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When was the last time you bought an actual record from an actual record store?

We highly recommend giving it a go if it’s been a while…

It really is good for the soul… or rock… or pop… or alternative… or electronica… or hip hop… or classical… or country… or dance… or folk… or heavy metal… or jazz… or (insert weird sub-genre here) or world.

Fresh Bloods!


We’ve been crushin’ pretty hard on Sydney party punks Bloods ever since they designed a pizza inspired pair of cons for our In Their Shoes initiative last year, and it looks like the love affair is set to continue with the release of their brand new tune Want It.

3 minute garage pop-punk perfection is the order of the day on the new jam, and when you delve into the trio’s impressive back catalogue it becomes obvious it’s a formula they know all to well.

Want It is the first taste off the groups forthcoming debut long player which is due out in August via new label Tiny Galaxy, and if it, and last years heavily slept on Golden Fang EP are anything to go by we’re in for a real treat.

Check the rad video below and be sure to head over to Bloods’ Soundcloud page to cop a free download… You know you want it.

Triple J’s Hottest 100 Analysed - The Decline Of Rock


via The Guardian

Rock is down, hip hop is up. The Guardian compiled the genres of every song in every Hottest 100 since Triple J began the annual list of listeners’ favourite records of the year in 1993. Explore how Australia’s taste in music has changed over time by checking out the graphs below or heading over to the Guardian to check the article and further nerdy analysis in full.

The decline of the guitar

Between 1993 (the first time Hottest 100 entries were limited to a single year) and 2006, rock and alternative bands dominated the Triple J Hottest 100. Brisbane’s Powderfinger – who have had 22 tracks in the hottest 100 in all, more than anyone else – helped make 2000 the most guitar-heavy year of all, when 50% of the songs in the chart fell into those genres. Powderfinger occupied the No 1 and No 3 slots, while the top 10 was crowded with bands who were either already filling stadiums or on their way to doing so: perennials like U2 and the Red Hot Chili Peppers and younger bands. Over the first half of the ’00s, the ’90s axe heroes were replaced by younger, more indie bands; the Vines, Jet and Wolfmother from Australia; and the Killers, the White Stripes, the Strokes and Queens of the Stone Age from the States. But in 2006, the proportion of rock and alternative tracks in the Hottest 100 dropped abruptly, to 35.5%, and has declined swiftly ever since, falling to just 12% in 2011 and 2012.


The ascent of electronic music

Taking electronic music to include hip-hop as well as house and techno – basically, records without guitars – we see a decline from 1993 (18%) to 1998 (9.5%), then a rise to 17.5% in 2001; a slump to 4.5% in 2005; followed by a swift upward trajectory to its all-time high of 40% in 2012. This has been driven mainly by the surging popularity of rap since the early ’00s, but also an increasing appetite by Triple J listeners for electronic dance music, which from 2006 has grown in popularity as guitar music has declined, initially thanks to the likes of the Presets, Prodigy, Fatboy Slim and the Chemical Brothers but latterly driven by acts like Flume, Pendulum, Calvin Harris and Skrillex.


The rise of hip hop & rap

Before 2000, it would take a massive international hit like 2Pac’s California Love or Warren G’s Regulate to get rap into the Hot 100, or something that crossed over to an indie/alternative audience like Cypress Hill. Since then, however, the amount of hip-hop in the Hottest 100 has exploded, thanks partly to homegrown rappers like Illy (four tracks in four years), Bliss N Eso (six tracks in three years) and, overwhelmingly, Hilltop Hoods, who have had 12 tracks in the chart in less than a decade, making them more popular with Triple J listeners than Jay-Z and Kanye West combined.


Whatever happened to grunge?

In the early-to-mid ’90s, Pearl Jam, Hole, Stone Temple Pilots and scene godfathers Nirvana made grunge the toast of young Australia – even more so when Silverchair came along and gave the country a grunge band of its own. By the second half of the ’90s, grunge declined as British bands like Oasis (No 1 in 1995 with Wonderwall, although with only three records in the chart over the years), the Verve and Blur ascended, superseded in popularity at the turn of the century by the nu-metal brigade (Korn et al). But while to purists Kurt Cobain’s death marked the real end of grunge, in some ways its popularity has endured in the shape of Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl’s band the Foo Fighters. They’ve had 21 records in the Hottest 100 (three of them in the top 10), making them second in popularity only to Powderfinger.


The changing face of pop

Pop is a broad category, ranging from Kylie to Regina Spektor, but its popularity has increased from 12% to 16% since Triple J started counting down the Hottest 100 by year in 1993. Australians seemed to lose the taste for pop in 2003, where it accounted for only 6% of the total, but the next year it was back decisively, with 18% – thanks in part to Franz Ferdinand (whose Take Me Out was that year’s No 1) and the Scissor Sisters. Latterly, Lily Allen (who had four records in the 100 in 2006 alone) and Gotye (No 1 in 2011) have made pop music more than the guilty pleasure it appeared to be for Australians back in 1993, when it was represented by records including Ace of Base’s All that She Wants and East 17’s Deep.

A growing fondness for folk

Folk now makes up a significant proportion of the Hottest 100, its high watermark to date coming in 2011, when it made up 8% of the overall total. This was thanks to multiple entries by Bon Iver, Boy & Bear, Owl Eyes and Sister Lover Keeper. Mumford and Sons have done a lot to make folk mainstream – their song Little Lion Man took the No 1 slot in 2009. But the most popular folk band with Triple J listeners are the John Butler Trio, who have had an impressive 15 records on the Hottest 100 between 2001 and 2010.

Guilty Pop Pleasure Perfection

Dance people. Pitchfork is streaming the new Icona Pop album here.

And if you love it as much as us you can buy it here.

Lady Gaga vs. Katy Perry

Popular culture … a world that makes pure sense…. Or does it?

Two of the biggest names in pop music drop tracks within the span of 13 hours of each other!

Is it rivalry? Is it a battle for pop supremacy?

Queens of pop: though creatively and stylistic different, suspiciously both tracks leaked on the same day! Each track representing something true to their artist - Roar goes for lyrical uplift, Applause hits with sonic heft.

Gaga, in her classic defiance of the norm was last week filmed nude in a bizarre Kickstarter video for the Marina Abramovic Institute. The Lead single from the fourth album Applause is a tad different from Gaga’s previously releases – singing the verses in an almost stiff, half spoken manner, though chorus kicks in and you can feel the energy of the song build.

Perry on the other hand revealed album PRISM on a GOLD PLATTED truck – No small announcement that made its way around the states. Roar the first single from the artist since her divorce from Russell Brand, sending a lyrically empowering tune with a killer hook in the chorus.

A little bit of pop competition never hurt anyone though the Little Monsters and the Katy Cats may have already chosen sides? The pop world just got a little more exciting.

-Em W

Is Bruno Mars Channeling Mark Holden In New Video?

A thought for your Valentines Day…

Maybe it’s just wishful thinking or a flower thing but do you think Bruno Mars

is channeling Aussie legend Mark Holden in his latest video??

OK so he obviously isn’t, but wouldn’t it be great if he was?

Just another Cool Accident I guess?

The State Of Pop In 2012


Now even though Cool Accidents doesn’t often delve into the world of pop, I thought it might be worth our while doing a wrap of the years best pop tunes, I started compiling the list and realised damn! there’s been some BIG tunes over the past 12 months, From inescapable earwormers by Carly Rae Jepsen,Taylor Swift & Bruno Mars to the novelty pop perfection of Psy, not too mention our own Gotye’s worldwide domination with Somebody That I Used To Know*, 2012 has been a great year for pop music & guilty pleasures.

Halfway through my search I stumbled across this video below by DJ Earworm, who has gone and done the hard work for anyone compiling a list of the years best by expertly chopping up 25 of 2012’s hottest tracks into tiny pieces then rearranging them into this 4 minute mashup masterpiece that takes elements of each track and forms, in effect an entirely new song. Wow.

The amazing video above contains elements of the pop hits below:
Gotye and Kimbra - Somebody That I Used To Know * Fun. - Some Nights * Carly Rae Jepsen - Call Me Maybe * Maroon 5 - One More Night * Fun. and Janelle Monáe - We Are Young * Maroon 5 and Wiz Khalifa - Payphone * Ellie Goulding - Lights * Rihanna - Diamonds * Bruno Mars - Locked Out Of Heaven * Ke$Ha - Die Young * Kelly Clarkson - Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) * Flo Rida - Good Feeling * Nicki Minaj - Starships * The Wanted - Glad You Came * Adele - Set Fire To The Rain * Lumineers - Ho Hey * One Direction - What Makes You Beautiful * Flo Rida and Sia - Wild Ones * Phillip Phillips - Home * Bruno Mars - It Will Rain * Katy Perry - Wide Awake * Alex Clare - Too Close * PSY - Gangnam Style * Taylor Swift - We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together * Flo Rida - Whistle

For all things pop music be sure to check out our sister site the Pop Mob blog.

*OK so we had this first back in 2011, WE WERE AHEAD OF THE CURVE FOR ONCE!

Does Bruno Mars Have a Space In Hip Hop?

via Rap Genius

If America’s culture is, as the writer Albert Murray once said, “incontestably mulatto,” it’s no wonder that one of its most successful pop stars is the culturally omnivorous Bruno Mars. Mars, who released his new single “Locked Out of Heaven” yesterday, was born in Hawaii to Puerto Rican and Filipino parents and is multi-racial himself, but that’s not even the beginning of the story. Much like the pop of the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, an obvious influence on and precursor to Mars’ own chart-toppers, his music brings together disparate strands of our heritage. For someone so early in his career, Mars has managed not only to have his name on a stunningly large number of smash hit songs, but to do something both timely and classic-sounding in the often-disposable realm of pop.

The modern inventors of that realm were the hit songwriters of the late 1950’s and early 60’s. Mostly working out of two buildings in New York City (the Brill Building and 1650 Broadway), young white songwriters would meld the R&B and blues song forms from so-called “race records”, the Latin rhythms they heard in the uptown streets, and teenage lyrical concerns – many of them were fresh out of high school themselves – into songs like “Under the Boardwalk,” “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow,” “Spanish Harlem,” “Hound Dog,” “The Loco-motion,” and countless more, often sung by young black and Latin artists. That approach would spread its tentacles to Detroit, where Motown would use a similar assembly-line approach (teams of songwriters, arrangers, producers. and musicians handing songs off to singers or groups) to world-changing effect.

A similarly polyglot style would come to shape the music of the artist formerly known as Peter Hernandez. Mars’ work trades heavily on the pop forms perfected by the teams of writers mentioned above. Even his most under-developed early work has pre-choruses, bridges, and all the other hallmarks of pop songcraft. His songs, like those of his predecessors, are concise and effective, containing simple and catchy melodic ideas, and complete with the “ah”’s and “yeah yeah yeah”s that have carried songs along since well before John and Paul.

But, much like the pop of the past mixed up influences from different races and genres, Bruno’s music does as well. His music contains a significant amount of reggae, enough that he actually collaborated with a Marley kid, and his vocal style owes more than a little to modern, melisma-heavy R&B singers.

What makes Mars the most modern, though, and not just an updated version of that dude he used to impersonate, is the fact that he understands and incorporates elements of hip-hop. It’s no accident that his first hits (“Nothin’ On You” and “Billionaire”) were hooks for rap songs. He is able to use a certain type of lyrical swagger, and the reason both “Billionaire” and “Fuck You” (written by Mars and his production and writing partners, The Smeezingtons for Cee-Lo) work so well is that they graft a materialistic, aggressive (notice the prominent cursing in both tunes) attitude onto a gorgeous melody. This incongruity grabs the listener immediately, and is no small part of the fact that both songs were such giant hits.

While Mars is far from the only modern pop singer to sport some rap flavor, it goes deeper with him than most. His whole approach to music is far more hip-hop than its sound might at first indicate. Rap listeners are used to hearing loops – short musical phrases repeated over and over throughout the song. Many of Mars’ best songs simply move this template to the pop world. They use the same chord progression, without variation, through the whole tune – even while keeping pop song structure (verse, chorus, etc.) This is hardly unique to Mars – Katy Perry and Lady Gaga have experimented with these ideas as well. But Mars has arguably done it the best, thanks mostly to stellar arrangements. The songs change enough in instrumentation, dynamics, and structure that they don’t suffer at all for not changing chords. Think of his monster hit “Just The Way You Are,” which somehow managed to make a four-chord progression at a crawlingly slow tempo into a huge single. Or “Marry You,” which never loses its sense of fun despite its harmonic stasis. This is in contrast to the Gagas of the world who use their loops in a form closer to dance music, where changes of all kinds are kept to a bare minimum.

Mars has both his own songwriting and arranging chops to thank for his success with loops, but also hip-hop itself, and the people who listen to it. There is a huge audience that is used to, and in fact expects, music to stay largely static throughout songs. The fact that Mars has been able to use that fact to his advantage rather than as a limitation says a great deal about his songwriting ability and smarts. If he keeps up his current level of output, there may be room for him in the discussion of great pop songwriters, along with Goffin and King, Leiber and Stoller, Smokey Robinson, and Holland-Dozier-Holland. Will we still love him tomorrow? No one knows, of course, but only a fool would bet against him based on what he’s accomplished so far.

-Same Old Shawn for Rap Genius

The good people over at The Guardian have come up with an alphabetical guide to modern day pop, From Afrobeats to Zombie Rock and everywhere in between, It’s a comprehensive list of genres, some of which you’ll know and others that sound like they were made up 5 minutes ago.
You can head on over to the Guardian site for the full A-Z breakdown
and just in case you thought these were made up, they’ve even gone and created an accompanying A-Z Spotify playlist which gives you an audio taste of 25 of the 26 genres (Tumblrwave is just too damn new apparently) Check it out below.

The good people over at The Guardian have come up with an alphabetical guide to modern day pop, From Afrobeats to Zombie Rock and everywhere in between, It’s a comprehensive list of genres, some of which you’ll know and others that sound like they were made up 5 minutes ago.

You can head on over to the Guardian site for the full A-Z breakdown

and just in case you thought these were made up, they’ve even gone and created an accompanying A-Z Spotify playlist which gives you an audio taste of 25 of the 26 genres (Tumblrwave is just too damn new apparently) Check it out below.