Tag Archives: Rihanna

Last night, This Must Be Pop Live! happened.

Before the event, I had just this to go on:

THERE'S A RABBIT ON IT.

So thankfully the flyer not only explained that the night would feature Queen Of Hearts and A*M*E, two popstars previously known to have been in the realm of “really good”, but THERE WAS A RABBIT ON IT. I was sold. Continue reading

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Rihanna and Chris Brown. Birthday Cake.

Early this morning, Rihanna and Chris Brown leaked their ‘remix’ of Birthday Cake onto the net. The extended version of the track, that originally featured as an unfinished interlude on Rihanna’s Talk That Talk features two extra verses by Chris Brown. And I just…don’t think I have anything objective left I can say about it.

“Come and put your name on it”

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“Put your name on it”

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Continue reading

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The 41 Greatest Singles of 2011

And here they are.

So, 2011 has sort of happened hasn’t it? And quite a lot of artists released good singles in it, which can get a bit confusing in the day and age where LMFAO are the year’s biggest selling iTunes artist. So HERE ARE the best fourty one singles 2011 had to offer, in reverse order so there’s a poptacular drum-roll from the ‘fucking good’ through the ‘absolutely chuffing brilliant’ right up to the ‘OH MY BLOODY GOD’ ones at the end. Any problems? Of course not. Here we go. Continue reading

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Jessie J

It’s 2010. You can imagine the confusion at Island Records. Having signed Jessica Cornish to their roster, the pressing question was what to do with her. She had proved that she could pen a hit (Miley Cyrus’ Party In The USA went #1 in America), she had proved that she could sing – and whatever else I write here I would like to ensure that people are aware that I know she can sing – but where would she fit in the current pop climate? Were they to mold her into a Lady Gaga-esque outlandish megapop queen? A semi-rapping Rihanna pastiche? Or an inspirational hip pop balladeer a la Natasha Bedingfield? And the sad truth of the answer is that they opted for a car crash of all three.

J-J-J-J-Jessie J
It is important that people understand that I did not have to look very hard to find this picture. Continue reading

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So, that Rihanna album.

It’s good. It’s not perfect, it’s not totally brilliant, but it’s definitely good.

The whole thing feels much less ‘thrown together’ than Loud and much more cohesive in sound, but the real strength lies in the quality of (most of) the songs, which are (largely) very good indeed. Drunk On Love take’s The XX‘s best song and lathers it with beautiful lyrics and some really strong vocals. Cockiness fires relentless, filthy and unapologetic innuendo over a beat so simple it’s hard to believe it’s there at all. Where Have You Been is We Found Love done right. All three of the aforementioned tracks are, in case you hadn’t grasped, fucking amazing.

But where there are strengths, weaknesses are unavoidable. Birthday Cake powers towards being the best song on the album before cutting off abruptly two minutes too short. Watch n’ Learn is all too reminiscent of Good Girl Gone Bad’s odd one out (for all the wrong reasons): Say It. We Found Love is already noted to be far too basic for ‘Bonafide Popstar Rihanna‘. And most of the album feels like some weird bastard child of  the two albums that preceeded it; there’s certainly no new ground being broken here.

And yet it is good. It is an album that is worth parting with money over. And that, I suppose, is the point. I just wish that a little more effort had been put in (by everyone involved) to ensure that Rihanna finally gets another album entirely representative of how brilliant a popstar she really is. A large part of my discontent with Talk That Talk is the second album she’s churned out in a row on which that hasn’t happened. And i’m really starting the think it never will again.

6/10

I’ll give you a 6/10 for now Rihanna. A second class honours. B-. But being a great popstar can only get you so far, and if Album Number Seven fails to be totally fantastic in every way, it won’t just be me grading you harshly – mark my words.

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