will.i.am – #willpower album review

After spending quite a while in music limbo, it looked as if will.i.am’s fourth studio album would never see a release date. And after almost 2 years of perpetual delay, a title transformation, and a plethora of creative changes, #willpower has finally hit the airwaves, much to the chagrin of you commercial pop haters.

If you take a moment to look at it intellectually, the hash tagged title almost mirrors the technological era and digital space that has enabled our self-absorption and instilled in us this sense of false omnipotence. Raise your hand if you think will.i.am considered this. The answer is probably not. The album unwittingly serves as an overstated representation of the futuristic and digital manifested into a musical compilation that will.i.am almost transparently assumes he knows what people will like because…. he’s will.i.am. And although it’s probably not the best thing to look for depth in a pop album, but this project almost reeks of conceit and will.i.am’s attempt to bank on his reputation (and on others’) alone.

#willpower is a pretty decent model for the dance club and very adequately fits the framework expected of a major pop artist. Ironically, after failing to garner commercial success to date (selling a dismal 29,000 units in the first week), most of its 18 tracks have the potential to chart. What gnaws at you is that with this album, will.i.am was clearly looking for hits and not art. The most obvious example is the oblique choice of features— because, really, besides the fact that they’re all relatively trending topics (pun intended), what do Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Juicy J., and Chris Brown seriously have in common? Unfortunately, this kind of inauthentic approach to relevance will hardly put this album on the radar.

I think we know by now that will.i.am’s signature auto-tuned vocals aren’t going away anytime soon. Each track is laden with at least a touch of the electro-bass and synth-pop sound, with the occasional boom-bat. “#thatPOWER” may be one of the album’s biggest hits, but the album includes a few hidden gems that sound so much better, most notably, the first track “Good Morning.” It has beautiful instrumentation and feels airy and pleasant in contrast to the others. It’s surprisingly introspective, though after this, the album quite abruptly takes a turn from the deep to the superficial. The production is fun and the high energy is expected. But the painfully repetitive lyrics and song arrangements will give you an anxiety attack if you attempt to listen to any one song straight through.

Somehow #willpower still sounds like a cohesive body of work, but there are absolutely no layers behind the flowery idea of digitization and revolutionized pop. Furthermore, this work isn’t any more progressive than what Afrojack or Swedish House Mafia has done within the last couple of years. It’s fun, but easily forgettable. But we’re still here for “Scream and Shout” whenever we hear “It’s Britney, bitch.”

Intel Teams with will.i.am, Black Eyed Peas Front Man

Intel Teams with will.i.am, Black Eyed Peas Front Man

ANAHEIM, Calif. – He’s best known for being a multi-platinum music artist, producer and front man for The Black Eyed Peas, but will.i.am is also an innovator, technology fan, entrepreneur and philanthropist. With today’s announcement at the Anaheim Convention Center, the seven-time Grammy winner has added another title to his multi-faceted resume: “director of creative innovation.”

As an extension of his insatiable fascination with technology, which plays a significant role in his professional and personal lives, will.i.am will engage in a multi-year, hands-on creative and technology collaboration with Intel Corporation. He already sports an Intel ID badge, which he proudly showed off at a news conference in Anaheim, where Intel is holding an internal sales and marketing conference.

“Nearly everything I do involves processors and computers, and when I see an Intel chip I think of all the creative minds involved that help to amplify my own creativity,” said will.i.am. “Teaming up with the scientists, researchers and computer programmers at Intel to collaborate and co-develop new ways to communicate, create, inform and entertain is going to be amazing.”

Added Deborah Conrad, Intel vice president and chief marketing officer: “We’re thrilled to tap into the limitless creativity will.i.am brings to the table. He’s not only a brilliant artist and producer, but also an innovator pushing the bounds of technology professionally and personally. We share a strong interest in innovation around music, art and lifestyle, and are excited to join forces to establish an authentic, emotional connection with consumers.”

The relationship ties in with Intel’s “compute continuum” vision, in which more and more devices will compute and connect to the Internet, and the company’s “visual life” initiative that explores how visual experiences such as photos, videos and movies are redefining the relationship consumers have with laptops, smart phones, tablets and other devices.

In his unique role, will.i.am will collaborate with Intel on many creative and technology endeavors across the “compute continuum” that may include such devices as laptops, smart phones and tablets. Complementing his visionary role as the front man for The Black Eyed Peas, will.i.am is also already working on music expressly for Intel.

Specifics haven’t been disclosed, but Conrad said that the partnership between will.i.am and Intel is the marrying of two worlds — entertainment and technology — in order to create what she calls “the ultimate experience.”

“Intel is in the midst of transforming the way we communicate with people,” Conrad said. “Our partnership with will.i.am is a prime example of how we want to convey and deliver the Intel experience. It’s imperative that Intel and our innovations are kept in front of the global youth culture that embraces new devices and new forms of communication and entertainment.”

THE BLACK EYED PEAS DEBUT IN WORLD’S FIRST 360-DEGREE MOBILE MUSIC VIDEO CREATED BY will.i.apps

THE BLACK EYED PEAS DEBUT IN WORLD’S FIRST 360-DEGREE MOBILE MUSIC VIDEO CREATED BY will.i.apps

New ‘BEP360’ App for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch Takes Fans Inside “The Time (Dirty Bit)” with 360-Degree Motion Control and Augmented Reality Developed by Peas Front Man will.i.am

Music industry pioneer and front man of The Black Eyed Peas, will.i.am, today announced the iTunes App Store launch of BEP360, an iPad, iPhone and iPod touch app that immerses fans in a 360 degree universe of the legendary music group. Featuring the world’s first 360-degree view music video (“The Time 360”), BEP360 features the song “The Time (Dirty Bit),” the first single from new CD, “The Beginning”, now available on Interscope Records.

BEP360 is the first release from will.i.apps, will.i.am’s new digital media production entity dedicated to pioneering and producing application-based entertainment experiences. BEP360 is the first in a line of upcoming applications that will converge the worlds of creativity, music and advanced digital technologies.

Thirty years after the first music video aired on MTV, the will.i.apps team has reinvented how fans can be further immersed in the world of their favorite artists by pointing and swinging an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad around a 360-degree axis that then changes the point of view. An entirely new form of music video, BEP360 uses digital teleportation to take fans deeper inside the world of The Black Eyed Peas. A demo of BEP360 app featuring The Black Eyed Peas and the making-of behind the scenes video can be seen at williapps.com.

“will.i.apps and the BEP360 app have been established to help artists tap into the potential of our hyper-connected mobile world and bring fans deeper inside the music far beyond a four minute audio recording. It’s a unique and completely new way to experience 360 degree music immersion that will bring artists and fans closer together,” said will.i.am.

Key Features of BEP360

• Point iPad, iPhone and iPod touch device at the cover artwork of the band’s latest album, The Beginning (Interscope Records) and watch augmented reality take form with BEP avatars dancing to the beat
• Direct a virtual photo session with Fergie, will.i.am, apl.de.ap & Taboo allowing users to capture their own shots and share them.
• Stay up to date on everything about the Peas via an aggregated Twitter feed
• Play an addictive Peas-inspired puzzle game
• View pictures and comments posted by other BEP360 app users on a virtual earth

The BEP360 app is available for $2.99 from the App Store on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad

will.i.apps partnered with Metaio to facilitate the cutting edge augmented reality experience bringing the Peas into the fans world. 3D360, the technology leader in 3D360 video was also part of the team that pioneered this ground breaking platform allowing capture, and then play back of the unique 360 degree video. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to allow fans to get closer to The Black Eyed Peas and realize will.i.am’s vision of the first mobile 3D360 music video,” commented 3D360 CEO Myles McGovern.

About will.i.apps

will.i.apps is a digital media company focused on delivering ground- breaking entertainment applications for mobile devices. Co-founded by music industry pioneer, producer and The Black Eyed Peas front man will.i.am and Edo Segal of Futurity Ventures, a New York-based Innovation Engine, will.i.apps partners with leading artists to bring their creative universes to life by embracing the power of mobile apps. Fans can also visit www.blackeyedpeas.com/apps to learn about future BEP360 apps.

The Black Eyed Peas Get It Started on Fuse TV Feb 1st

The Black Eyed Peas are taking over Fuse TV Feb 1st! Continuing with its Artist Takeover Mondays, Fuse TV will air exclusive interviews, music videos and concert performances from the Grammy winning group all day long starting at 11 AM ET!

Tune in for dedicated shows “The Black Eyed Peas: Then & Now” and “Loaded: The Black Eyed Peas” starting at 7 PM ET and rock out with the band!

FUSE “GETS IT STARTED” IN FEBRUARY WITH

THE BLACK EYED PEAS

Fuse, Madison Square Garden’s national music television network, continues its Artist Takeover Mondays on February 1st with an entire day dedicated to The Black Eyed Peas. Starting at 11am ET, viewers can catch exclusive interviews, music videos and concert performances from the Grammy-winning group in a block of artist dedicated shows like “The Black Eyed Peas: Then & Now” and “Loaded: The Black Eyed Peas.”

The globally recognized hip hop group broke through the music scene with their 2003 Elephunk album. Since then, The Black Eyed Peas have won over fans of all genres through their energizing songs, lyrics and music videos. Watch their seven-year career develop from classics like “Let’s Get it Started” and “Shut Up,” to today’s hits – “Boom Boom Pow” and “Meet Me Halfway.”

The Black Eyed Peas: Then & Now – Monday at 7pm ET

This hour-long exclusive interview with the band touches on what their fifth studio album, “The E.N.D.” meant for them, the craziness of touring the world and their wild ride rising to success.

Loaded: The Black Eyed Peas – Monday at 8:30pm ET

Take a tour through some of the group’s biggest hits in this half-hour music video franchise solely dedicated to The Black Eyed Peas.

F1 Rocks Singapore Live – Monday at 12am

Catch highlights of a three-night musical extravaganza surrounding the 2009 F1 race in Singapore, featuring performances by Black Eyed Peas in this hour-long music special.

WHAT: ARTIST TAKEOVER: BLACK EYED PEAS

PREMIERE: February 1, 2010 at 11am ET

CHANNEL #: DirecTV 339 / EchoStar 158; cable subscribers, check local listing

WEBSITE: http://www.fuse.tv

Black Eyed Peas Set Billboard Record 17 Straight Weeks On Hot 100

Black Eyed Peas Set Billboard Record 17 Straight Weeks On Hot 100

The Black Eyed Peas hold at No. 1 for a 17th straight week on the Billboard Hot 100 (12 for “Boom Boom Pow” and five for “I Gotta Feeling”), setting the record for the longest successive stay at the top by a duo or group in the chart’s 51-year history. The Peas bypass Boyz II Men, which had two different runs of 16 weeks. The first occurred in 1994 when “I’ll Make Love to You” held for 14 weeks and “On Bended Knee” for two frames. The other was in 1995/96 with “One Sweet Day,” their collaboration with Mariah Carey.