As it nears the first initial anniversary since the French dance powerhouses announced their split this year in February, I thought it be good to have a glance back at their influential chaos on the world of dance music.
Simply put as house pioneers to the eclectic halls of dance floors, Daft Punk were by-and-large the greatest acts to emerge as tastemakers in the 2000s and established creditors of mainstream by the 2010s.
As chique and shiny as their exterior costumes, their catalogue is awash with fanciful dancefloor grooves that is fitting for any celebration playlist. From progressive house rock of Da Funk from 1997 debut of Homework to coming-of-age Discovery in 2001 with venturings of acid-techno, Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger to anthemic funk of Random Access Memories in 2013 which really put the duo on the map frontier. Undoubtedly Insant Crush and Get Lucky pushed the boundaries of mainstream dance-funk collaborations with Pharrell Williams and was their most successful release ever.
Random Access Memoriesreaped the rewards of scooping up 5 Grammys for Best Dance/Electronica Album and Album of the Year to name a few. The devilishly hook-and-sinkerof Get Lucky caused a fetish heatwave to streak across the industry, having sold 4 million copies in the first quarter, in US alone.
After establishing themselves as the creditors to the business of dance, they finally hang their helmets after 28 years in the music industry. To both Guy-Manuel Homem Christo and Thomas Bangalter — many thanks for the (random access) memories. Every moment on the dance floor was worth remembering when your tracks were spinning.
One of the biggest stars of the century is back. Stark in maturity, complexion and musicality, Billie’s “Happier Than Ever.” Her genre-defining sound has been prolific since the debut of ocean eyes, and her first debut, WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO? with bad guy and when’s the party over. But this time, gone are the baggy clothes, the adolescent catharsis and the unique hair. This time, comes a new Billie. All grown up. Illustrious, sleek and sexy, Billie Eilish comes of age. And with, her first vogue cover. In what seems like a turning of age, she has become the female face of modern diplomacy, charting course for changes not just in an old-fashioned music industry for women, but the restrictions women face in every day-to-day environments.
If the album name goes by anything, safe to say, she is finally happy and comfortable with who she is, out and proud within her music, too.
Happier Than Ever brings a more wiser, self-reflective approach to Billie’s artistry with Getting Older, which tackles responsibility, sexual harassment and reflecting the distress she has gone through within the music industry. Which to me, after seeing her grown up in such a difficult industry being in the limelight, is quite sad.
“Things I once enjoyed,
Just keep me employed now.”
Fan pre-favourites, my future, Your Power and Lost Cause are strong contenders within an album fluxed with empowering emotion, undulating electronics and lustful lyrics that are so Billie. GOLDWING and Everybody Dies are my favourites among those already chosen, with the atmospheric space scapes making a return to her sophomore album. It’s a refreshing take on her music, shedding the skin of the angry from her debut and returning to her former modest self on her new and nurturing EP of don’t smile at me.
Worth the listen – even for the status of the artist.
Weak punchlines, awkward moments, chaotic introductions and female artists stealing the show, the Brit Awards 2021 had all types of funny and momentous occasions.
Despite popularity trumping musicality with these award shows, it’s still a good laugh and a watch from all things current in the music industry.
With the controversial work of Jack Whitehall returning to host the show again for the third year in a row, the show was flux with jokes that failed to hit the mark, jokes that trump a snort or chortle, or jokes that didn’t catch on at all. But despite the awkward moments with the socially distanced audiences, and flight-testing COVID-friendly live performances, the award show allowed us to delve a little deeper into what we should expect post-lockdown for our live music industry.
Lapping up the fame and notoriety of powerful women in the music industry, Dua Lipa, Little Mix, Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish and HAIM all made stellar appearances for Best British Group, Best British Album, Best International Group and International accolades that trifled a new domination, the Global Icon award, where previous winners have been Bowie and Elton John.
As they fed off male counterparts with the likes of The 1975 and Biffy Clyro, they made a point to prove for their cultural impact with their music – and rightly so.
Swift and Lipa also both discussed within their speeches, the power of stepping up and rising against resistance from those before them. The iconic moment captured, and taken aboard as every single woman up and down the country effortlessly echo and agree their words.
After the sham of The Grammys, Awards for the Brits wanted to get on the good side of chart-topping electro-pop maestro, The Weeknd as he collected his Best InternationalMale Artist while singing in the rain with his song, Save Your Tears, pre-recorded due to the inability to fly outside the Green Zone into and out of the United States.
The rising scenes of drill music also made an appeareance with J Hus and Headie One making fantastic live show performances and appearances at the awards show, demonstrating just how unique and varied our music scene really is.
Fashion-favourite and pop-lovin’ soloist, Harry Styles swept up the surprises with him taking home the Best British Single with Watermelon Sugar, whilst my favourite artist from the year, Arlo Parks got the fantastic praise she deserves by winning Breakthrough Artist for the year.
My top wtf moments from this year has to be the incontrollable use of ITV’s decision to mute the audio on some explicable language – despite it being past the watermark hour of 9pm. Whitehall made them hit the button a fair few times with him celebrating the majority of the audience being made up of our key workers – and the “corporate wankers” to boot in the boxes too. Capaldi also was a favourite of the mute, as his off-the-cuff introduction speech was simply hilarious and ridiculous at the same time.
“Hello motherfuckers! Listen guys… I’m fucking sweating – it’s like a swamp down there, I’m telling you. Sweaty bollocks.”
In an attempt to follow the controversial steeds of Oasis before him, he certainly made it more entertaining to watch nearing the final strands of the 2-and-a-half runtime of the show.
All in all, it was somewhat of a showing of what British music has to offer and really shows just how iconic and varied our scenes really are. Despite the fact that there are thousands more artists who create more compelling music than those who won but … popularity trumps musicality with these awards shows.
But growing up with 6 million dollars net worth at 18 in music is an incredulous feat that no one would ever dare to undertake.
Ellish’s sudden global rise to fame has been seeped over her music ever since she released Ocean Eyes at the age of 15.
Her music ultimately portrays such an intoxicating environment – with melancholic moments and agitated arks when it simply got too much.
Now just turned 19, it seems Ellish has veered onto a new path.
With her second studio album, Happier Than Ever.
Is this a turn of the tides for the artist finally being happy and comfortable with who she is?
With the help of her producing brother, Finneas, Billie has had the eternal spotlight on her since she was 15, and is no stranger to enduring the ugly side of such an industry.
Certainly, starting so young in an industry will almost never result in a healthy life.
Billie Eilish has used her empowering status and power figure in the arts to cast light on important topics such as depression, body image, self-doubt and a certain sense ofimposter syndrome.
Despite being having such a different childhood to many other esteemed teenagers, we have never felt connected more to a music artist than Billie Eilish.
With an overwhelming sense of dread with tours, press and the unbelievable amount of pressure that comes with it all, Eilish has been growing up with us since 2017 is truly an avid watch, and I would recommend to watch her documentary, The World’s a Little Blurry.
don’t smile at me, 2017
Her acclaimed status started gaining momentum when the temptations of don’t smile at me appeared in 2017, with the cardinal feature of Ocean Eyes, which certainly made heads turn.
WHEN WE FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?, 2019
After a few scary years up and down struggling with anxiety, depression and true identity all the while growing up as a teenager, her debut album, WHEN WE FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO? in 2019. Although slightly more contemptuous in style compared to the likes of Ocean Eyes, it showed an insatiable side to the teenage artist we hadn’t seen before. The sheer humble beginnings of such a debut scored her one of the biggest North America debuts in North America, and solidified her colossal rise with 5 GRAMMYs.
She is now set on a new journey on her own truly reflecting where she feels with herself right now. With us already being indulged with the soothing tones of Your Power, I feel this album will allow us to see another chapter in this artists’ life. Going off the decision of such a title, let’s hope it’s a happier one …
Vanity Fair Interview: One thing that is fascinating to witness and watch the simply intriguing journey this young artist has gone through to super pop stardom is to watch the Vanity Fair interview with Billie Eilish: Same Interview series. You can start the series via the link below:
“I want to know if it’s all worth it, because it’s tiring as heck.”
-Billie Eilish, 2017.
“You forget that I’m literally 18, it’s funny to be expected to have found myself and stick with it, you know? I’m trying different things out, I’m different ways of living. I’m just trying it all out cause I’m a growing f*cking girl.”
-Billie Eilish, Same Interview, The Fourth Year: Nov 30, 2020
In a first for the academy show, stand-in president, Harvey Mason Jr. declared a speech last night, to join together and share the love of music, as it should be loved.
Amongst the controversy and boycotting drama with The Weeknd and Zayn Malik, Mason addressed these concerns in an aid to “build a new Recording Academy that we can be proud of.”
“Tonight I’m here to ask the entire music community to join in – work with us, not against us – as we build a new Recording Academy that we can all be proud of. One that will continue to do the work and serve everyone in the industry. Now we might not get it right 100 percent of the time and we certainly won’t be able to make everyone happy, but we will provide support in times of need.
We will preserve music and educate the next generation. We will advocate for the rights of all creators to make sure they can continue to earn a fair living making music. And we will stand up for what’s right and fight for greater diversity and more equal representation. This is not a vision for tomorrow, but the job for today. Our work is important because music is important.” –
HARVEY MASON JR, Interim President and CEO
It certainly seems that the GRAMMYs are keeping themselves barely above water, and making us all aware that they themselves are aware of the outcries and rebuttal the award show has recently received. Striving for “greater diversity and more equal representation” – in an age where it seems easier to do so than ever before with our immense talent from all areas – only time will tell if the Recording Academy will set out to what they’ve promised over the next few years.
Let me know if this will ring true, or is merely here-say to protect their image.
Here all the winners from the Grammys 2021:
Questionable nominations; inconsistent qualities – is this the same case of “Popularity over Musicality”?
Record Of The Year
‘Black Parade’, Beyoncé ‘Colors’, Black Pumas ‘Rockstar’, DaBaby featuring Roddy Ricch ‘Say So’, Doja Cat ‘Everything I Wanted’, Billie Eilish – winner ‘Don’t Start Now’, Dua Lipa ‘Circles’, Post Malone ‘Savage’, Megan Thee Stallion featuring Beyoncé
Album Of The Year
‘Chilombo’, Jhené Aiko ‘Black Pumas’, Black Pumas ‘Everyday Life’, Coldplay ‘Djesse Vol.3’, Jacob Collier ‘Women In Music Pt. III’, Haim ‘Future Nostalgia’, Dua Lipa ‘Hollywood’s Bleeding’, Post Malone ‘Folklore’, Taylor Swift – winner
Song Of The Year
‘Black Parade’, Beyoncé ‘The Box’, Roddy Ricch ‘Cardigan’, Taylor Swift ‘Circles’, Post Malone ‘Don’t Start Now’, Dua Lipa ‘Everything I Wanted’, Billie Eilish ‘I Can’t Breathe’, H.E.R. – winner ‘If The World Was Ending’, JP Saxe featuring Julia Michaels
Best New Artist
Ingrid Andress Phoebe Bridgers Chika Noah Cyrus D Smoke Doja Cat Kaytranada Megan Thee Stallion – winner
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
‘Un Dia (One Day)’, J Balvin, Dua Lipa, Bad Bunny and Tainy ‘Intentions’, Justin Bieber featuring Quavo ‘Dynamite’, BTS ‘Rain On Me’, Lady Gaga with Ariana Grande – winner ‘Exile’, Taylor Swift featuring Bon Iver
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album
‘Blue Umbrella’, Daniel Tashian ‘True Love: A Celebration Of Cole Porter’, Harry Connick Jr. ‘American Standard’, James Taylor – winner ‘Unfollow The Rules’, Rufus Wainwright ‘Judy’, Renée Zellweger
Best Pop Vocal Album
‘Changes’, Justin Bieber ‘Chromatica’, Lady Gaga ‘Future Nostalgia’, Dua Lipa – winner ‘Fine Line’, Harry Styles ‘Folklore’, Taylor Swift
Best Dance Recording
‘On My Mind’, Diplo & Sidepiece ‘My High’, Disclosure featuring Aminé & Slowthai ‘The Difference’, Flume featuring Toro y Moi ‘Both Of Us’, Jayda G ’10%’, Kaytranada featuring Kali Uchis – winner
‘Axiom’, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah ‘Chronology Of A Dream: Live At The Village Vanguard’, Jon Batiste ‘Take The Stairs’, Black Violin ‘Americana’, Grégoire Maret, Romain Collin & Bill Frisell ‘Live At The Royal Albert Hall’, Snarky Puppy – winner
Best Rock Performance
‘Shameika’, Fiona Apple – winner ‘Not’, Big Thief ‘Kyoto’, Phoebe Bridgers ‘The Steps’, Haim ‘Stay High’, Brittany Howard ‘Daylight’, Grace Potter
Best Metal Performance
‘Bum-Rush’, Body Count – winner ‘Underneath’, Code Orange ‘The In-Between’, In This Moment ‘Bloodmoney’, Poppy ‘Executioner’s Tax (Swing Of The Ace) – Live’, Power Trip
Best Rock Song
‘Kyoto’, Phoebe Bridgers ‘Lost In Yesterday’, Tame Impala ‘Not’, Big Thief ‘Shameika’, Fiona Apple ‘Stay High’, Brittany Howard – winner
Best Rock Album
‘A Hero’s Death’, Fontaines D.C. ‘Kiwanuka’, Michael Kiwanuka ‘Daylight’, Grace Potter ‘Sound & Fury’, Sturgill Simpson ‘The New Abnormal’, The Strokes – winner
Best Alternative Music Album
‘Fetch The Boltcutters’, Fiona Apple – winner ‘Hyperspace’, Beck ‘Punisher’, Phoebe Bridgers ‘Jaime’, Brittany Howard ‘The Slow Rush’, Tame Impala
Best R&B Performance
‘Lightning & Thunder’, Jhené Aiko & John Legend ‘Black Parade’, Beyoncé – winner ‘All I Need’, Jacob Collier featuring Mahalia & Ty Dolla $ign ‘Goat Head’, Brittany Howard ‘See Me’, Emily King
Best Traditional R&B Performance
‘Sit On Down’, The Baylor Project featuring Jean Baylor & Marcus Baylor ‘Wonder What She Thinks Of Me’, Chloe X Halle ‘Let Me Go’, Mykal Kilgore ‘Anything For You’, Ledisi – winner ‘Distance’, Yebba
Best R&B Song
‘Better Than I Imagined’, Robert Glasper featuring H.E.R. & Meshell Ndegeocello – winner ‘Black Parade’, Beyoncé ‘Collide’, Tiana Major9 & Earthgang ‘Do It’, Chloe X Halle ‘Slow Down’, Skip Marley & H.E.R.
Best Progressive R&B Album
‘Chilombo’, Jhené Aiko ‘Ungodly Hour’, Chloe X Halle ‘Free Nationals’, Free Nationals ‘Fuck Yo Feelings’, Robert Glasper ‘It Is What It Is’, Thundercat – winner