Amazing Spring Sounds

Bruno Mars ’24K Magic’

Bruno Mars’ new album is a fresh take on sounds of the nineties – in the R&B department. Inspired by songs from the decade, which Mars classifies as the kind of songs all the girls in school would love to listen to, which he would belt out once upon a time in his life, 24K Magic is a good follow-up to Doo-Wops & Hooligans (2010), Unorthodox Jukebox (2012) and his dubious collab Uptown Funk (2014). It’s largely a party anthem, and a glorious party anthem, centered on R&B, which is really hard to find. Expect the expected though, with audacious lyrics and new tracks stylistically springing off hits by Boyz II Men and Michael Jackson.

Rating: 4/5

Harry Styles ‘Harry Styles’

Harry Styles’ debut album, since One Direction went on hiatus, was his one chance to carve out something entirely different: a solo project, which would be just as magical as the songs his band is recognized globally for. A mix of rock – particularly, the Los Angeles rock anthem variety, and ballads, it’s very different material because the music is more mature than before in Harry Styles.

The opening track Meet Me In The Hallway, is expressively about a singer/poet from the 11th-13th centuries who travels to and fro from the south of France to the north of Italy, to entertain the rich + a lot more of similar bases, like the big rock anthem Only Angel, where Harry sings of a woman who’s a devil between the sheets and how he thinks he might just like that he cannot take her home to his mother because she loves to wear mini skirts – fascinating…a really fascinating invented tale in the lyrics for Only Angel.

Everything, surprisingly, is an exploration of rock in the album, as often a departure from a prominent pop band grows into for a young star of Harry Styles’ stature. In fact, this might just be the biggest indication of a conscious switch from pop to rock for the British star but it would have made for an even better album to have the sounds mix with pop, as much as well.

Rating: 4/5

Linkin Park ‘One More Light’

Linkin Park has gone in a brand new direction from the previous amazing genres it had placed itself in as a band – rap metal, alternative metal and alternative rock. The latest album is a cleaner pop adventure, filled with melodies and sounds, which sound more contemporary than before. It’s a shocking move away for the band towards something a lot more experimental but it really is still far greater sounds when the band sticks to what it’s known to do – what it does best, which is brilliantly chart in nu-metal, instead.

Rating: 3/5

 

Jungle Fever

Jungle Fever

 

Fantastic Winter Music

Kylie Minogue Kylie Christmas

The Christmas album from Kylie Minogue is a disco edition of holiday songs that over the years have come to be regarded as proper classics. Minogue is doing much better than before in choosing the right kind of music, the kind that works for her (and our ears!). Sometimes it can be contemporary and at other times, it sounds proper festive with the presence of strings and woodwinds.

Rating: 3/5.

Ellie Goulding Delirium

The British pop star is back with her third album and it turns out to be a hit, which is a good comeback in the face of so many awkward returns. The album is colourful with musical instruments, from strings to percussion, and there seems to be no return as she revamps herself into a dance popstar from EDM musical chords, like in her previous albums.

In the song On My Mind you can spot influences from legendary bands, such as Police, and the eighties doesn’t really stop there for the star because she also puts plenty of it in Around U and there is also musical history and what feels like experimental song-writing, aiming to satisfy versatility, in spaces and gospel music spontaneously getting reborn as dance anthems, worth listening to.

Rating: 4/5.

 

Adele 25

This album is not meant to be the second part to 21, where the British diva was crooning through heartbreak and tough luck on romance, with a solid stance on the episode. This is about a woman who is tougher and more determined than before, feeling sorry for her past in songs, such as Water Under The Bridge and When We Were Young, and Hello. Going back for more than ten years to look for inspiration is what she does best, and she has got a solid team of songwriters on the album’s avenue, such as Bruno Mars. The album has fiery ballad songs on them and it feels more in control than ever before.

Rating: 3/5.

 

Puff Daddy MMM

Puff Daddy is back once again on the techno-fried club scene and this time there is no 50 Cent or homemade YouTube videos making it hard for him to strike a chord with the audience. He was once upon a time known as the rap mogul who did crazy things during MTV Video Music Awards and now he’s back on the block, with a mixtape, filled with funky sounds and a contemporary spin on eighties music.

Rating: 3/5.

Justin Bieber Purpose

The Canadian pop artist has been dubbed as the comeback kid of 2015 and he has promised to be on his best behaviour. The aim of this new Bieber album is to prep-talk about life’s struggles and talk about how he made it big: there is a lot of R&B but midtempo and party sounds for the 21-year-old, so it’s exciting to say the least to have more of good club anthems around, for a change.

Rating: 4/5.

 

Coldplay A Head Full of Dreams

Coldplay is back with a happy album – the kind that uplifts you about life’s moments. The melodies are rising high and the dance-beats are preppy enough, as you do the feel-good and talk about miracles at play. Coldplay has gathered a nice selection of artists to feature on their latest album, from Beyoncé’s powerful vocals to Noel Gallagher’s guitar strings, and it is always brilliant to have soulful albums to turn to when you need to feel joyful during the holidays.

Rating: 4/5.

The Great Unknown, Rob Thomas

Thomas is back with his third pop-rock solo-album. The sounds on this disc still follows the same standard he has set for himself the last few years. Smooth and crafty, the songs have been produced as a collaborative effort, with Matchbox Twenty’s Matt Serletic, and is soulful, important on guitar-notes, acoustic slants, scenic ballads, and music you can always count on to be fabulous.

Rating: 4/5

Male, Natalia Imbruglia

Natalie Imbruglia’s latest album is all about a resurfacing of the sounds that made “hearts mealt” back in the nineties, with “Torn”. There are 12 songs on the disc and some of them include her covers of famous songs, she has always loved that most of us would stick our noses up at for their grunge-overtones. The sounds range from banjo to pure country music.

Rating: 3/5

Kill The Lights, Luke Bryan

Luke Bryan is one of those rare country music icons that can command a stadium packed full of music lovers shaking their head to his songs. The tunes often have a country drawl and go like ballads on guitar. His fifth-studio album is all about his beloved hometown, Nashville, and it sounds a lot like classic nighttime driving music. There is something there about a cornfield dance routine, an anthem that is similar to the eighties, there are sultry overtones, romantic songs filled with passion, and no nonsense about how country music has lost its way – like, we live in an alternate universe, where that might be possible.

Rating: 4/5

Wilder Mind, Mumford & Sons

This act is known for bringing to life folk songs in the consciousness of the whole Billboard/MTV crowd. The songs are all about rock and the label is very upfront about it even when it sounds too much stadium-pleasing. Some of the sounds are acoustic and their work is always popular with music lovers. This album features electronic instruments and becomes stately and haunting. 

Rating: 4/5

Bush, Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg is back with more rhythms and grooves than you can shake your tail at. This is LA – smoky and partying. There is sunshine everywhere and it is all sexy but this is the seventies as always imagined by his producer since the 2000, Pharell Williams, but the sounds are pretty diverse: there is harmonica, nostalgia, and lyrical tales about life in that decade. 

Rating: 3/5

The Desired Effect, Brandon Flowers

Brandon Flowers has a new solo album to be proud of. His songs are things you can relate to, even when it is all about the pressing dangers of “pulling in a club” and the mayhem that follows these parties. It might not be something absolutely everyone can rule but the state of things is just that in a synth-disco atmosphere. The same environment is what Flowers is busy recreating for his latest work – there are torch songs, songs about dirty-blond, lost children born that way, and about rock music that might be dark but is so very real.

Rating: 3/5

Rediscovering “Some Might Say”

Noel Gallagher has branded the 20-year old track Some Might Say from their hit album, (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? as the signature Oasis song. To him, it is a song that defines the band, describes what it is but what’s in a song really? It was the British band’s first ever national number one single, and contrary to popular opinion, one of the driving forces behind the band’s success has been sibling rivalry, which eventually led to the band breaking up. The finality of the act, if nothing, has spurned on a greater level of interest in the band’s legacy – the Noel/Liam formulae is what makes their music enduring, according to some sources.

It is believed so because they mix the normal humdrums of British life, perfectly etched out in their songwritings, their music scores, with the abnormal and the off-putting, even if it is so very rarely so. This particular song is all about that: it captures British life, with all its struggles, not just it’s happiness and it’s successes. The song reminds you of the kind The Beatles were recognized for in the sixties, but only in the harmonies. The strife that many turn to Oasis, for, is what you will find in the Owen Morris devised recording of the song.

He was responsible for some of the best songs the band have had to offer – with Some Might Say the environment got chaotic. Noisy guitars, seamless but prominent vocals, harked back to the seventies when it was glamorous to own a guitar and play it well. However, there isn’t too much of 60s/70s – the song is also very nineties. It kind of asks you if you want to maybe think about which world you are living in at the moment, which particular era?

Don’t get too comfortable in that daydream, as fashion would have you know the contemporary age is all about revivalism of the past. The photograph on the sleeve is a Cromford station representation, of the railway line from Derby to Matlock, in B/W. It was then hand-painted and the monograms of the song featured on the sleeve, such as a busy housewife or a man who desperately needs some schooling, is also prime Oasis region.

It is talking about people who have trouble belonging but they are a part of society here, which is what somehow connected with music lovers and made the previously relatively unknown band into mainstream Britpop icons. Critics voiced it as a working-class band, but humble, alright and attracted to danger, and these nothing-but conflicts of resolution, have been finely photographed in the song.

Noel's "Some Might Say"

 

1. Ghost Stories. Coldplay. For the 57th Grammy Awards, Coldplay has been nominated for the ‘Best Pop Vocal Album’ and ‘Best Music Film’ for this album. The idea behind this album has been one of unconditional love, one where your past actions reflect upon your present actions. That’s a thought-provoking sentiment, and if you love classic British electronica then you’ll love this even more: the musical themes are captivating! 

2. Songs of Innocence. U2. This is the 38th year that the band are working on new music. I’m afraid many of the critics are rather lukewarm about their concept to music in this album but that is really nothing more than disagreeing with commercialization. Its a global phenomenon U2 and they are bent on continuing it, so you would be well-advised not to stand in the way of it, because good music only comes upon you once every fine blue moon.