Tag Archives: miley cyrus

Music to Your Ears – Best of the Year: Songs Part One

So we’re trying something different this year, as I’ve mentioned the past couple of editions – I’m a big fan of brackets and tournaments, so I figured I’d pick my four favorite songs from each season of 2017 (Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn) and pit them against each other. I’m going to give the lowdown on why I chose them and all that, of course, signifying why they’re the best sixteen songs of the year.

This is where you come in: This week and the subsequent three Tuesdays I’ll be asking you to vote for what you think is the best of the best. The first four matchups are today, below, and on Thursday I’ll reveal the other four face-offs.

Continue reading Music to Your Ears – Best of the Year: Songs Part One


Music to Your Ears – Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Shania Twain and Wolf Alice

Yeah, yeah I know, another day, another week of falling behind. Life comes at you fast, you gotta know when not to mind that last week’s music is now this week’s music. Here’s some reviews, enjoy:

Miley Cyrus – Younger Now

I have been lauding the genius of songs “Malibu” and “Younger Now”, the title track off of Miley Cyrus’ newest edition. What I wasn’t ready for was that these would be the only two great tracks. Don’t get me wrong, Miley is making some good stuff, but it all sort of blends together. After you get past those two singles, a strangely indigestible duet with Dolly Parton pops up, “Rainbowland”. It stops the album flat and you’re not quite sure if you care to continue. The effervescence of the first two songs never truly returns, as songs like “I Would Die for You” and “Bad Mood” re-hash many of the same notions and never really attempt anything exciting instrumentally. Eventually the whole thing fades into the background and you may find yourself wishing for the younger Miley, one that was more fun and entertaining.

Key Tracks: Malibu / Younger Now / Inspired

Continue reading Music to Your Ears – Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Shania Twain and Wolf Alice

Music to Your Ears – ‘Murica Edition

All hail the stars and stripes – sorry to our international readers, but we’re all about America here today. Well, probably by the time I finish this write-up, it’ll be the 5th, a far more important holiday (Tristan’s birthday). However, we here at Interjections find music as American as apple pie, so without further adieu, we present you with our top four picks from the spring season, packaged and ready for the final sixteen at the end of the year:

In addition, I wanted to highlight the only new items worth mentioningfrom the past two weeks (besides the oft on repeat Baby Driver soundtrack):

Imagine Dragons – Evolve

With a solid following already devoted to the band, what more could we want to add to this already strikingly impressive band? Well first thing’s first, they want to provide us with a collection of catchy tunes to help us rock the warm nights away. What better than having Dolph Lundgren join you in your first music video from the album? There’s not much more to say, but this is definitely one of the most average rock albums of the year, and that’s saying a lot given the state of “rock” albums. A lot of the album sounds similar, and while I’m not sure it’s outstanding for any casual fans, there are some highlights here, and big fans of the band will be pleased.

Key Tracks: Believer / I Don’t Know Why / Whatever It Takes

Sorry for the delay, but we’re all ready to dive right into the summer, aren’t we? Next week there will be the second full HAIM album, as well as the comeback of Broken Social Scene, as well as some likely surprises!

Music to Your Ears – Paramore, Harry Styles and April Showers

As part of the recent hiatus, I was feeling a little burnt out, and I hit a week where there was only one significant album release – Kendrick Lamar’s Damn. I don’t consider myself an expert, only because my listening extends to passing by some stuff on the radio and Childish Gambino. I expect to expand my knowledge, branch out a bit, and I’m starting with this. Truth is, it’s likely one of the best entries into rap I could have. It’s one of the meatiest albums I’ve listened to, period, and I expect this to be cited as one of the best of the year. If nothing else, I can tell it’s good, even if I’m not relating to it.

As for the rest of the April, I have a few words for some releases:

Incubus – 8

Glad to have them back, and Brandon Boyd brings a sorely missed vocal tremble, unsettling in its core and at the same time soothing lyrically. The band is still chugging along after all these years, and while they may not be as crazy as their youth, the maturity lends itself to some more serious fare, and the anger brimming on the surface in years past is still there, just deep down in their experienced souls.

Key Tracks: Glitterbomb / Nimble Bastard / Throw Out the Map

Gorillaz – Humanz

I may be in the minority, but this is a missed opportunity. I think it’s great having guest artists, but it’s simply too dull to even register. At this point, I’d rather have Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett focus on what they bring to the table. This all feels like a cash grab, more like the band got bored and played session behind a bunch of incongruent collaborators. In some ways, I’d rather they’d retired after Plastic Beach.

Key Tracks: Let Me Out, I guess…it’s all rather disappointing.

For this week, a few new instant classics debuted:

Paramore – After Laughter

Isn’t it interesting when a guilty pleasure becomes a beloved treasure? Anyone out there have a band like this? I dismissed Paramore after 2007’s “Misery Business”. I figured that would be a fun piece of my summer, but little did I know how much of an impact the badn would have on my seven years later with their seminal self-titled album. The songs contained within that record became so integral to my life that I still tense up at the memories brought on by certain tracks. So you can understand how hotly anticipated this album was for me, and I’m actually glad that it dropped earlier than I expected, a bit of a surprise this past weekend. Hayley Williams continues to exemplify the awkward balladeer, forcing me to re-examine my own current emotions on life. Listening to several tracks, I shook my head and thought about how much I could relate. If nothing else, Paramore took the mantle of what emo music began to leave behind with bands like Panic! at the Disco and Fall Out Boy. Their brand of self-immolation sparks a certain cynical optimism that belies the cheeriness evoked from every melody. I’m glad to have fallen in love with them after all, it was well worth it.

Key Tracks: Forgiveness / Told You So / Pool / Fake Happy

Harry Styles – Harry Styles

The Twitter world was abuzz with the hot takes on now solo frontman Harry Styles’ debut album, and for good reason. While I’m not sure what he styles (natch) himself as, Harry certainly has the bravado in check, as he lays his heart on the table for us to hear. In a brief story showcase – there are a scant ten tracks here – Styles blossoms is way in the one direction (natch) he could go – up. ‘Sign of the Times’ is a standard breakout single, radio ready and full of lyrics like “we never learn, we been here before”. For someone I didn’t expect much from, given he’s this generation’s version of Justin Timberlake, he’s proving himself more like that success story than others like his fellow bandmate Zayn Malik. (clearly the Chris Kirkpatrick, right?) The good news is that Styles will almosts certainly be able to build a career off of this, albeit slowly, as this album isn’t the be all and end all that Twitter is crowing about. I give him credit for being a rugged songwriter, but if he can harness that voice of his to better prove his point, he’ll take the world by storm

Key Tracks: Two Ghosts / Kiwi / Ever Since New York / Sweet Creature

Miley Cyrus – “Malibu”

Cory’s girl is back with some of the most delightful tones I’ve heard in a while. Gone is her bad girl persona, which is an obviously manufactured move, but who cares? Pop stars these days always have to reinvent themselves, and Cyrus is a master at it. If this is the direction she’s headed in, I’m all for it – she can handle the Katy Perry stadium shows and still feel down to earth, but not end up your prototypical acoustic songstresses like my girl Rachael Yamagata. Miley’s husky contralto does not overwhelm her here, as she discovers a new register to wax poetic on a fluffy memory of a day by the ocean. Let’s hope that the rest of the upcoming album is as demure as this, she’ll be putting her money where her mouth is.

Anyway, glad to be back. We’ll perhaps see some more tunes next week, as old favorite Land of Talk reemerges from the ashes, plus more!

Crisis in Six Scenes Review

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The Jimmy Hendrix-esque guitar licks over the patented Woody Allen font is a bit jarring change from his typical jazz music. Then we cut to protest footage about the 60’s for context in the subsequent scenes. It also explains why Sidney J. Munsinger’s (Allen) magazine clipping of James Dean is not ensconced in an antiquated Henny Youngman pop culture reference. Weirdly, Allen writes himself to be verbally abused by the barber as not J.D. Salinger. Rather than being endearingly self-deprecating, it’s parsimonious.

Is it just me or does Elaine May sound as if she had a stroke or bells palsy? It’s bewildering why she would want to sound so slurry. Then again her character’s hand is permanently affixed to a wine glass. It extinguishes a lot of the yuk-yuks. Just because May rattles off a few Vietnam articles doesn’t mean that he is weaving a historical tapestry behind his comedy. On the positive side, Allen can still elicit neurotic chuckles from anhedonia (“You can add years to life if you avoid anything pleasurable”).

The idea of a hippie, fugitive subversive being the houseguest of a passive neo-conservative is engineered for maximum high jinx. Allen is not accustomed to the cliffhangers that television usually end their episodes with. Instead Allen and May are laying in bed with an intruder nearby and the scene abruptly cuts to black. I honestly enjoyed the lack of overt foreshadowing.

The second episode dovetails into the funniest shtick of the whole series with Allen muttering under his breath about ransacked emeralds for Lennie Dale (Miley Cyrus). The stuttering Woody is a pristine comic foil next to Cyrus. It is mischievously funny when Allen forbids Lennie from “using [our] fluids” for a bath. Woody’s incisive point about how he doesn’t vote because “the blacks get screwed, the rich get richer and the wars never end” sounds like his arrow in his quiver is aimed at history repeating itself.

Just as the episode is firing on all cylinders, Cyrus sleepwalks into a misunderstanding with police officers and her performance is unconvincingly broad. Luckily the MVP is Allen who is more animated and caffeinated than most 80-year-old’s. By the third episode, May is slacking in her role and one wishes she would magically switch places with Diane Keaton who was a wry partner for Allen from the late 70’s to the early 90’s.

Is Miley meant to be a female Abby Hoffman? Maybe Woody has gotten the memo but conscious objector are not radical anymore. Cyrus’s SJW is harshly one-note at times. However, in his sharpest comedy in ages, Allen casts us back to a time when manifold activist-terrorism jokes weren’t topical firestorms, they were just slightly edgy potshots.

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Maybe I’m in the vocal minority but Allen is a wisecracking riot during a paranoid spell after a pitch meeting when he inspects Mel’s (Bobby Slayton) taco for wireless microphones. Without pregnant pauses and an emphasis on screwball dialogue and navel-gazing ethos (quotes from Frantz Fanon), contemporary audiences will chagrin at this affair for the Neil Simon sect.

Allen’s reticence towards Amazon Studios’ monetary proposition doesn’t encroach on the quality. Like much of his output, Allen can either strike a chord or be waterlogged with ankle weights (the book club sessions about Mao are gossipy and stultifying). Crisis in Six Scenes is a lopsided configuration of attributes (Allen’s hyperactive tics (his hysterically panic-stricken pantomime of dialing in a phone booth) and a mise-en-scene composition) and fundamental letdowns (May’s mushy-denture disorientation with one-liners and Allen’s fixation on backwards nostalgia and Freudian psychoanalysis as a crutch for shallow pop psychiatry).

Rating: 2.75 out of 5