tha Carter IV‘s delay. Now, since Tha Carter V has been similarly pushed back thanks to an ongoing battle between the New Orleans rapper and his old label Cash Money Records, he has delivered Sorry 4 the Wait 2. The 17-track mixtape features Drake (on an original track), Christina Milian, 2 Chainz, Mack Maine, and Shanell. Here is my track-by-track breakdown review of the brand new project:

1. CoCo
Weezy opens the project with a remix of O.T. Genasis’ 2014 viral hit “CoCo” and immediately catches the ear of his listeners by saying “I’m sorry for the wait. Tha Carter gon’ be late, so I cooked up a tape.” Wayne compares his ex-father figure Birdman to the Ugly Duckling, since he is responsible for his departure from Cash Money and delay of his album, Tha Carter 5. This track definitely opens up the tape with attitude and lets his listeners know that he is not playing around anymore, now that he is on his own.

2. Sh!t
This track was released as a preview for the full mixtape on January 12th and brings the lyrical heat from the New Orleans rapper. Holding nothing back on the first leak off his Sorry 4 The Wait 2 mixtape, Weezy once again apologizes for making listeners wait for new music from him because of his known dilemma with Cash Money Records. Personally, this song’s version featuring recording artists Drake and Juicy is overall a more lyrically challenging track. Listen here to see for yourself.

3. Trap House
With a remix of trio Migos’ song “Jumping Like Jordan,” Wayne spits bars about still being on top of the rap game even after 20 years. He also controversially references the recent tragedies of Eric Garner and Michael Brown by saying that we need a “real” president in the office. Weezy ends the track with a shoutout to Nicki Minaj saying that he would be very available for a ménage (referencing the word in a sexual connotation). Yet another cocky track of the mixtape, adding to the heat of this mixtape.

 4. Selsun Blue
As most people know, the title refers to the anti-dandruff shampoo. However, in this track, Weezy refers to dandruff as cocaine and uses the shampoo to “get rid of all the white like Selsun Blue” in order to get rid of any clue of him doing anything with it. We’re all used to Wayne’s metaphors and allusions to a whole plethora of things you can only imagine and this song only confirms this statement. Sampling Troy Ave’s “All About Money,” I would have to say causes this song to be one of the weakest tracks off the tape.

5. Used To (ft. Drake)
One of the highlights from the mixtape is the fifth track featuring rapper Drake. While there are a variety of remixes that can be highlighted on the project, this one has really been getting recognition as an all new original cut. Similar to last year’s “Believe Me”, the two YMCMB superstars hop on the major hype production from WondaGurl and deliver another strong addition to their great collection of hits. Drizzy’s appearance on this album suggests he sides with Wayne in his feud with Birdman. Some have even speculated (I repeat, speculated) Wayne and Drake will leave CMB together. I definitely got way too excited when the beat dropped at the beginning of this track!

6. No Type
If you don’t know what song Weezy remixed on this next track, then you must have been living in a cave during 2014 (Hint: it’s Rae Sremmurd’s “No Type”). Talking about drugs, alcohol, money, and girls, Wayne once again uses his catchy punchlines to deliver another solid remix of a viral hit from the previous year.

7. Fingers Hurting
Weezy first teased a snippet of “Fingers Hurting” on January 17th, before releasing the full song later on the same day. Using ILoveMakonnen’s “Maneuvering”, the rapper delivers strong verses over the super juiced up beat, making this track one of my favorite’s of the entire project. Wayne’s tonal energy in this track is essentially what makes it one of the strongest tracks.

8. Hot N***a
The eighth track off Wayne’s Sorry 4 The Wait 2 mixtape is a remix of Bobby Shmurda’s hugely-popular hit with the same name. By now, we’ve become accustomed to Weezy’s common staple as he repeats the tape’s title to reiterate it’s importance and meaning. He kills the beat, making some fans question whether or not this version is even better than Bobby’s original banger.

9. HollyWeezy
The next track off the project is about how Weezy will never go to Hollywood since he grew up in a district of New Orleans called Hollygrove; hence, why he’s says “too Hollygrove to go Hollywood”. Wayne even makes a shoutout to our very own city of Houston, Texas and says that one of his girls mentions that “if it ain’t chopped and screwed, it ain’t music”, making a reference to the popular chopped and screwed genre that originated in our beautiful city.

10. Drunk In Love (ft. Christina Milian)
After months of speculation on whether he is dating Christina Milian, the two fuel the romance rumors further by collaborating on this sexy jam. Making a shift in the project, the R&B singer appears on this steamy track and changes up some of the lyrics in the hook and verse saying that they “ain’t makin’ love,” just strictly messing around for the fun of it. Milian’s voice with Weezy’s strong verse combine to make one hot track to create a great tone shift in the project.

11. You Guessed It
Using the instrumental from OG Maco’s “U Guessed It”, Wayne takes more shots at Birdman and Cash Money Records by saying “my CMB days are dead, I ain’t worried about ghost.” Another track with a similar theme to what we have seen before, forcing it to not stand out amongst the other tracks on this project.

12.Try Me (ft. Mack Maine)
On this track, Wayne goes over the beat from Dej Loaf’s breakout single “Try Me”. Rapper and current president of Young Money Entertainment, Mack Maine, is featured on this track and definitely outshines Wayne on this beat. However, the upbeat track adds to the tone shift found after the tenth track on this project.

13. Preach (ft. 2 Chainz)
Sampling Young Dolph’s “Preach”, this track includes 2 Chainz who doesn’t always have strong verses in the songs he’s featured in. However, the “No Lie” artist brings his A-game to the verse he delivers on this track stating, “let your next work be your best work.” Wayne’s verse also stands out amongst other tracks because of the fortunate lack of autotune, unlike the rest of the project.

14. Alphabet
On the fourteenth track, Wayne goes over iLoveMakonnen’s 2014 hit “Tuesday” instrumental. In this song, Wayne raps about his abundance of women, naming a different one for each letter of the alphabet with amusing descriptions for each. Interestingly enough, Wayne already has a song with the exact same concept called “Alphabet B*****s”, where he uses a significantly smaller amount of autotune. Sorry, Weezy. We can do without the autotune!

15. No Haters
With a beat produced by London on da Track, Wayne talks about how he is not afraid of killing rappers in the game (this might be figuratively or literally…) and alludes to other rappers in the game including Eminem. Again, not a stand out track on the project so not too much to say about this one.

16. Admit It (ft. Shanell)
Slowly closing in on the end of the mixtape, Lil’ Wayne teams up with Young Money’s own Shanell aka SNL for the sixteenth track. The theme of the track is an attempt by Wayne to come clean on some of his inner workings, so he feels as though honesty is the best policy in this case. Shanell’s feature really makes this songs stand out amongst other tracks because of her unique choice of words and placement among Wayne’s verses. It’s safe to say that every feature on the project is a hit and definitely adds spark to Weezy’s verses.

17. Dreams and Nightmares
Last but not least, Weezy closes out Sorry 4 Wait 2 with a track sampling Meek Mill’s “Dreams and Nightmares”. He talks about how everyone Wayne knows, including himself, have changed because of the money they have earned through their fame and success. The beat drop around the 2 minute mark allows the rapper to add energy to the last verse of the entire tape. Dropping very real words, Wayne definitely finishes his mixtape on a high note.

Sorry 4 the Wait has 17 new sounds from Lil’ Wayne that undoubtedly builds a lot of anticipation for his indefinitely delayed album, Tha Carter V. This mixtape, however, falls slightly short of what we have come to expect from the Young Money rapper. Lil Wayne’s classic style that attracts the super wave of listeners to his music is not quite felt on this mixtape, and hasn’t particularly been that way for the past few years. The songs are great, but the lyrics have become sort of mundane for a Weezy song. Many fans are tired of the same predictable lines while referring to women, drugs, and skateboards. All we can do now is hope that he has saved the best content for his album, and that this mixtape was just meant to give the fans new sounds from Mr. Carter himself.

Give Weezy a chance and download Sorry 4 The Wait 2 here!

Rating: 3/5

Posted in Albums, Artists, Music, New Releases, Reviews, Staff Picks

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