In a bid against HBO’s Vinyl over-romanticizing ’70s New York to the exception of other decades, the Guardian published a piece on why the ’80s were more important than popular fantasy seems to suggest. The profile covers the post-punk scene, heavy with nostalgia for nights when the partying “was more like, ‘Let’s read some Rimbaud and talk about it while doing coke all night,’” as Cynthia Sley from the Bush Tetras said....more
Philadelphia’s Sheer Mag has received posivibes for the series of EPs it has released, beginning with Still Single’s praise for Sheer Mag I. The third EP, logically titled III, is still walking the power-pop/pop-metal line that Still Single observed, earning comparisons to Thin Lizzy, Royal Headache, Shannon and the Clams, and Ariel Pink, according to Raven Sings the Blues....more
Prince played two shows in Toronto on the Piano & A Microphone tour, and his sets featured a series of covers: the artist performed his take on David Bowie’s “Heroes,” along with Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You,” Vince Guaraldi’s “Linus & Lucy,” and Bob Marley’s “Waiting in Vain.” Watch recordings of the covers at Pitchfork....more
We’ve spoken before of D’Angelo’s ever-evolving live shows, and his recent performance at the Sydney Opera House was no different: this time definitely leaning toward the funk in his rendition of Roberta Flack’s “Feel Like Making Love.” Watch a clip of the song after the jump, then read about the performance and check out a photo slideshow of the full show via okayplayer....more
The Against Me! frontwoman Laura Jane Grace has announced that Hatchette Books will be publishing her memoir Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout. The book was written with Noisey’s Dan Ozzi, who has said of the project:
The book mixes narrative about Laura’s life—growing up with dysphoria and playing in our generation’s most influential punk band—with amazing journal entries she’s been keeping since she was a kid.
We can accuse Kanye West of a lot of things—arrogance, insensitivity, paranoia, ingratitude… the list goes on. But one thing he is not guilty of is dishonesty. The longer he spends in the international media spotlight (and he’s going on thirteen years now), the more the confessional side of his music seems to be emphasized....more
Joe Corré, co-founder of Agent Provocateur lingerie and son of Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren, has once again raised the issue of what it means to “claim” punk: in what he has said would be a protest of the Queen of England’s involvement in the plans for the celebration of punk’s 40th anniversary, Corré has threatened to burn his entire punk collection as a demonstration of what punk is really about....more
Marvin Gaye’s incredible record has turned forty and to celebrate the greatness of the work, Pitchfork has published a tribute to I Want You and to Gaye’s tactile sound and the history of african american music and resistance in this country....more
The singer’s “The Community of Hope,” off her upcoming album The Hope Six Demolition Project, has been out a week and is already drawing attention from unhappy politicians. The song was inspired by DC’s Ward 7 and explores urban blight—creating an association between the region and the phenomenon that the area’s politicians are none too happy about....more
Georgia Tech hosts a yearly competition in musical instrument design called the Guthman Musical Instrument Competition, where MIDI players are reborn in new forms that may expand the possibilities for musicians (or just make the things incredibly difficult to play).
The Nomis, designed by Jonathan Sparks, looks like a Star Wars take on the theremin—which is to say that it looks pretty amazing....more
Influenced by the heyday of ’70s and ’80s reggae in the UK, new artists are gathering a following in the region, the Guardian reports. Marcia Richards of the London band the Skints believes the renewed interest has something to do with the fact that the other bands in her scene have built followings organically, by playing show after show, rather than relying on networking through the Internet:
People appreciate us because we have built up a following by connecting directly with audiences live, and nowadays that seems rarer.
Anna Wise, the Grammy winner formerly of Sonnymoon who has collaborated with Kendrick Lamar, released a new video that sums up pretty beautifully a core reason for the continued importance of feminist discussion today: after all the work that has been done, women are still apt to fall subject to the frigid/fast binary....more
The nominee’s scheduled event at Chicago on Friday night was cancelled due to the overwhelming attendance of protesters chanting lyrics to Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright.” Trump may still be steamrolling his way into other cities and we don’t condone any violence that may have occurred in the rally, but it’s nice to see ignorance cower in the face of hip-hop, wouldn’t you say?...more
The album You and I comes out today via Sony, a collection of demos, mostly covers, recorded by Jeff Buckley in 1993. Some preliminary reviews argue the continued stream of posthumous releases is an important part of understanding the artist’s official work, while others contend that “the recordings…reveal a few Buckley’s—brace yourselves—flaws” without adding to his oeuvre....more
After forty-five years of playing in Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, Graham Nash has announced that he is done with tolerating—and mollifying—David Crosby’s notoriously big, cantankerous mouth. Nash told Billboard, “In my world, there will never, ever be a Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young record and there will never be another Crosby, Stills, and Nash record or show.” He went a bit further in an earlier interview with the magazine Lust for Life, saying:
I don’t like David Crosby right now.
The incredible cacophony of the bridge on Wilco’s definitive ballad “Misunderstood” is all the more striking because of its contrast with the rest of the tender, harmonious song. The brilliance of songwriter Jeff Tweedy is on full display here as the speaker laments his own bad attitude with a self-deprecating tone....more
This year’s Roots Jam Sessions featured a massive list of artists alongside the Roots crew: Gary Clark Jr., Tori Kelly, Bilal, Tinashe, Jeremih, Andra Day, John Legend, Lenny Kravitz, Lianne La Havas, Leon Bridges, Alessia Cara, J Angel, Kehlani, Bibi Bourelly, Nelly, George Clinton, Lil Dicky, Yuna, Freddie Gibbs, Corinne Bailey Rae, Jazmine Sullivan, and Tish Hyman....more
Kendrick Lamar has released a new album, untitled unmastered. The album was a surprise, although the artist performed some of its songs last year on The Colbert Report and this past January on The Tonight Show. The album is available via iTunes (along with just about every other online music retailer)....more
Sexual assault has been at the forefront of the news this week, most recently in the discussion of Lady Gaga’s performance of “Til It Happens to You” at the Oscars, a song in support of survivors of sexual assault that challenges dismissive attitudes toward the pain caused by such an attack....more
Although the record is being put out by Atlantic, and therefore isn’t a mixtape per se, the compilation of remixes, covers, and songs inspired by the Hamilton musical is amassing quite the list of featured artists: as Entertainment Weekly reports, participants include Sia, Usher, Chance the Rapper, Busta Rhymes, Ben Folds, Regina Spektor, and Queen Latifah....more