Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Top 2(00)9 of 2009: #9-7

For your own reference, you can use this link to look up all posts tagged as the Top 2(00)9 of 2009. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did! :) We can see the light at the end of the tunnel as we break through into the Top 10...

#9. Miley Cyrus - Party In the U.S.A.
From the Album: The Time Of Our Lives EP (2009)
Watch the Video: here

So I put my hands up
They're playing my song
The butterflies fly away
Noddin' my head like yeah
Movin' my hips like yeah

Oh, Miley. I considered knocking this off the list entirely when I heard her great snafu of claiming to have never heard a Jay-Z song (rolls eyes...really, Miley?), but that would be criminal to the geniuses that are Dr. Luke and Claude Kelly, who wrote this gem of a pop track. Does it get more perfectly-crafted pop than this? That answer would be no. It's full to the brim of hooks, one of them has got to stick in your head, whether you want it to or not. I may be quick to brush off Ms. Cyrus, but she knows a good pop song when she hears it ("See You Again", "Start All Over", "7 Things"...all proof of this), and I can't deny the fact that when "a [Miley] song is on", I move my hips like yeah, too. Shame me all you want, it's my list. And for all of you outside of the USA who are curious, yes, all of our parties are exactly as white-trash as what you see in the video. Exactly. It's basically documentary material. ;)

Best Part: The namechecking of Britney and Jay-Z, the reference to wearing a cardigan and stilettos,  the synths, the imagery of randomly bursting into dance (alone) in a cab and at a club (where was that video, huh?), and that effing "Yeah-eeh-aaa-uh-ahh-ee-ahh". It gets me every time.
Other Songs of Note: Although I hate to admit it, "The Climb" is a pretty decent pop song. Doesn't mean it should have been the X-Factor single, though.
Other Posts RE: Miley: I spout serious guilty pleasure love for "USA" here.
Looking Ahead: After publicly making herself appear petulant for never hearing a Jay-Z song, she has stated she hopes to shrug off the pop tag and pursue edgier, more adult musical material. Until that day comes, she is still on tour, and will soon  be promoting her first major film release away from the Hannah Montana brand, "The Last Song."


#8. Candy Coated Chaos - Utopia
From the Album: Utopia - Single (2009)
Listen to the Song (as background for a behind-the-scenes vid, that includes rocking out with BRANDY while recording this very song in Los Angeles): here

Welcome to another place
It's called 'Utopia'
Enjoy your stay, feel free to play in my Utopia
Sincerely hope you enjoy your time in
(ha ha ha...oooh) My Utopia

Sigh. 2009 was a year of highs and lows for my favorite Candy Coated trio of New Jersey popstars. They started the year off strong, recording a string of near-perfect gems with producer extraordinaire Jadion, including this stunner, as well as a few co-written themselves. They performed around the USA,  had their songs featured on two of MTV's biggest shows, and debuted several hilarious video shorts in promotional prep for an official release. Everything was firing and hitting, and you had the feeling that you were on the verge of something you couldn't put your finger on. A trio of tracks (appropriate) hit iTunes in early Spring to serve as their first original offerings (their first "official" single being a cover of Eddie Money's "Take Me Home Tonight" back in '06-'07). And then, just as quickly, it all fell by the wayside, as the group announced its retirement. While the ending is bittersweet, we now have two new musical careers to look forward to, one venturing on the pop/rock (Rochella Danishei, middle in the above picture), and one still poppy as ever (Pasquelina, on the left in the above picture). Here's to 2010, girls: I'm fairly certain you will see cuts by both Ro and Pasquelina in next year's list.

Best Part: That unrelenting bouncing backbeat, the tongue-in-cheek lyrics (written in part by Simon Curtis, in case you couldn't tell -- he's in the video as well), the "ha ha ha" sass, the "Candy Coated Air" reference, and basically, the nostalgia this song already gives me.
Other Songs of Note: "Masquerade", "Treat", "Angel", "Static", "Ever After"...basically if it is by them, I probably adored it.
Looking Ahead: Looking forward to Rochella's and Pasquelina's solo musical efforts, as well as Steph's foray into modeling. See here for more info.

#7. Kings of Leon - Notion
From the Album: Only By the Night (2008)
Watch the Video: here

I gotta notion to say what doesn't feel right
I just wanted to know if I could go home
So don't knock it, don't knock it
You been here before

2009 marks the beginning of my love affair with the band of brothers/cousins that is Kings of Leon. It's a mixture of a million different things that makes them so intriguing to me -- considering I'm more of a pure pop type of girl myself. It's an enticing blend of Caleb Followill's hauntingly husky lead vocals, the Coldplay-esque anthem-rock sound, and the lineup of a pretty perfect album, Only By the Night, that managed to crossover and win them millions of new fans (myself, included). My fandom came to a huge head in September upon seeing them live at the Izod Center in New Jersey, and I have not looked back since. Although my true love affair with the album seems  to lie with a tossup between "Closer" or "Sex On Fire" (and considering the album was released in late 2008, and "Sex" was the single back then), I'm including yet another perfectly good single.for this list. No, not "Use Somebody", but "Notion", the latest single off this grandiose project, which has also gone to #1 on Billboard's Top Alternative list. Just listen and enjoy the warbling. Take my word for it.

Best Part: The growly repeat of "Don't knock it, Don't knock it", the slurry word delivery, the lead guitar licks, and just how catchy it is without any real chorus.
Other Songs of Note: "Sex On Fire", "Closer" (<3333333!), "Manhattan", "Revelry" and basically the entire album, really.
Other Posts RE: KoL: Concert review from the show I saw in September here.
Looking Ahead: Interesting enough, if the rumors are to be believed, plans are in motion for a remix album to debut in 2010 with appearances by Mark Ronson and Linkin Park. Yes, please.


Clue: The next three songs are by two Brit artists and an American Gangster.


Myfizzypop said...

Mega sad sigh over the loss of Candy coated Chaos - this was a brilliant tune, and though i have enough from them for a decent debut album it's still not enough. sad frowny emoticon.

On the other hand, Miley's party grew on me exponentially throughout the year. I love how she works in different references in live performances - check out the Royal Variety Show performance where she works in gaga and jackson on the radio and does associated dance moves. AMAZE!

Ken said...

As much as I wouldn't want Miley to be in my list, I guess that 'Party In The USA' would have to be in. It's a pretty catchy tune! Dammit!

J.Mensah said...

If I do a list like this Miley wouldn't be there, but PITU is a catchy song. Ooh! I love that KOL song too! It's really nice--I like "I Want You" from their album too. The only two songs I know frmo the list :(

Nikki said...

Candy Coated Chaos were brilliant. Hahah.

Miley. Apart from the times I'd hear it on the (crappy) local music channel, it never really grew on me. It's catchy though.

John said...

I still can't get into Miley, and have a feeling mine might be the only countdown that doesn't include it this year. Love that KoL track, though.

Aaron said...

AWW! Nobody told me that CCC were retiring!

Anyways, I'm not a big Miley fan, and avoid the track where I can, but it's catchy enough...:)

rcLoy said...

Use Somebody is my faves track in that album. LOL. Notion is pretty damn great too, I have to agree with J, I love "I Want You" and "Manhattan" too apart from Sex on Fire.

Mel said...

Paul - True -- Almost enough for completely perfect album through and through but...Still. I would have liked to have BOUGHT it off iTunes. Le sigh indeed. As for Miley, I didn't know she did it to that extent -- that helps make up for the Jay-Z comments. Kinda. Merry Christmas!!

Ken - Don't I know it! Not the type of thing I wanted to like by any means and yet here we are! :) Merry Christmas!!

J - You got no love for the "Party" or are you just not a Miley fan? Either way is understandable. YAYAYAY for KoL. I agree, depending on the day I have a different fave. I need to fill you in on CCC post-humously. Remind me, I'll send over a ton of songs. ;) Merry Christmas!!

Nikki - Word. I still cry about it. Kinda. They could have accomplished so much! Merry Christmas!!

John -- Haha! How are you coming on your list? I can't wait to read it and am very impatient. ;) Merry Christmas!!

Aaron -- That seems to be general consensus - "Party" is a guilty pleasure that not many people want to cop to. ;) And yes, sad but true about CCC. But at least we have Ro and Britt's careers to look forward to! :) Merry Christmas!!

Loy - I was always partial to "Closer" from the moment I heard the full thing, but my favorite now fluctuates between that, "Notion", "Sex On Fire", "Manhattan", "Revelry"...see, here I go rambling again. :) Love those boys! Merry Christmas!!

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