Easily one of the most anticipated tracks off Rick Ross‘s upcoming God Forgives, I Don’t (we’ll have to reuse this line when “Crushed Pineapple” finally leaks), “3 Kings” finds the big Bawse drawing a hand from two of the rap game’s most regal, Jay-Z and Dr. Dre. Rozay has long been teasing this team-up as the “biggest collaboration in hip-hop,” and it’s easy to see why. On the track, each of the three take a turn recounting their rise to glory. For Dre, there were days mopping floors before he made it “front row at the awards.” Ross’ “twenty-stack seats at the Heat game” are a long way from the weed game he used to run. And Jay? He’ll have you know that before he and Oprah were BFFs, he was shopping at T.J. Maxx. The three certainly deserve a beat as soulful and triumphant as the one Jake-One made them, as well as the acclaim their meeting is sure to earn. It does seem fair to ask, though, because they put it out there: are they three really kings?
London’s Hot Chip dropped in on Jimmy Fallon last night to dispense a hit of synth and a dance break to late night watchers. Recently drawn forth once more for the release of In Our Heads, the deep thinking dance fiends performed “Don’t Deny Your Heart” with house band the Roots and a mess of instruments and equipment. Alexis Taylor led the unapologetic 80′s jam, pleading that you “don’t deny your heart, don’t destroy your heart (say yes).” Hot Chip have made a name for themselves by using the dance floor’s dark corners to explore those in their mind. You know, like this. But here they beg otherwise, suggesting that “You’ll see, we take fun seriously.” And — with jingling synth, disco keys, and a Questlove led drum break — that they do.
Florence and the Machine‘s Florence Welch had us worried when she, complaining of vocal injury, cancelled a handful of scheduled appearances. Artists like Adele and John Mayer past have sidelined for far too long by similar injuries, and we didn’t want to see our dear VH1 Diva Flo suffer the same fate. So she skipped the Benicassim Festival in Spain and the Optimus Festival in Portugal and rested her voice. And then this morning, just a week later, she showed up on the Good Morning America and out of her mouth came a voice as beautiful and earth shaking as ever. We are not worried anymore.
“It’s almost like being an athlete, you strain a muscle and I just couldn’t really speak,” she explained after she wowed the crowed with harp-and-all performances of “Spectrum” and “Shake It Off.” “It seems to still work,” she laughed. And good thing, Florence and the Machines kick off their North American tour this weekend in British Columbia.
Two Door Cinema Club have the internet buzzing this afternoon. The Irish trio debuted “Sleep Alone,” the first single from their forthcoming sophomore album Beacon, and now both “Sleep Alone” and “Two Door Cinema Club” are trending on Twitter as evidence of a world as excited about these You Oughta Know alums as we are! Back again are the jangly guitars and danceable beats that remind us almost of New Wave, if only Ian Curtis could have had access to a MacBook, and we are so glad. Have a listen below, or download it for free off of their website.
VH1 News caught up with the guys last month in L.A., where they were still hard at work on their new album — and on a new diet. “We spend the first hour or so just drinking coffee and watching YouTube or something, and then we’ll just take it as it comes and work until 11 in the evening and then go home and do it all over again,” they said of their process. And in the off hours that they weren’t in the studio? They were out enjoying Southern California’s hills, sunshine and preferred roughage. “The most L.A. thing we’ve been doing is just eating really healthily,” guitarist Sam Halliday admitted. “I’d never heard of kale before.”
Did you watch that video we posted yesterday, the one of the fierce kid in a snuggie doing Beyonce? It undoubtedly deserves all sorts of awards for it’s attention to detail and good humor, but it just earned something better yet: the high praise of Beyoncé herself, who thinks that he-so-fierce “did this video better than I did.” She wrote just that on her blog, adding also a smiley face emoticon and a “Love, B” for good measure.
It looks like rapper and producer Swizz Beatz might not not be off the hook for that Megaupload business, after all. When the once dominant file sharing site was shuttered back in January, Mr. Alicia Keys was revealed to be a “CEO without citation”. Beatz’s lawyers adamantly denied his involvement, and he was left out of early indictments. Megaupload has since claimed that, being a foreign company with no offices or agents on U.S. soil, they were functioning outside of the U.S.’s jurisdiction. In order to build a case otherwise, U.S. attorneys have dragged Beatz back into the case, listing him as an U.S. representative to the site in their most recent filings. Uh oh, that doesn’t bode well for Beatz, who has so far been both uncooperative with the feds. As for those of you who liked those “I Like Megaupload” videos, the ones that starred Beatz’s A-List friends like Kanye West and Will.i.am, you might have more fun propaganda to look forward to.
It will be interesting to see how Beatz, a high-profile producer dragged to the center of a high-profile anti-piracy case, explains his involvement in the site if he ends up summoned. As he and some of his also very successful musician friends have argued, file sharing sites like Megaupload are not just havens to piracy, they are also a means for artists to share and collaborate. In an interview with The Fader, Beatz suggested that “in due time everybody will understand everything.” Well, it might be that time, and it could very well also be Beatz’s chance to help shape music’s future on the internet.
Drake is not exactly a baron of good taste. Rather, he’s more the type of guy who is not too ashamed to spend that new, big pile of money on whatever he wishes. And so it’s no surprise that his latest investment, a new home in the Hidden Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, is a haven to all that is excessive and cheesy.
The seven bedroom, nine bathroom and 7,444 square foot mansion comes complete with all the amenities a bachelor like himself might want. There is a tennis court for his friend Serena, a home theater for Ice Age 4 screenings and Degrassi marathons, a mechanical bull (why not?), a wine cellar worthy of a wine fanatic like he, and a grotto that puts Hugh Hefner’s to shame. Because, well, Drake has long been into that sort of thing. His new, nearby neighbors include the likes of the Osbournes, the Kardashians, and Sinbad. And all that for less that $8 mil? That’s what you call dreams money can buy.
Walk the Moon sure don’t need that face paint they are so famous for. Last night in late night, the boys from Cincinnati dropped in on Conan to plug their sold-out homecoming show next week in Ohio and to play their hit single “Anna Sun.” Back-lit by lights tinged like twilight, they rattled the stage set like a garage — or a ghost town — with their frenzied energy. Frontman Nicholas Petricca took center, where he alternated between keys and drum and wail while all the rest of the band bounced to and fro around him. An anthem for the forever young, their synth-drenched and heart-filled “Anna Sun” has become a staple on our playlists during these hot months when it is, like they sing, “all a wash.” They are just the charge we need.
Maybe looking for one less thing to worry about, Passion Pit passed directing privileges for the “I’ll Be Alright” video over to a Genero.tv contest winner. Staged in an art gallery and replete with a pill-popping docent, gold glitter, and toga’s galore, they ended up with maybe the most thought-provoking music video we’ve seen since their last! Read more…