One week ago, Kanye premiered Yeezus‘s ferocious “New Slaves” by projecting his face onto buildings throughout the world. (He performed it the next day on SNL, too.) It was the best video of the week and you can watch it on the side of a building IRL tonight in these cities. The rapper’s new music was Stereogum’s most discussed topic this week, but you guys also had a lot to say about our Queens Of The Stone Age review, Fiona Apple’s 10 best songs, and the band name Pity Sex. Your best and worst comments are below. But first, your Moment of Zen:
The theatrical Swedish metal band Ghost B.C. have already shown that they have a way with the incongruous cover song; we posted their version of Abba’s “I’m A Marionette” back in January. And apparently, the Japanese version of their new album Infestissumam includes a cover of Depeche Mode’s gloomy 1990 synth ballad “Waiting For The Night” — which, it turns out, already has-kinda-metal lyrics, and which can be turned into a crunchy metal track without altering the music too much. Listen to the Ghost B.C. version below.
If it seems as though we’ve been talking about the National’s excellent new record Trouble Will Find Me for weeks now it’s because we have. Even though the record was just released this week, fascination with the band and a buzzing curiosity about how they might follow up 2010′s powerhouse High Violet have kept music writers (and our own comments sections) very busy over the past month or so. Initial reactions to the album have been largely positive, with our own Tom Breihan claiming that Trouble‘s “soft, majestic intensity is a reassuring and comfortable thing.” It’s a sentiment that seems to be at the core of what so many people love about the National — a band continues to age gracefully, not through a series of radical reinventions or extreme left-turns, but by playing to their own particular strengths as songwriters … which seem to have grown more formidable with each consecutive record.
Sweden’s Shout Out Louds performed on last night’s Leno to promote their album Optica. Following interviews with guests Tyler Perry and Isla Fischer, the band performed album cut “Walking In Your Footsteps.” Check it out below.
I’m not sure if this necessarily qualifies as a career milestone for Grizzly Bear, since they’ve already been on a million TV shows. But maybe it’s an indicator of how nebulous and meaningless the entire idea of indie rock has become: Grizzly Bear playing their fractured, floating “Yet Again” on Ellen, as Ellen DeGeneres, who apparently loves the band, gives free copies of Shields to everyone in the studio audience. They sounded good, in any case, and you can watch the performance below.
We begin our discussion of the Faces, as we must, with “The Rod Conundrum” — one of the thorniest in all of rock and roll lore. Cue the ESPN 30 For 30 voice over: “What if we told you that Rod Stewart was once every bit as cool, dangerous, and desirable as Keith, Kurt, or Kanye …”
Well, It actually happened. And it was amazing. And then there was the rest of it.
Last night, Portland’s Keller Auditorium played host to Vampire Weekend. The band ran through hits from their first two albums and played a significant chunk of their excellent new record Modern Vampires Of The City. We sent Colin McLaughlin to check it out.
Queens of the Stone Age shook the sold out Wiltern Theatre with a performance that was worthy of arenas. Unveiling a slew of tracks from their new album …Like Clockwork, Queens deftly interjected older songs in with the newer material as you may have witnessed during the live broadcast for NPR. The whole concert is now on YouTube and you can watch below. In the live format, the new songs had extra layers of muscle and bone that Queens are know for providing. Them Crooked Vultures guitarist Alain Johannes did a handful of acoustic songs to kick off the show. Check out the photo gallery above and the setlist below.