Posts Tagged ‘Tom Dice’

Charley says ALBUM! Tom Dice – Teardrops

May 28, 2010

I’d promised you a review of the Tom Dice album and what better day to do it than the one on which he will be singing in the big Eurovision final after becoming the first Belgian ever to make it out of the semi final?

This post will focus on the album ‘Teardrops‘, but if you want read about Tom’s career pre-Eurovision there’s always this one I wrote some time ago.

In short, the Tom Dice album is very good. It’s not perfect, but it’s very good. I usually listen to a selection of the tracks as posted below. The other songs aren’t bad, but I mostly feel they either don’t fit (‘A Soldier For His Country‘) or just add too little to the album (the Isbells sounding intro ‘Start Without The Ending‘).

1. Me And My Guitar
2. Lucy
3. Too Late
4. Murderer
5. Why?
6. Always And Forever
7. Broken
8. Bleeding Love (Bonus Track)

There’s little need to introduce ‘Me And My Guitar‘. When Tom was announced to be Belgium’s 2010 Eurovision contestant reactions varied between “Who?” and “Why?”. Suffice to say that expectations weren’t exactly sky high when he premiered his entry. However, with the simple tale of a boy and his guitar he managed to convince Flanders and the song ended up topping the charts. ‘Me And My Guitar’ was co-written by Tom, Ashley Hicklin and producer Jeroen Swinnen. Jeroen previously had a hand in songs like Ellektra’s ‘I Hate It But I Love It‘ and Born Crain’s ‘Tell The World‘.

Lucy‘ is set to be the follow-up single from ‘Teardrops’. The summery track was co-written by Tom Helsen, a singer/songwriter we mentioned earlier when he released a track with Belgium’s 1993 Eurovision entrant Barbara Dex. With a chorus that has Tom pleading “Lucy, I love you, why don’t you love me?” the song sounds like a male version of Colbie Caillat’s ‘Realize‘.

People who followed Tom on X Factor may recognise ‘Too Late‘. Tom performed the selfwritten track in the final episode of the show. It may not have won him a record deal at the time, but I’m glad it’s included on the album. The song was given a makeover by Erhan Kurkun, who produced nearly the entire album. The new version sounds a lot ‘fuller’ than its acoustic original. A definite favourite with a chorus so catchy that we can even forgive the wonky lyric “I still love you, even if you slap me every day”.

Murderer‘, ‘Why?‘ and ‘Broken‘ continue the theme of great pop/rock tracks with catchy bits, bits where the music drops out on Tom’s vocals only to come back full force and bits where Tom asks “I’ve been searching for a girl like you, why did you leave?”.

My favourite song on ‘Teardrops’ however is ‘Always And Forever‘. It basically makes Tom sound like the most romantic boyfriend ever. He may be always on the road, but finally Tom gets to announce “I am on my way to visit you tonight, but the detail you don’t know is that I’m staying for a while”. And how does Tom tell you? “Now what’s your favourite movie, cause I’ll be coming home soon…” However, tragedy strikes before Tom and your DVD of choice ever get to arrive. The song builds to its finale with Tom defeatedly asking “But I wanted to stay?” Oh, Tom…

See also: Charley says ARTIST! Tom Dice

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Charley says EUROVISION! Oslo 2010 In A Tweet (7)

May 24, 2010

Together with two of my favourite Eurovision fanatics I’ll be taking a closer look at this year’s Eurovision hopefuls. Over the next week we’ll be rating every country and we’ll give our own take on it in a tweet, i.e. in 140 characters or less.

Now, let’s meet my co-judges:

MadeInHeaven: A British resident of the Popjustice forum.
Greg Baker: Our impartial American voice of reason.

Today we’ll be taking a closer look at Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Georgia and Turkey.

(more…)

Charley says EUROVISION! Oslo 2010 In A Tweet (2)

May 19, 2010

Together with two of my favourite Eurovision fanatics I’ll be taking a closer look at this year’s Eurovision hopefuls. Over the next week we’ll be rating every country and we’ll give our own take on it in a tweet, i.e. in 140 characters or less.

Now, let’s meet my co-judges:

MadeInHeaven: A British resident of the Popjustice forum.
Greg Baker: Our impartial American voice of reason.

Today we’ll be taking a closer look at Belgium, Malta, Albania and Greece!

(more…)

Charley says WEEK! 2010.19

May 16, 2010

Move over, Jasper Erkens and Freaky Age. Here’s Breathe The Sound! Above is lead singer Simon Nuytten. Below is their song ‘Dance‘. Over here is a live cover of Michael Jackson’s ‘Man In The Mirror‘. And this is the band’s MySpace profile. This isn’t usually my kind of music, but I find myself liking this quite a bit.

Charley says ARTIST! Tom Dice
[http://tinyurl.com/37yv8wu]

Charley says COVER ART! Monrose – Like A Lady
[http://tinyurl.com/32jyq4p]

Charley says VIDEO! Petra – Angel
[http://tinyurl.com/38v9fmg]

Charley says ARTIST! Axeela
[http://tinyurl.com/34qmepa]

Charley says VIDEO! Lio – Le Banana Split
[http://tinyurl.com/32xv6wu]

Charley says LIST! 3 Unlikely Yet Rather Amazing Samples
[http://tinyurl.com/35uczzz]

Charley says LIST! 3 Small Updates
[http://tinyurl.com/3y8dmru]

Charley says ARTIST! Axeela

May 14, 2010

I am super excited about this!

Meet Axeela, a Flemish girl born as Axelle Aerts who will be releasing ‘What Do You Want From Me (Bitch)‘ through Sonic Angel.

This label, set up by Lords Of Acid mastermind Maurice Engelen, must be the most exciting new record company in Flanders. Not content with just letting talent show discoveries go to waste, the X Factor judge signed finalist Tom Dice as his first artist and made a success out of him.

Axelle isn’t a stranger to television either. Back in 2006 she participated in Eurosong For Kids as part of Lizz@xy. Their pop tune ‘Ik Doe Wat Ik Wil‘ lost out to Thor’s ‘Een Tocht Door Het Donker‘, but came a respectable third in the final.


Lizz@xy – Ik Doe Wat Ik Wil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxCbHSVFnr8

A couple of years later Axelle popped back onto the radar when Idool 2003 diva Natalia held a competition to find a support act for her Glamorous tour. She went on to win the competition and impressed the audiences with renditions of songs like Christina Aguilera’s ‘Ain’t No Other Man‘.

This renewed media exposure gave her the chance to release a single on a small label. ‘Sold In A Box‘ was a pleasant enough pop/rock song. In it Axelle tells of a guy: “He’s got charm, he’s got class, he’s got a perfect looking ass […] He’s got everything I need, but too bad he’s sold in a box”. The song even got some promo on online music show Muziektoppers, but unfortunately it didn’t chart. The cardboard boxes may look cheap, but when you see the kind of performance she manages to do on a budget, imagine how great a popstar she could be with a label properly backing her?

Axelle – Sold In A Box
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDZjBx7i54E

We’ll get to Axeela’s proper debut single in a minute, but first let’s point you to some other songs the singer’s got up around the internet. I’m assuming budget R&B tune ‘Playing Games‘ dates back to ‘Sold In A Box‘ era Axelle. The song still sounds rather demo-ish, but I do love the bleepy bits in the bridge. There’s also a short clip of ‘How We Grind‘ being recorded in the studio. I’m thinking this was done after the songs I mentioned earlier, but before her latest efforts. Finally, ‘They‘ isn’t my favourite, but the slow jam does show off Axelle’s vocals.

With all of this out of the way, let’s cut to the chase and introduce you to what will be Axeela’s first single. ‘What Do You Want From Me (Bitch)‘ is the song that got me properly excited about this project. You can check out the live performance she did at the Tom Dice album release party. The song’s got a brilliant “Aw Aw… Aw Aw…” intro and is basically a thumping pop/R&B anthem. Even the rent-a-rapper doesn’t bother me as it allows for there to be a build up to the song properly ‘going off’. A video has been shot and should be out soon, but for now the live performance below should already be enough to convince you that Axeela just might be the new best thing in Belgian pop.

Charley says ARTIST! Tom Dice

May 10, 2010

I am absolutely loving the Tom Dice album.

Before I give you guys a proper review of ‘Teardrops‘ I wanted to put together a full artist profile of the young singer who will be representing Belgium at the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest with ‘Me And My Guitar‘.

Back in 2008 Tom auditioned for the second season of Flemish X Factor.  He got through to the live shows where he immediately impressed with an acoustic rendition of Leona Lewis’ ‘Bleeding Love’. From then on he was the one to beat and sailed through to the final.

However, in the final school teacher Dirk De Smet was the one who ended up taking the record deal home. Not that it was anything to be jealous of, Dirk only got offered a two single deal. His winner’s song ‘Walk And Don’t Look Back‘ only got to number 4 and sophomore release ‘So Little‘ didn’t even bother the Bubbling Under chart.

Since Sony was barely interested in the show’s actual winner, it seemed like there was no hope for runner-up Tom. Luckily, his X Factor coach Maurice Engelen, the man behind Lords Of Acid, stepped in, started up a new label and signed Tom as one of his first artists. The other act being Mathieu & Guillaume, two brothers who had also been X Factor finalists.


Bleeding Love (Live)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2W-_5Jm3jYQ

In the summer of 2009 Tom released his debut single. The aforementioned cover of ‘Bleeding Love’ would have also been his winner’s song had he won the show, so it was decided to release it after all. While Tom’s version isn’t bad, I think it’s a shame they didn’t stick with the stripped down backing music that made his X Factor performance stand out. With a little help from a couple of instore signings ‘Bleeding Love’ managed to scrape into the top 10 for a week at number 7.

We’ll get to the success of ‘Me And My Guitar‘ and Tom’s debut album ‘Teardrops‘ next time, but before I end this post there’s one more thing I’d like to tell you about.

Network vtm doesn’t seem to realise that having guest performers benefits both the show and the Flemish music industry, so it was a bit of a surprise when one week they announced that Craig David would be appearing on the show. That week’s show even got a Craig David Week theme. Yes, seriously. Rather unexpectedly Tom gave his best performance that week. He managed to turn ‘7 Days‘ into a brilliant pop/rock tune that I still revisit every now and again. Also: judge Do‘s thumbs up face in that clip.

See also: Charley says ALBUM! Tom Dice – Teardrops