Billboard Dance Chart Upstarts: Meduza, Hilary Roberts & Matmos
Each week, Billboard Dance looks at songs & albums rising on Billboard's dance charts.
Meduza feat. GOODBOYS, "Piece of Your Heart"
Italian production trio Meduza (Mattia Vitale, Luca De Gregorio and Simone Giani) motors onto Billboard's Dance/Mix Show Airplay chart (dated March 30) at No. 39 with "Piece of Your Heart," featuring GOODBOYS (Josh Grimmett, Johannes Shore and Ethan Shore). The track, also up 43-39 on Dance Club Songs, is the first Billboard chart entry for both acts. "Piece" picks up airplay on core-dance affiliates, led by Music Choice's Dance/EDM channel, KNHC (C89.5) Seattle and iHeartRadio's Evolution network (as monitored on WFLZ-HD Tampa, Florida), according to Nielsen Music.
Steve Pereira, senior dance/EDM programmer at the song's airplay leader, Music Choice, tells Billboard, "The record brings me back to when I would blast house music in my bedroom years ago. It's like old-school dance meets new-school dance. That's the only way I could describe it."
Hilary Roberts, "Back to Life"
Dallas-native singer Hilary Roberts returns for a second run on Dance Club Songs, debuting at No. 47 with "Back to Life." Roberts tallied her first Billboard top 10 in her initial appearance last August, reaching No. 10 with "There for You." "Back" is a cover of Soul II Soul's 30-year-old pop/R&B smash "Back to Life (However Do You Want Me)," featuring Caron Wheeler, which spent three weeks at No. 1 in August-September 1989. That October, the original "Back" topped Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and by December it reached No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. Roberts' track was remixed by Andrew Wilson and Richard Cutmore, Perry Twins and Wideboys, among others.
Roberts tells Billboard, "I was at dinner with [label owner] Jason Dauman, my manager Felicia Greer and producer Damon Sharpe and we were talking about old-school songs that had a huge impact. I started singing 'Back to Life' and Jason said, 'You sound great singing that song. You should really consider redoing it.' I hadn't thought about singing it before because Soul II Soul's performance with Caron Wheeler's incredible vocals was extremely powerful. It was a bit intimidating to tackle this incredible song, but my team said, 'Let's do this!' "
She continues, "Going into the studio, it was difficult to not sing it like her. I had to listen as if I hadn't heard it before so that I could sing it with my style and my voice. What is so beautiful about it is that it reflects the experiences that I've been through, being brought back to life. We knew that people who had heard the song years ago would reminisce and celebrate it once again on the 30th anniversary of its release. We wanted to introduce it to a new generation of music lovers."
Matmos, Plastic Anniversary
Baltimore-based Matmos (the duo of M.C. Schmidt and Drew Daniel) enters Dance/Electronic Album Sales at No. 6 with Plastic Anniversary. It's the act's first Billboard top 10 and third title to appear on Dance/Electronic Album Sales, following Supreme Balloon (No. 20, 2008) and The Rose Has Teeth in the Mouth of a Beast (No. 21, 2006). Sounds on Plastic were, uniquely, sourced from discarded plastics, such as, according to a press release, "Bakelite dominos, Styrofoam coolers, police riot shields, polyethylene waste containers, PVC panpipes, pinpricks of bubble wrap, silicone gel breast implants and synthetic human fat."