16 January 2011

Black suede shoes

Well, it's one for the money,
Two for the show,
Three to get ready,
Now go, cat, go.

But don't you step on my blue suede shoes.
You can do anything but lay off of my Blue suede shoes.

Elvis knew what he was talking about. Suede shoes are high maintenance, and since I am not, I'm saying farewell to a pair of shoes I acquired only recently. The ASOS Ames shoe boots are beautiful. A thick chunky heel and a perfect cut off point just at the ankle, all draped in a luxuriously soft black suede exterior. With bare legs or some chunky socks these shoe boots are the perfect addition to many an outfit. Just a slight problem of the heel height.

Standing at 5"10 already, and having been compared to a basketball player on a few embarrassing occasions in Guadeloupe, I'm always a little hesitant when wearing a heel. When the heel in question is pushing three inches, platform or no platform, I can't help but feel like my head is literally in the clouds.

So the Asos Ames shoe boots have a date with eBay. Let's hope they are a match made in heaven. Au revoir.

12 January 2011

4 January 2011

Oh ya and...


Barbados babe

The flame haired babe from Barbados, Jay-Z’s recent success story or just an unconventional pop princess? No matter how you refer to Rihanna, there is no escaping her or her astonishingly catchy chart hits at the moment. Since signing to Deff Jam records at the tender age of 16, she is living proof that Jay-Z has the Midas Touch.

The end of 2010 saw the release of Rihanna’s latest pop offering to her legions of fans. Remarketed and restyled (as with every album), Rihanna has left behind the girly ballads of ‘Unfaithful’ and ‘We Ride’ and in their place; we have a sexier, more confident young woman who embraces her dancehall and reggae roots. ‘Loud’, released in November, has been like catnip to young UK listeners. A youth market that lacks a strong female black pop artist a point emphasised by the current state of the top ten - Rihanna features twice. This matched with a highly publicized performance on winter night favourite The X Factor, secured Rihanna as a club favourite.

Whilst the two singles, which have been released, are no doubt extremely catchy and dance friendly, their videos showcase Rihanna the chameleon. Be it strutting through a convenience store, a field or the night sky Rihanna’s stylist hasn’t skipped a beat. Mariel Haenn is the woman in question. As Rihanna runs around demanding to be treated as ‘the only girl in the world’, a viewer can’t help but be drawn to her tiny cream corset, her flowery shorts and her fluffy jumper. Every item of clothing is desirable and feminine not to mention crying out to be caressed. The beat is hypnotic but the vocals too synthesized. Resulting in a great club track, that unfortunately does not showcase any particularly strong vocal talent.

Seemingly, I am not alone in sharing this opinion since in the UK ‘What’s my name?’ the second single from the album actually nabbed the top spot before its predecessor. The duet sees Rihanna partnering up with one of the most wanted men in commercial hip hop Drake. As they serenade (version 2010) each other, finally we are privy to some of Rihanna’s Caribbean drawl, reminiscent of the anthem ‘Pon da Reply’. Her voice is charming, youthful and original in the pop charts. Whilst the rap and chorus are evidently the strongest parts of the song, inducing mass sing alongs every time I have heard it, the bridge is weak and sadly a reminder that an easy pop structure never fails to sell records.

Rihanna will have to do more than just churn out pop tunes to hold on to her musical crown. Especially as young whipper snappers such as Willow Smith also employ the creative opinions of a certain Miss Haenn. In a world where youth is celebrated, Rihanna would do well to exploit her fun girlish Caribbean roots.