Britney Spears "Till The World Ends" Video

The video for Britney Spears' second single Till The World Ends has finally premiered. The Ray Kay directed video features the Pop star in what appears to be an underground warehouse, dancing her life away with dozens of sweaty backup dancers, all while the world is coming to an end. Though the video is leaps and bounds better than the trash that was the Hold It Against Me video, I couldn't help but compare it to two specific "old Britney" videos:

As I watched Britney dance the night away in Till The World Ends, I was quickly reminded of these two videos. Not that it's a bad thing, it's not. It just felt like an updated version/tribute to some of her older videos, which I definitely enjoyed. On the Femme Fatale MTV special that aired this past weekend, Britney Spears said something that caught my attention, which was about the number of videos she's done to date and how at this point, she's more focused on enjoying it all as oppose to trying to "top" herself. Judging by the videos she's been recording since Blackout, I can definitely see that.

Nonetheless, while the new video isn't on the same level of the greatness that Slave 4 U or Boys are in, it is a step in the right direction, especially considering what her recent videos have looked like. The song is insanely catchy and different for her, which is something a lot of fans (and critics) are appreciating. She looks wonderful in the video and I like the grittiness of it all.

There were two versions of the video shot. Expect the other version to premiere shortly. Thoughts on the video?

When the Sparks are Gone: The Case of Britney Spears

I've never been a fan of Britney Spears. With the exception of a catchy song here and there, I've never really enjoyed her music and I've never understood her hype. I guess I've always felt that most of her competition (especially back in the day) were all light years ahead of her, vocally and musically speaking, which ironically, is something that over the years I've realized doesn't mean much.

I've always viewed Britney Spears as the definition of a product; an extremely appealing and well packaged young girl, with an innocent-sex-kitten-meow look, created by some ingenious record label executives who at the time felt that there was a void that Britney Spears, with a lot of grooming and training, could potentially fill; as oppose to an artist with a vision in mind (a la Pink) and with a quality and impressive discography, with the vocal and/or songwriting abilities to boot. Nonetheless, the public has embraced Britney Spears since she burst onto the scene with her debut album (Baby One More Time...), at the peak of the Pop craze back in 1999 and twelve years later, the public is enamored with her more than ever and here I am writing this little rant about her and her superb new album (Femme Fatale). Yes, superb.

All jabs aside, something must be made clear. One thing ole' girl did do extremely well, at least back in the day, was to perform. She hasn't been called the Princess-turned-Queen-now-dethroned-by-Gaga of Pop for nothing. Shall I take you back? *ahem*

.. all lip syncing aside, Britney Spears knew how to put on a show! Now let's take a look at last week's GMA performance.

.. what's interesting to me is that even though she obviously (for whatever reason) cannot perform as well as she used to, the quality of her albums (ever since In The Zone and with the exception of Circus which I did not like) has gotten tremendously better. 15 years later, Britney, in my opinion, is putting out some of her best music to date, to the point where she has finally caught my attention. But unfortunately, as she is slowly growing and evolving in one aspect, she is quickly diving head first in another. I think it is safe to say that Britney Spears no long has the fire or passion in performing anymore (or at least as she once had), judging by what I've been seeing from her since she released her album Blackout in 2007. At the time, I completely understood why she wasn't up to par, considering everything that she was going through. Surprisingly, it was then and there, amidst all her troubles, bad publicity and horrible VMA performance, that I took an interest in here and fell in love (from there on out) with her music. Blackout was probably the most played album for me that year and I would go as far as to say that it is definitely among the best Pop albums of the 2000's. Two years later, she released what was considered to be her "comeback" album, Circus, and though the interest and number one singles were there, something was still off. Britney Spears could no longer perform like she used to. Fast forward to 2011, Femme Fatale was released last week, Hold It Against Me hit number upon its release and the album reviews have been stellar. Unfortunately, five years after her infamous breakdown, it appears as though Britney Spears hasn't fully recovered. I had hoped that after Blackout she would've somehow snapped back into it, but I'm beginning to wonder whether or not that is even possible.

What do you think happened? I mean, not that it's necessarily a fair comparison, but J.Lo didn't get her music career on and popping till her late 20's/early 30's and (nearly 12 years later), she can still out-dance a lot of these younger artists, so obviously age isn't the issue here. One still has "it" (J.Lo) and hasn't been relevant for a while (although that is quickly changing with the success of On The Floor), whereas the other, Britney Spears, has remained relevant for most of her career but has apparently lost her spark. Will we ever get to see old Britney again or is that entertainer long dead and gone? I'm beginning to love Britney more and more but just for her music, and her music alone. The things that happen when the passion is gone.

P.S. Blackout and Femme Fatale = ♥

Katy Perry's "E.T." Music Video

I am not, in any way, shape or form, a fan of Katy Perry's music. I find her to be a dull and uninspired. And please don't get me started on Kesha.

That said, it annoys me to say that I really love this song. The Floria Sigismondi-directed clip is visually stunning and has to be one of her best videos to date. Considering the fact that the song just hit number one on the Billboard charts this week (the fourth one of her album to do so) and the video just came out, I expect this single to be huge for her. Kudos.

Rihanna Covers "Rollingstone"

That Rihanna reign just won't let up. Superb.

HQ version and interview will be posted as soon as it's available.

In other Rihanna news, it has been confirmed that California King Bed (Take a Bow/Hate That I Love You/Firebomb Part 2) will be the next single off her Loud album. Eh, bad choice. I personally would've preferred Cheers or Man Down (especially since summer is right around the corner) but apparently California King Bed was the fan favorite.

"The Borgias" Premires Next Week

April 3rd (this Sunday) is right around the corner! Given Showtime's excellent (Dexter, The Tudors, Nurse Jackie, Californication and etc.) history of producing quality TV series, this upcoming historic drama should be no different. Check out this interesting review from LA Times here, as well as Entertainment Weekly's opinion of the show and its competition (Starz's Camelot and HBO's Game of Thrones, here.

Off topic, but did anyone watch the third season premiere of Nurse Jackie? I missed it.

Season 3 Trailer of "Nurse Jackie"

Showtime is on a roll with its quality drama series. They have Dexter, Nurse Jackie, The Big C, United States of Tara, Weeds, Californication and most recently, Shameless. The trailer for the third season of Nurse Jackie looks really good. The season three premiere of Nurse Jackie will air on March 28th.

"X-Men First Class" Trailer

Following the success (and criticisms) of director Bryan Singer's three previous X-men films, this Matthew Vaughn-directed-X-men-prequel, which is scheduled for release on June 3rd, focuses on the beginning of the X-men saga, long before the world knew their true identities. Judging by what I've seen from the minute-long trailer, I am extremely anxious to see what the final outcome will be. Anyone who knows me knows that I am the biggest X-men fanboy, so when I heard that this film was in production, though a part of me was worried (of how inaccurate or low quality it would be), another part of me was rather excited and eager to see what this new director (and cast) would do with the incredibly rich and interesting saga that is X-men. Though it's too early to tell, and way too little to go by, I have to admit that I am more interested now than ever before. Bring it on.

Cover of Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" Single

This is the cover of her upcoming Born This Way single (not the album). It was shot by photographer Nick Knight, which isn't surprising as the image is straight up his ally..

The photo is great and while nowhere near as creative or groundbreaking as Nick Knight's previous works, it is interesting in the sense that it is a sneak peek of what this much hyped and highly anticipated new era of Lady Gaga is going to look like.

The single is scheduled to premiere this Friday.

Rihanna's "S&M" Video

Fucking epic. Melina and Rihanna have done it again (see Hard, Rudeboy, Rockstar 101). There are so many things that are fascinating about this video. For one, it's very David LaChapelle-ish, which is one of my favorite photographers:

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Two; Perez Hilton as Rihanna's bitch. Wait, those were her words, not mine.

.. and three, it's full of everything Rihanna has become a pro at selling; sex, vivid imagery and attitude. The song itself, while a bit on the generic side (production wise), is sure to be another number one hit for her and will become another one of her many club anthems, right up there with Only Girl, Don't Stop The Music and Disturbia. I love this video so much that I would rank it as one of her best videos ever, definitely top five (along with, in no particular order; Hard, Rudeboy, Rockstar 101, Russian Roulette and Disturbia). While Loud might not be as great of an album as Rated R was, Rihanna is proving that it doesn't have to be. Sans Rudeboy, the singles off Loud are doing more than anything from Rated R ever did. Goes to show that while this might not necessarily be her best material, she is definitely giving us her best effort.

Its been a good month. Both my girls, Rihanna and P!nk, have delivered videos that have not only exceeded my expectations, but blew the rest of their contemporaries out the water. This my friends, is how a hot video is done. Cheers.