'Rebel Heart': Madonna's Unapologetic Pop Conquest (Album Review)

Once upon a time, there lived an #UnapologeticBitch named Madonna. She was baptized with #HolyWater but born with a #RebelHeart, which led her to take the road less traveled by. And in her quest to express herself and encourage the world to start #LivingForLove,  she eventually became #Iconic. 32…


Madonna, 'Rebel Heart': Track-By-Track (Part Two)

The last time we left off with Queen Of Everything Madonna's 13th studio album Rebel Heart, the record had only leaked in full once, and Snapchat and Grindr were still only being used for nudes...and "networking." My, how much has changed. By now, we've all watched Matadonna's spectacular,…


'Vulnicura': Björk Honors Her Pain With Her Most Raw Record Yet (Album Review)

"I better document this," Björk wearily sings on "Stonemilker," the opening song on her ninth studio album, Vulnicura (or, literally in Latin, "wound heal.") And so begins what is, undoubtedly, her most personal album to date. (Let's get the Björkney Jean joke out the way right now.) In…


Madonna, 'Rebel Heart': Track-By-Track (Part One)

Madonna, you bitch. You #unapologeticbitch. Last night — well, early this morning, or whenever you're reading this — the Queen Of Pop semi-released her 13th studio album, Rebel Heart, in a swift, Beyoncé-ian drop on iTunes. Of course, unlike Bey, Madonna's been digitally navigating us through…


Various Artists, 'Utada Hikaru No Uta' (Album Review)

Utada Hikaru hasn't released a studio album in over four years (that's well over 300 years by Japanese pop standards), but her presence in the music industry is still felt. Strongly. Back at the end of 2010, the prolific singer-songwriter announced that she would be taking some time off to live…


'Broke With Expensive Taste': Azealia Banks Puts Her Money Where Her Mouth Is (Album Review)

There was a time — the past two years, to be exact — that Broke With Expensive Taste existed merely as a punchline. But, in a testament to the true bizarreness of 2014, a time when Meghan Trainor, Iggy Azalea and Taylor Swift now rule the airwaves, Azealia Banks suddenly decided to drop her…


'Only Human': Cheryl Should Probably Start Caring Again (Album Review)

[dropcap size=big]I[/dropcap]t was perhaps all too prophetic that Only Human already sounded like an apology in album title form. "Sorry about this. I'm only human, loves!" That was just one of the signs, but really, Only Human missed the mark from the very beginning. Ever since Cheryl Tweedy Cole…


'1989': Taylor Swift Makes Her Triumphant Pop Debut (Album Review)

The year is 2014, and Taylor Swift has produced one of the strongest pop records of the year in 1989. But...her? Even if you've never counted yourself as a Taylor Swift fan (a Swiftie, for the sake of political correctness), it would be irresponsible (or impossible?) to look past her thunderous…


'Aquarius': Tinashe Leads The Way (Album Review)

RCA The dawn of a new era is finally upon us. While "2 On" is most likely the point of entry for most fans of Tinashe in the past year, the LA-bred songstress has been working her way up in the industry for years. Of course, you should already know that. "Tired of y’all not doing your research,…


'Queen Of The Clouds': Tove Lo Takes Pop To New Heights (Album Review)

To no one's surprise, it was up to Sweden to save pop music this year. In a way, Tove Lo's success feels somewhat fated: After graduating from the prestigious Rytmus Music School in Stockholm — which counts legends like Robyn and Erik Hassle as alumni, among others — Tove started playing gigs in a…


FKA Twigs, 'LP1' (Album Review)

To me, the most important and innovative thing happening in music right now is something that can be lumped into a (very broad) genre called "future R&B": Moody, minimal music for the midnight hour comprising dozens of acts, including The Weeknd, Jhene Aiko, James Blake, BANKS and Tinashe. FKA…


G.R.L.'s Self-Titled Debut EP Is Pretty G.R.E.A.T., Actually (Review)

When you think about it, it should be all systems G.O. with G.R.L. The Robin Antin-curated, Dr. Luke-helmed fivesome — made up of an X Factor USA finalist (Simone Battle), an ex-Paradiso Girl (Lauren Bennett) a slay-sational actress (Natasha Slayton), a former Canadian pop starlet (Emmalyn…