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All Posts Tagged Synth-Pop

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Style (Taylor Swift) | Sounds Like | My Kind of Love (Emeli Sande)

Style by Taylor Swift My Kind of Love by Emeli Sande

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The verse vocal melody to Taylor Swift's chart-topping single Style (released January 27, 2015) from her 1989 album, closely resembles the chorus vocal melody to Emeli Sande's top-40 single My Kind of Love (released June 8, 2012).

Style (:40) VS My Kind of Love (:46)



Out of the Woods (Taylor Swift) | Sounds Like | Inside Out (Eve 6)

Out of the Woods by Taylor Swift Inside Out by Eve 6

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Additional notes/observations: 

The chorus vocal melodies to Taylor Swift's Out of the Woods (released February 5, 2016, and co-written by Jack Antonoff) and Eve 6's alt-rock chart-topper Inside Out (released May 26, 1998) are very similar. While in different keys (OotW: C; Inside Out: B), both melodies share the same the same rhythmic pattern or scansion, emphasizing syncopated sixteenth notes. Compare the chorus lines, OotW's: "Are we out of the woods?", with Inside Out's "I would swallow my doubt." Similar scansion can be found in The Killers' Mr. Brightside (released September 29, 2003), Jack Johnson's Mudfootball (released February 1, 2001), and Kid Rock's Bawitdaba (released April 8, 1999)

Out of the Woods (1:00) VS Inside Out (1:00)

Honorable mention:
Out of the Woods (1:00) VS Kid Rock's Bawitdaba (:39)

Out of the Woods (1:00) VS The Killer's Mr. Brightside (:09)

Out of the Woods (1:00) VS Jack Johnson's Mudfootball (:10)

Out of the Woods (:18) VS Kenny Roger's She Believes in Me (1:08)



Hey Everybody! (5 Seconds of Summer) | Sounds Like | Hungry Like the Wolf (Duran Duran)

Hey Everybody! by 5 Seconds of Summer Hungry Like the Wolf by Duran Duran

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Additional notes/observations: 

The verse vocal melody to Australian band 5 Seconds Of Summer's single Hey Everybody! (released October 9, 2015) legally samples the verse vocal melody to Duran Duran's signature '80s hit Hungry Like the Wolf (released May 4, 1982). DD's John, Roger, and Andy Taylor are noted in the Hey Everybody!'s credits. Incidentally, Hungry Like the Wolf owes the melody for it's "doo doo doo" to Gordon Lightfoot's If You Could Read My Mind (i.e. "[...] What a tale my thoughts could tell"). [Thanks to Roseanne Dattilo-Schack for bringing this one to our attention!].

Hey Everybody! (:26) VS Hungry Like the Wolf (:11)



Cool for the Summer (Demi Lovato) | Sounds Like | Domino (Jessie J)

Cool for the Summer by Demi Lovato Domino by Jessie J

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Additional notes/observations: 

The chorus vocal melody, chord progression, and lyrics to Demi Lovato's Cool for the Summer (released July 1, 2015) are very similar to the chorus vocal melody, chord progression, and lyrics to Jessie J's Domino (released August 29, 2011). Both songs were co-written by Swedish-born hit-maker Max Martin. While in different keys (Cool for the Summer: Eb, Domino: G), both chorus vocal melodies share a similar pattern/contour: repeating the initial note three times (on the downbeat of two, upbeat of three, and upbeat of four) and ascending for the final note of the phrase. Relative to their keys, the chorus chord progressions are nearly identical (Cool for the Summer: IVM7-ii-vi-vi-V, Domino: IVM7-ii-vi-V7sus4). The choruses are lyrically similar as well, Cool for the Summer: "Take me down into your paradise," and Domino: "Take me down like I'm a domino."

Cool for the Summer (1:53) VS Domino (1:08)

Cool for the Summer
Key: Eb
Chorus Chord Progression:
Ab major7, F minor, C minor, C minor, Bb (IVM7-ii-vi-vi-V)
Chorus Vocal Melody:
6-6-6-5-5-3-3-3-5
6-6-6-5-5-3-3-3-5


Domino
Key: G
Chorus Chord Progression:
C major 7, A minor, Eminor, D7sus4 (IVM7-ii-vi-V7sus4)
Chorus Vocal Melody:
5-5-5-4-3-2-2-3
3-5-2-2-2-3-2-1-1



This Summer's Gonna Hurt (Maroon 5) | Sounds Like | Wishing on a Star (Rose Royce)

This Summer's Gonna Hurt by Maroon 5 Wishing on a Star by Rose Royce

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The pre-chorus vocal melody to Maroon 5's This Summer's Gonna Hurt Like a MotherF****r (released May 15, 2015) is similar to the chorus vocal melody to Rose Royce's R&B classic Wishing on a Star (released 1978). Essentially, Maroon 5 lowered the key a half-step (from Ab to G) and reversed the chord progression (from vi-ii to ii-vi).

This Summer's Gonna Hurt (:51) VS Wishing on a Star (:22)

This Summer's Gonna Hurt
Key: G major
Chord Progression:
A minor, E minor (ii-vi)
Vocal Melody (pre-chorus relative to root):
3-1-7-6-7-1-2-3 ("I see her dancing in the streets")
1-7-6-7-1-2-3 ("Sipping champagne on the beach")

Wishing on a Star
Key: Ab major
Chord Progression:
F minor, Bb minor (vi-ii)
Vocal Melody (chorus relative to root):
3-6-7-1-2-3 ("I'm wishing on a star")
3-6-7-1-2-3-2-1 ("To find out where you are")



Something Big (Shawn Mendes) | Sounds Like | Take a Walk (Passion Pit)

Something Big by Shawn Mendes Take a Walk by Passion Pit

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Additional notes/observations: 

The chorus vocal melody to Canadian singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes' Something Big (released November 7, 2014) is reminiscent of the chorus keyboard melody to Passion Pit's Take a Walk (released May 8, 2012). Keys are only a half-step apart and the first five notes of both melodies (relative to their keys) are identical. Even the video seems familiar (i.e. singer on a picturesque suburban street).

Something Big (:50) VS Take a Walk (:38)

Something Big
Key: Bb Major/G minor
Chorus Chord Changes:
vi-V-iii-IV
Chorus Vocal Melody:
6-5-3-2-2-3-2-1-6


Take a Walk
Key: B Major/G# minor
Chorus Chord Changes:
ii-IV-vi-V
Chorus Keyboard Melody:
6-5-3-2-3-5-3-2


Honorable mention:
Something Big has the same key and changes as Keep Me Hanging On



Clouds (One Direction) | Sounds Like | 1901 (Phoenix)

Clouds by One Direction 1901 by Phoenix

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Additional notes/observations: 

The verse to One Direction's Clouds (released November 17, 2014) echoes many of the elements of Phoenix's 1901 (released February 23, 2009). Similarities include: same key (C major), tempo, fuzz synth bass lines that move from F to the A (or the IV to the vi), and staccato eight notes from a muted rhythm guitar.

Clouds (:14) VS 1901 (:00)



Elastic Heart (Sia) | Sounds Like | Remedy (Little Boots)

Elastic Heart by Sia Remedy by Little Boots

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Additional notes/observations: 

The chorus to Sia's Elastic Heart featuring the Weeknd and Diplo (released October 1, 2013) has the same chord progression as the chorus to Little Boots' Remedy (released June 15, 2009). Both songs are in the key of A major and share close tempos (Elastic Heart: 130 bpm, Remedy: 129 bpm), and a common IV-I-V-vi (or 4-1-5-minor 6) progression, though their melodies differ.

Elastic Heart (1:01) VS Remedy (:29)

Honorable mention:

The chorus chord progression to Elastic Heart is also slightly reminiscent of the chorus to Big Time Rush's Nothing Even Matters, though NEM follows a IV-I-V-ii (or 4-1-5-minor 2) in the key of E major.

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