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There is no doubt that it’s quite a challenge to top last year’s stellar line-up, but 2017 Singapore Grand Prix still continues to attract music fans for its 10th anniversary.

Warming up the eager audience on Night 1 was pop rock band OneRepublic that had fans who waited for 7 hours just to catch them up-close.

The band opened with the heart-wrenching Stop and Stare followed by the anthem of a song that is Secrets, inviting the crowd to sing along with the talented Ryan Tedder. Though as emotional and exciting as it was, the first number did not exactly hype up the vacant-eyed audience as much as the second one, this wasn’t much of a shock as Brent Kutzle breathtakingly brought the latter song to life with his famous cello intro.

Despite the slightly slow start, OneRepublic began to trigger everyone’s sentimentality in moments when Tedder would briefly explain inspirations of songs he wrote for other artists and later belted out live with the band. “If you know this song, sing it. If you don’t, don’t sing it,” Tedder instructed the stunned audience after revealing that he’d co-written Halo by Beyoncé, Happier by Ed Sheeran, and Rumour Has It by Adele.

However, the most memorable part of the evening was when a male fan caught Tedder’s attention midset. It turned out that the fan was at a OneRepublic show in Vancouver three weeks ago and was told by Tedder that he would buy him a beer if he flies to Singapore for their F1 gig. Keeping his word, Tedder immediately handed the fan a beer directly from stage. Talk about dedication!

As expected, F1 shows tend to be generous on the visual front. The alluring lights and impeccable stage set-up made songs like Good Life, Apologize, and Counting Stars more cinematic. Though all good things must come to an end as OneRepublic concluded with the much-awaited Love Runs Out, leaving a group of wide-eyed fans hoping for more.

Finally making their Singapore debut were Ariana Grande and The Chainsmokers on Night 2 at the Padang Stage.

Arianators could be easily spotted in the crowded pit with their black bunny ears, suggesting that they were indeed at the event solely for Grande. This was, of course, just an addition to their passionate singing.

Grande was in full pop star mode with quick costume changes and a variety of props onstage. Her Side to Side performance was delivered exactly like in the music video – a workout themed set up with Grande and backup dancers on exercise bicycles.

Known for her velvety vocals, the 24-year-old effortlessly showed off her prowess in the soulful pop ballad I Don’t Care, which was made even more “eargasmic” by chilling electric guitar solos.

Serving us some words of female empowerment were video interludes that took about 5-10 minutes of the show, which could’ve been at least just dedicated to performing more songs like Problem that we did not hear in its entirety given the limited 60-minute set.

Though Grande’s mere presence already brought excitement to the crowd, a little audience interaction would have been more satisfactory. We’d like to think that she was just saving her energy for a solo tour in Singapore in the near future. But for now, we can only hope.

One might quickly question how pop singer Ariana Grande ended up opening for The Chainsmokers. But the evening itself proved the critics wrong, at least temporarily, as the EDM-pop duo surpassed (almost) everyone’s expectations.

Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart have been severely criticized for their music's lack of variety. Although their tracks couldn't necessarily be labeled as "legendary," the duo was able to transform The Padang into a huge dance floor filled with an energetic mob through tracks like Roses, Closer, and Don’t Let Me Down - all of which enticed the crowd to sing along.

It is indeed undeniable that music that’s fun, catchy, and devoid of meaning could be aggressively electrifying. This, of course, wouldn’t be possible without those captivating pyrotechnics and animated emojis.

With unparalleled energy released in the first two evenings of the F1 concerts, we were unfortunately met with gloomy weather on the Night 3. But the skies quickly cleared up prior to Duran Duran’s set, giving us a breezy atmosphere for their '80s new wave music.

The award-winning synthpop band attracted a large group of fans comprising mostly of an older audience who eagerly responded with screams on par with Arianators’ the evening before.

Lead singer Simon Le Bon’s efforts in being culturally inclusive were evident in wittily crafted song introductions, getting audience members to shout out where they’re from preceding the band’s performance of Last Night In The City - a song about bringing people together, according to Le Bon.

“Did you catch your Laksa and Nasi Goreng? Is anybody hungry?” he further asked the crowd before delving into their hit song, Hungry Like A Wolf.

If that wasn’t endearing enough, the entire band manifested an exceptional stage presence that radiated from Dom Brown’s edgy guitar licks to John Taylor’s signature basslines. It’s no wonder that they’re able to attract a huge following of supporters even from the other side of the world.

Working the crowd brilliantly into songs like Save A Prayer and ending their set with Rio, Duran Duran certainly still carries the same fervor from their emergence in the '80s, almost four decades ago. While the crowd, unfortunately, did not get to hear The Reflex live despite their enthusiastic chanting, that devotion in itself demonstrates the band’s undying legacy as new wave icons.

Following the EDM themed dance party this year’s concerts were going for, record producer and DJ Calvin Harris closed the weekend with his jam-packed mixes - some of which constantly struck familiarity amongst the majority of the crowd that probably left the venue as EDM converts.

Radio hits like This Is What You Came For, How Deep Is Your Love, and Outside induced a rare euphoria that everyone would usually be devoid of on a Sunday evening. But before you know it, Rihanna’s vocals slowly enveloped the enormous mosh pit with We Found Love and after which ensued a whirlwind of frenzy.

Did I mention a toddler being carried by his dad in front of me during Calvin Harris’ set? Yes, that happened, and I guess that little boy can proudly tell his friends in the future that he had first “clubbing” experience with Calvin Harris as the DJ.

With this, one might confuse Singapore Grand Prix 2017 as Ultra Singapore given its EDM headliners. However, this risky move unexpectedly revives the definition of an after-party, reminding everyone that this year’s line-up is definitely what a celebration is all about, despite everyone’s doubts.

 

Photo Credit: Singapore GP and Joyce Pang for The Straits Times

Published in Concert Review

Catching Ariana Grande’s Singapore debut next week, but not a full-fledged Arianator? We’ve got you covered!

Ariana Grande has been dominating the pop scene ever since her breakthrough on the Nickelodeon show, Victorious.

What the 24-year-old is mostly famous for is her Mariah Carey-esque whistle tones that often dominate public spaces in Singapore – an infectious virus that leaves you with no choice but to eventually be familiar with some of her top hits.

But we’re not even complaining! Grande is one of today’s most talented artists who can effortlessly deliver stunning vocal quality and at the same time bop along to her catchy melodies.

So, almost everyone can hum to at least one Ariana Grande song by now. But the question is, can you sing along?

If you’re one of those people who need to know the lyrics to get the full concert experience, you’ve come to the right place.

We know it’s a challenge to even try to match Grande’s vocal prowess, but one can try.

Here are 5 Ariana Grande songs you need to memorize before her Singapore debut!*

*If you're attempting to practice these songs in your room, please inform your family members beforehand. Loud squealing might occur.

 

1. One Last Time

 

2. Into You

 

3. Break Free

 

4. Dangerous Woman

 

5. Problem

Photo credit: Ethan Miller

Published in Featured

Have you ever tried sending DMs to your favourite celebrities?

Unless you are a celebrity yourself, the DM you sent is usually left unseen. Don't be discouraged or take it personal, because most of the time, celebrities are too busy to scroll through and reply the hundreds and thousands of messages they get each day.

However, out of a hundred celebrities who do not look at their DMs, there would always be a gem who does. Here are three singers who are known to reply fan DMs.

 

1. Rihanna

From relationships to coming out, Rihanna doesn't hesitate to give quality life advice to her fans whenever they need it the most. It's no wonder why her Navy is so loyal to her, seeing how the love is reciprocated! She even retweeted our tweet back in 2011!

 

 

 

2. Ariana Grande

Ariana is a total sweetheart and she has her DM replies to back her up. If you're ever looking for someone to celebrate with or just to talk to, Ariana's your girl.

 

 

3. Nicki Minaj

The rapper made an ambitious statement to pay off her fans' education loans if they get all As, and actually did as she promised. So slide into Nicki's DMs with your bank information and who knows - you may just be the next lucky fan to receive a sum of money.

Photo credits: Ny Times

Published in Music News

Attracting a crowd of 50,000 and several big names in the music industry, Ariana Grande’s One Love Manchester concert was a tear-jerking gathering for music fans.

Despite the huge line up of musicians, a police officer stole the show when caught dancing with children during the concert, becoming an unexpected, heartwarming addition to the show.

An endearing act of kindness really does go a long way. There's no better way prove terrorists wrong than to combat violence with the genuine spread of love and unity.

Here's another footage of police officers joining in the fun.

The benefit concert succeeds the terror attack that happened in Grande’s recent show in the city of Manchester.

Aside from the overwhelming turnout, the concert’s roaring success was also evident in the generous donations of the public, raising about £2 million of proceeds for the victims and families of the tragic attack.

 

Photo Credit: WPA Pool/Getty Images & One Love Manchester

Published in Featured

Pray for Manchester.

A bomb went off in Manchester Arena killing at least 22 and injuring 59 people where Ariana Grande was performing for one of her stops of the Dangerous Woman Tour.

The blast happened in the foyer of the stadium, separating children from their parents while everyone was rushing for the exits. Twitter flooded with pictures of missing loved ones from concertgoers trying to contact one another.

The British Prime Minister, Theresa May, calls the incident an "appalling terrorist attack" and the British police reported that the attack was carried out by one man who was also killed in the blast though the government is still figuring out the full details of what exactly happened.

Ariana Grande tweeted out an apology after the incident although it is no fault of hers.


We also have no words to describe this tragic incident but it is very comforting to know that the people of Manchester chose to come together to take water and supplies to the streets as well as open their homes to those who are stranded. They reacted to the whole situation not with hate but with kindness and love.

Sending our condolences to affected families and friends, we will continue to stand by Manchester during this difficult time.

Photo Credit: #PrayForManchester on Twitter

Published in Music News

Ariana Grande might have been busy touring the world and taking on continents she has never toured this time around (including an odd sunset time slot for Singapore’s F1 on Saturday), but that has definitely not slowed her down.

Quit, Ariana’s second collab with Norwegian producer Cashmere Cat, was released alongside Cashy's debut album and follows a love-struck Ariana resisting her friends’ advice to not fall in love with them.

Ariana’s clean-cut vocals stand out against the lowkey electronic production that has become Cashy’s signature sound. Sorry if you’re expecting the chorus to lead into a massive breakdown, though.

This is the duo’s follow-up to 2013’s highly underrated Adore, which slipped under the radar of many fans, only got performed at a few dates on the tour, and never took off much on radio either.

A demo of Quit has also leaked, featuring everyone’s favourite songwriter, Sia. Thankfully, this didn't make the final cut because Sia didn't really bring much to the table anyway.

Check out the official lyric video of Quit, recorded whilst playing a laptop on a moving train. All for the aesthetics.

Photo Credit: Giphy, Miami New Times

Published in Music News

Singapore GP has revealed the headliners that will be gracing our shores this September for the 2017 F1 race. If you haven't seen it already, check out the lineup here:

 

Alas, the tribe has spoken: Singapore is not impressed.

Having seen the likes of Bon Jovi and Mariah Carey in the past years, the 2017 lineup might just be the least exciting. As someone who have always been pleasantly surprised by the lineups each year, I can't help but feel a tinge of disappointment. It also doesn't help that this could be the last race in the country. Unless a new wave of headliners are to be announced in the coming days, it seems like the F1 race would leave Singapore for the last time with only a fizzle. 

After doing some analysis, I have boiled down the underwhelming 2017 lineup to the lack of these 3 acts (that I would like to strongly urge Singapore GP to consider adding).

 

1) An Asian Headliner

As pointed out in Facebook comments, it has been 3 years since the F1 race saw their last asian headliner. 

 

 

Who would be perfect: X Japan

 

2) A World-Class Act

The Chainsmokers and Ariana Grande may be some of the recognisable names of today, but... they ain't no Queen. 

Who would be perfect: U2

 

3) A Veteran Performer For The Non-Teenagers

One of the biggest complaints about the lineup is that it appeals mostly to teens. While one could argue that there's still Duran Duran and Seal for the more seasoned crowd, what about those who fall in between?

Who would be perfect: Foo Fighters

 

(Photo credits: Facebook, Singapore GP)

Published in Music News (Singapore)

The live action remake of Disney’s Beauty and The Beast has just hit movie theatres worldwide and it is slightly different from most other remakes – it is a musical, and following the 1991 animation, it contains all the classic songs (plus a few new additions) but recreated by today’s top singers.

The theme duet of the movie, Beauty and the Beast – formerly recorded by Céline Dion and Peabo Bryson – was taken over by Ariana Grande and John Legend, and to say the least, it was a really good effort.

The original duet was composed by Alan Menken as a smooth, wholesome ballad. The stellar track had the sweet, timeless voice of Céline and the deep, powerful one of Peabo’s, and together, they managed to come so beautifully to create the image and passion of Belle and the Beast. It’s fair to say that it is very unlikely you’ll find another two singers as perfectly suited for this masterpiece of a song as Céline and Peabo.

With that being said, the new version was indeed a good effort for a modern remake. Upon finding out that Ariana and John had set out to recreate the song, I had my doubts but once I’d heard it, I found that it actually wasn’t as bad as I had expected.

The remake had an unsurprising increase in tempo, and John’s vocals did not have as much depth as Peabo’s did, so this affected the overall dynamics and emotion of the song as it sort of clashed with Ariana’s vocals when they sang together. However, both artists did have the individual vocal power for such a ballad so the delivery of their respecitve solos turned out to be strong. The original Menken melody was still retained which I’m sure everyone is super thankful for but the 2017 version had a slightly edgier sound to it that surprisingly managed to complement the tune.

So basically, you really can’t compare anything to the 1991 classic but on it’s own, Ariana and John’s version is probably a good 7/10. I mean it could have been worse so I’m pretty glad that it turned out the way it did.

Check out the 2017 and 1991 versions below and see if you agree:

 

 

2017

 

 

1991

Photo Credits: Mothership

Published in Single Review

What a talented young lady.

Alessia Cara is one rising star in the music industry and her achievements are slowly piling up for what seems to be like the runway to a real successful career that will leave a legacy.

At a young age of 20, Alessia has already had 2 number one singles on the US pop charts, a song on a Disney animated film and performed on Saturday Night Live as a musical guest.

Her schedule certainly keeps this singer-songwriter busy so we have no idea how on earth she found time to perfect these impersonations she did of some of the biggest artists in the world on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

The Wheel of Musical Impressions made some interesting combinations that night. Check out Alessia's Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj and Lorde impersonations here. They are seriously so spot on that it scares us.

 

Photo Credit: elle

Published in Music News

Remember when Ariana Grande had huge curly blonde hair? Me neither.

But a talented artist called Tronicbox on YouTube was able to make our curiosity come to life with photoshopped images of current popstars as 80s singers. Though that’s not the most exciting thing. Tronicbox remixes pop hits and turns them into 80s style anthems!

A few oldies junkies would usually complain how it was so much “better in the 80s,” as if they were already alive in that era. We really can’t blame them as there were a lot of timeless dance-pop anthems in that decade that we still can still hear on the radio today. But Tronicbox was able to merge these two decades into eargasmic tunes that you're going to feel sorry for snubbing current popstars!

If you’re a fan of the synth-based disco era and some glorious riffs, give these remixes a listen and thank us later!

 

 
 

Photo Credit: TRONICBOX, Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Published in Featured
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