All posts by The Pop Pyro

A Note of Admiration: Britney Spears


Many people can’t understand what strength, inspiration and encouragement can come from idolizing superficial pop stars…. Namely, Britney Spears. But I’ve grown up with her as a role model most of my life. And no, I am not a dancer or a singer, but she’s been one of the only figures in my life I’ve had to comfort my uncertainties and empower me when I’ve had to find the answers on my own. It’s hard to explain unless you, too, relate to what I’m about to say…

You’ve never seen Britney Spears on a talk-circuit shouting “you’re beautiful and worth it” like many other public figures in history seem to campaign for their “inspiring” image. No, that’s too on-the-nose for Britney and myself. I was in elementary and middle school and learning about life — I can’t say I didn’t have friends, but I CAN say I was bullied worse than most kids at my school. Then after growing up, being bullied in school was traded for a few abusive relationships… Now, you still might be lost as to where Britney’s lack of “Firework” and “Born This Way” anthems played a part in the empowerment of her fans and myself..

So I will break it down as concise and quickly as possible.

Staying Positive

Britney Spears’ worldwide success came nearly overnight. And after all the awards won and all the records she was breaking — it was always EQUALLY followed with critics mocking her, calling her talentless and begging for her career to end. The time was grossly notorious for making Britney the butt of every joke. Being bullied as a kid feels exactly the same… Like walking into a room with a huge confident smile then immediately being greeted with laughs and paper wads thrown at you… And sometimes… It wasn’t just a “feeling” (thank you ELA class – sixth grade).  Seeing Britney avoid most of the criticisms and ignoring the countless and unwarranted insults by continuing to stay true to the art and the things that made her happy was exactly what I needed to witness at the time.



No one can make a scene like Britney Spears.

landscape-1449074995-hbz-britney-spears-indexWe forget that most of our problems, worries, and pain are temporary. Someone telling us that “it gets better” for every time we’ve hurt becomes synonymous eventually. We’ve heard it all before… There’s no actual working response-advice for every problem. What worked for me is having Britney’s albums to come home to, her smile in her pictures, and her music videos endlessly rotating on MTV. I’ve come home and cried about my day alone in my room before playing some of Britney’s music. After a few songs or music videos, there’s no doubt that the investment she occupies in your senses — the sparkly dresses, beauty and spontaneous dance routines — can overtake any bad day. To add to my last point, Britney never took the stage to lay all of her problems on it. She used the stage as a place to separate art from reality. Her performances gave the audience an altered sense of reality. A much more pleasant and sexy one.


There’s no picture I’m more proud of than the smile she dons here on the December 2008 issue of Rolling Stone. “Britney Returns”

There’s not a story in pop music of someone as triumphant as Britney Spears. The breakdown, pain and abuse Britney was subjected to between 2005-2008 bares no reason to revisit other than the fact that she OVERCAME THEM ALL. There’s going to come a time in your life that you feel that every single thing has fallen apart and there’s no way to correct the mistakes you’ve made. And Britney is a testament to that: Although it may feel like it can’t get any lower, it will. But you have to persevere. And no one, NO ONE, has shown their resilience to do so like Britney has. If that can’t prove to you that the worse is yet to come.. But it will also pass… Then maybe this note isn’t for you.  

And maybe this is the part where I’m realizing this note is for me. 

I’ve been in a three-year slump of bad decisions; bad luck; bad relationships; bad habits; and countless people and situations that have made me feel like the best is all behind me. It’s not. And reminding myself what adversities Britney Spears has overcome to live a successful and fulfilling life solidifies why Britney Spears has always been an unknowing support system my entire life. And as I sit here, nearing an opporunity and chance to change my lifestyle and career for the better, I can proudly say that it is Britney Spears empowering me to do so.

So if you didn’t quite understand how someone can look up to someone so “superficial” and “shallow” like Britney Spears before this letter, hopefully you can now.

A note to you. A note to me. A note to Britney.





NEW MUSIC: Cappa and Cruel Youth Debut EPs

New music you’ve gotta hear!

Cruel Youth and Cappa debut solid EPs this week!


First up: Cappa

A relative newcomer, Cappa has a sound that places her alongside the likes of Halsey, Lorde and even Carly Rae Jepsen.


Queen of Hearts will be your anthem for late night makeout sessions in the backseat of your boyfriend’s car. Its latest single “Next Ex” is an amazing track that perfectly introduces Cappa and the EP. Throw on some headphones and frolic around to six sing-along-ready tracks over an ice cream sundae that’s as sweet as Cappa’s music.

Cappa is currently on tour with Matt Wertz! Make sure to grab some tickets in a city near you to catch her live set this Fall! Buy tickets and see the dates: HERE

Listen to Cappa‘s Queen of Hearts via Spotify below:


Next: Cruel Youth

If you’re a fan of Natalia Kills, you’ll recognize the lead singer of Cruel Youth. Natalia Kills, who now goes by the new name Teddy Sinclair, founded Cruel Youth with her husband Willy Moon this year.


+30mg begs its listeners to drown out their problems and surroundings with the hypothetical self-prescription from a handful of oxies. Cruel Youth takes aim at the masochism and vanity of youth and relationships throughout this project. The EP flirts between the lo-fi doo wop of the fifties and current urban beats with songs like “Alexis Texas“. +30mg is a musical experience of escapism and a satisfying piece of work from the band.

Cruel Youth is also touring this Fall in the U.S. and Canada. Get tickets and check out all their dates: HERE

Listen to Cruel Youth‘s +30mg via Spotify below:


What do you think of these new EPs?! Let me know what you think on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!




Dating Apps See MAJOR Surge in #Hosting users after Britney Spears Asks, “Do You You Wanna Come Over?”

Get yourself an intimate #GloryListeningParty planned tonight!!


“Nobody should be alone if they don’t have to be!”

Okay, so the data and statistics might not be officially public or certain, but there’s no doubt that after listening to Britney Spears’ new album GLORY  dating app users are more inclined for the company of a sexy someone “coming over!” The album’s sensual vibe and one of its many standouts, “Do You Wanna Come Over“, will have even Grindr’s most modest users updating their headlines to #HostingTonight!

Britney Spears’ newest album is available TONIGHT and its her best yet! Check out my glorious review here. Download the album here — and stream it when it becomes available on streaming services tonight at 12:00AM EST. And if you’re feeling racy enough, don’t be shy, get yourself on Tinder or Grindr and ask, “DO YOU WANNA COME OVER?!” 


Buy ‘GLORY’ on iTunes HERE!

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ALBUM REVIEW: Britney Spears – ‘Glory’

GLORY is IN THE ZONE and BLACKOUT’s sophisticated and refined older sister.

…or immaculate child. You pick.


You guys, when I tell you that Britney Spears’ new album induced goosebumps from start to finish, I am not lying. This album is no joke. 

When the album starts Britney is literally introducing your ears to an acoustic equivalent of HEAVEN with “Invitation“! The production is the most angelic and inspiring sound Britney has possibly ever done. “Here’s my invitation, baby // hope it sets us free // to know each other better.” She’s inviting us in to get to know her better!? HAVE WE ENTERED INTO THE PERSONAL SPACE THAT ‘BRITNEY JEAN‘ MISSED THE MARK ON? The answer is, “YES!”


Circus‘ was great; ‘Femme Fatale‘ was great; ‘Britney Jean‘ was great…. But there was always something missing in those albums. They were dance-pop perfection and formulaic collections of straight-forward pop songs and the occasional ballad. But no matter how perfect those pop anthems felt to the body, they never reached the heart. (Not always a bad thing because we get songs like “Till the World Ends” from that! It’s an anthem!) But until you listen to ‘Glory’ you will discover that every song on the album has a magic and heart that was missing in her three prior albums — as if she was almost phoning-in on songs that were chosen for her before. Britney takes her power back and is definitely the driving force on this album. And this feels as if she’s singing directly and intimately into your ear. If that even makes any sense!? Her voice is undistorted and extremely clear throughout this album. These vocals are so pure and powerful.. And not in a Christina or Demi kind of way. It’s in a very confident and assertive manner. There’s not a single doubt that Britney took her time with each and every song on this album with pretense to connect to it more than any of her other albums. You can’t get much more personal than that!



If you loved Selena Gomez’s ‘Revival’… ‘Glory’ is that album on steroids + soaking in Cristal champagne + covered in diamonds and multiplied to the Nth degree… 

After “Invitation” the album makes its seductive way through “Make Me…” and “Private Show” that have been previewed since July. Then we delve back into the album’s magic again when the fourth track “Man On The Moon” begins. “I can’t compete with the stars in the sky // I’m invisible.” — The song is euphoric! A majority of the instruments and elements on this album are organic which gives its listener the most full-bodied experience from it. “Just Luv Me” is easily the album’s centerpiece. “I’m gonna keep it really simple – real simple // Just luv me.” — A lyric all fans of Britney Spears should take into consideration. All deep-criticisms, dissections and expectations from Britney should be put aside so that we can continue to appreciate and love her brilliance in current presentations.giphy

The album expands with a cohesive sound and style that is fine-tuned better than any of her albums. The songs presented individually (i.e. her 4 previewed tracks) sound like they are from different planets. However, the mastering of this album is so well that every song feels like a single continuation. The tempo is personal (mid) throughout but still graduates into a full-on dance club beats within its tracks… And when it does — IT’S PHENOMENAL! “Love Me Down” and “What You Need” will put a clap in you so quick you’ll have no choice but sing along. The Deluxe version of the album has standouts “Change your Mind (No Seas Cortes)” and “Liar” but it bats completely out of the park with “If I’m Dancing“! This track is absolutely B-A-N-A-N-A-S! “Coupure Électrique” closes the album with mysteriously budding bass features and completely French lyrics. Coupure électrique translates into “blackout” by the way. Could this album be anymore iconic?! No!

This is possibly Britney Spears’ best album ever! The VOCALS, PRODUCTION, LYRICS AND ALL-TOGETHER BALANCE as a complete album make it one of her finest pieces of work.



Pre-Order ‘Glory’ right now on iTunes! The album will be available everywhere August 26th! Buy a copy for every person in your life that you wish to bless with the GLORY of Britney Spears! And make sure you tune into her appearance on Carpool Karaoke with James Cordon this Thursday and her PERFORMANCE at the 2016 MTV Music Video Awards this Sunday!

Let me know what you think of my review and your own thoughts of the album on my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

[PLAYLIST] Best of Duff Pop (’03-’07)!

It was the best of times… It was the worst of times…

The year was 2002 and Disney was NOT going to let its new crop of young talent go to waste after Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera grew out of the Mickey Mouse Club in the nineties and graduated into full-blown international pop superstars. Hilary Duff was the network’s biggest star at the time and her TV show “Lizzie McGuire” was getting the big-screen treatment in the summer of 2003. This is when Disney made the most important decision in our nation’s history by giving Hilary Duff a legitimate record deal and album! ‘Metamorphosis’ went on to go multi-platinum and make Hilary a huge pop star… and blah, blah, blah… You know how the rest of the story goes.


From Hilary Duff’s huge success, every network and production company with teen talent was hoping to recreate Hilary’s success. Suddenly every teen star was also moonlighting as a pop star! This was an era with some of the worst music ever.. But it gave some of our favorite teen-pop throwback girls of this millennium!

Now, Hilary Duff is the QUEEN of this class of pop tarts, but here are a few other memorable junior pop divas from Hilary’s reign in the mid 2000’s:

Ashley Tisdale


Better known as Sharpay Evans from the High School Musical franchise, Ashley Tisdale made some of the guiltiest pleasures in pop in the 2000’s!  “Headstrong” debuted at #5 on Billboard’s Hot 200 albums chart!

Vanessa Hudgens


Another girl from the High School Musical saga, Vanessa Hudgens had a bit of success from her two albums “V” and “Identified.” Her first album included the musica video for “Say OK” which was one of the first videos to hit 100 million views on YouTube!

Aly & AJ


Aly Michalka was starring in the hit Disney show “Phil of the Future” but had a bit more success in her singer-songrwiter band Aly & AJ alongside her sister AJ Michalka. Their song “Potential Break-Up Song” was a top 10 hit on the Hot 100 songs chart and also the first song to go platinum under Disney’s Hollywood Records label!

Lindsay Lohan


Lindsay Lohan needs no introduction. She is to Hilary Duff what Christina Aguilera is to Britney Spears. “Rumors” was a top 10 hit on Billboard’s Hot 100 and her album “Speak” debuted at #4 on the Hot 200 albums chart!

Ashlee Simpson


Although she is best known as being Jessica Simpson‘s younger sister, Ashlee Simpson was a teen star dancing back-up for her older sister and starring in a recurring role on “7th Heaven.” She had a popular reality show that followed her as she recorded her debut album. Fun fact: Her first two albums both went platinum+ and also debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 200 albums chart!

Play and FOLLOW the playlist below!


Did I miss any of our teen-pop girls from the mid-00’s? Let me know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram



[TOURNAMENT] 2016 – Q2: Finals!

Vote for your favorite song!

Almost there! Ariana Grande’s “Into You” and Rihanna’s “This Is What You Came For” tied! So They were both brought into the final song battle! Get to voting and share on Twitter and Facebook to help your favorites win!

Stream the songs below to preview them if needed! FOLLOW the playlist and other exclusive playlists from The Pop Pyro on Spotify!

Vote once every HOUR! And while you’re at it follow The Pop Pyro on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

[TOURNAMENT] Q2 – 2016: Semi-Finals!


We’ve reached the semi-finals and I’m only allowing half the week for you all to vote! So decide your loyalty to TWO of these four songs and hope that they make the final two this week! The top 4 are very different songs! So it might be a little hard to pick! Take a look at the bracket below and then vote! Share this as much as possible on Twitter and Facebook to help your favorite song win!

Full Round 3 Roster Q2

Stream the songs below to preview them if needed! FOLLOW the playlist and other exclusive playlists from The Pop Pyro on Spotify!

Vote once every HOUR! And while you’re at it follow The Pop Pyro on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!