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  1. It's unusual to encounter an artist who not only truly cares about her fans, but who is willing to be best friends with them, too. My story with Kara started when our longtime member @Baby V Alex made a thread about her first single, 'Cloud 18'. It wasn't long before my fellow writer @Countess and I conducted an interview with her, and since then our bond has only gotten stronger and stronger. When will your faves, huh? At first, I was completely intimidated. I was just a basic member of a music forum, and she was the person we were discussing. I didn't know what to talk about with her,
    10 points
  2. It's hard to believe, but as of September 30th this year living legend Britney Spears will have been driving us crazy, loving rock and roll and seeking Amy for exactly twenty years - and what a wild ride it's been. Apart from all the personal crises (think that Justin Timberlake break-up, the whole K-Fed saga and the infamous umbrella incident), Britney has also consistently wowed us with hit single after hit single, from 'Me Against the Music' to 'Make Me'. But amidst all the brilliant releases (Britney's last single 'Slumber Party' was her forty-first), there was a multitude of songs th
    9 points
  3. I first found out about Dress Black from Alexz Johnson, whose brother Brendan Johnson joins Stephane Monten, Colin Mercer and Justin Ross to make up the quartet. An indie-rock band, Dress Black got their start back in 2014 as a group of friends who bonded over a passion for surf rock and Motown, and since then they've gone on to release several singles and a self-titled EP, even picking up a nomination at the Toronto Independent Music Awards. Now Dress Black is preparing to release their debut album, Future Songs, set to drop next month. They took some time out of their busy promotional s
    9 points
  4. It doesn't come around often, but every now and then a seemingly ordinary musician goes from singing a popular Lady Gaga song at an open mic night to writing, funding and releasing an EP without any label support; from reaching number ten on the UK album charts to selling out her first headline tour within two days; from becoming the best selling independent UK artist of 2012 to surpassing over 100 000 records sold within two years; from beating Adele in the charts to opening for Taylor Swift at one of the biggest musical events of British summertime - and she’s not done yet. As a firm believe
    9 points
  5. Fans of bands such as Karamel and The Boom Boom will already be familiar with Kara Lane and Bobby Lo, the Canadian artists who have most recently masterminded the indie-rock band K.I.D. Since they started their career in the music industry playing in Mediterranean restaurants on minimum wage, they have built a huge fanbase with their combination of teen angst lyrics, nostalgic production and instantly catchy hooks, and are now signed to one of the worlds biggest record labels - Columbia Records. For Kara and Bobby, it all started in high school where the pair made fast friends and started
    8 points
  6. Dear Mr. Tromp, As webmaster, administrator and content writer of #PopHatesFlops, I am awoken every morning by a flurry of e-mails related to my website which I must attend to. Generally these e-mails are simple acknowledgements of errors that have occurred on the websites; often they are updates offered by our host or system manufacturers; and sometimes they are complaints by users of abuse on the website. Most common of all the e-mails in my inbox are newsletters from various outlets promoting their latest wares; and most rare are those threatening legal action against me and my website
    8 points
  7. 2020 may just be the worst year in living memory, but if there's one consolation in all of the chaos it is, as always, music. Although true concerts have been sorely missed in the madness of this year and many projects have faced significant delays while wide-scale lockdowns sweep the globe, that hasn't stopped certain artists from creating and releasing some masterpieces. Whether they're reflecting the mood of dread, isolation and fear prevalent in society or providing us an escape from the horrors of 2020, these ten songs have been the soundtrack of our year on PHF - and what a year it's bee
    7 points
  8. In December 2004, a 22 year old Britney Spears walked into the KIIS FM offices in Burbank carrying an unmarked CD to meet radio host Jesse Lozano. The meeting was pre-planned, but only barely; Spears had called about an hour before to ask whether she could play her new song live, a phone call that Lozano had immediately thought was a prank. “Usually, you don’t believe that,” he would later state. In other words: usually, this kind of meeting would have to be cleared by layer upon layer of managers, PR agents and radio executives before it could ever come to fruition. But on that particula
    7 points
  9. Moxiie first appeared on the pop music scene back in 2011 with her breakthrough single 'Dancing in Dirt', which proved right off the bat that she wasn't here to play. The single was the first from Moxiie's debut EP Jungle Pop, named after her self-created genre of the same name; and this in turn was followed in 2012 by her first album Savage, which featured A-list producers such as Reo (Beyoncé's 'Hello') and Peter Wade (Kylie Minogue's 'Les Sex'). Following this, Moxiie released a dancehall-inspired EP entitled ScandiRara in 2013, which was followed by several experimental singles in whi
    7 points
  10. You might not know J Sutta's name, but you almost certainly know her songs. Since her big break came in the form of The Pussycat Dolls, the burlesque troupe turned recording sensation which dominated the 2000s music scene with hits like 'Don't Cha', 'Buttons', 'Stickwitu', 'When I Grow Up' and 'Jai Ho!', Sutta - then known simply as Jessica - has travelled around the world spreading her particular brand of self-identity, confidence and love. Her solo career in music started in 2007, when she featured on two #1 dance hits - Paul Van Dyk's 'White Lies' and Dave Audé's 'Make It Last' - but after
    7 points
  11. Plenty of todays European acts struggle every day to blow up outside of their mother countries. The main reasons for that are that they tend to sing in their mother tongues or are having issues with promo...or lack thereof. Many such artists follow their dreams in music contests: for singers like Loreen, Måns Zelmerlöw, Conchita Wurst, Elena Paparizou and ABBA participating in Eurovision was the best thing since sliced bread. Nevertheless, there are artists who prefer to earn their fame without cutting corners. Not many artists have been able to attract the attention of international audiences
    7 points
  12. In a post-Clinton pop world full of strong females such as Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Rihanna, Britney Spears, Beyoncé and of course, Madonna, it can be hard to get excited over the debut of any male popstar. Between the obsessive fangirls, the predictably dull vocals, the awkward dance moves and the regular female objectification, there's not generally much for pop music stans to get into it when it comes to most dudes, meaning that most of us will only really pay attention when the music is really stellar - see 'Uptown Funk' or 'Where Are Ü Now' for more. Which is why it was a surprise when
    7 points
  13. Since we started our Member of the Month program early last year, we've been waiting for the perfect moment to introduce the second phase of our MOTM program - member interviews! We love celebrating our amazing #PHFriends and talking to them about their lives, so asking them some frequently asked questions seemed like a great way to get to know them on an even deeper level. And who better to help us introduce this program than @Third Eye? Since they joined PHF back in March of this year, Thirdy (or Ms. Eye if you're nasty) has made a reputation for themselves as one of the nicest and most
    7 points
  14. Watch the video version of this article here: Unkept promises are hardly a new trend in Lady Gaga's fanbase of Little Monsters. Between cancelled tours such as the co-headlining Fame Kills with Kanye West, scrapped documentaries such as the one promised for ARTPOP, failed collaborations with Britney Spears, Elton John, Cher and Kendrick Lamar, and a variety of random merchandises such as Polaroid photo printers, dog accessories and perfumes, fans have gotten quite used to taking everything Gaga says with a grain of salt and waiting for concrete release dates before they get excited.
    6 points
  15. The subject of my third article for PHF is yet another up-and-coming European musician, one which I really hope doesn’t retire days after my article is released (I didn’t know my writing was that bad but I can push through that pain another time). This article is merely an artist profile, something small I wanted to do help spread the word without going into overdrive and writing two thousand words. London-born singer-songwriter Izzy Bizu’s debut album A Moment of Madness was released in early September and quickly flew to the highest reaches of my top albums of 2016 list with its i
    6 points
  16. Art, philosophy, and music are engaged in a tumultuous relationship, often stretching each other to their limits. Arguably a new dawn for the pop scene, 2008 saw the introduction of fresh-faced artists like Lady Gaga who were willing to test the boundaries of the commercial music scene and its respective audiences; as well as the reintroduction of artists like Katy Perry and Rihanna, who were once known for their modesty but who were now rebranded into sexy pop icons donning outlandish latex outfits and meter-high heels. Weird and arty became the new cool, and labels capitalized on that.
    6 points
  17. When you hear the name AJR, the first thing that comes to mind is probably 'I'm Ready', the breakout track for this New York-based band consisting of three brothers. But things didn't always come easy to the group: when they started about ten years ago, the only gig they could book was in the streets and parks of New York, and they had to write, record and produce all of their tunes by themselves. AJR released their first LP Living Room three years ago. Even though it wasn't hugely successful, they didn't give up. They came back with a brand new EP called What Everyone’s Thinking, whose b
    6 points
  18. The Spice Girls' Forever turns twenty years old this month, and two decades after its release there appears to be more nostalgia and appreciation of the albums musical content than ever before. Released in November 2000 after a short break from their whirlwind of success, Forever marked the first (and last, and only) album recorded by the girls as a four-piece following the surprise departure of Ginger Spice Geri Halliwell. With one member down, the four remaining members worked harder than ever to craft an album that would keep them in the spotlight and maintain relevancy with their now matur
    5 points
  19. Watch the video version of this article here! With a voice like Mariah Carey's, one might wonder why she or her label bothers with any kind of imagery at all. It would have been easy to go down the Susan Boyle route and focus exclusively on Mariah's famously breathtaking vocals, to the exclusion of how she looks; and indeed, it may be that very line of reasoning that accounts for the live performances that double as official music videos for tracks like 'I'll Be There', 'Open Eyes' and 'If It's Over'. Luckily for us, Mariah for the most part has gone a different route, appearin
    5 points
  20. Watch the video version of this article here: If you're not a fan of Britney Spears (otherwise inexplicably known as a member of the 'Britney Army') or a hissing Illuminati overlord, you may never have heard of 'Rebellion'. The little-known track was never released as a single, never performed live, and never received any critical response from anyone outside of the Britney fanbase. It's not much to listen to, right? And yet, since it was hinted at by Britney way back in 2006, it's been beyond doubt the most anticipated song for release in her back catalogue since that ru
    5 points
  21. Britney Spears has been all over the news recently, despite - and perhaps because of - a conspicuous absence in the public eye. Whether it's news of her scrapped shows, talk of her father's illness or the leaking of her unreleased music video for 'Make Me', Britney fans have had a lot to talk about - and without Brit herself around to clear the air, rumours have started running wild and the #FreeBritney hashtag has officially gone viral. One particularly interesting story comes from the Britney's Gram podcast, who recently claimed to have been contacted by a lawyer with insider knowledge
    5 points
  22. This week marks ten years since the release of Britney Spear's indisputable magnum opus Blackout - and while a lot has changed in Britney's life and in pop culture since 2007, one thing that remains is the album's incredible influence and staying power. Ten years on, Blackout remains one of the most pivotal releases in pop music history, ushering in the era of dance-pop that has permeated the airwaves ever since and sounding just as current today as it ever has. Surely some of the credit for this has to go to the album's masterful production, handled mostly by R&B producer Danja and E
    5 points
  23. You may not have heard Dua Lipa's name, but you almost definitely know her songs. With a deep, husky tone that sounds like a less pained Amy Winehouse or a grown up Gabriella Cilmi, Lipa's voice seems custom-made for radio, which explains why her songs have been blowing up all over the airwaves for the past year. And with each single launching her further and further into pop super-stardom, we think it's probably a good idea for everyone to listen back to all her previous single releases and get used to the voice that will likely be in our heads for years to come. Lipa's debut single was
    5 points
  24. Singer, songwriter, actress, producer, philanthropist: Alexz Johnson has taken on a multitude of roles in the entertainment industry. Starting her career off as Annie Thelen in the Disney Channel original series So Weird, Alexz won the hearts of many and gained international fame from her role as singer-songwriter Jude Harrison on Canadian television series Instant Star. Following her graduation from the show in 2008, she released her debut album Voodoo in 2010 and her second studio album Let 'Em Eat Cake in 2014. Since then she's been involved in several projects including producing
    5 points
  25. @Stoop Kid, a well known member of the LanaBoards community (AKA Vinny Vidi Vici, SUNÐÅNCE KIÐ, SUNDANCEKID, SOFTSERVEKID, Daji and indianlovecall) is a New York born and raised poet. From the age of 11, he's felt a calling towards poetry. Since them, he has spent the past 13 years charming people around the world with his exquisitely crafted words and has recently been a featured poet on AllPoetry. Today I'm here to discover the man behind the Stoop... Let's start at the beginning. What was the first poem you remember writing on your own? Oh, fuck. You know what? I don't remember h
    5 points
  26. Watch the video version of this article here! There are some popstars who seem to simply go from strength to strength, to the point where it seems as though the sky is the limit for the amount of talent and commercial success they can achieve in a lifetime. Some, like Justin Bieber, may have started from a particularly low base in which they repeat the word "baby" two hundred times in succession; while others, like Beyoncé, take the time to break out as solo stars, free from girl group politics or the dark shadows of their husbands empires. But then there are others who, try as they
    4 points
  27. Watch the video version of this article here! In theory, Nicole Scherzinger has everything it takes to be the world's biggest popstar. She's undeniably stunning, has a versatile voice that can belt out Whitney just as well as it can lilt over opera or spit out raps, is well known for her provocative dance skills and judging by the sheer volume of reality shows she appears on seems to have a strong work ethic. And yet since her start in the entertainment industry back in 1999, it seems as though Nicole has suffered through setback after setback. From the short-lived girl groups Eden'
    4 points
  28. Watch the video version of this article here: Over the course of her career, Lady Gaga has often been praised for her relentlessly unique aesthetic and her almost single-handed elevation of the standard four minute film clip into a work of video art. While most popstars opt to put their music at the forefront, with their music videos nothing but stylised afterthoughts, a classic Gaga music video will act as a pop culture event, with the song and the visuals working hand in hand to reflect a grander vision. Standard Gaga videos can often run for over five minutes, feature fully devel
    4 points
  29. If 2018's list of the best songs of the year shows us anything, it's that the ability to define pop music in the 21st century is becoming increasingly more difficult. Gone are the days when record label executives and radio DJ's defined the sound of the summer in highly organised meetings; nowadays, listeners are willing and able to seek out their own finds, creating intimate emotional bonds with their favourite discoveries that last long after their songs end. Our list of 2018's greatest albums reinforces that idea, bouncing between rock, hip-hop, R&B and dance effortlessly. What's s
    4 points
  30. 2017 has been a great year for pop music. With new releases from Miley Cyrus, Sia and Taylor Swift, and comebacks from the likes of Kelly Clarkson, Kesha and P!nk, there's been plenty of new and interesting music to keep us busy throughout the year, and plenty of new trends to keep the songs fresh. That said, it's human nature to always look for the next thing to get excited about, and the ever-changing world of pop music is absolutely no different. In a world in which new albums are teased on social media from their very inception and right up until their release date, there's little roo
    4 points
  31. Katy Perry is one of the biggest names in pop music in the last ten years, with her sudden rise to fame from being a mere Christian gospel singer who would often sing in her local church, to being a global success story with five number one singles from just one album. Katy has proven her ability to accelerate up the charts numerous times, earning records that only the King of Pop Michael Jackson has to his name...but the question is, how many of these things have been achieved with her latest era, Witness? With the release of her fourth studio album Witness, Katy has gone through some ma
    4 points
  32. Every year, PHF publishes it's annual list of the best albums of the year; and every year, it becomes a little harder to scrape together enough albums to fill out the list. Over the past decade, the music industry has undergone a period of intense change, thanks in large to the trend of illegal downloads blowing up more than anyone could ever have imagined. Thanks to illegal downloads, as well as streaming services like Spotify, music lovers can now pick and choose the songs they want to listen to without committing to a full album. And with an entire world of music at their fingertips that th
    4 points
  33. Halloween is one of the most celebrated holidays in the world, even if its presence isn't marked on any calendar. Some of its appeal definitely has to do with the fact that its mostly polytheistic - although it started out as a Wiccan holiday, Halloween is essentially now atheist and up to be enjoyed by anyone. But its also one of the thematically strongest and widest, and one of the funnest, as it gets people off church pews and into their local communities and brings back the childhood joy of playing dress up. But despite all that, there's relatively few songs that have been released es
    4 points
  34. Hi, guys! It's time for the new PHF Song of the Week! I know how excited you are! This week I have been thinking about a lot of stuff - mostly reflecting on my life. I've recalled all of the bad things that happened and all the good times. One day I finally realized that I am at a good place right now. But then I started thinking about other people. We read the news every day. Sometimes it's about Korea threatening the USA and sometimes it's about Selena Gomez hitting x number of likes on her new photo on Instagram. One day, I was scrolling down my Facebook feed because I was bored and
    4 points
  35. I would like to introduce you to the second PHF Song of The Week with a little quotation: "The weight of this sad time we must obey. Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say. The oldest hath borne most. We that are young Shall never see so much, nor live so long." - William Shakespeare, King Lear For those who didn't keep abreast of the events that happened in Charlottesville, here's a little recap. The city became a place where American racists rallied. The majority of them were white men with extreme right-wing views. The pretext for the rally was to save a monument tha
    4 points
  36. 2016 has been a great year for pop music, featuring defining releases from several bonafide legends (think Britney Spears, Beyoncé and Lady Gaga), a couple of albums from our more stable hitmakers (such as Tove Lo, Sia and Ariana Grande) and some groundbreaking debuts from total newcomers to the game (like Zayn, Aurora and Petite Meller). The sheer volume of impressive albums from our faves and flops this year has made deciding how to rank each one a difficult task; but after several weeks of consideration we've managed to whittle down our list from several dozen amazing LPs to just the absolu
    4 points
  37. For years, musicians have been taking their high-heeled leaps into the fashion world, with style icons such as Lady Gaga, Rita Ora and Rihanna all inspiring or becoming the face of several high-profile fashion brands in recent memory. Certain singers have taken it one stiletto puncture further, with big name stars like Jessica Simpson, Kanye West, and, probably most notably, Victoria Beckham all finding huge critical (and financial) success with their designs. But it's rare to find a fashion designer at the top of their game willing to unlace their gladiator sandals in order to try and make it
    4 points
  38. Much has been made of the reduced importance of the record label in the Internet age, a time in which artists have almost unlimited opportunity to distribute their music as they see fit. Social media websites like YouTube, Facebook and Soundcloud all have functionalities that allow musicians to release and promote their work, something used to its full advantage by YouTube stars turned major label signees such as Justin Bieber, Pentatonix and Lindsey Stirling; while other websites like IndieGoGo and Pledge Music are entirely formulated around allowing fans to essentially act as financial backe
    4 points
  39. As the Internet continues it's ever-pervasive crusade into every aspect of our lives, artists have struggled to try and integrate digital worlds and media into their real world public identity. Most commonly, industry-manufactured musicians will snap pretty and vacuous selfies for their Instagram or take to Twitter to muster up a half-hearted "yas" for their millions of followers without any real engagement with the medium. Less common are those artists who start online but are able to successfully steer their careers into the real world: the quintessential Tumblr star Lana Del Rey may have ru
    4 points
  40. Mariah Carey made headlines last year with the reveal of Chick, an alt-rock group she created at the peak of her fame in 1995 which went undiscovered for years. Now, she's made headlines again with the reveal that the band may return - with an unlikely frontwoman. Mariah initially created Chick during the sessions for the Daydream album in 1995, inspired by the likes of female rock singer-songwriters such as Blondie and Pat Benatar. At the time, the harder, grungier sessions made a welcome respite from the highly controlled, perfect image that Mariah had cultivated during her R&B work
    3 points
  41. Over the course of her sixteen year career, Rihanna certainly hasn't had any trouble making hits. Named by Spotify and Apple as the most streamed female artist of all time, Rih's also earned herself 31 top ten singles on the Billboard Hot 100. Furthermore, five of her songs - 'Umbrella', 'We Found Love', 'Stay', 'Work' and Eminem collaboration 'Love The Way You Lie' - rank among the world's best selling songs of all time. Her distinct vocals, trend-setting sounds and high-profile romances also make her a songwriter's dream, with many artists imagining her voice layered over the top of the
    3 points
  42. “I don’t know her.” It was the throwaway sentence - delivered with seeming sincerity, a simpering smile and an innocent nod of the head that was either sarcastic or supportive depending on interpretation - that went on to become one of the Internet’s first real memes. Mariah Carey’s simple proclamation, in response to an interviewer's question about Jennifer Lopez, is one of the finest textbook definitions of shade that anyone could ever ask for. And yet, behind those four words is a world of pain, heartbreak and jealousy that most people know nothing about. It’s a world that reads l
    3 points
  43. With more music at our fingertips than ever before, one of the biggest challenges an artist can have is to truly build intrigue around their new project. It's a challenge that's made even more difficult the longer this hype has to be sustained for - which, depending on record label scheming or personal dramas, can range anywhere from weeks to years. And the consequences that can occur for an album when that hype isn't sustained can be severe. Take Rita Ora's second album Phoenix, which landed at #2 on our Best Albums of 2018 list, but stalled at a measly #11 on the UK charts and only #79
    3 points
  44. Excuse me, sir/madam, but do you have a minute to talk about the one true Lord and Saviour, the daughter of Pop Gods Michael Jackson and Madonna and the divine harborer of the Holy Spearit? You see, over the past few months our one true god has undergone a resurrection to make her presence plain on this earthly realm in which we live. We use the word "resurrection" loosely - for while she had never truly forsaken us, she had departed us for some time, lost in the heavenly slumber between life and death. Her earthly body remained here, lending its voice to some true bops and its muscles to
    3 points
  45. After eleven years of waiting, several false starts and countless delays, Fergie's sophomore album Double Dutchess has finally been released. A visual album, the thirteen tracks are accompanied by Seeing Double, a "visual experience" which contains standalone music videos for each of the songs as well as an exclusive interview with Fergie about the project. Of all of the music videos on Seeing Double, 'A Little Work' has to be my favourite. I'm not sure if I have the right words to explain it, but I found it beautiful, sad and intriguing. The video really spoke to me and the story behind
    3 points
  46. This is the e-mail that I received two days ago, on the tenth of December, in relation to a t-shirt design I had uploaded to the Redbubble online store. The design in question, uploaded under the title ‘Taylor Swift's 'no its becky' T-Shirt’, is one that had been present on the website for several years, and which had been a moderate source of finances for me as a designer; the company making the complaint was one ‘T[aylor] A[llison] S[swift] Rights Management’, a newly formidable presence in the online design world. Yet at first glance, for those as yet uninitiated into the 'Swiftie
    3 points
  47. Unicultism: A system of belief created by pop star cult leader Unicole Unicron in order to raise herself out of the pits of despair and into a state of near-constant joy. It may seem strange to some, but the Unicult has been gaining a devout following in the 2 months since MTV aired an episode of True Life, a documentary series, called I'm Starting A Religion. I first heard about the Unicult, like many others, through True Life in December 2015. From first glance I quite honestly thought Unicole Unicron was a deranged hippie tripping on shrooms. Her strange make up and even strange
    3 points
  48. It's a sad fact that cultural appropriation is everywhere in our society today. From everyday people on the streets copying the clothing of other cultures with no understanding of their true meaning (such as the white male chauvinist racist pigs who wear native American headdresses) to musicians stealing the styles, genres and techniques developed by minority groups (such as Paris Hilton making a mockery of the traditional European genre EDM), this disgusting form of racism has pervaded every aspect of our corrupt western culture so neatly that it's sometimes hard to even realise when it's hap
    3 points
  49. Laura Bettinson, born in England, coined the stage name FEMME in 2013 after performing in night clubs and small venues; and less than a year later she got picked up by Perez Hilton. In a routine wave to find new, interesting artists for his mixtape albums Perez Hilton Presents Pop Up!, he came across the video for 'Fever Boy' and she took off. Releasing six singles paired with six respective videos in the span of just over a year, FEMME was simultaneously working on her debut album - and thus Debutante was born. Only three of these already released, familiar tracks are seen on her upcoming alb
    3 points
  50. It's hard to pinpoint exactly what's disappointing about All I Need, the sophomore release from English singer and songwriter Foxes (due out February 5th). It's definitely not her voice, whose slight but distinctive rasp shines through every track as a unifying factor between sounds. It would be unfair to criticise the songs, which are all cohesively produced, well polished and perfectly commercial - word on the street is that 'Wicked Love' will be the next single released from the project, but if we're honest pretty much any song from the album could be released to moderate success, from the
    3 points
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