Sunday, September 28, 2008

High School Musical!?

Now, we all know that the songs from each HSM movie follow a pattern based on the first movie. So what is it? Let's do a recap of the songs from the first movie and their counterparts during the second(and maybe some predictions from the 3rd movie..)
  • First, there are your 'Start Of Something New' and the 'What I've Been Looking For''s. These songs are the secondary songs that Troy and Gabriella sing, second to 'Breaking Free'. The 'What I've Been Looking For''s almost always have reprises, whether it's slower or faster. In the second movie, if I'm correct there was only one song that applied to this, 'You Are the Music In Me'. In the third movie, the 'Start Of Something New' equivalent will be either 'Right Here, Right Now' or 'Can I Have This Dance' and the 'What I've Been Looking For' equivalent will be the medley of reprises.
  • Then you've got your 'Get'cha Head In The Game''s, which are always sung by the guys(most often with Troy and/or Chad on lead/s) and have something to do with sports and game and competition or something to that effect. In the second movie it was 'I Don't Dance' and yet another prediction from me is that the 3rd equivalent is 'The Boys Are Back'.
  • Let's move over to a Sharpay song, the 'Bop To The Top''s. This is the main Sharpay/Ryan song in every movie and in the second one it was 'Fabulous'. In the third one, it's clearly 'I Want It All', very Sharpay.
  • The second Troy and/or Gabriella song are the 'When There Was Me and You''s, the heartbreak-like songs. In the second movie, it was 'Gotta Go My Own Way' and possibly 'Bet On It'. For the third movie, I'm guessing it'll be 'Walk Away', but I haven't heard it yet so I'm not really sure.
  • Now you've got your 'Breaking Free''s. For the past two movies, these have always been sung at some kind of talent thingy. In the first one, it was an audition and for 'Everyday' in the second one, it was the country club's talent show. I can't really clearly see an equivalent from the third movie yet, but I think it's 'Right Here, Right Now'.
  • And finally, you have your ending team spirit/resolving, 'We're All In This Together' songs. In the second movie it was 'All For One' and in the third one, I'm guessing again that it's 'High School Musical'
  • Now, one song that wasn't in the first movie, but is clear in the second and third movies is a 'What Time Is It?'. In the third movie, it's predictably 'Now Or Never' and coincidentally, they were both first singles. Strange, much?
  • Then we have the songs that weren't in the movies but are on the soundtracks. For the first movie, it was 'I Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You' and in the second it was 'Humuhumunukunukuapua'a. I have a feeling for the third movie it's 'Last Chance' perhaps?
So, what do you guys think? Am I right or have I got anything wrong? Comment away!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Flashback: JoJo

While most pre-teens care about school, friends and fashion, JoJo was making her debut album at thirteen, something only a select few get to accomplish, let alone start. By the time she was fourteen, she had a US platinum-certified adult contemporary number one single('Leave'), beating Britney Spears as the youngest solo artist with a number one single in ANY US chart.
Only months after that feat, her debut album was released. It hit the top five, coming in at four and selling nearly a hundred thousand copies in it's first week alone. JoJo was suddenly on top of the world and at fourteen, she was probably just as overwhelmed as she was successful.
The album itself is a cool mix of R&B and mainstream pop, channeling JoJo's strengths and conveniently hiding her weaknesses, like what I think an ideal debut album should sound like. It should show people who the artist is, what he/she can do and most importantly, hide all possible flaws in production, songwriting and the vocals.
Before I heard her second effort, I thought this was all the work of the producers, except for maybe one or two songs but apparently not. Her second album was different, very different but I heard the similarities, I heard the transition of a girl to a teenager, of a new artist to an experienced one.
So what does that all mean? It means that even if she was just a young girl when this album was made, she had as much creative input with the album as she wanted to have. The album was a reflection of who she was at the time, and maybe even who she wanted to be.

The weekly recap..

Yes, here we go again!

  • Well, Girls Aloud are(for me..) big news-makers(or whatever you call it..) this week, with their Live Lounge Performance of the new single AND the new video out, I absolutely ADORE them! The video is so COOL! I love it... I seriously can't wait for the album! GA vs. Sugababes? GA wins it this year!
  • The Live Lounge Performance, even if Nadine was nowhere to be found, was DROP-DEAD GORGEOUS. These girls can sing... and sing well! watch it!!!!
  • I have the new albums from Monrose and Robin Thicke, I'll give them a listen over the weekend and tell you guys what I think in the coming week.
  • I LOVE the new James Morrison album, it's a very, very good advance from his first album, and to tell you the truth, the songs are still coming out for him, he's shown us who he is as a singer and now it's just all about sustaining what he's shown us.
  • According to my, 'Up' by The Saturdays is my most listened to track this week and coincidentally, it shoots up from number seven last week to the number one spot this week! Also quite a few new entries(GA rockets into the chart at number three with their new single 'The Promise'), a re-entry at number ten and a few tracks dropping off the countdown. Check it out!
  • To read on more of my favorite stuff, check out my post last Wednesday...
What to expect from me this week:

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Christina Aguilera - A look back..

My homework's all done! Seriously.
So after I watched her amazing VMA performance, I had this sudden urge to listen back to Christina Aguilera's debut album, which I think is a masterpiece.
Ever since, it's been Britney versus Christina but I don't see the point in comparing the two when clearly, it's Christina who has the voice and it's Christina who hasn't screwed up her career. Think Hilary vs. Lindsay but with a clearer winner.

Christina was one of the lucky ones in her generation. Countless others tried but failed, leaving a few unsuccessful singles and sometimes albums, the 'pop princess wannabes' of her generation just disappeared into thin air. Listening over to the album, I realize that she shot to the top not purely because of luck, the songs were phenomenal. 
It was really the right mix of slow, mid-tempo and up-tempo songs to shoot her to the top and show just how better she is than Britney. Songs like 'Come On Over' and 'Genie In A Bottle' are perfect up-tempo pop-y songs, then there are the ultra-amazing mid-tempos like 'Love For All Seasons' and 'Love Will Find A Way' and finally, the songs that make the hairs on your back stand up, 'I Turn To You' and 'Reflection'.

Judging by the success of this album(US #1, 8 times platinum) and how it propelled Christina to the top(a Grammy win for Best new artist in 2000 and another 2 nominations), it has truly become a model pop princess debut album.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Music.. duh..

As you know, I don't post that much since I'm a busy person but my homework's almost done, I swear!(I think I just have to cut paste some stuff on to a board and I'm done..)


Some assorted stuff. New, old, whatever's on my new iPod! Just a few stuff, I have to finish my homework!

1. DAVID COOK'S NEW SINGLE!!!!! EEEP! The reality show contestant singles just keep rolling in! I swear, I freaked when I saw that it's stream-able already, I mean, COOK!!! The song is very Daughtry meets some other pop/rock band, only this guy rocks! I've been listening to it a few times, but I absolutely adore the song. Bring on the number one and the album!

2. I got Atomic Kitten's videography and I'm reliving old memories. I only realized now how brilliant the songs were.

3. Hearing the new Girls Aloud song in high quality brings out the best in the song, I'm loving it more every day! So expect a full review from me sometime in the coming days(or weeks..), I love the song!

4. Well, Demi Lovato's new album is definitely worth more than one listen for me, very Camp Rock/'new' Disney-ish. It's a surefire top five hit, considering Camp Rock's success(although I don't really like the movie..).

5. I just heard newcomer Elise Estrada's new album(I heard she's Pinay.. don't know much about her..) and I may say, it's not that bad. I mean, if you like the standard, anyone-can-sing type of R&B songs. But there are some killer melodies in that album so if you get the chance, give it a listen!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Saturdays - Up

Gone were the times when, within one year, TV shows cranked out two or three pop groups(and when I say 'pop group', I mean they don't play their own instruments, a pop vocal group), record companies would kill each other to get the bands they thought would sell, and people like me were happily taking all the new stuff that came out. 'Cool' music like R&B and alt-rock is in. So every new girl group that sprouts out in the UK music scene nowadays will always be compared to Girls Aloud or the Spice Girls, the two big girl bands who've preceded them, mainly because of the lack of new girl groups at the moment.

So why should The Saturdays be any different?

Yes, people have been calling them the new Spice Girls or Girls Aloud, but more towards Girls Aloud because of their electro/dance-y songs(at least what we've heard so far) but now the GA are going the 'funky cool' route, that leaves The Saturdays to keep electro/dance fans contented. 

And they've got huge shoes to fill.

I could launch into ranting about how unoriginal they are for doing the electro/pop thing and copying GA down to their clothes but I've come to realize that they're actually a very good band with strong pop songs to cater to the 'new crowd' of listeners. You know, the R&B/alt-rock people? Yeah.

'Up' for me, is a masterpiece. It caters to the old school pop fans(like me) AND the 'cool' music people. It's like Girls Aloud without the same mistakes(need we be reminded of some so-so single choices and some BAD album track choices?), although I'm sure they've made tons of mistakes already(releasing 'If This Is Love' BEFORE 'Up'? they could've just burst into the scene with a number one and broke records! but noooooo..).

The melody is catchy enough for me to be able to sing along to it, but it shows their vocals almost as well. Whoever wrote this song is a genius, and I'm sure he/she'll get a nice big paycheck once this single becomes a smash hit.

SO, I'll give it a 5/5! Amazing stuff!

Things have been quite slow for me this week..


I got sick, missed out on 3/4 of the school week(my school week has four days in it, Mondays off!) and apparently, I missed out on some cool and not so cool stuff in music... check it out. Oh, and also included in this post are some of my re-discoveries and recent musical findings...
  • Why did it not surprise me when I heard that Britney Spears is releasing an album and a single this year? Oh, right... MOVING ON,
  • The new Leona Lewis song off her UK re-release is nothing special. I'm not a big fan of the rap at the start, but the chorus is not bad. Still, for me, 'Misses Glass' is the better track. You can hear it on the UK re-release of 'Spirit', which hits shelves on the UK on November 17 so get your copy, OK? OK.
  • The single, 'Forgive Me', is nothing special as well. I kinda liked it when the album just came out last year but I'm afraid it doesn't quite cut it for me.. 
  • I cannot get the new Christina Aguilera song out of my head! Seriously, it won't go away! Which prompted a look back at her music over the years, which I might write about in the coming week.. might.
  • I found the European edition of Atomic Kitten's 'Feels So Good' in a bargain bin at my local record store yesterday. Just how lucky am I?
  • I'm eagerly awaiting BoA's US debut, the song is absolutely phenomenal! Could we have another Leona Lewis(in a different way, I think Leona got too overrated after she cracked the US) in our hands? We'll wait and see.
  • New HSM3 Songs are slowly leaking and coming out on iTunes, even a sampler has made its way into the blogs.
  • I haven't listened to the new Pussycat Dolls album yet, but I'll get to doing that one of these days. Although I'm not really hot about them, they're worth one listen at the very least.
  • Some cool new single/album covers just in(click to enlarge), I adore them! The colors on the Agnes one remind me of the new iPod Nanos(I'm getting one day after tomorrow!):

What to expect this week:
  • Maybe a flashback to Christina Aguilera's debut album, it's definitely one of my favorites from the late 90's/early 2000's.
  • A review of The Saturdays' new single, 'Up'?
  • More random, spur of the moment, short reviews..
  • And some unexpected stuff!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The battle of the girl groups!

OK, to be fair, I'll review the new songs from the girls in chronological order.. So Sugababes first, then Girls Aloud, OK? OK.

1. Sugababes - Girls

A very drastic but welcomed shift from last year's 'Change', 'Girls' takes on a funkier sound from the band. I'd love to have another album like 'Change' but we all knew this had to happen some time. Plus, as far as I know, they're writing their own material! YES!

There are people who try to make a shift from one style to another(ahem, ahem, Vanessa..) but fail miserably because they just don't know what they're doing and just follow their record company. Thankfully, the Sugababes aren't like that. So, I expect another amazing album from the girls.


2. Girls Aloud - The Promise

Just one question, WHY DOES THIS SOUND LIKE THE SUGABABES SINGLE? OK, overreacting. But seriously, they sound the same!

The verses are different but the start just makes me think twice, is this GA or the Sugababes? It's a very drastic change as well, from the dancey-y 'Sexy.. No, No, No!' to this funky pop mid-tempo song. Well, that's GA for you. I mean, I wasn't as shocked when I heard this as when I heard the Sugababes single, mainly because of their history. I mean, from the pop/dance-y 'What Will the Neighbors Say?' to the vintage-inspired 'Biology', they made quite a shift there so yeah.

All in all, I'm looking forward to this album.. a lot of possibilities..


Sugababes - Change

An album review! My first(for this blog)!
For an established pop band like the Sugababes with four studio albums prior to this one and a greatest hits collection under their belt, it's relatively easy to create a good, solid pop album. That was what 'Taller In More Ways' was, a good, solid pop album from a good, solid pop act. In 2007, after two years, a greatest hits album, the departure of an original member and the arrival of a new one, the Sugababes came back with a vengeance.

'Change' was, and still is a pop masterpiece.

This album has set the standard for every other pop band in their genre and shown them what these girls are made of. From dance-y tracks like 'My Love Is Pink' and 'Never Gonna Dance Again' to absolute sugary-sweet pop concoctions like 'Back When' and equally amazing 'Surprise' to now institutional tracks like ultra-amazing lead single 'About You Now'(check out my review on the single here) and second single 'Change', this album is just beyond words.

The single choices were excellent. 'About You Now' was just catchy beyond description, 'Change' was enough of a ballad to give Westlife a run for their money and 'Denial' was a good way to top it all off, a solid dance track from the girls just to show the critics what they can do.

Even the non-single tracks were amazing, but none outshone the others, they're all equally amazing tracks.

Which is why this album deserves a...


Friday, September 12, 2008


Just a night after I reviewed this amazing song, look what came out, the video! I love it... it goes amazingly well with the song.. Now I really can't wait for the album!

Some random, spur of the moment, short reviews...

I haven't really had the time and will to write single, long reviews these past few weeks so I'll be writing a few short reviews for now..

1. New Kids on the Block with Lady GaGa - Big Girl Now

OK, I've been listening over to the NKOTB album these past few weeks but I've only pin-pointed a single favorite track, my favorite of the favorites and it's their duet with Lady GaGa.

I absolutely adore her(although I have gotten a bit sick of her album, I still think it's genius) and this song is probably a more modern NKOTB. I mean, I love the R&B stuff, but they're a bit too generic to compete with the heavyweights and this is probably the song that's most like an updated NKOTB pre-split sound.

Rating: 4.7/5

2. Taylor Swift - Love Story

I. Absolutely. Adore. This. Girl.

I loved her first album, loved 'Beautiful Eyes' just a bit more but I simply ADORE this new song.

Once again, the music industry has gotten someone right, in the form of Taylor Swift. She'll be making the shift from first album to second very gracefully by the looks of it. I mean, this song is amazing. Her first album showed us that she could sing and write good, solid songs well for her age but I think this second album will just blow us away, show us exactly what she's made of and get us hooked on her music even more.

Rating: 5/5

3. Karina - 16 @ War

Has anyone besides me noticed that she sounds like Beyonce + Rihanna + Keri Hilson?

Anyway. This girl HAS TALENT. Not the 'Charice Pempengco(or however you spell it), too big for her age' voice but the 'OMG, SHE'S AMAZING not too old for her age' voice. You can sense that she's maybe two or three years older than she actually is if you listen to the album but no more than that(although the song is a dead giveaway to her age...).

The song is amazing, the melody is priceless and it's just an amazing song. I cannot believe it only peaked at number 51 on the R&B charts...

Rating: 4.8/5

Thursday, September 11, 2008

New stuff...

So I'm too lazy to do my homework(I know, I know.. I'm such a bad influence.) so I'll blog instead. Here are some of the new goodies I've discovered so far this week.

1. Just in this morning, LEON JACKSON'S NEW SINGLE! Before Leon, the X Factor has got it right two out of three times, but with Leon, they've got it right again. I must say, this is all I've been listening to all day in school and I just can't get the quirk and 50's/60's but not sound out of my head, it's so damn amazing. His voice got better, it's so friggin' amazing(and quite sexy.... seriously.) and listening to him with an original song(not the X Factor winner's single..) makes me adore this guy even more. The new album's called 'Right Now' and it's out on October 20, not very long from now, is it?

2. Christina's new single, 'Keep's Getting Better'. Now I know it's been out for a week or so already but to be honest, when I first heard it, I wasn't impressed but after I saw her VMA performance, I realized that I actually like the song. The start and some elements have the Britney-like effects and instrumentation but what makes this light-years better than Britney is that Christina has something Britney will never have, the voice. She's also very good at what she does and it's good to know that people agree with that.

3. Boyzone's comeback single, 'I Love You Anyway' is very musical-ish and has an uncanny resemblance to Christina's new song for some strange reason. I don't know what it is, but when I listen to the two of them(one after the other..), I can sense something's the same. BUT, above all, I absolutely adore the new song, it's amazing!

4. I've listened through Ne-Yo's new album, and for me, it's nothing special. There are a few tracks worth listening to more than the obligatory once but right now I'm listening to it for the second time and I'm a bit sick of it already.

5. Katharine McPhee's new song 'Connected' is a pop masterpiece. It's hard enough to find pop like that these days but to find it in the US, land of R&B, Rap and alternative music, is just plain amazing.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Some songs I just got, re-discovered or listened to again this week..

Let's get this rolling..

1. Just in this morning from Ashley Tisdale, 'I'm Back' is not something I'm raving about. Stylistically, the song is good, the melody's strong and the vocals are well, expected. What blows it for me is that she made absolutely no transition from her first album, it doesn't sound fresh. I'm always complaining that artists change too much in the wrong way or experiment too much once they release their sophomore albums(Vanessa Hudgens, Miley Cyrus...) and now I complain that they don't change, what am I really looking for? I need something that's fresh, new but not completely different. The best example of my point is Jordan Pruitt. Her first album was good, it showed off her vocals and it defined her as an artist. Her sophomore release was amazing, the songs were gorgeous but if you listened to her first and didn't know that you were listening to her second, you'd know it's her. So I hope Ashley's new album is light years better than Vanessa's.

2. I've heard the new NKOTB album and there are a few solid tracks but I just re-discovered(if I even did..) their current single, 'Single'(redundant much..). I don't know if it's the video or the song or what but I clearly remember that when I first heard the song, I wasn't a big fan of it. Oh well, things change.

3. The 'Extended' iTunes version of 'Now or Never' from HSM3 is the same old 'Now or Never' we've all heard with maybe some dialogue and a longer start, nothing special.

4. Just got my hands on Annie's new album, 'Don't Stop'. I haven't listened to the whole thing though, but it's looking up to be a great album.

5. I caught on to the Chris Brown 'Forever' frenzy a bit late but hey, I can't believe I absolutely adore the song. It's a bit more pop than his other songs(which explains why I like it..) but(here we go again with the identity thing..) it's very him. The chorus is as catchy as you can get and it fits perfectly into the club scene without a remix! I just can't get enough of this song! I still kinda cringe a bit when I hear the doublemint catch phrase, but I must admit, the advert and the way it's tied up with the song is hands-down brilliant, see?