Reviews

Lady Gaga’s ARTPOP Lacks in Substance, Stacked in Production

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The following is a guest article by Sam Lowy.

Lady Gaga image

Lady Gaga has turned herself into one of the most iconic pop stars of our generation. There really is no debating the fact that Gaga is one of the most diverse and entertaining celebrities in the media. Known for her commentary on pop culture and the "fame monster," Lady Gaga has been one of the few celebs to turn the entertainment community on its head. Her past albums, which have all been huge successes, have all had a similar theme regarding such matters, but with her newest release, ARTPOP, has the controversial artist finally beaten the horse dead?

With her debut single of the record, "Applause," Gaga continues her satirical commentary of fame, stating she "live[s] for the applause," and "the way that [we] cheer and scream" for her, and while the song is somewhat catchy, in the end it really just seems to fall flat. Without any truly deep or inspiring lyrics, the listener is left with an instrumental track that is, again, lacking of any real substance. The song is honestly quite weak on all accounts and is just a regurgitation of past Gaga themes of fame and culture.

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The following is a guest article by Sam Lowy.

Album review

Since the release of their smash hit single "Sex On Fire," and Grammy Award winning track "Use Somebody," it seemed as though Nashville based Kings of Leon had been struggling to find another song or album to help them reach the top once again. With their most recent release, however, the family band has done just that.

Mechanical Bull truly is thirteen tracks packed with that true Southern Rock the group was best known for with their first two albums Aha Shake Heartbreak (2004) and Youth and Young Manhood (2003), both of which featured high energy rock and roll that deemed the group "The Strokes of the South."

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Review of Arcade Fire's Reflektor

The following is a guest article by Tyler Thursby.

Arcade Fire

My first introduction to Arcade Fire's Reflektor was through an enchanting self-titled music video, nearly eight minutes of black & white footage that read much like a short film. Cinematic is an appropriate term when describing the sound of Arcade Fire's latest album Reflektor as a whole, every vaulted track materializing a story one has to imagine could easily be adapted to the screen.

Reflektor's cinematic qualities and large sound packs an unshakable confidence behind it. Just when things threaten to spill over into an unmanageable chaos, the instrumentation finds order in the storm. That type of control is something Arcade Fire has worked long to master, but it certainly doesn't hurt to be working with David Bowie throughout the process of recording.

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I mentioned in my post on Friday that I was on my way to see the Backstreet Boys and I wasn't lying. I am wholeheartedly (still) a Backstreet Boys fan and their show in Camden, NJ on Friday, Aug. 16, marked my 10th Backstreet Boys concert. I had pit tickets, as well as their Gold VIP Package. So how'd it go? Was it worth it? Am I full of regret for how much money I spent on just one evening? Am I just really embarrassed that I'm an adult and this is my life?

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Review: National Wicked Tour is Wicked Good Fun

Wicked

Update 8/13/13: This review originally incorrectly identified the actors in the roles discussed below. The article has been updated. Thanks to the commenters who pointed out the mistake.

About a week and a half ago I was in Philadelphia for my cousin's wedding, and spent the following day doing some sightseeing. It was raining the entire day, so me and the group I was with decided that we should go see a show at night. It so happened that Wicked was playing across the street at the famous Academy of Music, so we bought some tickets.

I wasn't there specifically to review the show, of course, but I committed as much of it as possible to memory, and then wrote the first draft of what's below the next day as I traveled to Williamsburg, VA.

Warning: This review contains major spoilers for the show, so if you haven't seen it and don't wish to know anything about it, turn back now!

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