#Review: Chromeo – Head Over Heels ūüφ


   

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Muzik Speaks Loves Atlantic Records - SmallerChromeo are an electro-funk duo from Canada, consisting of David “Dave 1” Macklovitch and Patrick “P-Thugg” Gemayel. To date, the pair have released four studio albums, but Head Over Heels marks their fifth album and debut release with our pals over at Atlantic Records.

Chromeo - Head Over Heels.jpg

The first I knew of Chromeo, was their remix of Maroon 5‘s ‘Wait’ (as featured on our re:MIXTAPE playlist), so I must be forgiven for not having heard much of their back catalogue. However, taking this album at face value, it is a strong release with a stunningly contemporary take on disco and funk music.

Having worked together for the past 15 years, it’s clear to see that these guys have perfected their sound, which is a perfect amalgamation of modern, electro-pop music with synth-driven disco and bass-slapping funk.

This is certainly an album that doesn’t take itself too seriously – it’s intentionally fun and funky, with its saucy innuendos and genre-perfect production qualities, the likes of Giorgio Moroder and Nile Rogers would be proud of.

The album kick-starts with the tantalising¬†‘Must’ve Been’¬†(featuring¬†DRAM) – a slap bass, groovy-guitar, vocoder-infused anthem, that excellently demonstrates what’s in store throughout the rest of the record.

With the music up and a house to yourself (…or packed with friends), there really will be no holding you back!

Other memorable moments include the wonderfully repetitive¬†‘Don’t Sleep’ (featuring French Montana¬†and¬†Stefflon Don)¬†with its laid-back 80s vibes and sensational vocal harmonies, whilst¬†‘One Track Mind’¬†is an understated yet seriously catchy track consisting of beautiful talk box, vocal melodies towards the end – it’s very similar to something you might hear by¬†Charlie Puth.

Meanwhile,¬†‘Bad Decision’¬†is all about splashing the cash on a girl and has a definite¬†Prince-esque vibe to it; high-pitched vocals on top of some superb little guitar riffs and¬†‘Right Back Home To You (Interlude)’¬†is a track you can get surprisingly hooked on – think funky soul meets jazz lounge, topped with sweeping high-pitched vocals; there’s a real 70s quality to it.

Towards the end of the album, it all comes together on the two-part, ‘Bedroom Calling’. Part One is a truly anthemic mellow jam with atmospheric, reverb-driven bass notes and slow drum beats, whilst Part Two¬†(featuring The-Dream) is a much more upbeat, pop tune that is oozing with shimmering synths.

To those who say quality disco music doesn’t get made any more, I would simply reply, “Chromeo”. This is definitely not an album you can listen to without, at the very least, bobbing your head and tapping you toe, but in reality, with the music up and a house to yourself (…or packed with friends), there really will be no holding you back!

Rating


‘Head Over Heels’¬†is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/head-over-heels/1380944674


Head Over Heels on Spotify

Must’ve Been featuring DRAM (Official Video)

Juice (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed this review! What do you think of this duo’s latest record? Does it fulfil all your funk needs or leave you wanting more? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

Muzik Speaks Album Reviews


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#ThrowbackThursday: Lenny Kravitz – ‘Fly Away’


   

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Lenny Kravitz is well-known for his retro vibes and fusion of various genres, from rock to reggae, folk to funk and soul to psychedelic.

Back in 1998, Kravitz released ‘Fly Away’, one of his most successful singles to date, reaching Number 1 in the UK Charts.

The song was in fact the fourth single to be taken from his fifth album, 5, and due to the huge success of it, not only boosted sales of the album but also earned him a Grammy Award in 1999 for Best Male Rock Performance.

The track is incredibly catchy with its funk bass line and gritty vocals – it’s no wonder it rocketed to the top of the charts.

The music video was directed by Paul Hunter (Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and more) and features Kravitz and his band performing in a club, surrounded by a crowd, dancing and getting frisky. It’s a very iconic video for the artist and shows a real passion in his performance…something he definitely pours into his live shows!

What are your thoughts of this wonderfully unique artist? Did you love this track first time around? Do you still love it now? What’s your favourite Lenny Kravitz track? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Fly Away’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/fly-away/723338099?i=723338326


#FeelGoodFriday: Shawn Mendes – ‘In My Blood’ & ‘Lost In Japan’


   

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March 2018 saw the return of¬†Shawn Mendes, who brought us not just one, but two brand new singles, both of which vary greatly in style but have equally brilliant Feel-Good Friday vibes. We just couldn’t decide which one to share, so figured, why not share both?!

‘In My Blood’¬†is a (pop)-rock ballad that transcends from a soft, despairing beginning into a thunderous, passionate anthem by the very first chorus and continues to soar from there. This track shows off just how incredible Mendes’ vocals are with their raspy tones that show just how intensely meaningful this song is.

Meanwhile,¬†‘Lost In Japan’ is a melting pot of contemporary funk with R&B and pop flavours too; it’s very reminiscent of something by¬†Justin Timberlake. This track is also passionate but in a very different way; lyrically the song expresses how Mendes would happily travel the globe just to be close to his lover, all of which sits atop a heavy bassline and groovy guitar rhythms.

Sadly, no music videos have been released as yet, but as soon as they do, we’ll be sure to keep you updated.

What are your thoughts of Shawn Mendes’ two new singles? Are you as much of a fan as us? Have you got a #FeelGoodFriday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via our social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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Shawn Mendes – ‘In My Blood’


‘In My Blood’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/in-my-blood-single/1359906692



Shawn Mendes – ‘Lost In Japan’


‘Lost In Japan’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/lost-in-japan-single/1360548138


#ThrowbackThursday: Michael Jackson – ‘Blood On The Dancefloor’


   

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‘Blood On The Dancefloor’¬†is quite an underrated track from the King of Pop himself,¬†Michael Jackson.¬†The song was released as the first single from the¬†remix album,¬†Blood On The Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix.

Interestingly, Jackson and Teddy Riley actually created the track in time for the 1991 release of the album, Dangerous, however, it did not appear on the record. Instead, it was altered slightly before it found commercial release, in 1997. The track plays with a selection of genres including funk and new jack swing.

Needless to say, the track rocketed to Number 1 in the UK charts and the music video premiered on Top Of The Pops. It revolved around the main character of the track, Susie (played by Sybil Azur), seducing Jackson with a dance, before pulling a switchblade on him.

What are your thoughts on this underrated MJ track? Got your own #ThrowbackThursday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Blood On The Dancefloor’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/blood-on-the-dance-floor/id193015198?i=193015409


#EventSpeaks: Leah McFall @ Komedia, Brighton – 16/04/17


   

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On Sunday 16th April 2017, Leah McFall arrived in Brighton for the penultimate date on her 2017 INK Tour, which was entirely promoted by herself, selling out 4 of the dates, without any promoters backing her; a truly incredible feat. She was also supported throughout the tour, by local artists, including Taylor Barker (singer of band La Plage) and singer-songwriter, Callum Stewart.


Taylor Barker (singer of La Plage)

Taylor Barker took to the stage rather modestly, yet her voice was a sonic powerhouse. Usually part of the band,¬†La Plage, tonight she performed alone with her guitar but she showed off some impressive skills. The sounds she made with the guitar, backed up her vocals beautifully –¬†it certainly didn’t feel like she was performing alone. A thrilling opener for the evening.


Callum Stewart

Next to grace the stage with his keyboard, was Callum Stewart, a Brighton-based, Northern Ireland-born singer songwriter.

Although his performance got off to a bit of a shaky start, with a dodgy pedal, he quickly recovered, putting on a rather impressive display of self-penned songs, alongside a country cover I’d not heard before. His chats with the crowd were, at times, humorous and he’s definitely got a sound I’d like to hear more of. A talented guy who’s definitely going to be one to watch!


Leah McFall

Leah McFall took to the stage with a roar of excitement from the crowd, singing her debut single,¬†‘Home’ mashed-up with¬†Aaliyah‘s¬†‘Try Again’ – instantly letting the audience know they were in for a treat with her show.

She then went on to perform a¬†couple of tracks from her recent EP,¬†INK;¬†‘Happy Human’ and¬†‘Bottle It’, having the crowd singing along to every word. She continued by performing some new songs to see what the crowd would make of them, insisting that she wanted to try them out and feel the audience’s reaction.

Her humorous banter with the crowd was fantastic and felt like a truly personal interaction, keeping the crowd laughing. Her cover of Gloria Gaynor‘s¬†‘I Will Survive’¬†had people singing along, however her closing song (a unique version of her infamous cover of¬†Minnie Riperton‘s¬†‘Loving You’¬†from her days on¬†The Voice) had everyone held in the palm of her hand, waiting for those trademark whistle notes.

The whole show was a treat to behold Рsuch a powerfully effortless voice; it is undeniable, Leah McFall has got serious talent and you must catch her on her next tour.

Highlights (Watch out, there’s many!):

  • Leah’s incredible vocals just captivated the audience, keeping them hanging on every note.
  • Each time she performed a whistle note, the audience burst into rapturous applause, and she did them so perfectly, she made it look almost easy.
  • Her between-song banter was so on point and witty that she had the crowd in hysterics.
  • Her songs were incredible – the band were superb and her voice was impeccable – it’s definitely given people a taste of more original music to come.
  • My favourite song of the night was¬†‘Weird To Wonderful’ – I need a studio version of that song!
  • Leah’s genuine and, at times, rather emotional appreciation of her fans was endearing; you could tell she meant every word of gratitude for their adoration and support.
  • Her insistence to meet and greet every single fan (who wanted to meet) her after the show, really demonstrated a reciprocal dedication to her¬†loyal fanbase – needless to say, the queue was epic!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


 Setlist

Home/Try Again
Happy Human
Bottle It
Rubber
Fair Trade
Language
Weird To Wonderful
No Ordinary Love
Colours At A Funeral
I Will Survive (Gloria Gaynor Cover)*
Wolf Den
Solid Gold
INK*
Loving You (Minnie Riperton Cover)*

* Parts of these songs can be viewed on the YouTube playlist, below.


Finally, I want to say an absolutely HUGE thanks to Leah for putting on such an incredible evening and all without any backing of promoters Рit was a true testament to the power of her fanbase.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#FeelGoodFriday: Marianas Trench – ‘Who Do You Love’


   

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Canadian pop-rock band, Marianas Trench are beginning to make big waves over here, in the UK.

With¬†a massive fanbase in their home-country (Canada), frontman Josh Ramsay having received a Grammy nomination in 2013 for co-writing and producing Carly Rae Jepsen‘s ‘Call Me Maybe’¬†and following a small sold out tour last summer, the band have announced a full UK tour (starting in May 2017) and new UK single,¬†‘Who Do You Love’. The song is impeccably produced and the vocal harmonies at the beginning of the track are just immense. It’s a truly transcendent track that was just beginning to be a #FeelGoodFriday song, the moment I heard it.

I’m hoping to try and catch the band at the Brighton date of their upcoming tour – hopefully see some of you guys there ūüôā

For the new UK single ‘Who Do You Love’,¬†the band decided against making a traditional music video, instead¬†choosing to use the funds to make a difference and inspire others to go out and do some good. Some of the situations included¬†sharing funds with individuals to more elaborate, pay-it-forward-style scenarios that benefit groups of people. The scenarios themselves were pre-arranged but the reactions weren‚Äôt, leading to honest, authentic and heart-warming reactions from everyone involved. Make sure you watch the video below.

What are your thoughts of this superb track? Have you already heard of the band? Would you like to hear more from them? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or hit us up via our social media accounts.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Who Do You Love’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/who-do-you-love/id1040618675?i=1040618686


#WildCardWednesday: Naives – ‘Crystal Clear’


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Naives¬†are an¬†exotic-sounding pop group who blend massive¬†tropical beats with huge synth sounds, topped off with funky bass and dynamic vocals, all of which is showcased perfectly in their latest single, ‚ÄėCrystal Clear‚Äô.

The song is an uplifting electro-pop affair with some very intricate production; the tempo gives the appearance of change throughout the song as it weaves amongst some really funk-filled grooves; it’s a very powerful track which has lead to airplay on BBC London and can be heard in high street stores such as¬†H&M and¬†Topman.

The vibrant single is accompanied by an equally flamboyant video, laden with visuals of exploding volcanoes and vast mountains among psychedelic textures that help to convey similar themes to the sound of the song. Watch the music video below.

What are your thoughts of this track? Have you heard anything else by Naives? Make sure you check out their self-titled album (due out 27th January 2017). Leave your thoughts or own #WildCardWednesday song choice in a comment below or via our social media using the hashtag.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Crystal Clear’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/crystal-clear/id1181006985?i=1181007191