Tag Archives: new music

Song of the Day: “Speechless” by Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga’s latest studio album, The Fame Monster, features the surprisingly normal ballady song, “Speechless”.  She performed this song on the AMA’s and I was highly impressed.  So when I reader tipped me off to the studio version, I was sold.  Here’s the full length song, courtesy of the marvelous YouTube:

What do you think of “Speechless”.  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

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Rick

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Album Review: “Play On” by Carrie Underwood

A little over 4 years after winning American Idol, Carrie Underwood is still churning out the hits and proving to everyone that she is one of the biggest superstars in the music industry.  Her third studio album, Play On, is in stores now, so here’s a track-by-track review of her latest effort:

  1. “Cowboy Casanova”- The first single from shows that Carrie’s got that star power.  It’s a great vocal, of course, but more importantly it shows signs of growth in Carrie’s writing and shows that she’s not going to keep doing the same old thing.  With Hot AC and Pop showing great interest, I see this as being the next “Before He Cheats” in terms of  crossover success.  9.5/10
  2. “Quitter”- Once again, Carrie pulls out something new and different with this song.  This is another song that I see being really successful on country radio, as well as Hot AC and Pop.  It’s insanely catchy, and it would be a great single for next summer.   9/10
  3. “Mama’s Song”- This song will mean a lot to mother’s and their daughters I’m sure, but it’s probably my least favorite on the CD.  It’s not bad, but it’s kind of boring.  I know it means a lot to Carrie though.  8/10
  4. “Change”- Some have called “Change” preachy, I call it epic.  Sure it’s about helping others, but what’s wrong with that?  Not to mention the vocals and musical arrangement are phenomenal. I can’t wait to see Carrie knock this out of the park on the CNN Heroes special. 9/10
  5. “Undo It”- This one screams cross-over, even more than “Cowboy Casanova.” It’s also phenomenal live, as evidenced by the Jimmy Kimmel performance. If they choose to release this as a single, it’ll be a smash on multiple formats. 9.5/10
  6. “Someday When I Stop Loving You”- Once again, Carrie changes things up with “Someday When I Stop Loving You.”  The whole song is pretty low-key, but the vocals and arrangement are beautiful.  Probably Carrie’s most restrained vocal yet, not to mention it’s one of the most true country songs she’s done. 10/10
  7. “Songs Like This”- This song, more than any, just really makes you want to dance.  Every time my iPod shuffles to this song, I want to jump and embarrass myself.  The only problem is that it’s a bit too short, but the aggressive vocals make up for it. 9/10
  8. “Temporary Home”- If this song doesn’t show just how much Carrie has grown as a writer, I don’t know what well.  This deep ballad showcases Carrie’s vocals, but the real magic is the writing.  As I said in my single review of “Temporary Home”, the lyrics don’t beat around the bush and instead deliver the message without complicated metaphors.  “This is our temporary home/It’s not where we belong” sums up quite nicely.  Songwriting awards, engage.  10/10
  9. “This Time”- This smooth country/pop number could be a surprise single pick around the end of Play On’s run, with it’s catchy and light lyrics and delivery.  It’s definitely not like anything Carrie’s released as a single before, so it would keep with the theme of changing things up.  The only problem this song may face is the placement on the CD, where it could be lost among the highlights of the album. 8.5/10
  10. “Look At Me”- Like “I Told You So” before it, “Look At Me” features a soaring vocal by Carrie on a cover of a classic country song.  “Look At Me” is stronger than its predecessor, though, with Vince Gill on harmonies and Carrie bringing her A-game.  It’s the perfect song to keep those who want Carrie to be strictly country busy. 8.5/10
  11. “Unapologize”- To many listeners, “Unapologize” may seem like an off the wall song when you look at the grand scheme of Play On.  I, however, think it only adds to the amazing dynamic of the CD.  Sure “Unapologize” is about as country as “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon, but who says you can’t have a little variation on a CD?  Certainly not me, and that’s what makes Play On so great.  “Unapologize” is pop/rock straight-up and shows off some great vocals by Carrie and a brooding musical arrangement.  It’s got a great chorus, and could see success on Hot AC and pop radio.  9/10
  12. “What Can I Say”- Another beautiful song with a really cool intro.  Sons of Sylvia are on hand for a duet, though Carrie far outshines their lead singer.  That aside, the duet still works marvelously.  I hope this is a single, but I’m not holding my breath.  I can’t wait to see this on the Christmas special coming up. 9.5/10
  13. “Play On”- The title track takes us back to Carrie’s music when she was fresh off of Idol.  It’s a great little throwback, and I like the encouraging message.  Carrie sings the heck out of the final verses, showing us she has been hard at work perfecting that beautiful voice. 8.5/10

Play On has a little something for everyone, and that’s what makes it an amazingly engineered album.  It’s definitely Carrie’s best album from her young career, and arguably one of the best albums of 2009.  As someone who was a little disappointed in Carnival Ride (The first 4 singles were all wonderful, but outside of those and 2 or 3 more I wasn’t that impressed with it), Play On is refreshing indicator of where Carrie is going as an artist and just how much she has grown through the years.  I can’t wait to watch her and her career continue to grow into something truly incredible.

Overall Score: 95 out of 100

Staff Hot Picks: “Cowboy Casanova”, “Quitter”, “Change”, “Undo It”, “Someday When I Stop Loving You”, “Songs Like This”, “Temporary Home”, “Unapologize”, “What Can I Say”

What do you think of Play On?  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

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Rick

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Song of the Day: “The Truth” by Kris Allen (New Release)

The latest winner from the Idol franchise released his first post-Idol studio album on Tuesday, and it’s definitely a strong CD.  I will (actually, we will.  more on that later) be reviewing the full disc in the coming days, but until then here’s my personal favorite previously unheard track, “The Truth”.  Listen below:

What do you think of “The Truth”?  Be sure and check back for a full review of Kris Allen (the album) over the next few days.  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

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Rick

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Music Review: Carrie Underwood’s Latest Single “Cowboy Casanova”

I love the interweb.  Without it, Carrie Underwood’s latest single, “Cowboy Casanova”, from her upcoming album Play On (in stores November 3!) wouldn’t be out until the 8th.  I discovered it late last night and listened to it a few times and then woke up and listened to it some more.  She’s truly got an amazing voice.  Anyway, on to the song….

To the top of the charts, and beyond!

When I first listened to “Cowboy Casanova”, I must admit I wasn’t sold.  However, upon third listen, I was hooked.  Fans of Carrie will no doubt find it impossible to tear themselves away from the beat and incredible vocals, and new fans will be drawn in by the brilliant hook.  I see “Cowboy Casanova” rivaling, if not passing, “Before He Cheats” in the success department, but not necessarily because I think it’s a better song.  We all know there will always only be one “Before He Cheats” and it is epic.  However, “Cowboy Casanova” is nearly as strong a song PLUS it’s a first single, and those tend to perform exceptionally well on the charts.  The excitement from the release of Play On in November and all of the promotion will probably give Carrie her best shot at #1 on the Hot 100 with this song, unless of course she has some KILLER songs on the album, which I don’t doubt.

Rocking Carrie > Everything

As for the actual song, “Cowboy Casanova” breaks Carrie’s pattern of more sentimental lead-off singles in a big way.  It starts off with a bumpin’ beat and some intense strings and then Carrie tears into the vocals.  People that are more technically educated in singing can correct me if I’m wrong, but these vocals might be some of Carrie’s most soaring yet.   The song also incorporates the more rock vibe Carrie has been known to infuse in concert performances and, of course, my favorite performance she’s ever done: “Last Name” from the Grammys last year.

If “Cowboy Casanova” is any indication of the style of songs we’ll find on Play On, more country/pop/rock, I expect it to be closer in succes to Some Hearts than Carnival Ride. Carrie’s got a monster hit on her hands and if her promotion team can get it together (They’ve never impressed me), she could ride this one all the way to the top of The Hot 100.

The Verdict

Carrie is awesome and “Cowboy Casanova” is rocking.  Of course it makes the TCJ Playlist!

The Rating

9 out of 10 Elephants

Read Carrie’s induction into The Conservative Journal Hall of Fame by clicking here.

What do you think?

What do you think of “Cowboy Casanova”  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Thanks for reading!

Rick

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Filed under Breaking News, Carrie Underwood, Entertainment, Music, Singers, TCJ Playlist

Carrie Underwood’s Latest Single “Cowboy Casanova”: Hear It Now!

After much anticipation for the release of the lead-off single to her new album, Carrie sneaks up and surprises everyone by releasing it late last night.  So without further ado, the lead single off Play On, in stores November 3!

It took a couple of listens, but this song is growing on me.  Carrie has some crazy pipes and I could see this having mass radio success.  Look for a full review of the song later today.

What do you think about “Cowboy Casanova”?  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Thanks for reading!

Rick

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Filed under Breaking News, Carrie Underwood, Entertainment, Music, Singers

TCJ Playlist: More Fun Stuff

I realize that some people think I’m going a little overboard on the “feature” posts, but, to quote a famous song, “it’s my blog, and I’ll post what I want to”.

**future home of TCJ Playlist graphic**

The latest addition to The Conservative Journal line-up of entertainment is the “TCJ Playlist”.  How this will work is that each time I review a CD or a new song (Which I plan to start doing soon.) I will decide if it makes the cut for the playlist or not.  The playlist does not necessarily include songs that I like, but rather songs that are not complete garbage.  If a full CD is reviewed, I do reserve the rite to “line-item veto” (Barack/Congress, take notes for this part) the songs that I do not like, placing only those that I deem not complete garbage on the playlist.  I think this holds the potential to be a lot of fun for me, and moderate fun for those that read along.  As usual, any suggestions for the playlist are greatly appreciated and welcomed, simply e-mail your suggestions to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.

What does this have to with politics, you ask?  Everything, because politics is in everything and music is a thing.

Don’t forget, if you have a request for an album review or a suggestion for the playlist, send your e-mails to theconservativejournal@gmail.com, or leave a comment below.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Thanks for participating!

Rick

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