shelleyhanveywriter

'Let me live, love and say it well in good sentences'

Posts Tagged ‘Britney Spears

Britney is the treble baby/Will.I.Am’s the bass; The Voice UK judge confirmed for Britney’s next album

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In my capacity as top Britney fan of the Western Hemisphere (self-awarded), I am rather gleeful this week as the rumours have finally been confirmed; The Voice UK judge and all round king of the quirks Will.I.Am , will executive produce Britney‘s forthcoming eighth studio album.

My favourite track from Britney’s last album, Femme Fatale (2011), was the Will.I.Am penned homage to old-school house music, ‘Big Fat Bass’. Spears’ vocals are heavily processed on the track, as she states “I can be the treble, baby/You can be the bass” and Will.I.Am infuses keys with – unsurprisingly, given the title – a killer bassline that is addiction personified. I couldn’t get enough of this track on the first listen and it is still the first that I flick to when listening to the record. ‘Big Fat Bass’ gave us a taster of what was possible when these two artists collaborate; if this was the amuse-bouche, then ‘Scream & Shout’ was definitely the appetiser and a veritable plethora of delights await us for the main course with this next album.

 

This is the news that most Britney fans have been waiting for, as we have long been of the opinion that high-energy electropop and dance is the direction that Britney should continue to follow, after the brilliance that was 2007’s Blackout (‘Gimme More’, ‘Piece of Me’, ‘Radar’). Will.I.Am hopes that the forthcoming album will reflect who Spears is as a person rather than
an artist:

We need to talk about what she’s excited about in life. I gotta talk about the things that hurt her. I gotta talk about the things that make her concerned – she’s a mother. I gotta talk to her about all the things that her fans want to talk to her about…

I like this approach. My favourite Britney track, ‘Everytime’, gives the listener an insight in to Spears’ narrative voice and stream of consciousness and makes a seemingly untouchable celebrity entity, endearingly relatable. The track packs more of a punch because of the insinuation that it is rooted in the deep, painful truth of a real-life break up…and we can all relate to that! One of the most powerful live performances of the track that I’ve seen was during Britney’s 2004 Onyx Hotel Tour, where she spoke to the audience beforehand about the meaning behind the lyrics and expressed how difficult that part of her life had been. I think it was in that moment that I began to see Spears not as the world-famous star that she is, but as a normal girl who wasn’t afraid to be vulnerable in front of thousands of people and who wears her heart very much on her album sleeve.

I’d love to experience more of those moments and hope that this forthcoming album will provide just such an opportunity.

www.britneyspears.com / www.will-i-am.com

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

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Written by shelleyhanveywriter

May 3, 2013 at 2:24 pm

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Britney keeps going and keeps smiling. That’s why I love her. @britneyspears and @ddlovato confirmed as new X Factor USA judges

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So, it’s official; Britney Spears and Demi Lovato will join Simon Cowell and L.A. Reid, as new judges on X Factor USA.

Regular visitors to my blog won’t be surprised to learn of my excitement at the news; I am a HUGE Britney fan. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that she is pretty much God-like in my world. I sometimes receive a patronising sneer at such a statement, but millions of fellow fans around the world have my back. I find Britney to be an inspiration. Yes, she may have lived a charmed life on the surface and may indeed have chosen such a life and all that goes with it, but how many people can say that they have experienced a particularly hard time, had it played out in front of the world and haven’t ended up a shell of their former selves? How many celebrities have never returned to the public eye after such experiences? Everyone has difficult times and makes mistakes and the hardest thing can be to just keep going. Britney keeps going and keeps smiling. That’s why I love her.

 

Demi Lovato is another lady that I find to be particularly inspirational. A fellow former child star, she has a lot in common with Britney and is a massive star in the US. I watched her documentary on MTV recently, highlighting her battle with bulimia and self-harming. Demi is a dedicated philanthropist and has helped countless numbers of children and young people with her work. I’m looking forward to getting to know her more on X Factor USA.

 

Congratulations X Factor USA on securing two such positive role models for the judging panel.

shelleyhanveywriter 🙂

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

May 16, 2012 at 5:49 pm

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From Bombay to Louisiana, via Manchester; my top music picks of the week

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In honour of my favourite season: that of the summer holiday,  I have compiled a selection of hot and hazy tracks worthy of inclusion in any First Class music lounge…so sit back,  put on your fuzzy felt eye mask and allow yourself to be whisked away from Bombay to Louisiana, via Manchester.

Bombay Bicycle Club, Shuffle

A Different Kind of Fix‘ is the upcoming third album from London-based alternative folk-rock band Bombay Bicycle Club. ‘Shuffle is the first track to be released from the album, which follows on August 29th, 2011. Following the acoustic and accolade-laden offering of second album, ‘Flaws‘, the four-piece have returned to their electric-stringed roots, whilst never straying too far from their trademark blissful electronic- folk leanings. The soaring and atmospheric synth sounds of ‘Shuffle‘ are the perfect soundtrack to a lazy day on a sundrenched beach, or indeed a lazy afternoon indoors after getting drenched down your local high street…this is the ‘great British summer’ after all.

Michelle Branch, Loud Music

My love for Michelle Branch all started in Season 6, Episode 8 of one of my favourite TV series, ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘. Branch makes an appearance at the end of the highly emotive episode, to perform her track ‘Goodbye to You‘ as Giles leaves for England, Tara leaves Willow and Buffy leaves her senses, embarking on a doomed affair with resident badboy vamp Spike. I loved the track and Branch’s raspy and powerful country-tinged vocals, so I set about researching the artist and have never looked back. After two top selling albums, ‘The Spirit Room‘ and ‘Hotel Paper‘, Branch moved in a more defined country direction to form a duo with friend and fellow musician, Jessica Harp; The Wreckers. But now, fresh from putting down roots both family and home, she is back with the perfect summertime roadtrip track ‘Loud Music.’

The track documents the history of a relationship, starting with the first meeting and going through all of the highs and occasional lows, all the while using artists such as Hendrix and Zeppelin as flags or pinpoints throughout the narrative. Branch has always managed to successfully translate her great love of music through her own lyrics and regularly cites her influences through this medium. So if a destination only reachable via a trip down a few dusty highways is more your idea of a perfect holiday, then be sure to wind the windows down and blast out this perfect slice of American pop-rock.

The Travelling Band, Sundial

I recently reviewed Friends of Mine Festival for eFestivals.co.uk and had the pleasure of catching a performance by The Travelling Band whilst I was there. Cited as the best folk band to emerge from Manchester, the five-piece performed their upcoming single ‘Sundial‘ which was definitely a hit with the somewhat windswept and watery crowd. The orchestral splendour of this track cannot be underestimated and is truly addictive; I think this band will be filling headline slots on the folk circuit very soon. It’s nice to see some local folkies flying the flag for the genre up North.

Patrick Wolf, House

Patrick Wolf intrigues me; he is an intriguing character, one that you could listen to and watch for hours almost as if in a daze. His vocals intrigue me; the depth of his tone commands that you listen and his lyrics command that you hear. He cites poets and speaks romantic declarations and all of this set against an epic and enticing melody. I’ve said enough, I implore you listen and you start with ‘House.’

Friendly Fires, Hawaiian Air

Pala‘ is the recently released second album from alternative dance trio, Friendly Fires. ‘Hawaiian Air‘ is the second track to be released from the album. This band just keep going from strength to strength and have just this week released more dates on their biggest headlining tour of the UK, coming in the autumn. With its holiday flight-inspired music video, ‘Hawaiian Air‘ is all set to be the scorching hit of the summer radio waves. The rest of the album is just as good I might add, so I’d definitely recommend that it feature on your holiday pool-side playlist.

Britney Spears, I Wanna Go

Ah, Britney. Where do I start…well, I’m a huge fan and have loved every track that the Louisiana popstrel has ever released so I’m just putting it out there – if you’re looking for an unbiased review of the artist, scroll up and scroll out! ‘I Wanna Go‘ is genuinely one of my favourites off Spears’ new album ‘Femme Fatale‘, my other pop pick being the Will.I.Am penned track ‘Big Fat Bass.’ The video to accompany this track has just been released on Spears’ official website and on YouTube/Vevo and is a lot of fun. I think Spears has reached the point – perhaps understandably – were she just wants to enjoy herself in her career and this translates in her work; the videos aren’t meant to be groundbreaking, they’re meant to highlight the light-hearted, cheeky and self-depracating character of the performer and that they do. The new album is a dancer’s dream, filled with huge basslines, biting beats and catchy choruses. I’ve just secured myself tickets to see Spears in Manchester on her upcoming UK Tour…needless to say, I am just a little excited!

That’s all for now, happy holidays! 🙂

Britney’s new single ‘Hold It Against Me’ set to smash sales records worldwide

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This was the week that saw pop’s princess and pioneer, Britney Spears, return to our radio waves with a track that is already on course to smash sales and downloads records worldwide.  ‘Hold It Against Me‘, produced by long-time Britney collaborators Max Martin and Dr. Luke, is an electronic dance lovers’ dream, complete with thrashing bass line and thunderous drums and of course the obligatory sultry lyrical delivery. The track debuted at No 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles chart, selling 411,000 digital singles in the U.S. within just one week of its release on iTunes. This is the biggest first week track number for a female artist, the record previously being held by Taylor Swift.

The single also debuted at No 1 in nineteen other countries including Australia, Belgium, Japan, Canada, Switzerland, France, Ireland and more. Such was the level of media and fan demand;  the single was also released in the UK this week, just as the much-anticipated Britney GLEE episode aired on our screens.

Just like people say that you should never meet your idol; I have always veered away from writing a great deal about Britney as I know that the piece would take a bit of time in order to do it justice, but I think that the time has finally arrived. I too have once again got caught up in the level of hysteria that only a Britney ‘comeback’ can provoke and therefore I am currently writing a piece in anticipation of the sure to be light-headed and frivolous joyfest that will be her next album release in March 2011. Cue much skipping and gleeful abandon as I head to my nearest musical purchase point to see what the delightful Miss Spears has in store for me this time. I am currently contacting various interesting and intriguing individuals of the wider Spears circle for contributions, so should hopefully have some tasty anecdotes for you very soon.

Until then, I must retire to begin the researching process and will be back very soon but hey…don’t hold it against me! 🙂

www.britneyspears.com

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

January 21, 2011 at 1:33 pm

New tracks I like…Eliza Doolittle, Sia and Miike Snow

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I was having a browse at the UK singles chart yesterday and I have to say, I wasn’t all that keen on probably 80% of the tracks in the top 20. It’s personal opinion and taste obviously, but I wish there was more variety for our listening pleasure. I can’t really complain I suppose, as I don’t tend to download that many singles myself, preferring full albums of artists that I really like or am interested to hear more from.

I do like the following three tracks however, which are all released in the coming weeks.

First up, Eliza Doolittle with ‘Pack Up.’

Eliza (real name Eliza Sophie Caird) is a British singer-songwriter with a soulful voice and a contemporary quirky pop sound. She releases her debut self-titled album of 13 tracks on July 12th 2010. I really like her voice and I think she sounds a lot older than her 22 years, which gives her vocals a mature and warm feel, whilst still keeping a cool, innocent edge to her performance. I think she’ll be well received at her upcoming festival dates. I’m looking forward to seeing her at V.

Secondly, Sia (full name Sia Furler) with ‘Clap Your Hands.’

Australian singer-songwriter Sia has recently collaborated with Christina Aguilera on some tracks for her new album ‘Bionic‘, which I think are really great. Sia has a soulful voice with jazz and pop influences, whilst also possessing a quirky creative edge. I do appreciate a quirky female frontwoman! Citing her influences as Cyndi Lauper and Madonna, Sia has said that her fourth studio album ‘We Are Born‘ (from which this track is taken) delivers a more upbeat sound than its predecessors. Upbeat or down, I think Sia’s vocals possess that much desired sparkle and edge to carry off either tone.

Finally, a band which I have been a fan of since their emergence on to the UK music scene in the spring of 2009. Miike Snow are a Swedish trio made up of Andrew Wyatt, and the producing duo Bloodshy & Avant (real names Christian Karlsson and Pontus Winnberg) who have enjoyed considerable success, collaborating with artists such as Madonna, Kylie Minogue and Britney Spears. They have also remixed tracks by Passion Pit, Kings of Leon and Vampire Weekend. Their self-titled debut album features 11 tracks of an electro-pop/indie persuasion, and I think it’s amazing. I particularly like ‘Animal‘, ‘Burial‘ , ‘Silvia‘ and ‘Cult Logic.’ Their music videos are always brilliant too, full of colour, vibrancy and located in far-flung destinations most could only dream of visiting. Unless anyone wants to give me some money, then I need dream no more! I would urge anyone to get themselves a copy of this album; the trio are pure magic. ‘The Rabbit’ is a new single, to be included on a revamped, deluxe version of the album, to be released in July 2010.

Hope you find something you like.

Written by shelleyhanveywriter

June 19, 2010 at 7:10 pm

eGigs reviews

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Lou Rhodes, Band on the Wall Manchester (13th April 2010)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?a=13456

Alicia Keys PREVIEW  http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?a=13395

The Courteeners, Manchester Central (11th December 2009)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?a=13295

Lady Gaga, Manchester Academy 1 (29th June 2009)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?abr=22925

Aqualung, Manchester Club Academy (19th June 2009)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?abr=2836

Britney Spears, MEN Arena Manchester (17th June 2009)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?abr=22046

Lisa Hannigan, Manchester Club Academy (3rd May 2009)http://www.egigs.co.uk/index.php?abr=13818

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