Winter Popervescence #3: Pop Gets Smeared by ‘Kiss My Lipstick Off’, plus Willy Moon, Bim, Ryan Silverman, Matthew Kurz, Kim Smith, James William, and Brendan Maclean

I’m getting in my Popervescence dibs while it’s still Winter with lots of great songs to warm you up…


Kiss My Lipstick Off (compilation)

The creators of 2011’s sensational Ballroom Remixed album are back with another compilation set for some real razzle dazzle.  All kinds of pop gets smeared by Kiss My Lipstick Off, which naturally focuses on some mighty talented ladies.  Like any other compilation, not all of the songs work as well as others, but the fact that so many do means that it’s worth your precious dollars.  The songs vary from pure upbeat pop and electronica to those that have a more serious bent about them.

Give me dirty, grimy disco any day with a deep synth line, and here it comes in the form of “XTC” by lovely Liz Primo, who gave us some Hallowe’en tinged fun last year with “The Devil In Me”.  “XTC” is for the late night dance crowd and would make a sensationally sexy mashup with 90’s hit “A Little Bit Of Ecstasy” by Jocelyn Enriquez.  Georgia Haege’s title song is quite the tease that will instantly grab pop radio listeners’ ears with its Eurotastic rhythm and Kylie-esque vocal.  “You Can Always Come Home” is lighter, lyrical fare whose melody recalls another Kylie song – “The Locomotion” – albeit slowed down.  Producer Stormby has paired with singer Roz for “Twisted”, which also gets its sexy on.

I was already pre-disposed to the grandeur that is “Yesterday’s Tomorrows” by the lovely Jane Badler, which reached #8 on my chart last year.  Stormby is also in the picture here – the version of the song is his “Drama” remix which throws the into stage musical mode.  And Nathalie Archangel’s “Next To Me” is back in a new and much improved Ricardo Autobahn Electropop version, such a delight of a simple song set to help relaunch Nathalie’s new album Raven 25 years after her debut release.  Martha Wash did it recently too, so Nathalie is in great company.

Four of the songs already have videos, and you can watch those by Spray (animated video), Nathalie, Jane, and Georgia (featuring comedian Stevieweevie) below.  Hats off to the singers and creators for an impressive release.

Willy Moon, “My Girl”

I give Willy Moon a lot of credit for blending current electro-pop with a variety of 50’s and 60’s approaches – mainly having to do with fashion, hobbies (billiards, bowling), and short, short songs.  His iPod theme “Yeah Yeah” recently got to #2 on my chart – bested only by songs by Matthew Koma.  His debut album Here’s Willy Moon is on its way to us on April 1 and it’ll be preceded by another brief but big-sounding pop blast as the next single, “My Girl”.  Willy’s got a niche all his own right now and I can see many people finding it very attractive.  Listen to “My Girl” below as well as a sampler of the upcoming album.

Bim, “Lady In Red”

Ironically, “Lady In Red” originator Chris de Burgh (a singer frequently on my turntable from mid-70s to mid-80s) has a new record out, so it’s an unlikely tribute to the song that finds UK duo (and one of My 13 Performers To Watch For ’13) putting their own spin on the classic 1986 hit for Valentine’s Day.  If it was a straight cover I don’t think it would work and purists would complain.  So by making it a duet and changing the tempo, Bim doesn’t take anything away from the original at all, has fun with it, and allows it to offer up its own share of delights.  Watch below and download the song for free from Bim’s website.

Ryan Silverman, “If Only In My Mind”

In between stints on Broadway, current “Passion” star Canadian-born Ryan Silverman has been dropping videos that I’m hoping will ultimately extend to a full album release for this multi-talented guy.  “If Only In My Mind”, like Ryan’s last video “The Crossing Tree”, is a co-write from Ryan in which the director delights in taunting Ryan as to whether or not his relationship in the video is real or not.  Watch below and pick up tickets for “Passion” if you happen to be in New York City 🙂

Matthew Kurz, “Dancing On My Own” (Robyn cover)

He hasn’t officially released anything new yet in 2013, but American singer/songwriter Matthew Kurz, another of my 13 Performers To Watch For ’13, has been busy with viral covers, the best of which recently has been his acoustic take on Robyn’s beloved “Dancing On My Own”.  His diverse voice gives this rendition a genuine and gentle appeal all its own.  Listen below.

Kim Smith, “Jealous” (Vibekingz Remix)

It’s getting closer!  The long awaited release of Australian-born New York City-based cabaret singer Kim Smith’s pop album Nova is almost here.  Although it wasn’t what I expected to usher in its release, this Vibekingz remix of “Jealous”, with a fantastic dubsteppy break,  is about to charge full steam ahead through dance club doors with intent on slaying audiences worldwide.  Listen below, and don’t say you weren’t warned.

James William, “Lay Your Love On Me”

James William appears to be the new name for Manchester-based James Hutchinson, who has been performing in the UK and Germany for the last 10 years in different settings.  Another multi-talent, James looks poised to break out with a contemporary male pop sound in “Lay Your Love On Me”.  This could easily be a companion piece to the likes of Chris Wallace, Matthew Koma, and Kyle Patrick, who have continued to grace these blog pages and my chart.  Like them, James has an immediately identifiable voice and the song itself is pure ear candy.  Thanks to EQ Music Blog for the tip – you can get this song for free via Tweet For A Track, or you can listen to it below.  Like me, I expect you will listen to this one over and over again once you hear it.

Brendan Maclean, “Stupid”

It has taken me a number of viewings, but I think I finally get it.  Australian singer/dancer/actor Brendan Maclean’s video for his new song “Stupid” portrays him in a Mika-esque mode while emotions fly around the room – the singer performing his song and parading around the room; the balloons and “Congratulations” sign still up long after everyone has left; the lone other guest clearly heartbroken  despite Brendan performing and whatever has just transpired.  This is a promising start for the singer who will appear in the upcoming Baz Luhrmann film “The Great Gatsby” and is highly endorsed by fellow Aussie Darren Hayes, which speaks volumes.  Watch below – be prepared to be mesmerized into unexpected deeper thought.

I leave you with the artwork for the just-announced FrankMusik album, titled Between, due on April 1.


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