As the winner of the very first Pop Idol (the original American Idol, before Kelly Clarkson for you Americans not in the know), Will Young was not really on our radar until two seismic events took place. First, he contributed vocals to the Groove Armada track, History, one of our favorites tracks last year and secondly, he enlisted Richard X (Annie, The Sound of Arrows, Mirrors, Saint Etienne) to produce his new album, from which Jealousy, is the first single. The track moves Will away from the saccharine of his idol days into the electronic/dance realm, and is a beautiful song about desire and unrequited love (we’ve all been there). We love the video, ridiculous premise and all, which finds Will performing in a circus act?! and longing after another male aerialist, who in turn, seems to be torn between him and his girlfriend aerialist. Oh what a web Will weaves.
We are excited to premiere a new feature that highlights wonderful, cheesetastic, LGBT affirming songs and videos that also happen to have a good beat and you can dance to. The Young Professionals are from Israel and their new video, D.I.S.C.O. mixes equal parts Robert Palmer with Kylie Minogue to create an infectious pop confection that we admit is surprisingly a whole lot better than it ought to be. If it sounds familiar, it might be because they sample the chorus of Ottawan’s early 80s anthem, of the same name. Catchiness aside, ultimately, it’s the jaw dropping fierce male dancer who steals the show and would be our hands-down favorite on Logo’s Rupaul’s Drag Race.
We thought we’d share some buzz worthy songs that may have missed your radar.
We confess we are more of a 90’s era Bjork fan, back when her songs used instruments and melodies and she wasn’t making headlines wearing swan dresses. Although she is looking just as weird as ever, some are saying her new single, Crystalline, is a return to her Vespertine era. We haven’t been able to get fully behind it, but admit we are warming up to it as it is a grower.
M83 – Midnight City
In 2008, M83 released the critically acclaimed, Saturdays = Youth,which netted 4 great singles, especially We Own the Sky. Now they are back and are giving us a taste of their new double album with single, Midnight City. The song takes the harsh background synths of Kim and Jessie and brings them right up front and center. It’s a little too much for our tastes and we are also not loving the Duran Duran’s Rio sounding sax bit at the end, but hey, we love them anyway and are excited about what is in store.
Ladytron – White Elephant
No need to re-review a song we have reviewed before here, White Elephant, the new single by our favorite Liverpool quartet, now has a video! In it, they are at some sort of freakish fetish sex party, wearing outfits and masks inspired by animals (this theme is extended throughout the video by dead stuffed animals used as props). Dizzingly weird camera angles follow our singers Helen Marnie and Mira Aroyo as they slither through sex-filled hallways and rooms. A gun appears as a major plot point and something happens… or does it happen?. You will have to watch it to find out, since we can’t begin to make any sense of it.
Bop2pop is now on Twitter! Our apologies for not jumping on the Twitter bandwagon until now! We have been noticing more and more artists and people tweeting about us, and yet there wasn’t a way for us to connect to each other. We are excited about being newbies to the Twitter community and would love for you to follow us. Feel free to show us the ropes and help us improve the way we can reach out to others who share a mutual love of electronic and synthpop music.
Bop2pop is on Spotify! Although Spotify has been THE site/application for discovering and sharing new music in Europe, it has just made its way to America and we had to try it – and love it we did. We have created our very first playlist that have highlighted the songs we have reviewed on this site. If you have Spotify, download our Playlist! If you don’t, contact us and we can help you get an invite!
Bop2pop is on Facebook! We have had a fan page for a few months now and are excited that it has started to be recognized by the bands we write about. It is also a chance to get to know about the people who share our love of music. It is a great way to become active instead of passive and communicate with us and recommend bands and songs we should know about. Become a fan.
We hadn’t heard new music from our new favorite, Queen of Hearts in awhile now, so imagine our suprise when we found out she recently made a demo track produced by another of our favorites, Monarchy. Perfect Mistake fits beautifully alongside Freestyle and Where Are You Now. We like the nice mix of melancholy and drama that seems ready-made for remixing on the dancefloor.
New artist, Fiorious has just released a super-stylized video for I’m In Love With A German Film Star, whose dark streets/fog heavy, seductive black and white video reminds bop2pop of a hybrid of Ultravox’s Vienna and Depeche Mode’s Strangelove videos. Fiorious’ falsetto perfectly compliments the sinister, stalker undertones of the song and creates the perfect ominious and chilling effect. Fiorious is a Bronx-born Italian-American who gave up his job as a pop music critic to create the music he loves. Upon release, the 1981 original by The Passions, didn’t leave much of an impact, only reaching 25 on the UK charts, but has later gone on to reach cult level status, being remade by a roster of bop2pop favorites such as Katsen, Kish Mauve and The Pet Shop Boys.
Before Paul Young sung about his love for the common people, begged us to come back and stay and whose hair started to recede, he was in a band called Streetband that had this novelty hit in 1978. Paul looks adorkable and practically unrecognizable in this appearance on Top of the Pops when said song actually cracked the top 20 in the UK. How British.
We are perplexed yet loving (possibly because we’re perplexed) this new, charming yet bizarre video by Computer Magic, directed by John McSwain. We don’t know what it’s really about, but we’ll take a stab at it. A young child (possibly Danz herself) feels she/he is being abducted by aliens. Parents being parents in a science fiction/horror movie, hatch the very bad scheme to dress mom up like an alien and abduct her/him, for god only knows what reason, only to find out there’s truth in their child’s assertion. Aliens truly do exit and shapeshift into the likeness of Computer Magic herself, who abruptly ends their prank by abducting them all. Good riddance I say! Video aside, if you like the idea of Zooey Deschanel singing ethereal synthpop in the same vein as Class Actress , you’ll get an idea what this song sounds like. We are so impressed that Computer Magic has created such a whimsical body of work all the while attending school, here in NYC. We are also digging Computer Magic’s reoccurring themes of space and other worldliness. In case you missed it, check her out as an astronaut lost on planet Times Square in the video to The End of Time.
Like a chilled wave, so utterly cool and refeshing as it soothes your soul on a hot summer day, Eyes Be Closed is the new single by Washed Out, a/k/a Ernest Greene. For a song that is so relaxed, the contrasting video takes the premise of speed and driving, previously explored by La Roux in In For The Kill, changes the setting to day and swipes out the convertible for a motorcycle. It then adds a sexy model who can’t bother to sing since she is too busy acting sexy and occassionally playing/tossing her hair. We are not advocating driving without a helmet, but obviously it is not of enough concern to distract us from the song which we like to think of as senual synthpop. Although Washed Out has been around a few years, his debut album, Within and Without has just been released. Just watch out for stray confetti.
Someone is up to no good in this video by Revolution 9. The catchy single, Erase reminds bop2pop of Martin Gore from Depeche Mode, particularly his solo album, Counterfeit, which is a good thing. Revolution 9 are from Los Angeles and produce and promote their own music – so cool. Single out now.