Last Podcast of the Year, with a Mix to Boot. Bye 2016…

Happy New Year’s Eve my wonderful Earbudders,

As promised I made my last poddy a mix of just some of my favorite songs of the year. Better listen and download before it’s too late. Enjoy and I shall return next year.

Download

Stream

songmixlist

Intro Music – Praying For Time – George Michael

Starboy (feat. Daft Punk) – The Weeknd

VRY BLK (Feat. NoName) – Jamila Woods

Til The Evening – HONNE

Moving On – Roosevelt

Dollar Days – David Bowie

Alexander Hamilton – Broadway Cast of Hamilton

Dance with Me – LEAGUES

In The Lobby- Iggy Pop 

How To Fly – Skye And Ross

Lost On You – LP

Underwater – Goldroom

Light Up (Yachtclub. Remix) – MUTEMATH

Working Poor – Fantastic Negrito

Raise the Flag – BROOKZILL!

Don’t You Wait – Solange

Breathe Life – Jack Garratt

A-YO – Lady Gaga

Mad Love – JoJo

Lighting Turns Sawdust Gold – Sleigh Bells

Love Is a Soft Machine – Rocky

That Girl – Tegan & Sara

Close Enough – Ghost Beach

Have a safe and happy New Year. Thanks for listening…

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Oh My How Brandon’s Flowers Have Bloomed.

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I’m always wary when a lead singer of a band releases solo music. Chances are, it’s a cosmic slop of tunes that didn’t make previous albums with the band, mixed with potential radio songs. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Brandon Flowers’ second solo release (yes, he did release a first one a few years back – Flamingo – you should check it out) works.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed my fellow earbudders, the onslaught in the past year or so of an 80s sound revival that has returned to the music scene. As someone who was around this sound the first time, my ears are relieved. Flowers’ music clearly shows he was influenced by it as well. This album sounds like a throwback of Howard Jones, Culture Club, mixed in with interesting storytelling that rivals something from the vault of Bruce Springsteen’s lyrics. Flowers was always a good storyteller in his music. He makes you think, he makes you dream, and he makes you realize – no matter what – life goes on whether or not your life turned out the way you wanted it to. Combine his lyrics with a synthesizer, big band extravaganza, and you’ve got a winner of an album. The sound of keyboards with strong background female singers, and an excellent horn section should not be overlooked as well. There are a few songs that sound like outtakes from The Killers, but overall, it is worth the investment in time to listen. It’s got something for everyone. Here are a few of my favorites.

Dreams Come True – Great opener; A very positive ditty about a collection of outsiders who want something better in life other than coming home, working, going to sleep, punch the clock – wash rinse, repeat.. I’m sure we all feel the same way.

Can’t Deny My Love – First standout. The first in a series of 80s throwback songs. This really sounds like a departure from what we’re used to hearing from him when with The Killers. Has a Carribean Queen sound with a repeated but quick guitar riff.

I Can Change – Strong harmonies on this one. Another dance tune that could’ve easily been released in the 80s. Simply put, he’s willing to change for the object of his affection and he’s fine with it.

Still Want You – The chorus sounds like it could be a member of chant city. Loud chants, Kinda corny sounding, but it works. Only thing missing? A tambourine.

Between Me and You – I call this Bruce Springsteen light with Peter Gabriel thrown in for effect. It’s pretty, it’s poetic, it’s sappy, romantic, and I’m sure it will get a singalong from the audience when performed live.

Untangled Love – If you loved The Cure, you’ll love this one.

Desired Effect – The title track is another track that sounds like it could’ve been on a The Killers album. Funny enough, this is the title track. “Are you taking the time to listen, is it doing you any good? Are you looking to change the world? Have you already changed your mind?” Questions like this continue on throughout the song. He’s questioning the lives people lead, and the effect that their lives have on them. Is it what they wanted? Or is it something completely different? And if it’s not what they wanted, what are they going to do about it? it’s kind of a head-shrinky song. It definitely left me with wondering what good am I on this earth? And is the life I chose worth it after all? Where was this song when I was in college?

Overall, it’s a solid album. check it out if you want, or not. It’s up to you.

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Album of the Week: Nick Jonas.

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I admit. I’m a Nick Jonas fan.

I’m a wee bit older than ol’ Nicholas. And frankly I’ve never been a HUGE Jo Bro fan per se’. But I’ve always had an affinity for Nick. And I think all of us older ladies were a bit giddy when he finally turned 18. Ok so maybe I was the only one. But I always thought he was adorable, and I also thought he was the only one with true talent lol. So it didn’t surprise me one bit that he released a solo album. And he did NOT disappoint. Nick Jonas’ second effort away from the Jonas Brothers (the first being with the Administration – a more bluesy album) is completely dipped in r&b sauce with a dab of pop music and served with an appetizer of dance music on the side. I have to admit, I was impressed. The first single “Chains” I take it was to showcase a more grown up Nick and it succeeded. The melody is hard and it’s extremely catchy – all the makings of a pop hit. It has dark undertones with the bass line but overall it’s fantastic. I automatically kept an eye out on when the album would be released. So fast forward a month later, and it’s finally here. Now I know what you’re thinking. “Ew, he was in a boy band. Why give him a chance?” Well, you remember a certain boy bander named Justin Timberlake faced the same thing and look where he is now. Is Nick on that way to super stardom? Who knows, but he is definitely on his way on being a household name at the very least. My favorite tracks that you could at least download and see for yourself are the following:

“Chains” – Very dark. Very grown up. Very mature. Very awesome.

“Warning” – Straight up r&b and pop. A no brainer in the radio department. And a repetitive chorus that will get stuck in your head for a while. Trust me on that.

“Numb” – Another r&b banger. Complete with a rap by Angel Haze. The staccato delivery and echoes just illustrate he is no longer a teen idol anymore.

“Teacher” – Very very excellent. It’s Prince influenced. That’s all I can say. See below.

“I Want You” – A pop gem that should be a potential single. It’s just perfect.

“Avalanche” – Well I have to admit I’m biased here because I’m a fan of Demi Lovato, who he duets with on this one. It’s loud and fantastically beautifully sung by both. Their vocals are standouts in this one.

Overall, I give the album a B+ but it’s really a good one. You can work out to it, in a gym and out (if you’re lucky enough to get the hook up so to speak), play loudly in a car, or at home. And with a good pair of headphones, rock out on publc transportation. So thank you Nick for not letting me down. One of the few good pop albums I’ve heard this year. Welcome to the world of r&b. I hope you enjoy your stay.

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