Deadshirt is Listening…Bringing you a rundown of our staff and guest contributors’ favorite new tracks released in the past week after they’ve had the weekend to blast them in their cars, in a club, alone in their rooms, etc.
Julian Ames is giving everything a new coat of paint to…
“Tom’s Diner” feat. Britney Spears (Suzanne Vega Cover)
Since being paid tribute on the Daft Punk track “Giorgio By Moroder,” the 75-year-old producer and songwriter has been capitalizing on being attached to the Grammy award-winning Random Access Memories in the form of an increase in high-profile DJing gigs, remixes, and singles. Those singles, “74 is the new 24,” “Right Here, Right Now,” and most recently “Tom’s Diner” are all leading up to the release of Moroder’s first album in 30 years, entitled Deja Vu. For the album, Moroder collaborates with a bunch of modern female pop stars like Sia, Charli XCX, Kylie Minogue, and others; this formula netted Moroder his initial success back in the seventies, working with artists like Donna Summer and Blondie’s Debbie Harry.
For his most recent single, Moroder again reaches into the past to update Suzanne Vega’s 1987 song “Tom’s Diner” with the help of Britney Spears. Instead of the Vega version’s mellow sensuality, the Moroder/Spears version is more upbeat and fit for today’s discotheq — I mean, clubs. Moroder breaks out all his favorite tricks on this track, like arpeggiated synths, electric guitar hits, and orchestral string. The famous melody and the “duh duhh’s” remain, sung by Spears, who continues to embrace electronic music’s influence in pop after her 2013 album Britney Jean. Much like Todd Terje enlisting Brian Ferry’s help in updating Robert Palmer’s “Johnny and Mary” last year, Giorgio Moroder finds success electro-ing up old pop songs with “Tom’s Diner.”
Dylan Roth is ready to give his heart to…
“Everybody Needs Salvation”
Fan Club 7”
Pop Rock/Fake Metal
Weezer recently relaunched their official fan club, and early adopters got a one-time chance at a limited-edition seven-inch single with an exclusive new track. Well, physically exclusive, anyway—the band was kind enough to put the song up on YouTube for the rest of us to enjoy. “Everybody Needs Salvation” is apparently an outtake from last year’s exceptional Everything WIll Be Alright in the End, and it certainly lives up to the quality of that album. “Everybody Needs Salvation” has a catchy pop rock melody, an indie rock vulnerability, and a delicious layer of eighties power metal mega-cheese. Don’t forget, Rivers Cuomo’s favorite rock group is and forever will be KISS, and that influence shows through really well here.
“Everybody Needs Salvation” isn’t just a musical match for the tone of EWBAITE, it’s also lyrically in step with the rest of the album, which was heavy with themes of growth and redemption. For decades, singer and principal songwriter Cuomo seemed to pride himself on his perpetual adolescence, but now, with songs like “Back to the Shack,” “Eulogy for a Rock Band,” “Foolish Father,” and now “Everybody Needs Salvation,” Rivers seems more willing than ever to think heavy thoughts and bear grown-up burdens—punctuated by the kind of guitar solos he used to play air guitar to as a kid.
If Weezer makes these fan club-exclusive releases a regular thing, they just might have persuaded me to join.
Mike Duquette is trying to smile at…
“Instant Crush” (Daft Punk cover)
Nearly two decades after Natalie Imbruglia burst onto the scene with the 1997 single “Torn” (and six years after her last album), the Australian chanteuse has returned to popcraft with a forthcoming album of covers made famous by male artists, aptly titled Male. The idea of Imbruglia lending her pleasant voice to a series of gender-bent covers is tantalizing, and with planned takes on The Cure’s “Friday I’m in Love,” Death Cab for Cutie’s “I Will Follow You Into the Dark,” and Pete Townshend’s “Let My Love Open the Door,” the album seems the right mix of poppy and semi-alternative.
Unfortunately, lead single “Instant Crush” (a cover of the extraordinarily underrated Daft Punk cut from Random Access Memories, which boasted The Strokes’ Julian Casablancas on lead vocals) is not the promising first volley it could have been. Imbruglia’s inoffensive read on the track is marred by producer Billy Mann’s middle-of-the-road sheen, recasting “Instant Crush” from moody, synth-hiccup love song to lite-FM coffeehouse jam. It’s too squeaky clean to provoke anything other than minor pleasantries, something I’m hoping the rest of the album avoids.