Luminous pop music aligned with new wave flavors.
Meet Xuan (pronounced swan).
Her debut album Have Some Fun will drop November 16, on Palo Santo Records. But right now she's premiering the music video for "Not The Man," a Strokes-inspired song.
Xuan Nguyen grew up in a suburb of Dallas, where, according to Xuan, "Everything was really good. But I knew I needed to go out and get my ego smashed and explore. I moved to Vietnam and hosted a TV show. I traveled around Southeast Asia, Australia, and then moved to Ireland."
In Ireland, Xuan began writing songs. When she returned to the U.S., she continued writing and, while performing at an open mic, met producer Salim Nourallah, who invited her to his studio to begin work on a record. The result is Have Some Fun, a 12-track album full of indie-pop-flavored music both unpretentious and authentic.
XUAN //" Not the Man" youtu.be
"Growing up, I listened to whatever was on the radio. Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. So, my songs are pretty standard verse-chorus-verse-bridge. I like indie stuff, but I don't sound like them," Xuan says. "I always wish I was as cool as Lucius."
"Not The Man" opens with new wave pop colors attended by art rock surfaces atop a buoyant rhythm. A compact bass line holds the harmonics together, as droning synth hues stream and sparkle. Austere guitar riffs infuse the tune with sonic dimension, as Xuan's soft yet gentle timbres ride above.
On one level, Xuan's voice approaches hyper-femininity, while on another level it's quixotic and intimate, allowing her the luxury of emotional commitment to the music. Its unique resonance is charming and simultaneously chic, exuding infectious energy.
"Not The Man" emanates contagious pop essence, along with stylish new wave innovation. The combination is a pop confection that's scrumptious and bewitching.
Randy Radic is a Left Coast author and writer. Author of numerous true crime books written under the pen-name of John Lee Brook. Former music contributor at Huff Post.
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Animation is lame and live-action is awesome.
Everybody loves Disney live-action remakes.
In a world plagued by racism, disease, and a seemingly endless bounty of spiraling misfortune, at least we can all agree that Disney knocks it out of the park every time they dredge up an old, animated movie for a live-action makeover because cartoons are for babies.
Sure, some of us thought the original Beauty and the Beast was fine, but could lame, 2D Belle ever hold a candle to 3D Emma Watson? And yeah, the original Lion King was okay, I guess, but there's nobody in the world who preferred cartoon Scar's rendition of "Be Prepared" to the incredible feat of getting a real lion to sing it in the live-action remake.
Being a Disney fan can be hard sometimes, as you have fond memories of beloved childhood movies but also don't want people to make fun of you for liking cartoons. That's why, out of all the corporations in the world, Disney is undoubtedly the most selfless, willing to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to bring their old, outdated movies into the modern age—all for the fans.
After Halle Berry walked back her consideration of playing a transgender character, we look back at how Hollywood has repeatedly fumbled trans representation.
Halle Berry has made headlines this week after turning down a role in which, had she gone through with production, would have represented a transgender man.
Berry, an Academy Award-winning actress known for roles in films like Monster's Ball, Catwoman, and Gothika, took to Twitter Monday night to apologize for considering the role. "Over the weekend I had the opportunity to discuss my consideration of an upcoming role as a transgender man, and I"d like to apologize for those remarks," Berry wrote. "As a cisgender woman, I now understand that I should not have considered this role, and that the transgender community should undeniably have the opportunity to tell their own stories."
The post continued: "I am grateful for the guidance and critical conversation over the past few days and I will continue to listen, educate and learn from this mistake. I vow to be an ally in using my voice to promote better representation on-screen, both in front of and behind the camera."