Foxygen showed off two new songs during their Coachella set yesterday, presumably from their followup to We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic. Watch video from the set below — they kick off with a new song and then follow it up with “On Blue Mountain” before going into another new one.
Tonight’s Game Of Thrones is a must-watch, not only because of some huge events that take place but also because Sigur Rós will be scoring some of said events. Their version of traditional Westeros folk song “The Rains Of Castamere” (which was previously covered by the National) will appear in tonight’s episode. Their ethereal take on things isn’t as entertaining as HBO”s mixtape of rappers going on about the series but it’s certainly good at instilling a deep sense of foreboding. You can hear a preview and buy the song over on Amazon.
While the most famous thing by far on the Coachella stage was Pharrell’s hat, the man himself managed to wrangle up enough star power to compete. Last night’s performance was a revolving door of celebrities including guest appearances from Nelly (“Hot In Herre”), Snoop Dogg (Lion, whatever) (“Drop It Like It’s Hot” & “Beautiful”), Busta Rhymes and Diddy (“Pass the Courvoisier Part II”), Tyler The Creator (“Lapdance”), Gwen Stefani (“Hollaback Girl”), and Diplo (“Aerosol Can”). Watch the whole set below.
The twentieth anniversary of Illmatic is less than a week away and Nas celebrated in style by performing his entire debut album from beginning to end at his Coachella performance. The only interlude from the album was when Nas was joined by former rival Jay Z to perform “Dead Presidents” and “Where I’m From.” Diddy also joined him for his encore with a performance of “Hate Me Now.” Watch the full set below — Jay comes in around 9:30 and Diddy shows up at 32:00.
I’m not crying, I just have a little dust in my eyes. No, really: Coachella’s second day was largely engulfed by a more manageable (but still annoying!) version of the dust storm that turned last year’s event hazardous. That said, I might actually be crying too because I missed the historic alignment of Nas and Jay Z. The legendary MCs have combined on a number of records since patching up their feud in 2005, but they’d never performed on stage before Shawn joined Nasir Saturday night. To make the occasion extra historic, they did “Dead Presidents,” the song many credit for sparking their feud in the first place when Nas refused an offer to record the hook. They also did Jay’s “Where I’m From.” And that wasn’t the only big cameo of the day. Elsewhere in the Carter family, Beyoncé hopped on stage with sister Solange to dance out “Losing You.” Pharrell invited enough pals on stage with him that I began to wonder about the possibility of a Pharrell-centric road show. Lastly, dust combined with wind to remind us of mortality and Kansas. Carry on, wayward sons, to Saturday’s greatest moments.
Sufjan Stevens has been busy with his Sisyphus side project but he’s once again teamed up with choreographer Justin Peck to score a new ballet. They’ve previously worked together on Year Of The Rabbit. The new ballet, called Everywhere We Go, premieres on May 8 at New York City Ballet and features a nine-movement orchestral score. You can watch a beautifully shot preview below.
The first day of Coachella brought us the first Outkast concert since 2006, the fourth Replacements concert since 1991, and the first time Haim was on the festival grounds legally. (According to Este, the sisters have been hopping the fence since 2004.) It spawned thoughts in my brain such as “Wow, Chromeo is now famous enough to play the main stage after dark!” and “Wow, rock ’n’ roll doesn’t go over at festivals like it used to!” and “Wow, you can see Dee Dee Penny’s boobs through her shirt!” It also marked my first visit to Empire Polo Club after many years wishing I could hop the fence like Haim. Scroll through the pics above to discover the best of what Friday had to offer.
Lana Del Rey kicked off her tour last night in Las Vegas and teased her new single “West Coast,” which is set to be released on Monday. She didn’t perform the whole thing (maybe she’s saving it for Coachella) but she did sing the chorus a capella. It’s hard to tell because it’s just her singing but it sounds a lot like the sun-bathed nostalgia we’ve heard from her before: “Down in the West Coast, they got a saying/ “If you’re not drinking, then you’re not playing”/ But you’ve got the music in you, don’t you?/ Down on the West Coast, I get this feeling/ Like it all could happen/ That’s why I’m leaving you.” Watch a fan video below.
Conor Oberst stopped by WNYC’s Greene Space on Thursday to perform almost half of the songs from his upcoming ninth solo album Upside Down Mountain. In addition to lead single “Hundreds Of Ways,” he performed “Time Forgot,” “Double Life,” “Night At Lake Unknown,” “Lonely At The Top,” “You Are Your Mother’s Child,” and “Common Knowledge.” Check them all out below.
Looking back, it’s hard to believe that there was ever any doubt that an OutKast reunion would happen. When the rumor mill started up last fall, it seemed like a pipe dream but here we are a few months later and OutKast is headlining over 40 festivals this year in their first tour since the release of Speakerboxxx/The Love Below over ten years ago. Last night was the first of many OutKast performances that will carry us through the summer and it feels good to have them back together. The two came roaring onto stage with “Bombs Over Baghdad” and didn’t let up from there, putting on an energetic and career-spanning set that reached deep into their rich discography and even managed to incorporate some songs from each one’s solo material. The show also featured guest spots from Future, Janelle Monáe, and a few others. Killer Mike was also ready to perform but Coachella cut the set off before he could due to time constraints. Watch the whole show and check out the setlist below.
Towards the end of a Coachella set that saw A$AP Ferg run through album cuts like “Cocaine Castle” and “Shabba,” he was joined on stage by A$AP Rocky who debuted a new track. The song starts off with a whispered intro (“When the real niggas die/fake niggas gonna multiply”) before escalating into hazy, bass-heavy posturing that culminates in a killer hook: “Even in my will/ keep it trill.” Watch Rocky’s performance (and the whole set) below.
There was a point during last night’s minimally audacious Rock & Roll ceremony — maybe halfway through the E Street Band’s interminable shoutouts — when I remarked to the guy from Billboard that this was the opposite of Coachella. But boy did that Nirvana coda make the whole thing worthwhile. It was surreal and thrilling to hear Dave, Krist, and Pat revisit those songs two decades later, even if Lorde was too green to do Kurt justice on the band’s best song. Also surreal to run into Courtney backstage and find her completely lucid and polite. Happy 20th, Live Through This! Of course while we’re all happy for Nirvana, it’s OutKast’s turn to reunite now. Nobody (outside of the Snow Queen of Arendelle) gets the spotlight for more than a day in 2014. Tune in here and check back throughout the weekend for Chris’ reports from Indio. But first…
While we wait anxiously for Charli XCX’s followup to last year’s True Romance, she’s kept us busy with the bubbly “SuperLove,” the Iggy Azalea collab “Fancy,” a Snuffed By The Yakuza cover, and some tantalizing peeks at what’s up next for the British pop singer. Our next tidbit comes in the form of the goofily fun “Boom Clap,” which will appear on the upcoming The Fault In Our Stars soundtrack. Listen below.
Coachella seems like an especially dangerous place for your personal brand this year — how can you possibly stay relevant when everyone around you is either getting paid to be there, crash dieting, or just being a boring, basic bitch? Thankfully, Coachella will be livestreaming all of the action so that you don’t have to get out of bed and wash the Doritos dust off your fingers. You’ll probably even get a better view than if you were actually there and you can skip around feeds so you don’t have to make the difficult choice of which artist to see. This year boasts an impressive lineup, including Outkast’s first stop in a massive festival reunion tour, Arcade Fire, Beck, Pharrell, Lorde, the Knife, and last minute additions Julian Casablancas and Pixies. You can see the schedule of events (all times PST) and watch the broadcasts below. We’ll be covering the festival all weekend so be sure to say hi in the comments and talk about who you’re watching or share your experiences if you’re there.
Disclosure are in full victory-lap mode, playing high on the bill at a bazillion summer festivals and cranking out collaborations when they feel like it, after releasing last year’s monster debut LP Settle. For their latest trick, they’ve teamed up with the British producer Friend Within to put together the rubbery house track “The Mechanism.” Listen to it below.
Morrissey leaked the excellent title of his forthcoming 10th solo LP, World Peace Is None Of Your Business, early last month. Today, essential fan site True To You has the album details. The album — Moz’s first since 2009 — will be out in July; it will be released via the Harvest label through the Capitol Music Group. And the song titles .. well, there are some classics here: “Neal Cassady Drops Dead,” “Earth Is The Loneliest Planet,” “Kick The Bride Down The Aisle”… Check ’em all below.
The coolest thing about the four-headed Nirvana proxy that performed at last night’s Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony was the demographic disparity of the women involved. No, in every real sense, it’s not like Joan Jett, Kim Gordon, Annie Clark, and Lorde represent anything more than a tiny sliver of the global community, but in the little corner that is rock & roll, they’re a pretty diverse group: the old-school rocker; the iconic noise-punk; the baroque poet; the precocious pop/goth/other superstar. Those women are links in a sort of evolutionary chain, but none of them really resembles the others in any artistic capacity. The other coolest thing about the Rock Hall’s big night was Questlove inducting Hall & Oates: one of hip-hop’s great transformative figures celebrating the career of one of history’s finest pop and soul groups. Gene Simmons wouldn’t have liked it, but Gene Simmons is an idiot. What could be more idiotic than trying to reduce the possibilities of music? This week’s 5 Best Songs showcase plenty of those possibilities, from Future and Young Thug to Nicki Minaj and Pharmakon. In fact if the Rock Hall wanted to extend the running time of their already absurdly long ceremony by enlisting another couple of revolutionary women to sing old Kurt Cobain songs, they would have done well to call up both Ms. Minaj and Pharmakon’s Margaret Chardiet. No worries, though. They’ll get their chance.
German pop-music tinkerers the Notwist returned earlier this year with Close To The Glass, their first album in six years. And on Record Store Day, they’ll follow it up by turning the album track “Run Run Run” into a 12″ EP, which will include a couple of remixes and an unreleased track called “Magnificent Fall.” One of those remixes comes from the singer and producer Ada, a fellow German, who imagines minimal house music as a sort of breathy sigh. Her reimagining of “Run Run Run” is a very pretty pileup of thumps and swooshes and feelings, and you can hear it below.
The British new waver Tom Vek has never stopped cranking out his jagged, herky-jerk pop music, and he’s just announced plans to follow up 2011′s Leisure Seizure with a new album called Luck. First single “Sherman (Animals In The Jungle)” has a deadpan vocal and a feverish groove, and it blasts on ahead like 2005 never ended. Check out the lyric video below.
The young Richmond, California rapper Iamsu! occupies an interesting place in the California rap ecosystem: He’s a tremendously influential figure and a cult success, someone who shows up on a ton of other people’s hit songs but who can’t seem to make one himself. His latest attempt to chance this status is “Only That Real,” his clipped and catchy new single with out-of-town guest 2 Chainz and his HBK Gang crewmate Sage The Gemini. The track’s new video, from director Alex Nazari, should help matters. It makes Iamsu!’s Richmond look like a deeply fun place to hang out, even with all the animated monsters and aliens and slime everywhere. Watch it below.