Heidi Montag’s New Disc…and 5 Albums You Should Buy Instead

Heidi Montag – Superficial

After three years and two-million dollars out of her own pocket, former reality-tv star and current tabloid fixture Heidi Montag has finally unleashed her self-proclaimed masterpiece upon the world. Fittingly titled “Superficial,” the album serves as Montag’s robotic love letter to the Hollywood party life. Montag has already publicly compared the dance-pop album to Michael Jackson’s legendary 1982 album “Thriller,” claiming that her album stands up to his since she has put in more time and money than he did. A valid claim, since most intelligent people agree that time and money determine artistic merit…right. As one might expect, auto-tune runs rampant through this recording. The vocals are as digitally altered as Montag’s physique on the album cover. Montag moans and whispers over wannabe GaGa beats, sounding more like a fembot than anything else. I would only buy this album as a curiosity piece. I think we’ve found a Florence Foster Jenkins for the new millennium.

That aside, let’s talk about some albums you should own by some hot female artists worth knowing.

1. Janelle Monae – Metropolis: The Chase Suite

Atlanta native Janelle Monae released this ambitious little LP in 2008, following some high-profile work with Outkast. Originally envisioned as the first suite in a four-part opus, Metropolis tells the story of Cyndi Mayweather, an android on the run from the authorities after falling in love with a human (criminal activity in futuristic Metropolis). Over the 7 tracks, Ms. Monae switches between sounding like a female version of Outkast’s Andre 3000 and channeling the trumpet-esque voice of Shirley Bassey, pulling both sounds off stunningly. I would definitely recommend this short album to anyone. Be on the lookout for more from this talented lady with her next effort, Metropolis Suites II & III: Arch Android set to release sometime this year.

Watch: “Many Moons”

2. Robyn – Robyn

You might remember Robyn’s early hits from the mid-90s. “Show Me Love” and “Do You Know (What it Takes)” were both major radio hits in the pre-Britney teen pop era. I have both of those songs in my library, but it was this awesome comeback album that made me fall in love with Robyn. Released in Sweden in 2005, it didn’t see American shores until 2008 (unless you count the copy I imported in 2006, soon after its UK release). On this album, Robyn fuses electronica beats with organic string instrumentation to great effect. Add in Robyn’s quirky, solid vocals and you have a recipe for avant-garde pop gold.

Watch: “With Every Heartbeat”

3. Nikka Costa – Pebble to a Pearl

Former child star Nikka Costa first got mainstream attention with her catchy single “Like A Feather”. I, like many critics, assumed that this 2001 single would propel her to national stardom. While it did garner her a loyal fanbase, Nikka is still no household name. Now on a new label (Stax Records), Nikka is doing her best work yet. With arrangements that could have come right out of the 70s, Nikka gives a master class in real singing. If you are feeling some raw Janis Joplin meets James Brown vocals, give this girl a listen!

Watch: “Stuck to You” (live on Conan)

4. Solange – Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams

Solange finally finds her stride with this fun and soulful record. Finding more inspiration from artists like Jill Scott and Erykah Badu, Solange distances herself from the clean pop sound of older sister Beyonce. If Beyonce is a trumpet, Solange has the wah-wah mute on, throwing her voice through 4 octaves fearlessly. Lyrically, Solange gets even more experimental. Imagine Kate Bush writing the lyrics for a Joss Stone album and you’ll almost have it. Who knows what Ms. Knowles will do in the future. Whatever it is, I’m gonna bet she surprises us again.

Watch: “Sandcastle Disco”

5. Little Jackie – The Stoop

When you listen to Little Jackie’s début album, things might sound a bit familiar. They should. The lead singer is Imani Coppola who had a huge MTV hit in 1997 with the video for “Legend of a Cowgirl.” Imani then toured with the Lilith Fair before being dropped from her label. Mostly self-releasing since then, this effort his her first with S-Curve records. A sonic cousin of genre-bending group Gnarls Barkley, Little Jackie makes catchy music with something to say. Whether humorously teaching Amy Winehouse a lesson on “Crying for the Queen” or sharing experiences of growing up in a broken family on “Go Hard or Go Home,” Coppola is always telling a story. If conscious hip-hop and soul is your bag of tea, download this one.

Listen: “The Kitchen”

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  1. Please tell me you’ve seen Heidi Montag’s “music video” from her vacation on the beach. It was a while ago and I don’t know if it’s still on YouTube, but it was ripped apart when she posted it. Heh!

    But I couldn’t agree more with Janelle Monae being one of your selections. She gave me one of her demos last year at the Class of 3000 premiere. This chick is pretty stellar!

  2. I started watching the beginning of that “music video” and had to stop it. That girl will do whatever it takes to keep her name circulating in the press even if it kills her.

    Have you seen the cover of People this week? Ms. Montag is completely unrecognizable. She had another boob job, a chin reduction, and about 8 more procedures all in the same day. I’m a little frightened for her.

  3. That issue actually came in the mail today. It scares me that she states, “I’m obsessed” and how she wants more surgeries. Gross.

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