Archive for Lily Allen

Electronic music and the Grammys

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on December 3, 2009 by softsynth

Once again we raise a quizzical eyebrow at the Grammy awards, who announced their latest round of nominations and as always we turn our attention to the category, “Best Electronic/Dance album”. Now putting aside for now the notion that all electronic music is compatible with “Dance” (which would be a surprise for everyone from Cold Cave to Coil to M83) the Grammy committee continues to make odd choices when it comes to the category. The nominees:

  • Divided By Night
    The Crystal Method

  • One Love
    David Guetta

  • The Fame
    Lady Gaga

  • Party Rock

  • Yes
    Pet Shop Boys Continue reading

What exactly constitutes “electronic” music?

Posted in Commentary with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 12, 2009 by softsynth

I have been asked following my posted review of Lily Allen’s great new album, what do I consider electronic music? Where does the line get drawn? Why is it that many bands lumped in as part of the electro universe only possess a tentative link at best? There are obvious rock bands that some consider part of that universe and other artists that clearly find themselves driven by electronic soundscapes but would never be considered part of the electronic scene. What gives? Continue reading

Review: Lily Allen – It’s Not Me, It’s You

Posted in Review with tags , on February 6, 2009 by softsynth

Full disclosure, I love Lily Allen. Not her music, pre se, but her. I find her utterly compelling. A combination of adorable and total mess, alcoholic horror show notwithstanding. Her first album, Alright, Still, was serviceable but lacked a certain something. She was full of cheeky bravado and her lyrics were both dark as hell and a lot of fun. But her ska-pop stylings often left me cold (and when she laid them aside for songs like “Not Big” and “Alfie” she took her schtick to a new level).

Then early last year she announced her next album would be an electronic record. Now, when a mainstream artist says something along those lines it as often as not never pans out. What mainstream artists deem “electronic” rarely bares much resemblance to what fans of the genre would suggest. Yet when she released “The Fear” at the tail end of ’08 I was surprised to realize just how much she meant it. She essentially popped out an electro-pop ditty that ended up my favourite single of 2008.

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On “best ofs” and yet-to-comes

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2008 by softsynth

I have had a few questions regarding my “best of ’08” list, and yes it’s ridiculously subjective. As are all such lists. I like lists, they play to my anal retentive side. But while fun to contemplate, they are still based on the varying tastes of its particular authors. Among the “big five or six” of the music papers I saw Duffy’s album on two “best of the year” lists” and on one “worst of the year”. I saw the Jonas Brothers on one of each. Same with Chinese Democracy What does any of it mean? Not a whole lot. Unless you are T.V. on the Radio, in which case you are universally beloved by mainstream music press and those who fashion themselves as more of the alternative variety. (Now I like TVotR too, but the collective hysteria over this album is disproportionate to how good the album actually is. It’s good. It is. It’s a fine, clever, well written, well produced album but except for a few stand out tracks it still strikes me as quite ordinary. Good-ordinary to be sure, but still ordinary. Nothing wrong with that but the “It’s as good as Pet Sounds/The While Album/Let it Bleed all rolled into one” wankfest has gone to a silly place. But there again, you have it. It’s so stupidly subjective that what means one thing to one listener means something altogether different to the next.) 

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