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  • Music Video Extraordinaires, OK GO Top Themselves With New Robotic Scooter, Drone Video

    There are music videos and then there are OK Go music videos. Ever sicne stepping on the scene with their “treadmill” video, they changed the game forever. In a world where music videos aren’t looked at in the same echelon of coolness as they once were when MTV actually played music, OK Go refuses to give up the lost art. “The Writing on the Wall” came next as they used optical illusions in their one-shot video playing with the eyes and minds of viewers, now they call upon robotic scooters, drones and a sea of Japanese women to assist them in a video that trumps everything else they or any other artist has made specifically for a piece of music. Mission accomplished, the catchy hook of “I Wont Let You Down” is embedded in my brain for the remainder of existence.

  • Aphex Swift Is Our New Favorite Mashup

    When we initially heard about a Taylor Swift/Aphex Twin mashup, we figured it would just be some hip joke. It’s a funny idea, but there’s no way it could work. We were so very wrong. Cartoonist and professional pencil sharpener (no joke) David Rees created an album of 8 Taylor Swift/Aphex Twin mashups called Aphex Swift. Rees believes that many of Aphex Twin’s melodies are just as saccharine as any pop music, so what better way to showcase this than by mixing the music with Swift’s vocals? The result is incredible. Our favorite is the “Mean”/”Flim” mashup, “Why You Gotta Be So Flim.” Now to wait for the “Windowlicker”-esque video wherein Richard D James’s creepy face is superimposed on Taylor Swift’s body…

  • Thirty-Three-Hit Wonder [Link]

    Billy Joel’s first album came out over 40 years ago and he hasn’t released a new pop album in over 20 years, but the Piano Man is still going strong. Catch up with the 65-year-old performer in this New Yorker interview at his Long Island home before a Madison Square Garden performance last month.

  • The Truth Behind Iconic Album Covers. Sort of.

    Back in the days of CDs and vinyls album covers we’re just as important as the music inside of them, triggering a melody and feeling after growing cose to some of your favorites. Each piece of cover art was meticulously created to portray a message to the masses, but today, with digital downloads taking the majority of sales for bands, album cover art is all but lost. Aptitude takes a look at some of the most iconic album covers over the years and puts their own spin on them by revealing ‘the bigger picture’. From quirky reveals to future happenings, from Justin Bieber to The Beatles, click the album covers below and reveal all.

  • 10 Must-See Bands At CMJ 2014

    Next week, more than 1300 bands will play shows all around New York City during the 5-day 2014 CMJ Music Marathon. With shows going on all over the place, all day long, it can be tough to figure out who to see. But instead of becoming overwhelmed and hiding at home all week, let this list serve as a starting point for what you should check out. We tried to showcase some bands from all different genres, too, so you have an idea of all the different music that awaits you.

  • Exploring The Pop Music Poetry Of Nicki Minaj [Video]

    YouTube user MartiansBrain was surprised when he found out that his 12-year-old niece and all her friends were listening to Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda.” He didn’t believe that the song, about a woman who sleeps with a drug dealer because she likes the things he buys her, was appropriate for children his niece’s age. In order to present the lyrics in an easier to understand manner, he created this spoken word video, set to the soothing music of Erik Satie’s “Gymnopédie No.1.” No matter where you stand on the issue, this is a pretty entertaining and effective video. I think it’s the first time I actually paid attention to the lyrics of this song…

  • Who You Gonna Call To Get This Deluxe Ghostbusters Vinyl Reissue?

    To celebrate the 30th anniversary of our generation’s favorite movie, Ghostbusters, Legacy Recordings announced a deluxe vinyl reissue of the classic theme song at New York City’s Comic Con last weekend. The Stay Puft Super Deluxe Edition features Ray Parker Jr.’s hit song along with Run DMC’s rap from the sequel. Both songs are on Side A of the 12″ white vinyl with Side B smooth. Also included are two 12×12 3D Stay Puft lenticulars, a puffy jacket that feels and even smells like marshmallow, a certificate of authenticity, and a 6″ Stay Puft figurine. Unfortunately, only 3000 copies are available and the nerds are sure to snatch ‘em up quickly. We’ll have to keep our eyes on eBay after they begin shipping October 21. Pre-order yours at the Ghostbusters Store.

  • Warren G.’s “Regulate” Has Been Transformed Into An Amazing Children’s Book

    It has been 20 years since Warren G and the late Nate Dogg released their hit “Regulate” and to celebrate the platinum anniversary, Wes Eisenhauer and Marc Wagner created Regulate – The Children’s Book. So gather the children around, play Michael McDonald’s “I Keep Forgettin,” and regale the youngsters with the tale of Warren G getting jumped in the LBC only to be saved by Nate Dogg.

  • Kurt Cobain’s Final Photo Shoot Revealed

    In August 1993, Nirvana was in New York for a performance at the Roseland Ballroom. Photographer Jesse Frohman was sent to shoot the band for the London Observer’s Sunday magazine. Nobody knew at the time that it would be the last formal photo shoot before Kurt Cobain committed suicide in April, 1994. Now the 90 photos have been collected in a new book entitled Kurt Cobain: The Last Session. Along with the photographs, the interview between Cobain and music journalist Jon Savage that originally appeared in the Observer has been reprinted. Check out the photos below and read an excerpt from the interview at Dazed Digital. And you can pre-order the book, to be published November 12, from Amazon for $31.

  • Elvis Costello, Mumford & More Collab With A 26-Year-Old Bob Dylan; The New Basement Tapes

    Bob Dylan is universally regarded as one of the world’s most popular and acclaimed songwriters, musicians and performers, having sold more than 125 million albums and performed literally thousands of shows around the world spanning six decades. His influence and impact on our culture is unparalleled, and his artistic output of recordings and songs are both cultural landmarks and the genesis of countless great songwriters and musicians that have emerged in the decades since Dylan exploded onto the global stage. Among Dylan’s many cultural milestones, the legendary Basement Tapes – dozens of songs written and recorded by Dylan in 1967, backed by members of his touring ensemble who would later achieve their own fame as The Band – have long fascinated and enticed successive generations of musicians, fans and cultural critics alike. Having transformed music and culture during the preceding five years, Dylan had reached unparalleled heights by 1966 through the release of three historic albums, the groundbreaking single, “Like A Rolling Stone,” a controversial and legendary ‘electric’ performance at the Newport Folk Festival and wildly polarizing tours of the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom. Dylan’s mercurial rise and prodigious body of work in that decade came to more »

  • Iconic Concert: AC/DC Live at River Plate 2009

    In December 2009 AC/DC performed three nights in Buenos Aires, Argentina to a crowd who’s seismic activity could be felt hundreds of miles away. Just look at the 110,000+ people jumping in unison to Hells Bells, it’s almost mesmerizing. In recent years AC/DC has been lauded by critics for sounded better during live performances than they did earlier in their career and after watching the video we agree, which means they could be rocking crowds like this for another decade.

  • You Can Now Live Stream Weezer’s New Album For Free on iTunes

    One week ahead of it’s set release date, Weezer has begun streaming their newest studio project Everything Will Be Alright in the End on iTunes First Look. This will be Weezer’s 9th Studio album following Hurley, which only sold 175,000 albums worldwide. Though the declining numbers shouldn’t reflect their fan base or demand for their music, being that tickets for their October 27th show at New York’s Bowery Ballroom show are averaging $230. On the subject of an album name, Frontman, Rivers Cuomo recently told Rolling Stone “”On the surface, the name is optimistic,” frontman Rivers Cuomo recently told Rolling Stone of the potentially ominous album title. “But you’re not 100 percent sure how sincerely to take that. Those last three words can’t help but remind a sensitive reader of the end of themselves, of Weezer, of the world.” He went on to muse, “Part of me feels like, ‘Wow, this is bleak.’ But another part is like, ‘You can’t get rid of us that easily.’”

  • 28 Explosive Music Rivalries [Link]

    Modigliani and Picasso. Jerry Seinfeld and Newman. The Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals. Famous rivalries have existed in all facets of life since Cain slew Abel and popular music is no exception. Revisit these 28 rivalries in music and fin out what the beef was between Kanye West and 50 Cent, Nirvana and Guns N’ Roses, and many more.

  • Your Favorite Classic Music Videos Are Retroactively Getting Product Placement

    Since their inception, the main purpose of music videos was to promote the artist. They were advertisements for the record first and foremost, but they also offered artists the chance to express themselves in a visual manner not possible with a CD. They may have been ads in that sense, but they still had artistic value of their own as a visual medium. But now, the line between music video and advertising will be blurred much more, and change will apply to videos that have already existed for years. Universal Music Group has entered into a three-way partnership with in-video advertising technology company MirriAd and ad agency Havas. Music videos from UMG’s huge stable of superstars will now feature advertisements of Havas clients via MirriAd’s software that transforms bare walls and other surfaces in the background of the videos into billboards. The technology has already been used in Aviici’s video for “You Make Me.” Using MirriAd, Havas was able to insert advertisements for their client Grand Marnier. You can see the post-production product placement in the before and after shots below. As giant record companies find themselves more and more irrelevant in their traditional roles of production, promotion, and distribution more »

  • Pogo Has Created A Hypnotic Song Using Harry Potter Dialogue [Video]

    Australian electronic music wunderkind first came to prominence in 2007 with a hypnotic track composed of sound clips from Disney’s “Alice in Wonderland.” Since then he has created dozens of impressive songs using sounds clips from popular children’s movies. His most recent track revisits the Harry Potter films, which he famously used in his drum and bass track “Alohamora” in 2009. This new mix mostly utilizes dialogue from the character of Hermione, portrayed by Emma Watson in the films, and features an equally impressive video created by Jeesh.

  • This Kanye/BoJack Horseman Mashup Actually Works [Video]

    First of all, if you haven’t watched the new Netflix animated series “BoJack Horseman,” about a washed up sitcom actor who also happens to be a horse, check it out. It’s a great show and it’s chill, instrumental intro, by Patrick Carney of the Black Keys, is a fine piece of music. It’s definitely not a typical, TV score throwaway track. And that’s probably why it works so well as a Kanye backing track. Mitch Marzuola created this incredible mashup featuring Kanye’s 2007 hit “Can’t Tell Me Nothing.” Let’s just hope Kanye doesn’t hear it and steal the credit for the BoJack theme.

  • We Love These 10 Album Covers As Animated GIFs

    We’ve seen animated album covers before, and they were really great, but these are on another level. The artist, JB, originally created them just for himself for fun, but after amassing a huge collection, he put them up on Tumblr for all the world to enjoy. And judging by the many of the album covers he chose, he’s a fan of the great 90s punk from Fat Wreck Chords and Epitaph. Check out the rest at JB’s Tumblr where you can even make a request.

  • The Smiths And X-Men Mash-Up You Never Knew You Wanted

    When you think about it, The Smiths and the X-Men are an obvious match. The outcast band of superheroes that want nothing more than to be accepted despite being different are just the type of tortured souls that make The Smiths’ Morrissey go home, cry, and want to die. With that in mind, artist Adam Villacin made these brilliant drawings for a series titled “These Charming X-Men.” You can even show some love and buy the collection as a full-color zine at Secret Headquarters. After all, they are mutants and they need to be loved, just like everybody else does.

  • Panic! At The Disco Played a Live “Bohemian Rhapsody” Cover for the Ages

    Punk-ballad-rock group, Panic! At The Disco have been on tour as of late and if you we’re lucky enough to be in the crowd for “The Gospel Tour” then you got to see them perform an epic cover to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. Panic not only covered the sound pretty flawlessly, but frontman, Brendon Urie did a decent enough job of reaching to hit the near impossible octave range Freddie Mercury belted out in his day. Combine that with a dazzling light show and some HD cameras and you have yourself quite a little music video. On July 12, 1986 Queen performed “Bohemian Rhapsody” at Wembley Stadium and to this day it is still considered to be one of the great moments in rock music history. Watch it below and let us know int he comments if you think the Panic! cover did it any justice. Photo source: HuffingtonPost

  • 23 YouTubers Unknowingly Come Together For An Epic Song [Video]

    Israeli musician Ophir Kutiel, known as Kutiman, first gained worldwide attention in 2009 when he sampled multiple YouTube videos for his project “ThruYOU,” amassing 10 million views in just 2 weeks. Kutiman has been releasing more videos of his YouTube mixes recently that will be compiled into an album next month, “Thru You Too.” The following video features one of these impressive compositions, “Give It Up,” comprised of an incredible 23 samples of amateur YouTube musicians.

  • Preview Primus Covering Classics From Willy Wonka

    Earlier this year, experimental funksters Primus played a Willie Wonka themed New Years show that was a huge hit with fans. Then in July bassist and frontman Les Claypool revealed that he was reuniting with the classic Primus lineup of guitarist Larry LaLonde and drummer Tim “Herb” Alexander to record Primus and the Chocolate Factory With the Fungi Ensemble, featuring funky, far-out covers of the songs from the classic 1971 Gene Wilder film. It will be the first time the original Primus lineup will play on an album together since 1995. The album doesn’t come out until October 21, but Primus released “Pure Imagination” a couple months ago and “Golden Ticket” just this week. Check out the tracks below, which sound like Swordfishtrombones-era Tom Waits transforming beloved children’s songs into nightmarish carnival music (in other words, they’re awesome). And for more info on the album and tour dates, head over to Primusville.

  • Eric Andre Has Directed A Music Video And It’s Amazing

    Comedian Eric Andre is best known for his bizarre, Tim and Eric-produced talk show The Eric Andre Show, which looks like something produced by asylum inmates. Now Andre has turned his twisted eye toward music videos with this video for Thundercat’s “Tron Song.” The VHS-quality and low-budget effects definitely show Tim and Eric’s influence as does the inane content, featuring cats, autoerotic asphyxiation, and even a Mortal Kombat-style “fatality.” Oh, and the song isn’t half bad, either.

  • Groundbreaking Tom Waits Cartoon From 1979 To Be Restored [Video]

    Tom Waits, the gravelly-voiced musician who dresses like a 1930s skid row inhabitant and sings like Rowlf from The Muppets, was the star of a 1979 animated short titled Tom Waits For No One. The cartoon was actually rotoscoped, meaning Tom Waits and a dancer were filmed interacting while he performed “The One That Got Away” from his 1976 album Small Change and then animators drew over the live action footage, resulting in realistic, fluid movement from the characters. This same technique would be employed by Ralph Bakshi in his 1981 hit film American Pop. What makes Tom Waits For No One especially noteworthy is the crew who would go on to become huge stars in the animation world. Director John Lamb went on to win an Academy Award for his innovative Lyon Lamb Video Animation System, which allowed for pre-testing animation art before it’s committed to film, in 1980. Animator David Silverman was the first animator on The Simpsons back when it was still a short on The Tracey Ullman Show. Character designer Keith Newton went to work for Disney, doing character design and backgrounds for Pocahontas. Inker Michael Cressey became a children’s book author and was twice awarded more »

  • Watch The Full Documentary About The Guy Who Crashed 50 Concerts [Video]

    We previously reported on the documentary No Cameras Allowed which tells the story of James Marcus Haney, a USC dropout who crashed 50 concerts in 4 years and became an official music photographer in the process. MTV premiered the film late last month and now you can watch the full movie streaming online. Although the story can be a tad saccharine-sweet at times, there is plenty of great concert footage weaved in that makes the narrative much easier to tolerate. If you want a positive story set to music and performances from the likes of Mumford & Sons and Old Crow Medicine Show, give No Cameras Allowed a shot. If nothing else, it’s a reminder that MTV is still capable of music-centric programming.

  • Aphex Twin’s New Album Getting Box Set Treatment

    On September 22, Richard D James, better known as Aphex Twin, will release his long-awaited new album, Syro. It’s been 13 years since the electronic music master released his last album of new material, “Drukqs.” Earlier this year, fans banded together to purchase an unreleased album from 1994 for $40,000, which made James realize how much his music has been missed. “You can’t be thinking about keeping other people happy, going in circles. But that was really touching, and really sweet. And I’m getting a bit older. It’s like, “Okay. People out there really, really want stuff off me, so I can’t deny it. Let’s put it out.” And now James has announced a collaboration with The Designers Republic to release Syro as a limited edition vinyl box set in addition to the standard CD. The box set will include the album on 3 perspex vinyl, a debossed bonus track, and a “disinfographic” breaking down the costs associated with the packages production. The set will be limited to just 200 copies and will retail for £250 ($400). For more info and to preorder, check out Warp Records.

  • Metallica Enters The Record Books Thanks To This Iconic Concert [Video]

    The Guinness Book of World Records will release their 2015 edition next week including a new entry featuring heavy metal icons Metallica. How did they get into the pages of Guinness? Is it for the hundreds of millions of records they sold? For all the awards they’ve won? For being featured on the t-shirt of the greatest cartoon character of the 90s? Nope. When they played a concert in Antarctica on December 8 for a small crowd of fans and research scientists (and penguins), they became the first band to play all 7 continents. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, there’s no denying that’s a hell of a feat. Watch the entire 10-song set below and download it at Live Metallica.

  • Watch Kanye West’s Full “Made In America” Performance

    Bringing the theatrics of his Yeezus tour to Philadelphia’s Benjamin Franklin Parkway this past Saturday, Kanye West closed out day-one of Budweiser’s Made in America festival with a two-hour set that featured songs from his entire catalog—from College Dropout to 808s and Heartbreak, Cruel Summer, and of course Yeezus. In addition to the classics, Kanye included his trademark rants and even a callout to Virgil Abloh when he wasn’t satisfied with lighting at one point during the performance. Regardless of how you feel about ‘Ye’s personality, the man can perform. Although the visually stimulating sets and high-energy execution has become somewhat of a signature, Kanye definitely surprised the crowd when he brought a waterfall on stage with him. Enjoy the performance. ~ highsnobiety.com

  • The Periodic Table of Hip-Hop

    In conjuction with A3C, PopChart Labs just created one of the best visual representations of hip-hop’s greatest artist we’ve ever seen. Laid out in the image of a periodic table, each chemical symbol is designated an artist and unique elemental representation in letters. tabular arrangement of eminent MCs catalogues 223 naturally occurring, never-word-slurring artists in all, from N(as) and (Dr) Dre to (Mf) Doom and (A$)AP Rocky to (D)rake and Snoop D-O-(gg). Featuring color-coded labels indicating their favored genres–with special indicators for originators of a style–each MC has been meticulously hand-illustrated and assigned an appropriate chemical symbol, along with notations for debut year and geographic area of origin.

  • The 100 Best Alternative Rock Songs of 1994

    In 1994, the distinction between “mainstream” and “alternative” evaporated. Green Day and the Offspring brought hook-heavy punk to the Billboard charts, middle-of-the-road acts such as Soul Asylum and Live helped calcify “alt-rock” into a blockbuster radio format, and Nirvana’s fate as future classic-rock legends was sealed with Kurt Cobain’s death. Beck rebranded “loser” as a badge of honor and Trent Reznor said he wanted to… well, you know. Plenty of songs had a hand in making ’94 alternative’s biggest year — we’ve ranked the 100 best.

  • Quiz: match the insult to the rock star [Link]

    “I’m forever near a stereo saying, ‘What the fuck is this garbage?’ And the answer is always the Red Hot Chili Peppers.” Damn, that’s harsh. But do you know who said it? Find out in this hilarious quiz from The Guardian featuring some of the most vitriolic quote from rock stars about other rock stars. What fun! I only got 5 correct. Let’s see if you can do better.

  • Revisiting Woodstock ’94: 10 Iconic Performances That Took Place 20 Years Ago Today

    Woodstock ’94 was a music festival organized to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the original Woodstock festival of 1969. It was promoted as “2 More Days of Peace and Music.” The poster used to promote the first concert was revised to feature two birds perched on a guitar fretboard, instead of the original one. The 1994 concert was scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, August 13 and 14, with a third day (Friday, August 12) added later. The weather was rainy that weekend, and by Saturday much of the field had turned into mud. The event took place on Winston Farm in Saugerties, New York, about 100 miles north of New York City. The site is 10 miles from Woodstock, New York and it was originally proposed as the location for the 1969 concert. Permission to use the property was not granted the first time around, so the first concert was instead held in Sullivan County, much farther from the namesake town of Woodstock. The crowd at Woodstock ’94 was estimated at 350,000. The size of the crowd was larger than concert organizers had planned for and by the second night many of the event policies were logistically unenforceable. The major more »

 
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