Your tears don't shake my world like Britney Spears.

Archive for November, 2012

Covercentric: Noisettes Cover James Brown’s “Living In America”

British rock duo Noisettes recorded a cover of James Brown’s “Living In America” a while ago to give away as a free download, which was sadly overlooked, as was their lovely new album “Contact”. It’s a fantastically funky effort, with an amazing pure-joy section that only starts at 2:25. And yes, there’s some serious cowbell action going on here too, which is always a good thing. I found Shinghai Shinowa to be a total star and one of the most fascinating frontwomen the UK has offered in recent years. I hope a tour on this side of the pond is in the planning.


MP3: Noisettes – Living In America (James Brown Cover)

Coincidentally, it’s Election Day in America! *pause for suspense* Have you done your part yet? Don’t just sit there now, GO OUT AND VOTE!

Buy the album.
More on Noisettes.
Also do pop by their Facebook page and get amazed at Shinghai’s seemingly endless supply of amazing frocks.

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LISTEN: Tyler James – Written In Stone

Tyler James gained a rejuvenated career thanks to The Voice UK, but I’ve always had goodwill for him on the strength of his two poptastic nuggets “Why Do I Do” & “Foolish”. The former Amy Winehouse’s friend is now back on Island (the label that dropped him in the past), and just released a new album entitled “A Place I Go”. Lead single “Single Tear” was a decent rewrite of “Cry Me A River”, even if I find most of the album rather rushed and MOR. I appreciate that it was a uniformed throwback to mid-’00s R&B but individually the tracks just weren’t strong enough and the production came off as dated rather than nostalgic. Not my cup of tea, I guess.
With that said, the true keeper is track 11 “Written In Stone” – co-written by Jamie Woon & ’80s singer/songwriter Nik Kershaw. It’s an elegant R&B-lite ballad with a subtle postdubstep production. You can definitely tell that Woon had a hand in writing it, and I’d love to hear his own version. James’ vocals sounded a bit strained and seasoned, compared to Woon’s buttery tones.

 

STREAM: Tyler James – Written In Stone

 

The Voice finalists are not exactly known for commercial success, but I do hope he won’t be written off just yet.

Buy the album.
More on Tyler.


Covercentric: Alex Hepburn Covers Neneh Cherry’s “Woman”

Alex Hepburn is a London-based up-and-coming artist signed to Warner, and seems to be getting a push in France. Her sound is more on the serious “real music” side, but it’s her torch-soul cover of Neneh Cherry‘s 1996 Portishead-esque single “Woman” that caught my attention. Alex’s got a raw, raspy, smoky voice that suits bare-bone soul/blues. She has a tendency to sound a bit affected on her own tracks, but for the cover, she’s got the balance just right. She’s definitely one to watch out for in 2013.

 

STREAM: Alex Hepburn – Woman (Neneh Cherry Cover)

 

And here’s an original – “Pain Is”, co-written by the notorious Linda Perry…
STREAM: Alex Hepburn – Pain Is

Buy her self-titled EP (UK).
More on Alex.