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From the KORD writers:

How Def Leppard brought on the golden age of power ballads

“Bringin’ on the Heartbreak” isn’t simply the best power ballad of the 1980s; it’s also the savviest. The second single from Def Leppard’s sophomore album High ‘N’ Dry ushered power ballads squarely into the pop mainstream, demonstrating that ostensibly earnest love songs burnished with the sound and spirit of hard rock could dominate commercial airwaves […]

Vampire Weekend creates a ‘Holiday’ worth celebrating

The surface of Vampire Weekend’s “Holiday” is all sun, but darkness lurks underneath its ska-punk bounce. “It’s about a member of my family who gave up meat when we invaded Iraq,” lead singer Ezra Koenig explained to British music weekly NME in 2010. “They were horrified by what was happening, and they lost their taste […]

‘All I Wanna Do’ follows a fairytale path to the top

“All I Wanna Do” is one of the most unlikely breakout songs ever released. A pop confection on an album full of earnest roots rockers, it was also an outlier among the grunge and hip-hop that dominated cultural discourse during the first half of the 1990s. Were it not for a series of quirks of […]

‘Cars’ steers the New Wave into a brave new world

Musician and machine become one in “Cars.” New Wave pioneer Gary Numan’s paranoid-android anthem, a No. 1 hit in the UK in 1979, is a marvel of precision engineering — a chrome-plated vision of a world where technology has transcended humanity, foretelling the Orwellian future hurtling towards us at breakneck speed.  KSID::g9E04KJ0453D

‘ABC’ spells success for the Jackson 5

When the Supremes’ Diana Ross introduced the world to five singing siblings from Gary, Ind., she lit the fuse on what would become one of America’s defining and most enduring musical families. Since 1969, we’ve known the Jackson 5 for a series of impeccable Motown Records singles spearheaded by an inchoate, irrepressible Michael Jackson: there’s […]

LMFAO’s ‘Party Rock Anthem’ gets the last laugh

“Party Rock Anthem,” the worldwide smash from electronic duo LMFAO’s sophomore album Sorry for Party Rocking, doesn’t make grand statements about American politics. It doesn’t show concern for people sleeping on the streets. It doesn’t consider our warming climate, or worry about daily commutes or paying bills. It offers neither commentary on the pains and […]

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