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I’m not crazy about the new song, “Bleeding Love.”

As expected, Leona Lewis‘ first single is a ballad, but it’s not some Diane Warren belter or a glossy, R&B slow jam. It’s one of those mid-tempo numbers – too slow for the club, too fast for the foxtrot. Actually, with its marching band drum beat, it sounds as much like Gwen Stefani‘s “Hollaback Girl” as a ballad can. However, the inventive percussion can’t stop “Bleeding Love” from sounding dated, like filler on some long-lost, late ’90s Mariah Carey album. Mariah may be Leona’s idol, but the emancipated Mimi has long moved past earnest songs like this.

Also, all this talk of cutting and bleeding is very insensitive in light of Amy Winehouse‘s recent problems.

On to the positive: Lewis wisely restrains her vocals, never devolving into those vocal acrobatics that have historically plagued Christina Aguilera.

Waiting for the inevitable club remix, which I’m sure will be hot.

This week’s UK charts: boring. The top 4 maintaintheir spots from last week, and the rest simply tradeplaces. You know something’s wrong in the world when 50 Cent‘s ludicrous Timbaland/Timberlake collaboration moves up, and the brilliant Girls Aloud single takes a tumble.

1. Sean Kingston – Beautiful Girls
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2. Plain White Ts – Hey ThereDelilah
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3. Kanye West – Stronger
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4. James Blunt – 1973
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5. 50 Cent ft Justin Timberlake – AYO Technology
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6. Rihanna – Shut Up and Drive
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7. Girls Aloud – Sexy! No No No
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8. Robyn ft Kleerup – With EveryHeartbeat
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9. Timbaland ft. Keri Hilson, D.O.E.,and Sebastian – The Way I Are
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10. Scouting For Girls – She’s SoLovely
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In other news:

  • Amy Winehouse tells The Mirror that she’s already started work on her follow-up to Back To Black: “I’m writing some new stuff and can’t wait to be back on tour.” Amy certainly talks like everything is just ice cream and sprinkles, claiming she’s all “sorted out” and that she’s not returning to rehab. “I didn’t enjoy it and don’t want to go back. I missed my friends and my parents. I have been doing better now and that’s because of my friends…A lot of fuss has been made about nothing. There’s nothing wrong with me. In fact, I feel better than I’ve ever felt before.”

  • If you wanted to convince people nothing’s wrong with you, wouldn’t it be a good idea to not run through London streets with blood gushing from your hand – especially with those sneaky paps lurking about?(Daily Mail)
  • And you know you’re effed when Lou Reed is concerned for your well-being.(NME)
  • Things that make you say “Duh!”: Kanye West suggested Amy Winehouse is more important to music than Britney Spears. Appearing on Friday’s Ellen DeGeneres Show, he said: “I told the guy at MTV, ‘There’s only a couple things important in music this year: Umbrella, Amy Winehouse.’ It’s not just about me. Britney Spears is not important in music, but she’s important to the tabloids and stuff like that.”(Gigwise)
  • Victoria Beckham‘s green tiled frock had onlookers saying “Cowabunga, dude!” Not in a good way, say The Daily Mail‘s spies: “Victoria’s dress was obviously couture and massively expensive. It was exceedingly well cut and fitted her like a glove.But the green satin tiles gave it a turtle-like, body armour feel. Sadly, the only things marking her apart from being the fifth member of the Ninja Turtles were the lack of a coloured eye mask or a samurai sword.”
  • Sophie Ellis-Bextor has no hard feelings toward her equally wafer-thin rival, Victoria Beckham, she tells the BBC. Ellis-Bextor infamously kept Victoria’s solo single out of the No. 1 spot back in 2000. “I don’t mean this to sound disrespectful, but I probably spend as much time thinking about her as she does about me,” she says. “I’d quite like to go and see the Spice Girls, but I don’t really have an opinion on her and I’m sure she doesn’t have one on me.” I’m quite certain her statement wasn’t as bitchy as it reads on paper.
  • Katie Melua, a.k.a. “Britain’s Norah Jones,” has splitfrom her longtime collaborator Mike Batt, who spurred her on to success through three huge-selling albums. She tells Telegraph, “Iwouldn’t say I was getting restless but three wasenough. I am becoming my own person and there isn’tspace any more for two creative people to go on analbum.”
  • Kate Nash responds to her potty-mouthed heckler: “That guy shouted that out and I was like ‘That’s so lame, so crude, so old’.I was really surprised someone would say that, I was like ‘God, do people still say that kind of thing?’ But he was dealt with accordingly I think, he got a pint chucked over him.”(Digital Spy)
  • Sir Elton John on his career: “I’ve taken work seriously – the artistic side – but I’ve never really taken fame seriously. Otherwise I wouldn’t be able to look back and laugh at some of the hideous things I’ve done!” (Mirror)
  • Does a platinum-blonde Peaches Geldof have an “uncanny resemblance” to late mother Paula Yates? I don’t see it.(The Sun)
  • A mystery man in a gold lamé shirt, high-waters, and red socks molests gives Peaches a ride on a carousel. (Daily Mail)
  • So the man who told Roxanne not to put on the red light gets caught outside of a brothel, huh? The Daily Mail calls Sting a big ol’ hypocrite.
  • With the reunion of Page and Plant on the horizon, The Guardian‘s Paul Lester suggests that the great songwriting partnerships concealed displaced sexual desire: “Think of a great band and it usually contains two warring partners who might otherwise, at least if Freud had his way, be copulating wildly on the studio floor; think of an all-time classic rock song and it’s more likely than not the result of friction between two rampaging egos who are secretly vying for each other’s love.” I guess that means The Police is a couple poppers away from one big gangbang.
  • Ian Parton of The Go! Team reveals the method behind his band’s madness in The Times: “I wanted it to sound likea clashing-together of all my favorite music. Noisystuff like My Bloody Valentine and Sonic Youth,breakbeats, Bollywood soundtracks, 1970s film scores,1960s girl groups, old-school hip-hop withdouble-dutch girlie rappers – all slammed together.It all adds up to a picture in your mind where you’respeeding through New York or you’re at a block party.I want to create images in your head.”
  • Sick of Pete Doherty‘s drugs hell? Read about Alex Turner‘s bedbugs hell.(NME)
  • Sir Richard Branson has sold his Virgin Megastore chain.(The Times)
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By Kevin Wicks
Kevin Wicks is the founding editor of Anglophenia.