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Brent M Faulkner Brent M Faulkner
Starpulse Contributing Writer
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Bio/Profile
Hi, I'm Brent – one of those eccentric musician types who live and breathe music. Kentucky bred (don’t judge). Besides being a certified music teacher, multi-instrumentalist, and composer, I've been passionate about the music industry and music journalism for years. I've contributed to various music sites over the past five years – there's nothing better than being quoted!

Review: After Many Delays Chris Brown's 'X' Is Stronger Than Expected

September 18th, 2014 3:30pm EDT
Chris Brown - X
What’s a deadly disease that damages a musician’s career? The correct answer is the delayed album. Sure, controversy does the same (Chris Brown might know something about that), but the delayed album can be truly devastating. Brown’s sixth studio album X has been delayed several times. That said, even at its most imperfect, X is better than previous LP Fortune. Not only was Fortune filled with curse words, it also incited curse words…

"X" opens the effort mysteriously, gradually evolving into electro-R&B. It sports repetition and gimmickry commonplace to contemporary R&B and pop. Eve...
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Christian Rapper Lecrae Takes ‘Anomaly’ To The Top Of Billboard 200

September 18th, 2014 8:31am EDT
Lecrae Anomaly
It’s rare that the Christian rapper debuts atop the Billboard 200. How rare – well it never happens – like “never ever.” Anyways, Lecrae made it happen this week as Anomaly outperformed early prognostications and sold 88,000 copies. Lecrae was able to hold off a strong second week from Maroon 5’s V (80,000 copies, #2) as well as what was thought to be a tight race with Jhené Aiko (Souled Out sold 70,000 copies, good for #3).

While Lecrae’s debut is celebratory, it is also another week where no albums moved 100,000 copies. Throw in the fact that besides Lecrae and Jhené Aiko, the top ...
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5 Musicians Experiencing A Horrible 2014 (With Bonus Tracks!)

September 17th, 2014 4:00pm EDT
5 Musicians Experiencing A Horrible 2014 (With Bonus Tracks!)
Not everybody is having a swell 2014. Some people are searching for employment, grieving over a loved one, or dealing with the heartbreak of a relationship. Others – those creatures called musicians – are dealing with some of the same things, not to mention flopped albums and a boatload of controversy. Here are five musicians experiencing a horrible 2014, with three honorable ‘bonus tracks’ thrown in.

1) Robin Thicke

It should take an army to beat Justin Bieber at the coveted top spot, but Robin Thicke has it “signed, sealed, and delivered” following nothing short of a dreadful yea...
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Chris Brown, Tim McGraw & Train Among Albums to Check Out: This Week in Music

September 16th, 2014 10:40am EDT
Chris Brown, Tim McGraw & Train Among Albums to Check Out: This
The fourth quarter is underway in the music industry, with bigger, more coveted artists/albums dropping. September 16 again sports some big names, all looking for a slice of those lucrative sales that only occur during the September, October, November, and December months – sigh*. While this week doesn’t sport an album that looks to completely ‘slay’ the charts with robust numbers, many of the albums listed will certainly impact it. Here are seven albums to check out this week!

1) Chris Brown, X (RCA)

After multiple delays, Chris Brown releases his fifth studio album, X. Delayed al...
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Review: Jhené Aiko Maintains Poise On 'Souled Out'

September 15th, 2014 2:27pm EDT
Review: Jhené Aiko Maintains Poise On 'Souled Out'
Jhené Aiko definitely takes a different approach than many female R&B artists. Rather than delivering big, dramatic vocals, Aiko takes a cool, calm, and more poised approach. This contrast sets her apart, but at times, also leaves the listener desiring Aiko to push just a bit more. Still, her first full-length album for Def Jam has plenty to offer, showcasing Aiko’s tremendous artistic potential.

“She was born in limbo,” sings Aiko, “With the need to be as simple / as her makers and the made up things she dreamed.” “Limbo Limbo Limbo” kicks off the contemporary, alt-R&B affair uniquel...
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10 Reasons Why Miley Cyrus Is A Hot Mess!

September 13th, 2014 4:00pm EDT
10 Reasons Why Miley Cyrus Is A Hot Mess!
Keeping it short and sweet, if one were to search for the words crazy, ludicrous, or insane in the dictionary, likely, a picture of Miley Cyrus would serve as an example. Hey, you could even throw twerking onto that list! Yes, Ms. Cyrus is nothing short of ‘something else,’ whatever that may be. The behavior that has traveled along the pop star over the last year-plus is, well, nuts. To each his own, but this list has 10 convincing reasons why Miley Cyrus is a mess. Strike that – why Miley Cyrus is a ‘hot’ mess!

1) BANGERZ

Miley Cyrus took one gargantuan leap of faith dropping an a...
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Music Spotlight: Ann Hampton Callaway – A Musician You Should Know

September 11th, 2014 1:40pm EDT
Ann Hampton Callaway, From Sassy To Divine Shanachie
Perhaps only a few will recognize the name Ann Hampton Callaway off the top of their head, but definitely more than a few should know about Callaway's elite talent. Callaway sports a résumé that is stacked – absolutely loaded – from top to bottom. Perhaps she's not a household name compared to say pop artists, but her accomplishments deserve even greater recognition than she receives and certainly speaks for itself.

One look at the experience Callaway possesses, and the reasons why she’s “kind of a big deal” immediately reveal themselves. Callaway’s riveting bio describes her as a “sin...
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'Maroon 5' Earns Second #1 Album With ‘V’: This Week In Music

September 11th, 2014 8:32am EDT
'Maroon 5' Earns Second #1 Album With ‘V’: This Week In Music
Expectedly, rock/pop band Maroon 5 debut atop the Billboard 200 with their fifth studio album, V. Until V arrived, it had been seven years since Maroon 5 first reached the penthouse of the Billboard Album Charts, when It Won’t Be Soon Before Long sold a robust 429,000 copies. V doesn’t open nearly as hot, but does sell a respectable 164,000 copies. Those numbers are in line with other first-week sales in 2014, including Ariana Grande’s My Everything (#1, 169,000) Sam Smith’s In the Lonely Hour (#2, 166,000).

Thankfully, Maroon 5 wouldn’t be the only big name dropping respectable number...
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Review: Lecrae Delivers Prudent, Inspiring Messages on 'Anomaly'

September 10th, 2014 11:45am EDT
Review: Lecrae Delivers Prudent, Inspiring Messages on 'Anomaly'
Hip-hop and religion seem to be on opposite sides of the spectrum. That’s not speculating upon religious or nonreligious stance of rappers, but rather church and rap seem to have little in common. Few rappers spread spiritual messages through their music – most are spitting about hook ups, the club, and the cash flow. Likewise, ministers aren’t exactly raving over the secular themes hip-hop artists thrive upon.

That brings in Lecrae. An MC with nothing short of an impressive flow, rather than spit about his come-up in the secular sense, Lecrae always has ‘the man upstairs’ and a higher...
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Jhené Aiko, Lee Brice & Ryan Adams Among Albums To Check Out: This Week In Music

September 9th, 2014 11:07am EDT
Jhené Aiko, Lee Brice & Ryan Adams Among Albums To Check Out: Th
There’s nothing like the fourth quarter, a time when label executives know that sales will flourish more than any other time of the year. A host of albums are always dropped during this most exciting and lucrative time, and this week certainly doesn’t break way from that trend. Led by particularly notable releases from Jhené Aiko, Lee Brice, and Ryan Adams, here are nine albums to check out this week.

1) Lee Brice, I Don’t Dance (Curb)

Country artist Lee Brice returns with his third studio album I Don’t Dance. I Don’t Dance follows up his 2012 album, Hard 2 Love, which debuted at #...
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