Dance Into Spring, Spring Into Dance?: Mika & Ariana Grande, Pet Shop Boys, The Wanted, and Boris Dlugosch & Róisín Murphy

I swear the clubs and dance floors are gonna be hot this summer, given the music that keeps arriving to make our feet aflutter 🙂

MIKA featuring ARIANA GRANDE “Popular Song”

I know that zeroing in on a song from Mika’s The Origin Of Love album since last Fall may have been difficult, especially with the multiple videos which didn’t seem to help promote the album very well.  First, “Make You Happy”, then “Celebrate”, and more recently “Underwater”, whose video was spell-binding, until the end which left a rather poor aftertaste.  Nevertheless seeing Mika for the first time in concert a few weeks ago was a real treat, he is an amazing showman, and it was still so surprising to hear how many fans knew all the lyrics to his songs from Life In Cartoon Motion six years later.  The focal song for me from The Origin Of Love has always been “Popular Song”, with its playful inclusion of the chorus of “Popular” from the play “Wicked”, so much that I’ve already charted the song twice, in its original album version and then with this Ariana Grande version, which has now surfaced as a video.  If there’s a song to reignite interest in the album, it’s “Popular Song”, and this immensely fun and Tim Burton-inspired video (with its bullying theme undercurrent, note!), full of style and delightful ghastly humour.

PET SHOP BOYS “Axis”

Now that PSB have finally left Parlophone after their 25 years with them, Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe return to the classic PSB sound of 20+ years ago with “Axis” from their upcoming album Electric, released on their own X2 label.  While “Axis” might be an official single, to me this is just PSB whetting our appetite for what are likely to be much, much different songs than on their last (and IMO weakest) album Elysium.  “Axis” is the buoyant, layered stuff that paved the way for current EDM/electronica, and it’s primarily an instrumental, which reminds me of many a PSB B-side.  Look for a second single to bring the Boys back in true style along with the album release.  Then there’s a tour which appears to be taking them everywhere, including my city (Toronto) on September 25.  Absolutely can’t wait.

THE WANTED “Walks Like Rihanna”

Say what you will about The Wanted, I think they’ve got a lot of strong vocal talent which is also blessed with songs from very good songwriters indeed.  “Walks Like Rihanna” may seem obvious but quite truly you will neither be able to escape this song in the coming summer nor will you be able to get it out of your heads.  And that’s what is setting the quintet apart from other current boy bands.  Not out for sale until June 23 unless that’s bumped up.

BORIS DLUGOSCH featuring ROISIN MURPHY “Look Around You”

“Look Around You” neatly joins songs about which I’ve been writing lately that might bring disco music back to its heyday.  Note: You will get sick of me saying this in upcoming blog posts, so be warned 🙂 Taking its cues from turn of the century house music – not surprising since German producer Boris last teamed with the essential Róisín around that time with “Never Enough” – “Look Around You” beckons you to move with a sultry and polished Róisín vocal.   More like this, please!  For sale on May 17.

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  1. […] weeks after the Tim Burton-influenced video for “Popular Song” (featuring Ariana Grande) arrives on the scene, we find Mika sharing the video with “Citizens From A Place Called World” for this […]


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