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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!

Wiz Khalifa Takes ‘Blacc Hollywood’ To The Top: This Week in Music

August 28th, 2014 7:45am EDT
Wiz Khalifa, 'Blacc Hollywood'
Wiz Khalifa has been high many times in his life – he’d probably say the same thing – but he’s never been #1 on the Billboard 200. This week, after two previous albums, Wiz Khalifa’s latest album Blacc Hollywood sold 90,000 copies, easily sufficient for #1. While Wiz had never debuted at the penthouse, both his previous albums actually moved more copies their first week. 2011 effort Rolling Papers sold a robust 197,000 copies, while 2012 LP O.N.I.F.C. sold 148,000. Each album by the kush lover has sold less. Still, Wiz should celebrate…then again maybe he should ease up on Mary Jane. ...
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Review: Ariana Grande Shines Vocally on ‘My Everything’

August 27th, 2014 9:50am EDT
Ariana Grande
On Ariana Grande’s sophomore album My Everything, things feel different from her debut Yours Truly from 2013. The voice still soars commandingly – there’s no difference there – but My Everything has more of the feel of a big pop album. Sure Yours Truly had some exceptional records itself and blended pop and R&B sensibilities much like this album, but My Everything feels as if Grande has better established her niche and is flexing.

My Everything is a solid second effort from Grande, feeling like the right album for the right time. That said, the album itself, while good, is by no means...
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Ariana Grande Leads New Albums: This Week In Music

August 26th, 2014 9:12am EDT
Ariana Grande Leads New Albums: This Week In Music
After some rather unexceptional release weeks, the music industry looks to be picking up some steam in regards to bigger album releases. This week, many new titles were released off-cycle, hitting stores on Monday, August 25. Some of the artists dropping new music this week included Ariana Grande, Kem, and Brad Paisley. Grande, who’s had big hits this summer, leads the charge this week with My Everything.

1) Ariana Grande, My Everything (Universal Republic)

Pop’s new ‘it’ star releases her highly anticipated sophomore album, My Everything, which follows up 2013’s #1 debut, Yours Tru...
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Caleb Johnson Becomes The Latest Casualty Of The Diminishing 'American Idol' Franchise

August 25th, 2014 10:50am EDT
Caleb Johnson
The profitability and lucrativeness of the American Idol franchise in regards to its album sales seems to be done. It is finished people – F-I-N-I-S-H-E-D! It’s sort of like overcooking bacon…not very tasty and certainly not edible. Why this post now – well another Idol winner has fallen, epically. Technically, maybe you can’t fall before you ever ascended, but a recording career can definitely be done before it begins. Lately, this has been the disconcerting trend of American Idol.

Caleb Johnson has successfully stolen Candice Glover’s crown as the lowest selling American Idol wi...
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10 Best Taylor Swift Songs

August 24th, 2014 12:00pm EDT
10 Best Taylor Swift Songs
Ah Taylor Swift – the same musician who made the 10 Musicians You Either Adore Or Loathe list – has certainly put her thumbprint on the music industry within recent times. Everyone should just admit it: Swift is nothing short of a beast. Throughout a relatively young career, Swift has released plenty of noteworthy material. While every song about a broken relationship can’t make the list, here are 10 of Swift’s best songs.

1) “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” (Red, 2012)

If saying “we are never getting back together” wasn’t enough, Swift makes sure everybody is fully aware of...
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Music Spotlight: Troye Sivan – Youthful Alt-Pop Warrior

August 21st, 2014 11:15am EDT
Music Spotlight: Troye Sivan – Youthful Alt-Pop Warrior
Often times, a teen musician offers one of two things as a recording artist – bubblegum and more bubblegum. Call it schmaltz. Maybe that assertion is over simplistic, but typically, teen musicians tend to appeal to audiences of their peers or even younger. Not many youngsters have the ability early on to crossover or appeal to more mature, older listeners. With numerous EPs released from burgeoning teen acts, most appealed to, well teens. No shade 5 Seconds of Summer, The Vamps, or Shawn Mendes.

For Troye Sivan, the script is a bit different. With Sivan, a multitalented 19-year ol...
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The Gaslight Anthem Land at #4 on Billboard 200 : This Week In Music

August 21st, 2014 9:20am EDT
The Gaslight Anthem
In a blasé August release week, Guardians of the Galaxy Soundtrack remains at #1 on the Billboard 200 selling 93,000 copies. The numbers are solid considering the soundtrack sold 109,000 copies last week (no substantial drop), but worth noting is no album moved 100,000 copies this week. The next closest album, Now 51, was distant second place, selling 52,000 copies. Ouch!

Despite sluggish numbers, there were some new debuts. The Gaslight Anthem landed at #4 with its latest album, Get Hurt. Get Hurt sold 33,000 copies, which by no means is the second coming. Troy Sivan’s numbers ar...
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Review: Wiz Khalifa Brings More Of The Same On ‘Blacc Hollywood’

August 20th, 2014 9:21am EDT
Wiz Khalifa, 'Blacc Hollywood'
If nothing else comes across on a Wiz Khalifa album, the MC’s love of weed does. It seems as if no Wiz song is a go without a reference to smoking. While the honesty is appreciated, it is often overplayed, growing tiresome album in and album out. On third album of note, Blacc Hollywood, weed definitely remains part of Wiz. His shallowness as an MC as well, dominates his latest album. Ultimately, Wiz Khalifa is who he is, and nothing more.

“Hope” opens Blacc Hollywood, featuring up and coming artist Ty Dolla $ign. Chevy Woods provides a lengthy intro before Wiz ever spits one bar. Ulti...
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Wiz Khalifa, 'Blacc Hollywood' Leads Albums To Check Out: This Week In Music

August 19th, 2014 11:33am EDT
Wiz Khalifa, 'Blacc Hollywood' Leads Albums To Check Out: This W
Finally, finally, finally! Things are beginning to look up as the music industry gears towards the always busy, profitable fourth quarter (September through December). After August has gotten off to a slow start, this week, numerous interesting titles drop. Not every title is featured here (sorry Amy Grant, Colton Dixon, Gretchen Wilson, Kimbra and Randy Travis), but a select few are highlighted as albums to check out. Among the most notable titles is Wiz Khalifa’s third album, Blacc Hollywood.

1) Wiz Khalifa, Blacc Hollywood (Atlantic)

Wiz Khalifa’s third album could be one to make...
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Review: The Gaslight Anthem Show Consistency On ‘Get Hurt’

August 18th, 2014 1:29pm EDT
Review: The Gaslight Anthem Show Consistency On ‘Get Hurt’
After a two-year hiatus, rock band The Gaslight Anthem return with their fifth studio album, Get Hurt. Get Hurt follows a high watermark for the band, led by vocalist and guitarist Brian Fallon. 2012 effort Handwritten easily ranked among the best rock albums that year. Get Hurt maintains consistency and enjoyability, regardless if it trumps Handwritten or not.

“Stay Vicious” opens Get Hurt in excitedly. The riffs come ‘right at your face,’ while Fallon delivers the lyrics in gritty, emotional fashion. Interesting about “Stay Vicious” is the chorus pulls back, while the verses are...
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