Favorites Friday – OneRepublic, “Secrets”

onerepublicOneRepublic has placed a couple of their hits into my favorites, but none of their songs compare in both quality and nostalgia to “Secrets”. It differs greatly from most Pop music while still finding a catchy rhythm and entrancing tune. The strings are glorious and Ryan Tedder’s vocals stand out from most band’s lead singers in its unique pitch.

The song is slightly repetitive, but the chorus is the best part. While I can shake that part off, I have to admit that the instrumental does tend to dominate the vocals, especially in the first stanza. If those strings weren’t so damn awesome, that could be a bit of a problem.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

9.25/10

Hoping you like this song, because I have plenty other OneRepublic songs to cover later. Consider them the T-Pain of Pop for AMP’s Favorites Friday; You will probably see them way more than you like. In the meantime, you can check out one of my all-time favorites (seriously, this just barely missed the list) below:

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Favorites Friday – Rihanna, “Disturbia”

rihanna-good-girl-gone-badEarlier this week I spoiled that I would be writing about Rihanna this Frid – Saturday. Of course, I had to start with a personal favorite of hers, “Disturbia”. What made this song a favorite of mine, you may ask? Either hours of playing Just Dance 4, how unique the concept of the song was, or how catchy that “bum-bum-be-dum-be-dum-dum” part is.

The lyrics are way off from the low standard of most Pop music, and even better than most of Rihanna’s lyrics from other songs. In the end, nothing she ever releases will top “Good Girl Gone Bad”, but I’ll save that rant for another time.

Really, the chilling sound yet easy listening of the track makes it the most interesting. Vocally, there is quite a bit of autotune and work done, though I can’t say I still don’t love singing along to it.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

8.5/10

You can go check out one of my favorites below (Hopefully you’re not claustrophobic like me):

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Favorites Friday – The Weeknd, “Wicked Games”

the-weekndI’ve been away this weekend, and you know what they say about hotel wifi: it sucks. Luckily, we can use our imaginations and act like it is still Friday night. For my next installment of musical favorites, we’ll start with my first song I ever heard by The Weeknd. Of course, I downloaded “Crew Love” on Drake’s Take Care, but I had no real inclination to listen to that song more than a couple of times. It took hearing Abel’s solo work to realize my love for the singer.

I have written about The Weeknd plenty before, and you may know that his “Adaptation” ranks in my Top 50 all-time favorite songs. “Wicked Games” may not be an all-timer, but it still stands as an excellent piece and one of the best songs by The Weeknd. The tune is gritty and unfiltered, releasing an emotional opening-up to Abel’s mistress.

The vocals echo a bit but stay rather pure (oftentimes it sounds almost live, especially on the chorus). The beat is simplistic, but features usage of multiple instruments and is subtle enough to carry along the vocals.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

9/10

You can check out the song below:

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Favorites Friday – Trey Songz, “Last Time”

Trey-Day“Last Time” has got to be one of my favorite songs by Trey Songz, and ranks up in my favorite all-time RnB songs. Though, it may not be the best song to post on Valentine’s Day.

“Last Time” is incredibly passionate and features a smooth rhythm that feels harmonized all the right ways and is paced quite well. Songz always struck up comparisons to R. Kelly when he first launched his career in music, and while that may no longer apply, Trey Day is a prime example of their similarities.

The biggest reason I love this song oh so much is because of how strikingly soulful it is, lyrically and rhythmically. The vocals are not perfect, but they contain the amount of passion, lust and desire needed to make the song feel meaningful (a subject that Trey Songz is probably experienced at dealing with). The song would end up placing in the Billboard Hot 100 briefly, but never got the attention I feel it quite deserved.

Overall, I would rate this song at:

9.25/10

“Last Time” might be a cheater’s anthem, but at least those bastards have a great taste in music. You may notice the chorus returns quicker than hoped for, but it has such a flow to it that its repetition really is not a bother.

You can check out one of my all-time favorite songs below:

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Favorites Friday – Chris Brown ft. Tyga and Kevin McCall, “Deuces”

Remember the days when Chris Brown acted like a deucebag? Well, more than he does now. As horrible as he was for a while, I always have to be the guy who points out at how amazing Brown’s music was around this time. His F.A.M.E. album stole the show, and much of the props have to go to this song’s success.

Can I say that this may be the only song I actually enjoy listening to Tyga rap? Of course, Kevin McCall steals the show, but the whole track is a masterpiece. Chris Brown sets the mood, Tyga opens up a bit, and Kevin McCall finishes it by not giving a single f*ck. The instrumental is spectacular and some of the best production I have ever heard to date, and this song ranks as one of the overall best songs I have ever heard for its genre.

Despite it not making my Top 50 this year, the song ranks in my all-time favorites and could easily break the cusp any year. The lyrics, the tone, everything about “Deuces” makes it a great break-up song. Overall, I would rate it at:

10/10

While this may be one of my most opinionated 10/10’s, this song is timeless and has been regarded by many as one of the best. Any RnB and Hip-Hop fan can see why “Deuces” is so critically acclaimed. And now for the quotable part: Anytime one of the artists says the word “Deuces”, I find the reflex to put two fingers in the air immediately.

Now you can check out one of my favorite songs below and enjoy with me:

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Favorites Friday – Enrique Iglesias ft. Nicole Scherzinger, “Heartbeat”

enrique-iglesiasWhile “Takin’ Back My Love” is one of my favorite duets, “Heartbeat” is a very close second. Both are songs by Enrique Iglesias, whose voice has always had an odd (and sometimes shaky) but compelling feeling to it. Nicole Scherzinger’s voice had never been massively appealing (nor her name), but these two compliment each other so well vocally that I had to forgive any faults that either singers’ voices have.

The song as a whole is everything you would expect from a meeting between these two artists. It’s signature Pop music from the man that brought you “I Like It” (Or, would sooner or later) and the girl that asked me if my imaginary girlfriend was hot like her in middle school. Tuned vocals and a high-bass beat made the song feel a bit unoriginal, but the conviction of both of these artists performing in sync together is just fascinating.

The song is an upbeat love ballad and, though it has its flaws in tuning and repetition in lyrics, it is an easy song to pick up and enjoy. There’s nothing wrong with loving a good love duet. Overall, I would rate it at:

8.25/10

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Favorites Friday – Destiny’s Child, “Say My Name”

Destiny's_Child_The_Writing's_on_the_WallI actually forgot how much I loved this bloody-awful song until hearing it again recently. The weirdest part is that I cannot get past about two and a half minutes everytime I listen to it. Let’s rewind about three years; I am the cool reverse-hipster who will discover old music and treasure it years later. While I am proud of the man – nay, boy, who made it to his 18th birthday, I cannot confirm nor deny that he was for the longest time, how you say, a dimrod.

So I found “Say My Name” under the category “Songs featuring the girl from Destiny’s Child who I happened to be obsessed with at the time.” Believe it or not, I am not referring to Beyonce; For the longest time, I had a massive love for Kelly Rowland and her music. Beyonce does do the most work in the song, even when it was incredibly unneeded.

I never said “Say My Name” was a great song; I just think it is stupid catchy and has an essence of empowerment to the point I wish just one time I could be right in an argument. One of these days…

Have I even discussed the song? Overall, I would rate it at:

8.25/10

This song truly came close to making my Top 50 list this year, but nope. The bridge is incredibly lazy and the repetitive nature of the song means that the perfection that is “dat dope hook” as the urban teenager would call it, is the reason the song is so massively appealing.

Check out one of my favorite songs below, or just listen to it because you have a couple of minutes to kill:

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Favorites Friday – Future, “Turn On The Lights”

HaFutureve you ever had a song that you liked, but knew it was terrible and hid any acknowledgement of existence from others while you failed to pinpoint why it appealed to you as much as it did? Meet my candidate for that ever-so-specific category, Future’s “Turn On The Lights”. Any Future song, really, makes me question the quality of my choices in music recommendations. However, “Turn On The Lights” ended up being one of my favorite songs for two months and almost made the cut for the Top 50.

I do not expect you to like this song, or even tolerate it for more than 30 seconds, but somehow I found it to be incredibly easy to pick up and repeat. The rap verses are so vague lyrically just mumbling felt like knowing the lyrics. The hook and chorus always had the most style and was crafted well. Mike Will Made It was big in 2013, and his beat definitely tunes out the vocals a bit to make the song a bit more tolerable.

I will not waste time writing too much about “Turn On The Lights” as about 90% of the readers of this article will hate it. However, I found it catchy and it made me believe in my own singing skills when singing along to it. Overall, I would rate it at:

5.75/10

Go ahead and check it out below (or not) and hear one of my all-time favorite songs (somehow, I don’t know how or why but the song just makes me happy to hear):

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Favorites Friday – The Script, “Nothing”

the-script-science-and-faithHooray, it’s Friday! No, I work weekends, so the day’s timing in the week has nothing to do with my excitement. Rather, I get to be a bit more narcissistic than usual and talk about one of my personal favorite songs. It seems that I have not written anything about The Script yet some how, so you might want to know that my all-time favorite The Script song (and one of my all-time favorites in general) is “Nothing”.

This song is relateable, meaningful, and quite honestly, kind-of funny when you think about what the lyrics are saying. I cannot act like I would not act the same way (or haven’t before), and the catchy tune that goes along with the words always helps. The Script have always been solid, and “Breakeven” was a favorite song for a while, but they have yet to show me a song better than “Nothing”.

The guitar was subtle at first to ease into the vocals. The song takes shape as it continues and, as I always am quick to point out, set up a right pace. Overall, I would rate the song at:

9.75/10

You may have noticed this song in my Top 50 for this year. It always will be in my Top 50 for how much I related to it for a long time that summer when 8th grade was full of woes. For whatever reason, I could not say that this is a song I would go out showing everyone I know. Regardless, it remains one of the best songs I have ever heard and I highly recommend listening to it. So go ahead, check it out, or just give it a listen again below:

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Favorites Friday – J. Cole ft. Trey Songz, “Can’t Get Enough”

j-coleSince I finished Forest Hill Drive today, I thought I would give J. Cole a nod in an article by citing one of my favorite Coleworld song. I would say this is slightly ahead of Work Out and that amazing Intro for favorite J. Cole songs all-time. Can’t Get Enough was full of excellent bars and Trey Songz’s chorus is different but something new and interesting.

The beat always slightly annoyed me, though it does it right on the chorus. Otherwise, it just felt overbearing. J. Cole just has a bit of trouble with production, but if he can get that together, his music will be unstoppably powerful.

Let it be said that I love J. Cole and his music. Now that I’m done being that guy who comments under every J. Cole post saying “Coleworld” and riding certain genitalia, I have to say that this song is hardly perfect. It may be one of Cole’s more unfocused tracks lyrically (at least compared to his other works), but it is one of his catchiest and is always a fun listen.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

9.25/10

Go ahead and enjoy one of my favorite songs below:

-Austin Heath