King Tuff's Was Dead album was one of my favorites of 2013. Though it came out years ago, fan fervor over the original recordings made him reissue it last year, and rightfully so. It's a fantastic record. Now Tuff is gearing up to release another LP (Black Moon Spell), and he's giving a taste of what it'll entail with the album track “Eyes of the Muse.” That should tide you over 'til Sept. 23, but I'm sure he'll release more previews between then and now. Here's hoping.
I've always liked Usher ... well, mostly. I've lost touch with a lot of his recent work, but “Confessions Part II,” “Nice and Slow” and “Yeah” are some good songs to dance, reflect or get in the mood to. Whatever your preference, the man knows what he's doing. Now Usher has made a track available that was produced by Pharrell and features Nicki Minaj. The slick, club-happy number will definitely be a crowdpleaser. Head to Hip-Hop Wired to hear it.
Coldplay and Cat Power? I'm sure some could have predicted it … probably not. Cat Power is ... well ... Cat Power. And Coldplay used to be good. Regardless, it's an interesting combination any way you squeeze it, and the song they've concocted together (written by Coldplay's Chris Martin, sung by Chan Marshall) is a contemplative little number. The track “Wish I Was Here” was written and recorded for Zach Braff's upcoming film of the same name. How that'll go is an entirely different thing. But check out the song below.
There's always dissension when a legendary rock group announces they've recorded new material. Some say it's going to be awful. Some say it's a new era, a new sound. Whatever your views, that still doesn't stop it from happening. Take Pink Floyd for instance. The group is coming out with a new record (The Endless River) in October, and according to the band's website, it's “an album of mainly ambient and instrumental music based on the 1993/4 Division Bell sessions which feature David Gilmour, Nick Mason and Richard Wright.” So keep an eye out for that one … or don't … I mean I might not even remember … I probably will though.
I mentioned a few weeks back that Christopher Owens (former frontman from Girls) was coming out with his second solo album. Well, that's still happening. The record (A New Testament) hits the music-sphere on Sept. 30. And Owens shared a snippet in the form of “Nothing More Than Everything to Me,” which you can view below.
It's happening. Beck is going to release a new album titled Song Reader. I know, I know, he already came out with a record called Song Reader (though it was a release of sheet music, made to be interpreted by skilled musicians). But Beck is going to release actual recordings of those songs, and each track is going to be done by a different artist. Among them are Laura Marling, Jack Black, Jarvis Cocker, Jack White and much more. Head to Pitchfork to get more deets on that. Oh, and it drops on July 29, which is hella soon!
Like most, I became familiar with The Vines at the turn of the millennium when they graced us with “Get Free.” Anyone else remember the Hives vs. Vines battle during MTV's Music Awards? Them's were the days. The band has been steadily releasing albums over the past decade, though none have found their way on my radar. Now, they're coming out with a new double LP (Wicked Nature). They're self-releasing it via PledgeMusic where fans donate funds and get free downloads of some of the album's tracks. So there ya go. Not sure when the record is coming out, but you can watch the video for their new song “Metal Zone” below.
Taylor Swift is a writer? Well, duh, I know she writes her own songs, but an editorial? And for the Wall Street Journal? The country-pop sensation wrote a piece on the future of the music industry, speculating on where music will be in 30 or 40 years. Swift describes herself at the beginning of the piece as an “enthusiastic optimist.” (Go figure.) She does say some insightful things here and there, and whether you agree with her assertions, it's not as if she's the be-all-end-all authority on music entirely. But if you want her perspective, it's not a terrible read. See what she has to say here.
Fans of Death Proof are no strangers to Mary Elizabeth Winstead (you know, the one who was dressed like a cheerleader in the second half). 'Member the scene where she sits in the car and sings a lovely cover of Smith's “Baby It's You”? Good times. Well Winstead and Dan “The Automator” Nakamura have a music project together (Got A Girl), and they're getting ready to release a record on July 22. To give people a preview, they've made the track “There's a Revolution” available. Listen to the retro pop ditty below.
There are still moments when I get tears in my eyes at the thought that I will never see The White Stripes live in person. I think back to moments when I could have seen them had I driven 3 1/2 hours, changed highways, snacked on goodies, all while playing all six of their fantastic albums in chronological order. That is slightly remedied with the release of a live White Stripes album (Live Under the Lights of the Rising Sun). No release date on it yet, but the record will have 31 tracks, and it's taken from their first tour in Japan in 2000. So it'll probably have some good early stuff. Head to NME to read more 'bout it.
A Washington mudslide has claimed at least eight fatalities.
An O’Hare Airport train derailment has injured at least 32 people.
Rest in peace, James Rebhorn.
Rest in peace, Oderus Urungus.
Japanese manhole covers are cool.
Do you want to build a snowman?
There was a police shooting in Los Lunas.
A man was rescued from Rio Grande quicksand.
Check out Albuquerque’s future buses.
Happy birthday, Harry Houdini.
CNM's getting a Downtown location, y'all.
Albuquerque is getting a “Living Cities” grant, which will help with Downtown revitalization, low-income residents and community improvement.
President Obama's budget proposal could result in more access to New Mexico public lands.
Three more accusers have come forward against Rusty Glanton, a tumbling coach who was accused of “criminal sexual contact of a minor” in January.
The court-martial is underway for a US general accused of sexually assault.
A transgender woman was told by CrossFit that she couldn't compete in the women's strength competition. Now she's suing them.
Brig. Gen. Peggy C. Combs is the first woman to take command of Fort Knox. Not bad.
An abortion clinic in McAllen, Texas closed its doors yesterday due to new state restrictions. The law is expected to be “fully implemented” in September, which will leave only six clinics in the state of Texas.
Wait … there's actual employment for ninjas? With no experience required? Guess I'm moving to Japan.
John Cougar’s sons were sucking on chili dogs behind the Tastee Freez.
Obama played cards during the Osama bin Laden raid. The intern kept losing, but wouldn’t take her bra off.
A shark ate a lady’s arm in Maui.
Area 51 exists.
Take a peek at Guillermo del Toro’s sketchbook.
Google yanked YouTube access from Microsoft’s Windows Phone app.
Shittens are now available.
Enjoy these pictures of animals wearing clothes.
Albuquerque programmer Sean McCracken wrote the first game for Google Glass. The game involves killing aliens.
Happy birthday, Robert Culp. I don’t believe I’ve mentioned I’m related to Robert Culp. Or perhaps I have!
A group of researchers from Tokyo University of the Arts and RIKEN Brain Science Institute have decided to tackle an interesting subject: Why do we love sad songs? It's a valid question, considering many sad songs have entered the top-40 and kept listeners on their toes while belting out minor chords over hopeless lyrics. Adele's “Someone Like You” is one example that comes to mind. These researchers not only wanted to discuss the various reasons why people listen to sad music but also to see if they could pinpoint certain characteristics within the music that pique certain emotions.
They had 44 volunteers listen to two pieces of sad music and one piece of happy music, and they basically came to the conclusion that sad music actually made people feel more positive about their own lives. They concluded that while the volunteers listened to these despairing, emotionally-driven opuses, they found “sad music to be more tragic, less romantic, and less blithe than they felt themselves while listening to it,” according to an article in Science Daily. So maybe we do listen to sad music to realize how good we have it?
This got me thinking about what sad songs I enjoy listening to, or better yet, got me thinking what my favorite sad song is. As a music journalist, that's a hard question to answer because I like different things at different times. But one sad song that did come to mind was Joanna Newsom's “Go Long,” from her 2010 album Have One On Me. It's one of those songs that if you see her play it live, it utterly kills you. I witnessed the most rough-looking dudes crying like babies when the song was over. I don't cry when I hear it, but I do really enjoy it. It's a beautiful number that dissects the “Bluebeard” story in its most poetic, morbid sense. But now I'm curious … what's a notable sad song for you?
South Korea elects first female president, conservative Park Geun-hye.
The sky (of The Pit) is falling!
Penn State scandal voted top sports story of the year (again).
APD officer arrested and accused of theft.
Tebow’s sad, sad story.
American pastor imprisoned in Iran while visiting family.
Rumors of school violence lead to 7 suspensions at Manzano High School.
Those darn foxes getting their heads stuck in everything.
A menagerie of adorable things that happened in 2012.
How gun control works for Japan.
US job growth picked up in November.
Changes have been made to Bernalillo county animal law.
Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen welcome baby girl.
Who wants a a steaming hot cup of really expensive elephant poop coffee?
Man who lost $20,000 in drug money, asks police for excuse note to prevent the cartel from killing him.
In the spirit of Christmas, here are some tips to avoid giving a gift that will later be returned.
Grieving father writes 14-song tribute album for missing daughter.
High magnitude earthquake hits northeast Japan.
Following the demise of Hostess, Burque residents have started selling Twinkies on Craigslist.
The Biebs didn’t get a single Grammy nomination.
Nurse involved in Kate Middleton prank call found dead.
This years top most perfectly timed photos.
Heavy rains leave at least 28 dead on island in southern Japan.
Let the FBI know if you have any information that could help solve an armored van murder from 1994.
Albuquerque police arrest two people in human trafficking case.
Mom infected with flesh-eating bacteria seems to be on good road to recovery.
Violent police standoff in northern New Mexico leaves one man dead.
This Monday just keeps getting worse and worse: Gemini the two-faced kitten died.
Budget cuts in Oregon prison mean nearly 100 released inmates.
Everybody wants Jeremy Lin, but not everybody can afford him.
One does not simply cut off the power to Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen's microphones just as they are about to start a duet.
Breaking Bad back for 5th (and final) season.
Japan, as a nation, is filled with people doing incredibly brilliant and incomprehensively weird things. There may be no clearer proof of that than this video in which someone goes through the unbelievably labor intensive process of creating Japan’s hottest new snack food: a powdered McDonalds Happy Meal. This thing is as fascinating as it is repulsive. I’m craving one right now.