Making New Year’s bright

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The Netflix series
The Netflix series "The Politician" has been scheduled for a second season

In the Cookie Jar

Ben Platt in The Politician

Netflix and Ryan Murphy’s newest collaboration The Politician is the show everyone is talking about, and that is in no small part due to Ben Platt’s star making turn as the overly ambitious future politico Payton Hobart. As soon as Platt was announced to be starring in this series, fans of this Tony winning actor were hoping that Platt’s vocal talents would be weaved into the show somehow, and they have not been disappointed. During the run of the entire show, Platt was able to showcase the talents that made so many people fall in love with him, without it being heavy handed. His aching rendition of Joni Mitchell’s “River” strings together a much larger plot point, while his version of Billy Joel’s “Vienna” is a shiny new turn on a classic track. The inclusion of “Unworthy Of Your Love” not only includes one of the dynamic songs from the Broadway musical Assassins, but allows Platt to musically duel with his divine co-star Zoey Deutch, which also serves as a major plot point in the show.

Madonna "Crave"
Madonna “Crave”

Platt’s album Sing To Me Instead was a musical and lyrical dream when it was released earlier this year, and including the track “Run Away” as the closing track is the perfect way to close out the soundtrack. As Season 2 of The Politician has already been confirmed, we are now left to anxiously see how more of Platt’s musical talents will be threaded throughout future story.

Madonna 

Madonna’s Madame X incarnation is presenting yet another new side of this legendary pop artist, as she collaborates with artists like Maluna and brings issues like gun control to the forefront in the video for “God Control.” For the remixes from Madame X, Madge has decided to stick with a proven formula, and once again partnered up with the dynamic Tracy Young, who remixed a number of singles from Madonna’s Music album to huge acclaim.

The debut album cover "Gravity" from Gryffin
The debut album “Gravity” from Gryffin

The package for her latest single “Crave” showcases Young’s abilities once again, while giving some shine to some other names who took a crack at remixing one of the best songs on the album. The “Tracy Young Dangerous Remix” shows amps up the beats on the track, with a baseline thrown behind the vocals, yet still keeping it quintessential Madonna. The legendary Benny Benassi checks in with the “Benny Benassi & BB Team” Remixes maneuvers the track into interesting territory, with some parts almost turning it into a dub, but keeping Madonna’s chorus line throughout. “The Twisted Dee & Diego Fernandez Mix” is a true standout, with heavy drums and smart maneuvering of the vocals making this remix truly one of a kind. The remaining mixes on the package range from heavy electronica with the “Otto Benson Remix,” gorgeously hypnotic on the “Dan De Leon & Anthony Griego Remix” and peak anthem with the RNG Club Mix. With this talented bunch at the helm, Crave is poised to be another jewel in Madge’s crown of Number One Remixes.

Griffyn

Los Angeles based writer producer Griffyn has released his long awaited debut album Gravity and it is as daring and amazing as it has been anticipated to be. With the singles “OMG” (with Carly Rae Jepsen) and “Baggage” (with Gorgon City ft. Aluna George) both being released earlier this year to high acclaim, the bar was high for the full release. Tracks like the recently released “Gravity”, featuring the ethereal Maia Wright, showcases a slowed down and breezy Griffyn, while “if I Left The World” featuring MARINA & Model Child truly is an epic musical event. “Hurt People” is a storming and reflective track of a fractured relationship gone wrong, while “Nothing Like You” (ft. Hana) is light pop track that fits perfectly within the deeper and more largely produced tracks.

The tracks on Gravity are sure to be on radios and dance floors throughout the remainder of 2019, with 2020 poised to be one of Gryffin’s biggest.

Mika

For his first full length in five years, My Name is Michael Holbrook, MIKA explores his American heritage. Recording in places like Miami and in Tuscany, Mika has crafted an album that is true to his signature musical style, but indescribably a heightened sound. Opening the album with the production heavy opus “Tiny Love” is a stroke of brilliance, at it sets the tone for the remainder of the album.

"My Name is Michael Holbrook" album cover from MIKA
“My Name is Michael Holbrook” album cover from MIKA

The tracks range from dance heavy (“Dear Jealousy”, “Platform Ballerinas”) to understated anthems (“Ready To Call This Love”). “This album has been a rich and intense journey. Inspired by life in all its glory and all its dark challenges. It’s also inspired by love. Starting with an idea that was born in a cemetery in Savannah Georgia and ending the writing in a 650 year old farm house in Italy. My intention was to write about life as it happened. A sort of album made in ‘real time,’” MIKA says.

His signature falsettos are featured throughout, with the ballads being heavy on strings. The down tempo “I Went To Hell Last Night” is an album standout, making Mika’s sound both new, yet very much his own.