Bob the Drag Queen
Since the inception of RuPaul’s Drag Race, many of the contestants have released their own music. Each has had varying degrees of success. While true dance floor stompers like Manila Luzon and Latrice Royale’s post “All Stars” elimination duet “The Chop,” and Alaska’s tongue in cheek “Your Makeup is Terrible.” Now, along with one of New York City’s premier DJ’s, Mitch Ferrino, Season 8 winner, Bob the Drag Queen, has released “Purse First,” which is arguably one of the best yet.
Borrowing heavily from the NYC ball scene of the late 90’s , Bob has taken his mantra from Season Eight of the show and along with a talent like Ferrino, morphed it into one of the biggest songs of the summer. The remixes for this track have elevated it’s kitsch factor and turned it into a full on anthem.
The “B. Ames Remix” keeps Bob’s throaty vocals front and center with a heavy bass line, while the “Koil X Vito Fun Remix” cranks the BPM up slightly, giving the track a slightly mysterious and moody vibe. The “Drew G & Brian Cua Club Remix” is the most anthem-esque of the package, keeping the verses soaring steadily and then dropping the chorus squarely in the middle of the dance floor. Drew and Cua consistently bring unique tracks to the dance floor with their “Dirty Pop” label and this one is no exception.
Since Britney Spears’ last outing with 2013’s Britney Jean, we have seen very little of the pop princess (save for the abysmal and much anticipated “Pretty Girls” with Iggy Azalea). Britney just dropped her most recent album Glory and it shows a pop princess still finding her footing and definitely moving in the right direction.
The blissfully smooth “Make Me” kicked off a Spears publicity blitz, and it’s a vintage sound for Spears, yet with a much needed more adult sound. “Private Show” sounds like it could have been an extra track from the Circus album, but it’s a fun and poppy track, save for Spears overly produced vocals which literally make her voice unrecognizable at times on the track. The third single “Do You Wanna Come Over” is one of Spears’ best in years; a good old fashioned dance track, complete with a dance ready chorus, and completely in line with what has made her most successful dance tracks before this one such huge hits. The track definitely shows some growth.
The rest of the album is an interesting mix of tracks that seem like they would have been better matched with an artist that aims for a younger demographic. “Man On The Moon” and “Better” sound like they could be Disney throwaway tracks, but other tracks are perfectly matched to Ms. Spears 2.0. “Hard To Forget Ya” and “If I’m Dancing” show Spears experimenting with different styles of dance music.
While we have all gotten the memo that Spears lip synchs to the majority of her live performances, it can be slightly distracting when her voice is, as mentioned previously, almost unrecognizable as Britney Spears herself. All in all, Glory definitely shows a Britney that is growing up, yet still knows that the dance floor is where her fans want her.
DJ Eddie Martinez
DJ Eddie Martinez is one of the leading DJ’s and remixers in his industry right now. It is amazing that he has found the time to release a full album of new material, but that is exactly what he has done with the his new album, Foreplay. From the moment that you hear the first beats on the first track “Free,” this album is pure and perfected big room dance anthems with the signature Martinez flavor. Tracks like “Are You Ready” and “Believe” have his signature sound of drum-heavy beats and a stomping bass line. Martinez has taken some of the tracks in a different direction by partnering up with some fantastic vocalists on several of the other tracks. Whether it’s Bailey on “Want You To Want Me” or Monica Jordan, Martinez manages to weave in their talents without sacrificing his signature sound. This is most evident on the track “State of Mind” which has harkens back to a Hannah Jones-esuqe sound from the 90s. It shows that Martinez, while recognizing the recent past of dance music, just may very well be one of the future names you will be seeing much more.
One of the most anticipated albums the finish out 2016 has to be Idina Menzel’s self titled idina. This is not Menzel’s first foray into solo territory. But considering the many changes in her personal life, this could very well be her most intimate yet. On “Queen of Swords” Menzel is showing that she has the pipes for pop music and can still dip into Elphaba territory if need be, on a mid-tempo track. On “I See You,” Menzel does what she does best when she is handed honest and truthful lyrics. She tears through them with her signature soaring vocals.
We are still waiting for word on remix packages coming for some of these singles, but if her LGBT fans have anything to say about it, we will be dancing to this Broadway legends’ singles long into the holiday season.