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Music Blog - Billboard Top 10

posted 20 Jul 2012, 15:30 by Chris Morris
Not much change in the list of the most popular songs worldwide this week with just a single new entry from Pink. Lets dive straight into the deep end and get started with this week's top 10 in the Billboard Hot 100:

10. Scream - Usher

This lively song from Usher sticks in the head a little but that’s not to say that it’s very good. The singing is good but sounds like it may have had the auto-tune treatment at some points. The drums are nothing exciting either, programmed electric sounds keeping the heads nodding. The sythns are never too loud however, hanging nicely in the background of Usher’s voice. 

9. Blow Me (One Last Kiss) - Pink

The vocals are the highlight of this song as the other musicians play in the background. Sounds like another drum machine so nothing to analyse there, and the structure to the song is very simple (Remember the Pink song that only used one chord?). There's nothing here that sticks in the memory unfortunately, as this standard pop song fails to make a mark.

8. Titanium - David Guetta (feat. Sia)

When this song started I thought I was listening to Every Breath You Take by The Police ... Is it a sample possibly? The song is among a few out there at the moment to feature Sia who is the artist behind some great music likeBreathe Me, not sure what she’s doing in this type of music. The electric noise in the chorus of this song is enough to give you a sore head. There are some pretty neat little sounds coming from the drum machine but I would have preferred to hear a human drummer. 

7. Whistle - Flo Rida

There’s a nice use of guitar in this song and it’s unfortunate that the best drum beat I’ve heard so far is from the drum machine in this song. No prizes for guessing that this is a cheesy song about whistling (Well, we all know what it’s really about but that’s for another blog), involving someone actually whistling. The singer isn’t anything special and my memory tells me that neither is the rest of the song as I can’t recall any lyrics.

6. Where Have You Been - Rihanna

Nothing stand-out about this effort from Rihanna. This fits right in with the UK Music chart – Electric music produced by someone sitting at a computer (Which, you got it, means no drummer). Rihanna’s voice is okay but this song does nothing to showcase exactly what she is capable of, especially because it is fiddled with here and there by said man on computer.

5. Lights - Ellie Goulding

Ellie Goulding’s voice is really nice but the backing music in this song is a little bare. Drums are a standard machine-generated beat and there isn’t much music played by a human in here at all. There’s actually quite a nice little ringing sound through this song which gives a sort of majestic sound, but the songwriting is very basic. 

4. Somebody That I Used To Know - Gotye (feat. Kimbra)

This song starts very quietly and almost bare but for an uncharacteristic xylophone melody ringing out. The percussion stays very subtle and grooves nicely with the guitarist. The chorus breaks out into a more lively emotional sound but retains it's mysterious atmosphere. The feature for Kimbra is very nice, showcasing some ace vocals. She also puts in some nice backing vocals afterwards. Definitely a great single and it makes me want to listen to more from Gotye.

3. Wide Awake - Katy Perry

I found this song to be pretty standard electric stuff – There was no human drummer... In fact the only musician involved in this song is Katy Perry herself as the rest of music is made by man on a computer. 
The chord progression remains the exact same throughout the verse and the chorus. And speaking of the chorus, I found it pretty bland in comparison to the verse. So all in all this song involved a guy sitting at a computer laying down a simple chord progression then adding sound effects, and then getting Katy Perry (Who, don’t get me wrong, is a good singer) to sing over it. 

2. Payphone - Maroon 5 (feat. Wiz Khalifa)

Back in 2002 this band were a semi-promising act with a couple of hit songs. Now they play standardized pop music so that they can shoot to number one. The vocals are pretty shocking in this song – They sound auto-tuned and there is a lot of very unnecessary swearing – I’d expect this in a gangsta rap song but it just sounds very out of place here. The drums have a very weird rhythm all the way through and sounds again like it may be a drum machine. The snare falls on the 4th beat making the music lose a bit of momentum. 
This is a song which features someone who is better than the main act – Wiz Khalifa. The rapping is certainly the best part of this otherwise forgettable song.

1. Call Me Maybe - Carly Rae Jepson

The electric strings at the start of Call Me Maybe sound like a bad imitation from a student version of Sibelius. They get a little better during the energetic chorus though, but don’t do much to set this standard electric song apart from others in the charts. The singer is good, but is shown singing with a band of human musicians in the music video which unfortunately aren’t present in the actual song.

In my opinion, these songs should be arranged in this order of quality:

1. Somebody That I Used To Know – Gotye (feat. Kimbra)
2. Lights – Ellie Goulding
3. Payphone – Maroon 5 (feat. Wiz Khalifa)
4. Call Me Maybe – Carly Rae Jepson
5. Scream - Usher
6. Wide Awake – Katy Perry
7. Blow Me (One Last Kiss) - Pink
8. Where Have You Been – Rihanna
9. Whistle - Flo Rida
10. Titanium – David Guetta (feat. Sia)

Best Drummer - Matt Flynn from Maroon 5.

Sadly, for the second time this week I have chosen the only person who I know definitely played drums in one of these songs. Nothing special at all but he was the only human drummer this week bar the percussion in Gotye's song.

Back in the day, in order to make music, you had to be a good musician. Nowadays it seems anyone with a computer can make number one singles overnight. This is seen with the state that these charts are in and it is a sad day indeed. If you ask me, making music should be the reserved right of a musician, and not a producer who doesn't have an ounce of musical talent.

But hey, people buy into what they buy.