Georgia native Carson Aldridge is photographed by Blake Ballard for Issue 3 of Desnudo UK, Summer 2018.
Soul Artist Management model Barak Shamir sizzles as his stars in this edgy spread from the Spring 2019 issue of Man About Town, photographed by Christian Oita. Aside from the rugged, raw modeling and stunning photography, the styling is impeccable; courtesy of Tony Cook.
Pizza, patriotism, even a hint of Disney. Easily one of our favorite photoshoots ever.
Photographed by Galore founders Prince + Jacob, this clever spread brings back memories of turn-of-the-millennium teen fan magazines that many of us grew up with.
At just 17 years old Mahone was named 2013 MTV Artist to Watch, but six and a half years later has yet to release a proper debut studio album outside of Japan (we are still watching, Austin!). Despite this, the 23-year-old has still racked up 10 million Instagram followers, solidifying him as a bona fide influencer and public figure — impressive, even though his musicianship often takes a back seat.
To hold us off in the mean time, we have his photoshoots, as well as the fire he drops on his Instagram. 🔥
Today is September 13th, 2018 and marks the hopeful comeback of part time music icon and part time skinny legend Mariah Carey with “GTFO.”
Not that she’s ever left. Since 2014’s criminally underrated Me. I Am Mariah… The Elusive Chanteuse, the diva has dropped her second #1’s compilation album (when will your fave?), embarked on her Vegas residency and a tour, appeared in her not-a-reality-show-but-an-eight-part-event Mariah’s World, made her directorial debut with A Christmas Melody, and even gifted fans with another underrated single: “I Don’t.”
In short, ya girl’s been busy. Never too busy to continue to be writing and producing behind the scenes though. “GTFO,” written by Mariah alongside Bibi Bourelly (“Bitch Better Have My Money”) and Jordan Manswell, is hopefully the first sign of a fifteenth studio album on the way.
In classic Mariah fashion, “GTFO” is a slow burn of a breakup track, and much like “I Don’t,” she’s over it.
“How ’bout you get the fuck out” is the main hook and it pretty much says it all. The lush beat samples “Goodbye to a World,” a Porter Robinson deep cut that features vocals from AVANNA, a Vocaloid. Mariah rarely samples modern songs, much less any from the EDM genre. We don’t know whether the sample was selected by her or co-producer Nineteen85 but we know how picky she is, and it’s kinda brilliant.
“How ’bout you take your tings and be on your merry way, how ’bout you fly off with a wink, bye bye, baby,” is one of the particularly pleasing melodies in the song. The songbird coos firmly in her whisper voice throughout, not even treading into the further echelons of her voice. Audiences will probably cite this and the overall vibe of the song to current minimalist R&B influencers like Tinashe, The Weeknd, and FKA twigs, lest we forget Mariah has tackled the sound time and time again throughout her career. (Speaking of underrated, let’s talk about Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel shall we?”)
“GTFO” isn’t the lead single anyone would expect from a Mimi album, nor is it the most exciting release, but it proves that she can time and time again still produce incredible music. Mariah’s artistry and involvement in her music has been overlooked for almost three decades, but with each release she continues to prove to those who care that her bar has never been lowered.
Now get the fuck out there and stream “GTFO.”
*Edit* “GTFO” is a first helping from Mariah’s upcoming untitled 15th album, due out later this year. The first official single, “With You,” is slated for release October 5.
Mendes talks of a possible future in acting, collaborating with John Mayer and why he’s using his platform to support mental health and gun control. Check out the behind-the-scenes video below as well as these GIFs!
We wanna try some right now: Poison Paradise is officially hopping on the hallyu thanks to staff writer Mikey Xi.
Let’s get the nitty gritty out of the way.
LOONA (stylized as LOOΠΔ), of Blockberry Creative, is probably the greatest and most innovative group to happen to K-Pop and perhaps pop music in at least the past few years. With a unique rollout process, each of the 12 members were revealed previously with their own single, music video, and b-side. Every 3-4 girls would debut as a sub-unit as well, each with their own unique style and sound.
Technically in less than two years LOONA released 19 singles and videos (filmed throughout 7+ different countries) with 12 mini albums, three albums and two re-releases, with five live show and promo cycles. Possibly the greatest feat of all? They’re good. From pure bubblegum pop, a tango-inflected orchestral ballad, Eurodance, and horn-driven throwbacks, the group has proven their versatility as a group and each girl as a solid solo contender.
Also, each music video has contributed a side of an intricate storyline that makes up the LOONAVERSE. What’s the story? We don’t even know ourselves. Fans have come up with many theories, some debunked, some still holding up. What we do know? Not a lot, but some of them have super powers like travelling through realms by eating cherries, the youngest is lost in the forest, the oldest is an android, a couple are gay as hell, and one loves bread.
Tired? They’re just barely getting started.
Say hello to HeeJin, HyunJin, HaSeul, YeoJin, ViVi, Kim Lip, JinSoul, Choerry, Yves, Chuu, GoWon, and Olivia Hye. Get familiar while you can with each of their stellar solo debuts.
August 20th, 2018: “Hi High,” the highly anticipated debut single has dropped, nearly two years after first girl HeeJin was first revealed.
You’d be hard pressed to find a bubblegum track that carries the same bursting energy that “Hi High” does – and I challenge you to find anything this brilliant in Western pop today.
After such a wait, it’s hard not to feel giddy and proud of the fully realized unit, but objectively the song is a certified bop! Starting off with their signature spoken intro (“I know it’s been a long day, I haven’t seen you today / you’re somewhere, I’m sure”), “Hi High” brings together the 90s punchy pop sounds of LOONA 1/3’s “Love & Live,” the euphoric effervescence of LOONA / Odd Eye Circle’s “Girl Front” and the pure unbridled glee of LOONA / yyxy’s “Love4Eva” in a genre that Blockberry describes as “Hi Energy.” This has become the inspiration for the title of the mini album: [ + + ], (like [1/3 + Odd Eye Circle + yyxy]… get it?) Innovative queens.
For Orbits (their official fanbase name) who may have felt underwhelmed by “favOriTe” – which wasn’t the debut single, but a “lead” single, because Korea said fuck you – this is surely going to be a destiny fulfilled moment. Significantly more screen time for all your biases, a much more engaging video to further the LOONAVERSE story, and a towering chorus to satisfy any thirsty pop fan. ViVi still only has one line though, and I am calling for justice for our Hong Kongese princess. Production team Digipedi (SHINee, BoA, Seventeen) still consistently comes through with the visuals, the girls are quite literally racing to find each other and to snatch Twice’s wigs. Through highways and abandoned waterparks the girls of Odd Eye Circle collect each girl, joining together at a pink construction plant for one of their most engaging choreographies yet.
It’s not uncommon at all to find a K-pop girl group to go for the cutesy concept, especially early on in their careers, but you’d be hard pressed to find a bubblegum track that carries the same bursting energy that “Hi High” does – and I challenge you to find anything this brilliant in Western pop today. Quite possibly a favorite K-pop quality of mine is how groups don’t necessarily put sadness at the obvious forefront of the song. However, behind earworm woo-o-o-o-ahh’s, the shifting minor chords and melodies add a sense of underlying somberness to the bright track. “Love is even crueler than college exams,” they sing over sparkling synths, a glorious line encapsulating all the cheekiness, melancholy, and unashamed youthfulness that pop should be.
Pop stans love hyperbole and the ever rabid Orbits are certainly no exception. However, with just how strong and engaging the entire LOONA experience has been so far, it’s not hard to understand how the fanbase has grown to so fiercely stand behind their girls. K-pop has been really the industry consistently serving quality and consistently fresh material and after two years of nearly non-stop content, LOONA is still bringing fresh and unique moments to the table. Keep an eye on these girls, because it’s about to be moonrise kingdom up in this bitch.
As pop fans, we love it when music moves us, we love it how it touches us. In 2018, it just doesn’t seem like that’s any artist’s goal anymore. The definition of a pop star or diva has definitely become very loosely thrown nowadays. Who’s an artist that’s debuted in recent years that could even be considered a proper pop star? We have white sadboys who are automatically given artistic cred for knowing how to play the guitar, and pretty girls who sleepwalk through performances.
Enter Ariana Grande and Sweetener, her 2018 opus. Kicking off with a bang bang into the room this era with “no tears left to cry,” it was evident while her peers settle for moderate success with half-assed efforts, the songstress had no intentions of lowering the bar for herself. While the lead single extended her record of being the only artist in Billboard history to debut in the top ten with all her lead singles, “no tears left to cry” furthers the Grande narrative as we know it. Over elements of disco and house and trap, the track is the first lead of hers to really sound like she’s completely in her element. It’s more “hi, I’m Ariana Grande and this is my music” and less “I’m Ariana Grande and I’m here to prove that I can make mature R&B music, effervescent pop bangers, and sexy bedroom jams.” The fact that it’s one of her best singles to date is proof in the sweetened pudding, and the rest of the project follows as it paints a picture of a proper pop star being realized.
Kicking off with a bang bang into the room this era with “no tears left to cry,” it was evident while her peers settle for moderate success with half-assed efforts, the songstress had no intentions of lowering the bar for herself.
Oh, and remember when she was hoeing around on Dangerous Woman? Yeah, girl is still horny and still 100% in control of her sexuality. The trap-pop/reggae-tinged second single “God is a woman” is obviously no exception as it aligns feminine energy with godliness, all packed in a sultry and steamy banger. Even on the breezy Pharrell-produced “successful,” which celebrates success and confidence among women, she still teases “let me put my hands over your eyes” as background vocals coo “it’s a surprise, surprise.” It’s the kind of breezy, bouncy track that recalls “Bad Liar” by Selena Gomez (one of the better pop singles in past years) without using it as a full reference point.
The chill, reserved vibe is definitely the type of energy that runs through most of Sweetener, which has been the chagrin of many fans who may have been expecting the same level of high-octane pop that’s been present throughout most of Ariana’s career. Chill, however, doesn’t have to mean lazy or careless – although the one downfall of these tracks is that sometimes they nearly fall into that realm, as with “borderline” and “blazed,” where even flashy featured names like Pharrell and Missy Elliott sound like they couldn’t be bothered to sit up to record. Other times, such as with title track, the songs bring a lot more to the table. “sweetener,” which many suspected may have been a tender ballad in line with “Moonlight,” immediately switches up with an already-memified, Bop It-sampling chorus. While the tracks aren’t dancefloor filers (wait for that remix though), they keep an audience engaged. Backing vocals exclaiming “sheesh” and “ayy” here and there give the tracks a nearly conversational vibe. “the light is coming” is another Pharrell track that shows that restraint can make gold and that sometimes bursting at the seams is better than punching a listener in the face.
But we’ve always known Miss Grande can serve bops, haven’t we? Of course we have. However, like any diva, the most arresting moments on the album are when she’s feeling all her emotions at the forefront. “raindrops (an angel cried)” is short album intro in the form of an acapella cover of the Four Seasons hit, and might be one of the most immediately arresting moments on the album in just 38 sweet seconds. Savor it, it’s one of the few times you’ll get your standard soaring ballad moment. You’re gonna hear more in the vein of “pete davidson,” putting the young artist’s penchant for stacked vocals and harmonies on full display.
“everytime” feels like a hangover of Dangerous Woman’s “Bad Decisions,” lamenting over someone Ari keeps going back to. A lesson in classic pop earworm couplets “you get high and call on the regular / I get weak and fall like a teenager.” Whereas other times she finds herself the opposite direction of sentimental. Matching the lyrical themes, the track “better off” is a gorgeous musical moment with production making Grande sound like a lonely astronaut drifting in space. Singing about keeping lovers at a safe emotional distance: “let’s put them topics to bed and go fuck on the roof, just to say we did it” is definitely a moment fans will be talking about. Several titles like these also show off the songstress’ gorgeous warm lower register, proving time again that she can give more than a great roaring belter.
The singer describes the title of her fourth full-length Sweetener to reference “somebody else who brings light to your life, or sweetening the situation.” Self-aware queen. Jokes aside, this obviously references the tragedy her and her fans faced this past year when the Manchester date of her Dangerous Woman Tour was the site of a deadly terror attack. Avoiding that subject in her music and public persona would’ve been scrutinized by the public, even though we shouldn’t have to depend on trauma survivors addressing their experiences, and with the lead single and other entries on the album she finds an honest ground far away from exploitation. “no tears left to cry” was no exception, and “get well soon” delivers an important message on taking care of ones mental health while recalling the doo-wop filled fan favorite “Honeymoon Avenue.”
“breathing” has become quite a new fan favorite and album centerpiece as well, the Cashmere Cat-written number takes lyrics about anxiety and not able to find peace and leads it into a chorus with a pulsing dance track with a simple message: “just keep breathin, and breathin, and breathin.”
Sweetener is quite literally the album we needed in 2018. Anthems calling for fans to take care of their mental health, feminist bops, songs about getting dicked down, and more. It’s no perfect album by far, but in 2018 been one of the few proper pop albums to serve exciting and genuinely touching moments. She’s fulfilled her promise of being a sweetener for her fans and listeners, and then some.
It was “sometime last year or the year before” when he first started tackling his anxiety by confronting it in his music. “Sometimes it’s not about seeking help and getting a therapist,” he reasons. “The hardest thing to do is accept what’s going on and the human mind has this funny thing where if you acknowledge that something is wrong, sometimes it works towards helping you instead of going against you. Just talking to friends and family and talking to people, becoming more open and vulnerable with everything that’s going on in my life, it’s really hard at first, and with the public it’s hard at first, but ultimately it made things easier for me.”
Bonus: Cody answers fan questions for @BelloMag “Instagram” Interview
ReQuest model Chris Hinchey is no stranger to the sexy selfie. The boy knows how to pose, and it seems he doesn’t have a single bad angle. A quick scroll through his Instagram feed will tell you that.
However his latest selfie is one for the books. The angle, the accessories, the even lighting, and a little bit of teasing with his Sean John underwear.
We can’t wait to see more from Chris, both in professional shoots, and on his Instagram account. Be sure to follow him.