Chart Mondays: Ariana Grande - positions

As expected, Ariana Grande jumped straight to the top spot of the UK Singles Chart with her latest track "positions" and so I am reviewing the music video for my Chart Mondays review. I am not so impressed with the song, she has definitely released better songs in the past, but this is her official seventh UK number one. As usual, her voice is superb, but the song just doesn't hit me unlike some of her previous songs. It is the lead single from her brand new album of the same name which has been released this week and is more than likely going to chart at number one on the UK Albums Chart. The track's lyrical content suggests that Ariana Grande is willing to try new things for the person she loves and her overall dedication to him and willingness to switch positions (from sexual to stereotypical).

The music video has been directed by Dave Meyers and sees Ariana Grande acting as president and fulfilling some of the tasks that the president undertakes whilst also taking on typical female stereotypical roles such as being in a kitchen. It also stars her mother, Joan Grande, as well as frequent collaborators Tayla Parx and Victoria Monét. The release coincides well with the 2020 US Presidential Election. I feel like this could've been iconic and there is substance to it, but it's just missing so much, I also don't like how it transitions between her positions. I truly believe if this was wrapped up in a complete narrative storyline, it would've worked amazingly.

New Release: Karmen & BRUJA - Belladonna

Today we have a brand new single and music video from Karmen in collaboration with BRUJA, titled "Belladonna" and I am addicted! Beyond catchy in every way, Karmen shines vocally and visually. It reminds me of INNA's deep house tracks mixed with the vocal brilliance of Antonia. Romanian female singers are totally on top of their game at the moment and Karmen is up there with the best of them. This collaboration with BRUJA allows her to start a new musical journey that brings a new take to Eastern European pop music and I am excited about this era. BRUJA switches up the track with a brilliant rap that further adds to the unique quality of the song, which has been written by Alexandru Pelin, Krishane Murray, Maria Teodora Mizgoi, Octavian Ioachim Petre, and Vlad Lucan.

The music video has a Halloween feel to it, which isn't a surprise since it is Halloween tomorrow. It also goes well with the song as it does have a creepy spooky vibe in the track itself. It is set in what looks like an asylum, which is giving me Lady Gaga "Marry The Night" vibes. Karmen is one of the nurses and she is fiercely working it in the music video as she rolls a guy who is wearing a straight jacket around in a wheelchair. There are split-second scenes throughout that showcases a different reality where Karmen is dressed in black and is knocking out killer dance choreography with a group of dancers. BRUJA is scarily freaky, acting as another patient in the asylum, which adds to the creepy aesthetic of the video and the song itself. This just works as a complete package and I could so watch it again and again.

New Release: Sam Callahan - Demons

I have been a fan of Sam Callahan for years, even before he auditioned for The X Factor, and today saw him drop a brand new single and music video, titled "Demons", and I am obsessed with this song. Highly relatable to anyone who has been in toxic friendships and relationships - let's be honest, we've all been there at some point - this song draws on the emotions of that pivotal moment when you decide to do what's best for you and leave the toxic person once and for all, detoxing yourself from that person who was dragging you down with them. It's quite possibly one of his best songs he's released lyrically as the structure is on-point, as well as his vocals, and his falsetto gives me chills every time he launches into that bridge. This is one brilliant song that deserves to become his biggest hit to date. Keep listening to it on repeat!

The music video, directed by Jake Pursey, is set in an abandoned building and is a pure performance visual. Sam Callahan takes all his honesty and emotion and unleashes it during the visual allowing the audience to feel what this track means to him. We imagine that he would bring this sort of energy on stage whenever gigs are allowed to go-ahead again. The last few scenes see him use all that emotional energy on smashing a TV with a baseball bat - which he clearly enjoyed doing. This is such a great music video to accompany this track.

ROLE MODEL - going out

Another music video that was displayed in my YouTube Recommendations and I was intrigued with the name, ROLE MODEL, so I thought I'll give it a shot and review this visual, titled "going out". He is a singer-songwriter whose real name is Tucker Pillsbury and his lyrics are always very real, touching upon mental health such as depression and loneliness, as well as hitting troubles that many people are having in the world such as failed relationships and self-doubt. This specific song is about not wanting to go out clubbing for various reasons, mainly due to his mood which hits upon anxiety and depression but as well as his character trait of being introverted and much preferring his own company. His lyrics give reasons as to why he doesn't want to go out and he makes plenty of good points that you can't even argue with. I can totally relate since I am quite the introvert especially around new people, but clubbing is my escape and it makes me feel like an extrovert, especially when I've had some alcohol.

The music video opens up with him being asked by his mates to go out with them, but he turns them down or even tunes them out with his headphones. He walks down the middle of the road listening to music through his headphones and I can so relate to that specific scene, it's literally so good to be in your own music bubble. We later see him enjoying himself being at his home, taking a bath, ironing, and just spending his time exactly the way he wants to.

Chart Mondays: Pop Smoke Featuring Lil Tjay - Mood Swings

This song, as well as the other songs from Pop Smoke's debut album, has been gaining traction over the last few weeks, which isn't a surprise sing the album hit number one on the UK Albums Chart a couple of weeks ago, with "Mood Swings" featuring Lil Tjay becoming his most chart successful song in the UK. Back in February, he was murdered where he was shot twice during a home invasion. As with most posthumous releases, he has charted well around the globe, defining his legacy and making sure we're all aware of his name. I'm reviewing this music video this week as 24kGoldn and iann dior is still at number one with "Mood". "Mood Swings" is a great hip-hop track with raunchy lyrics and an addicting R&B backing track that all piece up together brilliantly, with Pop Smoke and Lil Tjay working well together on the track. The artists include references to their women and the expensive items that they own and therefore boasting about their lives and fame. The track has gone viral on video-sharing app TikTok.

It's so sad that Pop Smoke is no longer able to appear in his own music videos but Lil Tjay fully brings it for the visual. The opening scene sees two women in a car with the driver discussing with the passenger that she can't keep picking her up when stuff happens in her relationship even though the passenger states that she loves Lil Tjay. Then we watch their relationship unfold from the sexual attraction - and a lot of it within this visual - to the fights and disagreements that end up with her leaving him at the end. It's an important topic to cover in a music video, and that opening scene sets up the rest of the video absolutely perfectly. Lil Tjay brings it for the performance visual throughout, giving it his all and managing to make this a solid video even though Pop Smoke isn't there. I just wish there was more to the narrative overall.

*NSYNC - Bye Bye Bye

Okay, how have I never reviewed an *NSYNC music video on my blog before today? It sounds impossible to have this happen, and yet here we are. This song has been stuck in my head all day, probably because I've recently caught up with Celebrity Karaoke Club (which is a lot trashier than I thought it was going to be, but it's addictive trash), and this was one of the ending songs as they said goodbye to another contestant, and it made me realise how much I loved this track in the '90s. To be fair, it's still a brilliant song today and I could so see it resurfacing as a viral hit over the next few years.

*NSYNC were a '90s/'00s pop boy band consisting of Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez, Chris Kirkpatrick, Joey Fatone, and Lance Bass. They had a number of hit singles but I never really caught on to the group and preferred UK boy bands such as 5ive and A1, at the time. This song is strong and powerful with the group giving it throughout and easily making it catchy. This is truly an unforgettable track with Justin Timberlake and JC Chasez impressing vocally. The song was originally given to 5ive, who rejected it, clearly, they missed out because it became a brilliant hit for *NSYNC.

The music video, directed by Wayne Isham, is totally iconic and one we all remember. It opens with all five members being string puppets, controlled by a woman, who is the former model and actress, Kim Smith. She cuts the strings of Chris Kirkpatrick and Joey Fatone first and they fly through the air and onto a speeding train where they run away and try to evade the woman, who gives chase. She next cuts the strings of Justin Timberlake and chases after him in an abandoned warehouse with a pair of dogs, but he manages to escape too. Lastly, she cuts the strings of JC Chasez and Lance Bass who land in a red Dodge Viper and they speed away as Kim Smith gives chase in her silver BMW Z3. They end up sliding into a u-turn to escape from her, which totally works. Throughout the video, there's a performance visual where the group are performing in a blue rotating box, which is made to look like they're on changing gravity fields. During this performance piece, they give us brilliant dance choreography and passion for the song. This is totally one of the best music videos released in the '90s/'00s.

New Release: Paul Damixie Featuring Alexandra Stan - Bandit

Why do two of my all-time favourite artists release new music on the same day? Like, I love it because it's new music from both INNA (who has collaborated with Michael Calfan on the track "Call Me Now") and Alexandra Stan (who features on this song "Bandit" by Paul Damixie) but it causes me to have to choose which new release to cover - or it normally would, in this case, luckily, INNA hasn't dropped a music video for her new song and so Alexandra Stan has to be my new release music video review this week and I am loving it. This song effortlessly gets stuck in my head, to the extent where I just have the chorus going around and around, eager for me to listen to the song on repeat. It's a really fun song with Paul Damixie giving us some brilliant instrumental sounds throughout the track whilst Alexandra Stan brings the vocals and her care-free spirit as she sings.

The music video has been directed by SAN and has a cowboy-theme throughout with both artists appearing in a wild wild west village. Alexandra Stan appears in most of the scenes, giving us a performance piece where she's wearing a hat that has string hanging down all around it, which clearly gets in the way and she's always messing with it. There's also a performance with a cactus where she's watering it and herself with a hose, and then there are also scenes where she's inside a bar, performing on the tabletop wearing cow chaps. Paul Damixie can be seen walking around dressed as a cowboy throughout. It really has a bandit air to the video with the cowboy theme, but I feel it's missing connection and substance.

Antonia Featuring Puya - Hurricane

This has got to be one of the best music videos that Antonia has ever released. I discovered it when I was creating a CelebMix article titled 5 of Antonia's Best Music Videos and I couldn't help but crown "Hurricane" as the best one. I do wish that the track had become an international success just so that the music video could've been shown on music channels all around the globe because it really is so amazing and it's shocking that there are only 6 million YouTube views, I mean, that's still a lot but this so deserves a tonne more. The song reminds people of Eminem and Rihanna's song "Love The Way You Lie", and whilst I agree with them on the meaning behind the songs, Antonia's vocals are completely off the chart filling the track with so much heart and passion throughout. Puya's rapping switches the track up adding more Eastern-European vibes to the track whilst also making it truly Romanian. The lyrics of the song paints a story of a love that has its ups and its downs, but one she would fight for, for every single day - I need someone who would fight for me!

I've already stated that I think this is one incredible music video but I'm willing to say this again and again. I could literally watch this on repeat, over and over. It's both a narrative and a performance piece with Antonia completely selling it from the get-go. We start off with a scene where Antonia is dressed impeccably in a black dress as she walks down the corridor away from her on-screen love-interest who has clearly done something wrong. We flash through performance scenes, which we continually see throughout the visual of both Antonia and Puya who are giving it their all, you can see in their eyes that they mean every single word they are singing. The narrative continues with a flashback of Antonia meeting her love interest for the first time as they both work at a cute small bar where she's a waitress and he's a barman. During this scene, when the chorus kicks in, Antonia jumps up onto the stage and sings her part of the song, to which the audience applauds her.

The story continues in which they move up in the world and go into the business side of things. He has his own office, and Antonia looks amazing as she struts around promoting Avon - she's even on the cover of his assistant's Avon book. Antonia returns to his office, only to see the said assistant with her hands all over him. Let's be real, Antonia isn't someone you want to get on the wrong side of, and her face in that exact moment, says it all. She ends up forgiving him, until their fancy dinner comes along, in which she's already got her doubts about him and then, on top of that, he gets a message from another woman saying that she misses him. Well, Antonia flips, and rightly so, shoving him and throwing a glass of wine over him - you go, girl! She returns to the bar that she once worked at and takes a seat, he later follows hoping to make it up to her, she goes to sing on the stage and the ending scene sees them hugging. Their love is clearly so strong and forgiving is never easy. It's great to see the representation of a real relationship in this visual. There's so much going on, so much detail, which makes me want to watch this again and again. Definitely one of Antonia's best music videos to-date.

Little Mix - Holiday

Another music video I haven't seen before today, from one of my favourite girl groups. I'm literally blaming YouTube for all the reasons why I'm missing these music videos, as they no longer send emails when a channel you're subscribed to releases a new video - I get it because my email is full of YouTube emails, so I do understand it from that perspective, but on the other hand, I am missing all these music videos that I want to watch upon the day of release, not weeks and weeks down the line. This one is another great performance piece from Little Mix and I've recently been watching their TV talent show Little Mix The Search where they are searching for people to form a band which will go out on tour with them as their support act; this song has been played a couple of times in the background of the show and it is so addictively catchy. It's a very sweet pop track about being in love and how that feels like a holiday.

The music video is a pure performance visual that was filmed during the pandemic and as with all the music videos that are being filmed during this time, there are restrictions, limitations, and plenty of difficulties, which explains why this music video is slightly disappointing considering their previous visuals, yet it can totally be forgiven due to filming during these tough times. Little Mix still manages to bring it, with all things considered, giving sexiness, dance, and fierceness. Throughout the video, they are depicted as mermaids and goddesses. It's an iconic video with some brilliantly edited scenes that transports them into such a magical world, but it's just missing the Little Mix fire that they deliver in all their other music videos.

Marshmello & Demi Lovato - OK Not To Be OK

How have I not seen this yet? Since it was released a few weeks ago, I thought I'd write up about it today. I'm shocked this hasn't been a global hit - certainly, it's charted in many different countries, but in the UK it only reached number 42, to date, with the US Billboard it's peaked at number 36, and in Australia it's peaked at 47. It's done well in Belgium, New Zealand, and Japan. There is plenty of time for it to work it's way up the charts around the world, but I am shocked it hasn't instantly become a worldwide success, especially since Marshmello & Demi Lovato have a tonne of fans collectively. The song is so amazing too, spreading positivity throughout the world when we totally need it most, especially since a lot of people aren't OK what with the pandemic affecting everything from jobs, relationships, friendships, family, life, enjoyment, and a hundred different other things too. Demi Lovato's vocals are on fire from start to finish, whilst Marshmello totally impresses with the production, this was a brilliant team-up!

Directed by Hannah Lux Davis, the music video sees the two stars go back in time to their childhood bedrooms. They awake in their old beds and there's a tonne of nostalgic themes shown throughout. We watch them take time to address their younger selves and start to see the kid they once were again. I love how they interact with their younger selves and just end up partying in the street together. Don't we all wish we could just do that, like right now? It's a great video, I just wanted a bit more from it. The artists have teamed up with Hope For The Day which is a non-profit movement opening the conversation of proactive suicide prevention and mental health education.