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

Alternative

ON ROTATION: Cloud Nothings – I’m Not Part of Me

nothings
The hype surround Cloud Nothings‘ second album “Here and Nowhere Else” was so big I had to check it out myself. While the album as a whole wasn’t entirely to my taste, I can’t deny this irresistible punk-pop gem “I’m Not Part of Me”. Let’s not beat around the bush, this belongs in a ’90s teen flick soundtrack. Proper jump on your bed, sing into your hairbrush, dance like nobody’s watching stuff. The music video even features teenage girls having a weird slumber party. They’re in on it.
It helps that the frontman Dylan Baldi openly talks about his appreciation for Taylor Swift’s songcraft. Check out the Ohio-based indie rock’s single below, and good luck getting it out of your head.

 

MP3: Cloud Nothings – I’m Not Part of Me

 

Buy the album on iTunes.
More on Cloud Nothings.

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ON ROTATION: The Horrors – So Now You Know

horrors

On paper, The Horrors are the kind of band I wouldn’t be bothered with, and yet I keep liking bits and bobs of their output. Plus Cat’s Eyes, Faris Badwan’s side-project with Rachel Zeffira, was far from terrible. With their fourth album “Luminous” arriving soon, it’s safe to say they have become reliable mainstays for panoramic post-punk shoegaze goodness. Their latest single “So Now You Know” is what I’d call one of their accidental pop songs, and I can confirm it sounds fantastic on a sunny day. Turn on the volume!

 

STREAM: The Horrors – So Now You Know

 

Watch the desert-based music video for the track here. New album drops May 5 on XL Recordings.

Buy the single on iTunes.
More on The Horrors.


Coldplay’s “Midnight” Remixed by Disco Legend Giorgio Moroder

moroder

Giorgio Moroder is the latest to join disco greats like Nile Rodgers and Cerrone to resurface after the renewed interest thanks to Daft Punk & Pharrell. The Italian legend lent his magic touch to Coldplay‘s recent single “Midnight” and turned it into a 9-minute intergalactic trip, complete with French-singing robot vocoders, violin strings and delicious synth sequencers. Leave it to the master to bring on good times.

 

STREAM: Coldplay – Midnight (Giorgio Moroder Remix)

You can check out the original, co-produced by Paul Epworth and Jon Hopkins, via its unintentionally hilarious video here.

 

Coldplay’s 6th album “Ghost Stories” drops on May 16.

Buy the remix on iTunes.
More on Coldplay.
More on Moroder.


LISTEN: Lana Del Rey – West Coast

westcoast

After a week of relentless teasing, this morning Lana Del Rey finally premiered “West Coast”, the lead single off her highly-anticipated sophomore album “Ultraviolence”. The multi-layered, slow-burning midtempo ballad is something of a departure for her. It’s not like she has gone trap or anything, but it’s still a fairly new territory for her, sound-wise. To be honest, I was hoping for something on the poppier side (à la “National Anthem”), still, as I let it marinate a bit more, here are a few keynotes:

  • It’s produced by The Black Keys‘ Dan Auerbach. So credible.
  • A video has been shot with director Vincent Haycock (Calvin Harris, Florence + The Machine). Expect it to be a serious narrative affair
  • I wonder if they deliberately sampled The Beatles’ “And I Love Her” opening bar? Listen to 1:04 and compare.
  • Hello, “Pure Shores” synth pads!
  • Basically it’s something you can swing from side to side to in the pale moonlight.
  • Perpetua tweeted that it sounds like “she merged Portishead and Mazzy Star”, which I can actually hear.

Have a listen below:

 

STREAM: Lana Del Rey – West Coast

What do you make of the ‘queen of Saigon”s new direction?

Buy ‘West Coast’ on iTunes.
More on Lana.


ON ROTATION: Nina Persson – Animal Heart

nina
Nina Persson‘s debut solo album “Animal Heart” has been a Pop Labyrinth favorite since its release in February. Now that the sun is out, it feels like the right time to revisit the soaring title track. “Animal Heart” sees The Cardigans/A Camp frontwoman at her ’80s synth-pop new wave mode, and rest assured, it’s a fantastic song injected with wildlife metaphors, heartfelt melodies, and of course, her unmistakable voice. The one-shot music video filmed at her Harlem neighborhood features back-up dancers, confetti, and costume changes, all in one quick walk to grab some milk! It looks like great fun without appearing too rehearsed. And her belting at the last chorus – she’s still got me after all these years.

 

WATCH: Nina Persson – Animal Heart

 

Nina Persson is playing a show at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn this Wednesday, 4/16, for which you can buy tickets here.

Buy the album, out now on The End Records.
More on Nina.


Plastiscines Return With Covers EP, Reinterpret Lana Del Rey

plasticines
Does the name Plastiscines ring a bell to you?
Let me jog your memory: back in 2009, the all-girl French rock band became the first to sign to NYLON magazine’s record label, released their second album “About Love”, and even nabbed a guest spot on Gossip Girl. Since then, the group downsized to a trio, added synths to their sound and continued to release new music. Their most recent release is a covers EP sponsored by Paco Rabanne perfume Black XS. It’s an eclectic collection of slick and stylish reinterpretations of Lana Del Rey’s “Blue Jeans”, Air’s “Sexy Boy”, Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s “Murder On The Dancefloor”, Caroline Loeb’s ’80s hit “C’est la ouate”, and an acoustic version of Wham!’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go”. If you like your bands to consist of guitar-rocking ladies (The Like, The Donnas, HAIM etc.), you should dig into this pronto. You can’t go wrong with some fun rock n’ roll with a French accent.
Listen to their new-wave take of Lana Del Rey’s “Blue Jeans” below. Cowbells included!

 

STREAM: Plastiscines – Blue Jeans (Lana Del Rey Cover)

 

I also quite enjoy their 2013 French single – the groovy “Comment faire”, whose video is a fun retro homage to American ’70s cop shows à la Charlie’s Angels.

 

WATCH: Plastiscines – Comment Faire

 

Their new album “Back To The Start” drops April 14.
Buy Black XS: The Rock Cover EP on iTunes.
Check out their Soundcloud.


J▲M: Tame Impala – Stranger In Moscow (Michael Jackson Cover)

2_TAME IMPALA_NEIL KRUG

Last weekend, Aussie psych-pop wizards Tame Impala casually chucked a cover of Michael Jackson‘s 1996 single “Stranger In Moscow” on Soundcloud. The track’s arrival might be unexpected, but its gorgeousness is no surprise. Generously doused with swirling psychedelia, comfy synth pads and layer upon layer of reverb, it’s an effortlessly superb re-imagining that sounds fresh and retro at once. Honestly, if they hadn’t put “MJ Cover” in (double) parentheses, I would have totally bought it as a new unreleased Tame Impala song.

 

STREAM: Tame Impala – Stranger In Moscow (Michael Jackson Cover)

 

Out of curiosity, I launched Youtube right after to check out the original, which turned out to be a beautiful ’90s relic. Then I ended up at the track’s Wiki page and found out UK duo Alpines also recorded another lovely version which was put up on their Myspace back in 2010. I’ve unearthed that and uploaded it for your convenience below. Have a listen while I lean back and congratulate myself for such a productive day.

 

STREAM: Alpines – Stranger In Moscow (Michael Jackson Cover)

 

More on Tame Impala.
More on Alpines.


White Lies Cover Lana Del Rey’s “Ride”

whitelies

Considering they have done a remix for Lana Del Rey before, White Lies‘ cover of the demure songstress’ single “Ride” seems like an obvious move. It first started out a bit Celtic, and just as I almost expected some bagpipe action, the cover took a turn into funkier territory with a more electronic arrangement. Why do I have a feeling they might have recorded this with tongue firmly in cheek?

 

DOWNLOAD: White Lies – Ride (Lana Del Rey Cover)

 

In other news, the band just kickstarted their US tour promoting their new album “Big TV” last night in New York. I happened to be at the show, so hopefully more on that later… In the meantime, check out their remaining US tour dates below.

 

October 3 New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom

October 4 New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom (SOLD OUT)

October 5 Boston, MA @ Paradise Rock Club

October 7 Chicago, IL @ Cabaret Metro

October 9 San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall

October 10 Los Angeles, CA @ El Rey Theatre

More on White Lies.


NEW VIDEOS: Oh Land – Renaissance Girls & Pyromaniac

ohland

Moving away from the lush, dreamy soundscapes of her second album, Oh Land returns with something a little more adventurous. For her third full-length entitled “Wish Bone”, the Danish songstress works with producer Dave Sitek (TV On The Radio). Her relocation to Brooklyn really shows in the new batch of songs. Lead single “Renaissance Girls” is a fun celebration of female empowerment in the form of an infectious synth-pop tune. The girl-power sentiment is cool in a post-Lilith-Fair way, and the immaculately choreographed music video is AMAZING. She really put her ballet dancer skills to good use!

 

 

There’s also a lovely new video for the quirky “Pyromaniac”. She’s really nailing it down on the visual side this era. Her hair alone is divine, I can’t tell what exact shade it is (light blue greyish blond?), but she rocks it.

 

You can now stream the entire album on New York Times. FYI, the track co-written with former tourmate Sia is “Green Card”.



“Wish Bone”
drops September 24 on Federal Prism.

Pre-order.

More on Oh Land.


LISTEN: Goldfrapp – Drew

alison

Goldfrapp never cease to surprise. After their brief flirtation with ’80s synth-pop on Head First, Alison & Will revert to nature for their forthcoming sixth album Tales of Us. If you’re a fan of Seventh Tree and Felt Mountain, you’re bound to be pleased, the sound template this time is much inspired by organic textures, James Bond soundtrack, and ’70s Italian film scores, with a touch of grandiosity. Alison’s voice remains otherwordly and crystalline on the haunting “Drew”, which could well be the sequel to “A&E”. Those cinematic strings at the middle eight… they’re quite something.

 

STREAM: Goldfrapp – Drew

 

Every track on the album is named after a person, like a postcard to a ghost of past memories. The second short film for “Annabel” premiered yesterday, and it’s just as gorgeous. It’s clear they’re treating this project as a singular body of work.

 

Goldfrapp are performing a one-off show at Beacon Theater on 9/10 to celebrate the album release next week. Tickets are still available. See you there?

“Tales of Us” is out on 9/10. Pre-order on iTunes.
More on Goldfrapp.