Looks like we're gonna be seeing a new album from King Khan & BBQ Show ... wait, never mind. The new album will be released under their old/new moniker Bad News Boys. Apparently a barbecue joint in Berlin sued the band for taking their name (King Khan Und BBQ), so they decided to go back to their original band name. Along with that, they've shared a track from said upcoming record, though there's no details as far as the release date and whatnot. Still, have a listen to “We Are The Champion” below.
Bad News Boys - “We Are The Champion”
Out tha basement
Two legends. Count 'em, two: Bob Dylan and The Band. Why do I bring them up? Because Bob Dylan has announced the release of The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11. Basically he's releasing “every salvageable recording” from sessions with The Band from 1967. 138 tracks of sonic goodness, all yours for the small price of ... wait, I don't know how much it costs. But it hits online and physical markets on Nov. 4, so that's somethin' to look forward to, no?
Take a leap
'Member how I mentioned that underground folk legend Vashti Bunyan was releasing a new and final album, Heartleap, on Oct. 7? Well, to give fans another snippet of the record, she's released the track “Holy Smoke.” The atmospheric ditty is gorgeous, whispery and magical ... as I'm sure the record will be. Have a listen below.
Believe in Usher
Uh-oh, the sexy vocal stylings of Mr. Usher Raymond are about to grace the airwaves once again. Not like he's been slacking on that front or anything. Usher shared a new single, “Believe Me,” which is scheduled to appear on his forthcoming record Everything You Can Imagine. The song is produced by Mike WiLL Made-It, who has worked with noted contemporaries like Juicy J, GOOD Music, Lil Wayne and the queen of dick pop (new genre, you heard it here) Miley Cyrus. Head to Spin to hear the tune.
Morrissey, Scorsese, Ramones, oh my!
Here's a lil something exciting if you like The Smiths (which I don't) … or better, if you like the Ramones. Morrissey has chosen the tracklist for the upcoming Best of the Ramones compilation. Not only that, he also got to choose the cover photo, which is viewable below. No word on when that'll be released, but this should still be interesting. Not because Morrissey had anything to do with it, but because it's the Ramones! Speaking of the Ramones, apparently there's a film in the works, and it's set to be directed by none other than Martin Scorsese. That's gonna be a good one. Head to Pitchfork to read more about that.
Please stand up
Slim Shady ain't over, y'all. Eminem recently announced a 2-CD compilation titled Shady XV, which is scheduled to hit the music-sphere on Nov. 24. The compilation will feature one album of Shady Records greatest hits and an album of new work by Em, D-12, Yelawolf and more. As an added bonus, Shady also shared a collaborative track with Sia (who's been gaining some hardcore traction with her latest album 1000 Forms of Fear), titled “Guts Over Fear,” which is featured in the upcoming film The Equalizer (out Sept. 26). To read more about the compilation and single, head over to Billboard.
Dream of the stream
It's time for the album streamage. New York rock band Interpol announced a few months ago that they'd be coming back with a new record (El Pintor). Well, they weren't lying. That record drops on Sept. 9, but in the meantime, NPR has you covered. Head their way to hear the album in its entirety. And while we're talkin' free music (well, this next one is free), why not mention Ty Dolla $ign's new $ign Languagemixtape, which is available for download. Don't worry, fans. He's still coming out with a new record later this year. This is just a nice little sampler. Listen to/download that below. Note: Streams are only available for a limited time, so we apologize if they’re no longer available by the time you click these links.
MacFarlane’s crooning skills
He may not be Frank Sinatra, but Seth MacFarlane can sing a tune. Known mostly for his various voices and comedic timing after creating such hits as “Family Guy” and Ted, MacFarlane seems to have a hand in everything, whether it's writing, directing, voice-overs and singing. You name it, he's probably done it. And now he's tackling a Christmas album (Holiday for Swing), in which he'll cover such classics as “Baby It's Cold Outside” and “Let It Snow.” If you like Christmas LPs and crooning, then this is the record to play whilst decorating your house in tinsel and stockings. MacFarlane spoke to Billboard from the set of Ted 2, so head there to read what he had to say about the record.
Berry gets the Polar
It's great news for the music industry, or for people in general, that legend Chuck Berry received Sweden's Polar Music Prize, considered to be “the world's most prestigious music accolade.” Not bad, Berry. The 87-year-old musician wasn't able to make it to the ceremony due to illness, but he did have someone there to read his acceptance speech. So, congratulations Mr. Berry! Now, we watch a performance of “Nadine” to celebrate!
Chuck Berry - “Nadine”
A dip in sales
Uh-oh, the record industry is in trouble. According to Billboard, last week's sales (3.97 million) are the lowest weekly sum since SoundScan began tracking these numbers in '91. It's also the first time sales have fallen below 4 million for a single week. But record executives aren't surprised, as the head of one label said, “Sales have been going in the wrong direction all year. I guess it's overdue when you look at the growth of streaming.” For more information on the decline of the record business, click here.
'Member how I mentioned that Veruca Salt was getting back together? Well guitarists/vocalists Nina Gordon and Louise Post have had their first joint interview in … oh … 17 years? Yes, it's definitely worth reading. Head over to Stereogum to see what these women have been up to and what the future holds for one of the most welcomed reunions ever. Oh, and you can also hear their excellent new track, “The Museum of Broken Relationships,” below.
Veruca Salt - “The Museum of Broken Relationships”
Nothing like a 40th anniversary to inspire new material. Rock band Blondie has decided to come out with a new double LP that will feature new songs as well as their greatest hits. The album, titled Blondie 4(0) Ever, will contain their 10th studio album (Ghosts of Download) as the first disc; the second portion will be a compilation of their most famous tracks. That hits stores on May 13, but in the meantime, you can head over to Billboard to read more.
Most people know of punk band Death from watching A Band Called Death (a documentary by Mark Christopher Covino and Jeff Howlett). While the band didn't see much mainstream success in their heyday (early to late '70s), they're now regarded as precursors to later punk sounds and revolutionary for being an all-black trio of brothers who created wild and uncompromising tunes. The group recently played on “Arsenio,” and you can view that performance below. Also, look out for III, a Drag City reissue of unreleased material, which is out now.
Death - “Freakin’ Out”
In case you haven't been keeping tabs on Pixies, they've released three EPs in the past year (EP-1, EP-2 and EP-3). And you'd think that with a steady stream of new material, they'd hop back in the studio to record what I would consider to be an appopriate full-length. But I guess laziness prevailed, as they've compiled all three releases into one album (titled Indie Cindy) that comes out on April 29. You don't need me (or want me) to comment on the recordings themselves; rather, you should provide your own educated analysis of the band's material post-Kim Deal's departure. Head over to The Guardian to give that a listen.
Music: the gift that keeps on giving. Jack White broke records this past Saturday by recording and distributing the “world's fastest released record.” And on top of that, he's also given fans another taste of his upcoming LP (after sharing “High Ball Stepper” a week or two ago) in the form of the album's title track. The record comes out on June 10, so keep your eyes and ears open for that. You can give “Lazaretto” a listen below and view some recaps of his record-breaking record making over at Pitchfork. Enjoy!
Jack White - “Lazaretto”
Austin City Limits is a festival always worth mentioning. Having gone three times, it's one of those experiences that can't be replicated. The only way to truly experience it is to go. And now the fest is two weekends instead of one (Oct. 3-5, 10-12), fancy that. Folks gracing the stage(s) include Beck, Lorde, Eminem, Outkast, Belle & Sebastian, St. Vincent, Juanes, Mac Demarco and many, many more. You can view the full lineup at the ACL website.
When I think of Courtney Love, the first thought that comes to mind is “bitch be crazy.” Granted, she's done little to prove otherwise, but feeding that particular beast has done well for her songwriting. Take her latest track “You Know My Name,” being released as a single with the tune “Wedding Day”; that's scheduled to hit stores on May 4. You can take a listen to the punk-inflected ditty below.
Courtney Love - “You Know My Name”
Ever so prolific, Neil Young surprised fans with a new album of covers (titled A Letter Home) via Jack White's Third Man Records. The LP contains covers of songs by Bob Dylan, Gordon Lightfoot, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen and more. Rolling Stone reports that there was no official announcement, but you can order the album on Third Man's website. To add to that, the album is also getting the deluxe box set treatment, with the vinyl record, CD, singles, picture book, the works. So have at it!
Songwriter/composer and performer Owen Pallett first caught my attention when a friend sent me a recording of him covering Joanna Newsom's “Peach, Plum, Pear.” I liked his voice, but as far as delving into his sonic landscapes, there wasn't much in the way of follow-up. But I've heard several excited whispers about his upcoming LP In Conflict, which hits physical and online markets on May 27. And now Pallett has posted a video for his track “Song for Five & Six.” You can view that below.
Owen Pallett - “Song for Five & Six”
When Lily Allen announced the title of her forthcoming record (Sheezus), many thought she was parodying Kanye West's last full-length effort Yeezus. However, Allen was quick to point out that it was an homage, rather than making fun of anyone. And now Allen has shared a video of the title track of said LP, wherein she compares herself to a fighter, while also name-checking various pop divas. You can hear the track below.
Since last week's Rooster Roundabout, we lost one of rock 'n' roll's truest gods … Mr. Lou Reed. I can't speak for others, but he had a profound effect on how I listen to music, and he showed the immense beauty that exists when poetry and rock meld together seamlessly. It's a practice few can master. And no one did it like Reed. You can read the obituary his wife, Laurie Anderson, wrote here. This one's for you, Lou.
The Velvet Underground - “Heroin”
According to the folks over at Pitchfork, Beck has signed with Capitol Records and will be releasing a new album (Morning Phase) in February 2014. This has been sort of a long time coming, as his last full-length release was back in 2008, and it wasn't one of his best. They also stated that a good amount of personnel on this new record worked with Beck on 2002's Sea Change, so this should be interesting.
Okay, I'm obviously playing favorites at this point, but I can't help it. Savages is still very much on my radar with their stellar release Silence Yourself. And now they've come out with a new video for album closer “Marshal Dear,” one of the best tracks on the album. Then again, all of the tracks on the album are fantastic. Okay, okay … I'll stop gushing. Just watch the animated, conceptually war-torn video.
Savages - “Marshal Dear”
Oh those relentless psych-garage rockers! First Ty Segall and now Thee Oh Sees. The latter band is coming out with a third Singles Collection that's scheduled to drop on Nov. 26. They've also made the track “What You Need” available, so get those boomboxes (assuming you still got one) prepared for this probably-pretty-good compilation.
James Blake has one of those magnetic voices that just needs to be heard. It operates on a wavelength that mixes beautiful tones with a soulful prowess rarely seen in male vocalists. Maybe that's why Blake won the 2013 Barclaycard Mercury Prize for his album Overgrown. For those who don't know, the Mercury Prize is given once a year for the best British or Irish album. Past winners include Primal Scream, PJ Harvey and Antony & The Johnsons.
James Blake - “Retrograde”
Dancing at numerous parties in Austin, Texas, it was natural to stumble upon Calle 13, a Puerto Rican outfit who've been steadily releasing albums for years to much acclaim. They've also garnered 19 Latin Grammies. Not bad, eh. Now the group has announced a new single that'll hit the streets on Nov. 13, and a new album that will come out in March, though they've stated that they plan on releasing it independently. So we'll see how that goes. You can hear their awesome track “Atrevete te te” below.
Calle 13 - “Atrevete te te”
Lady Gaga has unleashed another derivative disco pop-infused club track, titled “Venus,” to the masses. Can we not have a little time to digest the last one, Gaga? Sheesh. Either way … the track is now available for listening via the world wide web. Gaga's ARTPOP is slated for a Nov. 11 release, so keep that pocket change jingling.
Devendra Banhart came out with a substantial release this past year (Mala). It was a release that showed him recycling his worldly sentiments and regurgitating them in a sonically forward-moving motion. Now Banhart has released a music video for the track “Für Hildegard Von Bingen.” You can view that below.
Devendra Banhart - “Fur Hildegard Von Bingen”
A week ahead of the release of The Marshall Mathers LP2, Eminem has shared his collaborative track with Rihanna, titled “The Monster.” If the song isn't a groundbreaking attempt to boast marketable partnerships, it's at least an okay iteration of Eminem's prowess as a rapper. And at this point, can we hope for anything more? [Editors Note: By the time this was scheduled to go up, Eminem also made his collaboration with Kendrick Lamar available, so you can hear that as well.]
Do you remember where you were when you first heard Eminem's The Marshall Mathers LP? I remember trying to be cool with my older brother and his friends, jamming out to it at someone's house … or was that in a dream? Regardless the sequel is headed our way in the form of MMLP2, which comes out Nov. 5. But Eminem (who's blonde again) shared the track, “Berzerk,” which you can hear below:
“Berzerk” by Eminem
You gotta love NPR and their “first listen” antics. Right now, they're streaming The Julie Ruin's Run Fast, which hits stores Sept. 3. Don't think, just hit play.
When I was a kid, I watched Almost Famous, and the song “Sparks” by The Who completely enthralled me to the point where it sort of became my own personal mantra to follow. It’s fantastic. On that note, Universal is going to reissue The Who’s Tommy in a deluxe edition, set to break down walls on Nov. 11.
The Who - “Sparks”
In honor of The Breeders’ Last Splash turning 20, Stereogum writer Tom Breihan did a little write-up about his love/hate relationship with one of the best records of the ’90s.
Spike Jonze and Karen O collaborate again! After Karen O of Yeah Yeah Yeahs handled the soundtrack to Jonze's rendition of Where the Wild Things Are, she has now provided a track, titled “The Moon Song,” for his new film, Her, starring Joaquin Phoenix. You can hear the track below as well as view a trailer for the flick.
“The Moon Song” by Karen O
Apparently, some lost Joy Division and New Order tapes have been recovered and former member of both bands, Peter Hook, is in talks to buy them back. Unheard material? Yes please!
Cursive's The Ugly Organ confirmed two things for me. The first was that a rock band could be self-critical but with a poetic, angry prowess, and that Tim Kasher had one of the most tragically unique voices I've ever heard. But here's Kasher in a more synth-friendly, less angsty light, with his new track, “Truly Freaking Out,” taken from his new solo record, Adult Film, which hits the music-sphere on Oct. 8.
“Truly Freaking Out” by Tim Kasher
Alibi Arts Editor Lisa Barrow has suggested I tune in to watch “Boardwalk Empire.” I still have yet to get see it because I'm always weary when it comes to getting obsessed with a new show. I still haven't gotten into “Breaking Bad,” and that show's already coming to a close. But I digress, the soundtrack for “Boardwalk Empire,” which features Patti Smith (!), St. Vincent, Stephan DeRosa, Elvis Costello and more, drops next week (Sept. 3), but thanks to the folks at Billboard, you can hear it now.
In case you're wondering what Paul McCartney is up to, he's released a new track, titled “New,” from his upcoming album of the same name. The track maintains that whimsical style that made The Beatles so legendary. Look for the new record on Oct. 15.
“New” by Paul McCartney
According to Consequence of Sound, The Dead Weather just got a little deadlier. The band, featuring Jack White on drums, singer Alison Mosshart, guitarist Dean Fertita and Jack Lawrence handling bass, released two albums, their last being 2010's Sea of Cowards. But Third Man Records announced, via Twitter, that the band is working on some new material (!).
“Die by the Drop” by The Dead Weather from Sea of Cowards
4AD American pioneers, Throwing Muses, are coming out with an art book/album. According to Pitchfork, the release, titled Purgatory/Paradise, is scheduled for release on Oct. 28, with a full(er) release set for Nov. 11. So, if you're feeling nostalgic, pull out those late-'80s, early-'90s albums, or have a listen to their new track, “sleepwalking 1.”
Throwing Muses’ “sleepwalking 1”
I love A.V. Club. From their “Hatesong” columns to their Undercover music series, they know how to wrangle interesting musicians and make them do interesting things. Like here … we have Kurt Vile covering “Down In It” by Nine Inch Nails.
If you've never listened to “I Luv the Valley, OH!” by Xiu Xiu, where've you been? It's a fantastic song that captures the sadness and anger of misspent youth and the hardships of all-consuming love. At least that's my interpretation. But, Shearwater's covering it for their new LP (of covers) titled Fellow Travelers. The album drops on Nov. 26 via Sub Pop, and will feature covers of songs by St. Vincent, Smog, Coldplay, etc.