New York tri-state power-pop fans have a big reason to be happy today: hyper-prolific songwriter Adam Schlesinger has re-teamed with his bandmates for the first Fountains of Wayne album since 2007′s Traffic and Weather. The critically-acclaimed but perennially underrated (and isn’t that always the way with power-pop?) band returns with “Someone’s Gonna Break Your Heart,” the first single from the forthcoming Sky Full of Holes. The song premiered this morning on Vulture.
Schlesinger has kept plenty busy in the interim, of course; he’s written dozens of songs for television and film, including the theme to That Thing You Do!, which won him an Oscar nomination, and, most recently, interstitial music for the Billboard Music Awards last month. He was also the primary songwriter for the super-group Tinted Windows, formed by his Scratchie Records partner James Iha, and featuring Taylor Hanson and Cheap Trick‘s Bun E. Carlos. But it’s good to have the old band back, if you’re into bright pop songs about love and/or the Northeast Corridor. And who knows? Maybe this record will have another “Stacy’s Mom.”
The video for Katy Perry‘s new single “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)” premieres in a week, but today Perry released an entire teaser package, including not only the clip above, but also a Twitter account and Facebook page for the fictional “nerd persona” that we first saw on the single’s cover art. “Kathy Beth Terry” is some sort of mid-90s teenybopper everynerd; on Twitter she follows BOP and Tiger Beat, Popstar! Magazine, and teen idols from a range of years centered around 1995 (Leonardo DiCaprio, Hanson, Jared Leto, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Rider Strong, and Devon Sawa), plus two NASA accounts, Sudoku Fun, LARP Craft, and, of course, the Katy Perry account. Read more…
Dr. Dre cruises around Los Angeles in a Chrysler 300S playing an instrumental track through the sedan’s Beats by Dre speakers in a television spot that premiered on Sunday during the NBA finals. HipHopDX is reporting that the instrumental is the beat for a Dr. Dre/50 Cent collaboration from the long-promised Detox. Does this commercial lend support to the most recently rumored Detox release date?
We’ve got a live one! Leaking last night with the rest of Beyonc?’s album, 4, “Party” might be one of the strongest new contenders for our Song of the Summer, and we’re hoping it will also be her third single. Produced by both Kanye West and Consequence and featuring an insane verse from novelty-spitter Andr? 3000, this sweetly sexy track delivers something for every listener, including a silly line from Yeezy woven in-and-out that’s so cheesy it might actually grow on us (I mean, “swag sauce” and “dripping swagu”? If you say so!).
But don’t let the song title deceive you; while “Party” can easily help complete a laid-back, trill evening with friends, its sound is more reminiscent of a come-hither lady anthem from the R&B 90s. And who better to pull off a grown and sexy summer smash than B, singing sassy lyrics that demand the most intense kind of intimacy from her suitor– but only if he “don’t tell nobody tomorrow.” The need for intimacy, however, is a self-proclaimed bi-product of a (perhaps unrequited?) love that crowns the track’s endearing confesional nature. Of course Beyonc? is a happily married woman, but at one time, she was a single lady looking for love and cruising for a man to be her equal. Perfectly suited for brewing summer romances, “Party” can serve as the backdrop to a BBQ, a bikini-targeted workout session, or -you guessed it- some good old-fashioned boot knockin’. Proceed with caution, y’all!
The best part about the promotion of NBC’s The Voice is that Cee Lo Green keeps turning up on late night. Last night, backed by a seventeen-piece band, including horns and strings, he continued his “Bright Lights, Bigger City” victory lap on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno. Frankly, a lot of his backing music was probably unnecessary, but Cee Lo is one of the best when it comes to selling it, so it worked?much as it did on his episode of Storytellers. Watch it above.
People reports this morning that Andrew Gold, the 1970s era singer-songwriter, died on Friday night after suffering a heart attack. Gold got his start as a multi-threat talent (session player, producer, songwriter) in the dynamic Los Angeles music scene of the early seventies, gaining widespread acclaim for his work as a multi-instrumentalist and arranger on Linda Ronstadt‘s seminal 1974 album, Heart Like A Wheel (#164 on Rolling Stone‘s Top 500 Albums of All-Time). His success with that project enabled him to launch a solo career, which arguably culminated with his 1977 Top 10 Billboard hit, “Lonely Boy.”
However, Gold will likely be best remembered for penning “Thank You For Being A Friend,” which was a success in its own right when it was released as a single in 1978. However, it wasn’t until singer Cynthia Fee re-recorded the song in 1985 and NBC producers chose it as the theme song for The Golden Girls that his song reached iconic status. In his memory, take a listen to his original take on the song above. Gold was 59 years-old.
Ever since the bizarre dichotomy of Insane Clown Posse‘s horror-fetishism and family-friendly state-fair advertising that was the commercial for the 10th Annual Gathering of the Juggalos Festival went viral in 2009, the arrival of the festival’s ads have been greeted with glee by fans and haters alike, and this year is no exception. Vanilla Ice, who over the past ten years has been accepted as one of the Juggalo “family,” costars in this twenty-seven minute advertisement for the festival taking place August 11-14 in Cave-In-Rock, Illinois. We don’t advise sitting through the entirety of this press conference-as-report to alien superiors, but we do recommend clicking through it for a taste.
Highlights include the authenticity ethos that characterizes the majority of pop music as “commercialized, mainstream, watered-down, safe-and-censored, unauthentic, pop p***y-fart bulls**t” and the misspellings of artist names onscreen (“DJ Quick,” “Juvinile,” and “Kitty“).
Beyond that, the main surprise of this clip is how good the rap bookings are for this show: aside from the requisite Psychopathic Records rap roster, the Gathering will feature Mystikal, E-40, Xzibit, Busta Rhymes, Ice Cube (in his second Gathering appearance), and Tech N9ne (in his fifth appearance, one shy of Vanilla Ice’s count!), plus DJ Quik and Juvenile, as mentioned above.
And of course, the biggest fan favorite will return to the Gathering: helicopter rides!
Bob Lefsetz may not have good music industry sense, but he sure has a good memory for personal feuds. The self-styled “First in Music Analysis” (who last week wrote that Tyler, the Creator’s Goblin didn’t have any online word of mouth) took a shot at Lily Allen in September 2009 after she decried filesharing on her myspace blog. Believing Allen’s complaints to actually be about Allen’s own relative lack of success in the United States, Lefsetz proceeded to criticize both her artistry and what he believed was an expectation of success due to birthright.
Last night Lefsetz rekindled the feud when Allen tweeted, “Everyone watch Case Histories on BBC1, my mummy produced it.” He fired back:
Welcome to Week Two of VH1′s Song of the Summer countdown. Each and every Monday from now until Labor Day, we’ll be utilizing today’s most advanced data collection techniques Microsoft Excel to chart the competition of what will become THE song that people will think of when they remember the summer of 2011.
Last week, Adele‘s monster smash, “Rolling In The Deep,” captured the top spot, scoring 87 of a possible 100 points. (For a reminder on how the scoring system works, click here.) Somehow, the English songbird managed to increase her stranglehold on the #1 spot in this countdown this week, racking up 91 (!!!) points and proving that no matter what medium people use to consume music these days, they’re using it to listen to Adele.
The NSFW video for Kanye West‘s feature-packed single “Monster” premiered on kanyewest.com yesterday, largely unchanged from what was seen in the unfinished cut that surfaced five months ago. One notable addition: the disclaimer “The following content is in no way to be interpreted as misogynistic or negative towards any groups of people. It is an art piece and it shall be taken as such.”
What a joke! The song remains one of the highlights of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, but every music video is an “art piece”?some just happen to be more self-conscious about it?and interpretation is the task and privilege of the viewer, not the creator. Besides which, this disclaimer, preceding six minutes of sexualized “dead” models, is the most absurd non-apology for the treatment of women since R. Kelly’s “When you say ‘teenage,’ how old are we talking?” in Tour?’s interview with him on BET.
The tracks’ guests have varying levels of complicity in Kanye’s sexist aesthetics. Rick Ross portrays some sort of serial killer, complete with chainsaw, whose victims just so happen to be female models. Jay-Z raps in the foreground while a nude model is half-buried under the cushions of a couch in the background. Nicki Minaj (who, musically, steals the show on this track) portrays one of her personalities mildly torturing another of her personalities. But mainly this is Kanye’s problem.
Considering the appearance of zombies in the video (and his self-proclaimed idolatry of Michael Jackson), we have a pretty good idea of where Kanye got the idea for a disclaimer, but it goes without saying that “Monster” is no “Thriller.”