This is where Bracket Madness gets really difficult. In round-one, Mariah Carey and her five-octaves beat-out the ever-classy Celine Dion, while Green Day‘s punk spirit trumped Dave Matthews Band‘s laid-back jams. And so now this next round pits Mariah Carey against Green Day, two artists whose messages and music were totally different, the songbird and the screamers. Though different at first blush, it was usually “Fantasy” or “Basket Case” that had us hoarse in the throat by night’s end. If you caught us in the car, it was “Always Be My Baby” or “Good Riddance” that we would be singing along to. Read more…
Posts By Zara Golden
It can’t hurt to have Madonna on your team. Onstage in Moscow last night, Madge voiced her support for the feminist punk band Pussy Riot, who have been in jail the past five months on charges of hooliganism, the night before their trial wrapped. This MDNA tour has been a particularly controversial one, with feelings and bits spilling freely, but Madonna’s words last night were careful, clear and — at least by those in attendance — uncontested.
“There are many sides to this story, and I mean no disrespect to the church or the government … I think that they have done something courageous, I think that they have paid the price for this act, and I pray for their freedom,” she offered during the show’s pause, “PUSSY RIOT” scrawled across her back. Then she called on the Moscow audience, who, “if you’re here as my fan, you feel that you deserve the right to be free,” to join her. The speech earned a massive applause.
Madonna is not the first artist to come out in support of Pussy Riot — Patti Smith, Sting, Pete Townsend, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, for a few, have spoken in their defense. She was bold, though, to voice her support in Moscow and on the eve of their trial’s close. Who are Pussy Riot? Check out our primer below.
It’s only fit that “I Will Wait,” the first single off of Mumford & Sons long-awaited Babel come accompanied by a video of the road, passing endlessly behind. The British bluegrass band have come a long way since their days as VH1 You Oughta Know artists, topping charts and rounding the world on seemingly endless tour. And instead of just logging the miles, they put them to work, mining the distance for inspiration and road-testing new material all along the way. As bassist Ted Dwane told Rolling Stone recently, “Being away so much for the last couple of years is inevitably a theme on the record;” and as frontman Ben Lovett explained to Spin, “touring so much and playing so many different kinds of places, especially big ones, affected how we hear ourselves as a band.” And so they return, all the better for the work and wait.
This heartbroken first taste of their new album, a swelling tale of love put on hold, just how worthwhile the wait was. Driven by banjos and punctuated by the the sort of stomping chorus they’re so famous for, “I Will Wait” grows and grows, and then grows and bigger still to fill the venues they regularly fill, before getting quiet so that Lovett can promise, “I will be home, as well as strong strong/And use my head alongside my heart.” The wait, it will be worth it.
Babel hits shelves September 25th.
Last night on Conan, Grouplove and an army of cardboard cutout lookalikes shook all the sleepy out of the late night with an all-out performance of “Itchin’ on a Photograph,” the bright and catchy new single off their rising 2011 album Never Trust a Happy Song. The vibrant pop-rock crew spun and jammed and yelped things like “I’m living loud and I’m living now” until almost all of their two-dimensional counterparts were all knocked down.
Grouplove got the Glee treatment last spring, and this summer they have lit up the festival circuit, making stops at Bonnaroo and Firefly, where they ran into their friends Young The Giant. And this fall, they hit the road for a nationwide tour. Last night marked their national television debut of the song, and like that cardboard army, they knocked it out. We can’t wait to see them do it again and again and again.
AW! KANYE WEST THINKS KIM KARDASHIAN IS A “PERFECT B****”
In a good way, we assume. ‘Ye debuted the song he penned for his new lady friend last week, during a DJ set that included a bunch of new material, some of which may be destined for Cruel Summer. [TMZ] Read more…
Pearl Jam and Nirvana having done their part to bring alternative edge to 90′s mainstream, Green Day and Dave Matthews Band swooped in just after Neverland and Ten to further atomized the scene. Each at the top of their own alt-genre, Green Day’s Dookie (1994) heralding an era of mainstream pop-punk while Dave Matthews Band “chilled” the mainstream with their seven-times platinum album Crash (1996). Radio is far more diverse these days, and for that we can thank all of the aforementioned. But Bracket Madness means there can only be one Greatest Artist of the 90s. Who should it be?
Anyone who is anyone who was at Lollapalooza this past weekend talked to VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown‘s Jim Shearer. Or maybe Jim Shearer just made sure to talk to anyone who is anyone who was at Lollapalooza this past weekend, so as to provide you with as thorough a recap of what went down as ever was. Really, the above five minutes tell the whole story: he got Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to laugh, Gaslight Anthem to punch him, fun. to talk about their summer jams, Aaron Paul to spoil Breaking Bad season 5 part 2 (just kidding!), Chairlift mourning their rained-out set, and he even gained access to headliners the Red Hot Chili Peppers — well, the sign on their trailer. Very fun, and not a moment un-capped. Check it out!
Bracket Madness is upon us once more, and this time around artists from the 90s are off and battling for the “Greatest” crown. This first round pits Nirvana against Pearl Jam, and it almost feels unfair to have to choose. Both groups emerged from the hair and flannel and sludge of Seattle in the 90s as alt-rock legends, distinguished in their tunely post-punk and oftentimes painful sincerity. Eddie Veder with his masterpiece, Ten, and Kurt Cobain with his masterpiece, Nevermind, are giants in grunge but different in the shadows they cast. Which represents the greatest of grunge?
Let’s consider: Read more…
Things don’t end so well for Miriam, we know that now. So it’s with a certain anticipation that we watch when Norah Jones performs the lurking Little Broken Heart lullaby, and all the more so when she plays it live, like she did last night on Conan. Seated at her piano in a pretty blue dress, Jones kept her eyes trained to the audience while she pleaded, “Miriam, was it a game to you? Was it a game to him? Don’t tell me lies.” This is a perfect song for late night, when all is dark and quiet and it lulls you to sleep and then haunt your dreams with it’s eery beauty. Oh, Miriam, that’s such a pretty name…
And below, watch her web-only performance of “Out On the Road”
Karmin‘s Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan are doing things a little different in this new video for “Hello,” a song meant to introduce the pop-duo as more than just a YouTube covers act. “I’m gonna do it do it, like I want to do it,” sings Heidemann over the zappy synth before she shifts gear to full spit-mode: “Don’t they know I came from Nebraska, am I going to quit? Nice of you to ask, but…” Yeah, no, not quitting. It’s more like she’s just getting started. Read more…