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Brent Faulkner Brent Faulkner
Starpulse Contributing Writer
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Brent Faulkner is a music educator, composer, music journalist, blogger, and all around music enthusiast. Faulkner holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in music education as well as a Masters degree in music theory/composition. Faulkner contributes his pen to several sites.

Music Shopping List: What To Consider Buying April 8, 2014

April 8th, 2014 12:00am EDT
Ah new release Tuesday, where dreams come true and are broken for many artists who hope their album will sell these days.  This Tuesday, April 8, 2014, the releases aren’t exactly star-studded – that would be an understatement.  That said, there are some possibilities to choose from, whether you’re looking to go vintage, be spiritually uplifted, or want to stomach an immature pop star’s life…

Linda Ronstadt
Ronstadt doesn’t release new music anymore, but the vocalist has released more than enough classic material to solidify her veteran musician status.  Duets is a co...

Review: M&O, ‘Almost Us’

April 7th, 2014 11:45am EDT
M&O isn’t a household name, but perhaps the duo should be
M&O • Almost Us • US Release Date: April 3, 2014
In an age where many of us music listeners are searching for the next ‘big-thing’ – aka the next breakout artist/band – too often WE think ‘too big’ and end up missing out on a treat that wasn’t so far-fetched to discover. There are a number of independent artists who offers just as much, if not more than our ‘idea’ of what and who the next big-time major label artist should be. Among those artists – the “lesser-known” artists as they could be categorized – is a duo that shouldn’t be s...

Review: MKTO, ‘MKTO’

April 7th, 2014 12:00am EDT
MKTO don’t reinvent the wheel, but deliver worthwhile pop music
MKTO • MKTO • Columbia • US Release Date: April 1, 2014
Every year, there are new pop acts that come and go. Some make a gargantuan impact and either exemplify current trends soundly or begin a new trend. Others fall by the wayside, going unnoticed. For MKTO, made up of actors/musicians Malcolm Kelly and Tony Oller, they don’t reinvent pop’s wheel (if there is such a thing), but they do execute pop’s current trends very well. Don’t call MKTO the saviors of pop or perhaps even the next ‘great’ thing, but the twenty something duo...

15 Songs That Will Make You Smile

April 4th, 2014 7:03pm EDT
15 Songs That Will Make You Smile
Sometimes, it is incredibly difficult to smile. Even for the most positive person, there are circumstances in life that sap the joy right out of you and supplant happiness with incredibly sadness. Being sad or worried is a big-time drag, but it’s nothing that a little “happy” music can’t rid of. Sure, a good song can’t erase the debt one has built up or that bad breakup over irreconcilable differences, but it can certainly be therapeutic. Here are 15 Songs That Will Make You Smile.



Pharrell Williams

From the album G I R L (2014)

There isn’t a song in 2014 that coul...

Review: Mac Demarco's, ‘Salad Days’ Proves To Be One Of 2014s Best Albums

April 4th, 2014 11:45am EDT
Mac Demarco : Salad Days
Salad Days easily proves to be one of the year’s elite albums

Mac Demarco • Salad Days • Captured Tracks • US Release Dates: April 1, 2014

“Oh now, you’ve done it again / no use when you already know how it ends.” Throughout Salad Days, singer/songwriter Mac Demarco seems incredibly down – there is the sense of the constant ‘bummer’. The aforementioned lyrics, excerpted from “Treat Her Better”, would suggest this extreme pessimism from the Canadian artist. However, even though Demarco gets down within Salad Days about various things, he also offers atoning words of wisdoms and relatable...

Dancehall Artist Vybz Kartel Sentenced to Life in Prison

April 4th, 2014 12:00am EDT
As Snoop Dogg once rapped in reference to his own trial,  “Murder Was The Case” indeed for Vybz Kartel, a popular Jamaican dancehall artist.  Kartel has been sentenced to life in prison after previously being convicted for the murder of Clive “Lizard” Williams according to the Associate Press.  Apparently Williams’ murder was one of extreme cruelty – brutal – with the corpse never being recovered.   While Kartel’s musical impact is more notable in Jamaica, Kartel has collaborated with highly regarded musicians in the U.S.A., including Missy Elliott (“Bad Man” from album The Cookbook), Rihan...

Review: 5 Seconds of Summer, ‘She Looks So Perfect (EP)’

April 3rd, 2014 11:45am EDT
Australian Band Hopes for more than ‘5 Seconds’ of fame on Latest EP
5 Seconds of Summer • She Looks So Perfect (EP) • Capitol • US Release Date: April 1, 2014
Let’s just cut straight to the chase here. Who are these dudes 5 Seconds of Summer you ask?  Well, 5 Seconds of Summer are an Australian band comprised of Luke Hemmings, Michael Clifford, Callum Hood, and Ashton Irwin.  As is customary (and smart) these days, rather than release/invest into a full-length album initially, the band releases EPs.  She Looks So Perfect is the latest EP, certainly meant to elevate the band’s fan base.  Ho...

Review: Luke Bryan, ‘Spring Break 6…Like We Ain’t Ever’

April 3rd, 2014 12:00am EDT
Luke Bryan’s Spring Break series rolls right along…for a sixth time
Luke Bryan • Spring Break 6…Like We Ain’t Ever • Capitol Nashville • US Release Date: March 11, 2014
Spring break is a rite of passage of sorts for many college-aged kids.  The ever youthful Luke Bryan, however, continues to place himself back in his early twenties with his never ending Spring Break series, now on Spring Break 6…Like We Ain’t Ever.  There’s nothing wrong with using the crazy antics of spring break as fuel for fire, but approaching 38 years of age, is Bryan stretching it a bit?  Regardless, not only is anoth...

50 Cent & Trey Songz Miss The Mark on Single “Smoke”

April 2nd, 2014 5:00pm EDT
50 Cent ft. Trey Songz • “Smoke” • G-Unit • US Release Date: April 1, 2014
50 Cent’s best days as a relevant MC seem far behind him, at least judging by his blasé, uninspired comeback single, “Smoke”.  Assisted by an equally lackadaisical Trey Songz,  “Smoke” manages to compare sex and smoking – preferably blunts judging by the hook.  While the notion may seem like it has potential to be interesting if far-fetched (two examples of pleasure), the ultimate results are nothing short of EPIC FAIL.  This single truly reveals just how far 50 Cent’s game has fallen, particularly since his last tru...

Shakira Settles For No. 2 as ‘Frozen’ Keeps The Top Spot Warm

April 2nd, 2014 1:17pm EDT
On the Billboard 200 Albums Chart this week, multiple new albums graced the top ten.  Unfortunately for them, not were able to take down reigning champ Frozen Soundtrack, which once more sells six figures (161,000 copies) according to Billboard.  The new releases underperformed where numbers are concerned, keeping Frozen easily ahead of them. Frozen, led by ubiquitous Academy Award winning song “Let It Go” seems unstoppable.  As to what or who could kill Frozen’s vibe, I don’t know.
Shakira was unable to stop the beloved soundtrack, as Shakira. debuted in the runner-up slot with only 84,000...