33 is Los Angeles musician Mary Pearson, formerly one-half of Brooklyn tropical electronic psych experimentalists and old-school Band To Watch High Places. She released her debut single “Inside Stuff” earlier this month, and today fellow LA imports and basketball fans Liars have delivered a typically ominous remix. What had been a beat-driven minimal daydream is now a darkly aggressive series of clicks, gurgles, and forward motion. Stream the remix and watch the video for the original version below.
Fatboy Slim’s big beat breakout track “The Rockafeller Skank” felt like a giddy novelty in 1998, when it came out. But it hit huge, and the song, when you run across it now, is still nearly as much of a goofy blast as it ever was. The speaker company Bose has now put together a five-minute mini-documentary about “The Rockafeller Skank,” and it turns out to be pretty interesting. We learn about what sound Norman Cook was chasing, what primitive equipment he used, how he figured out what samples to combine, and how Spike Jonze sent him a letter when he heard it. Watch the video below.
As a way to make some sort of artistic sense out of the year we just had, the Canadian newspaper The Globe And Mail recently teamed up with the Canadian Opera Company and the indie label Arts & Crafts to share a six-song compilation called Broadsheet Music: A Year In Review. The compilation features Canadian musicians contributing songs inspired by the 2014′s news events, sometimes with the help of opera singers. For the occasion, Broken Social Scene contributed the unreleased song “Golden Facelift,” which comes from the same sessions that gave us 2010′s Forgiveness Rock Record. Even though the song is technically old, it’s still the first new BSS song we’ve heard since 2010. The comp also has Fucked Up doing a 17-minute Italian opera called “Voce Rubata.” The song piece only features opera singers. Damian Abraham never shows up, and it never turns into a punk song. The band wrote it themselves. It’s one of the weirdest things they’ve ever done. The comp also features a solo song from BSS member Brendan Canning, as well as BSS member Jason Collett teaming up with Zeus on another one. Listen to all of it and read some words about the BSS and Fucked Up contributions below.
There was a lot happening on late-night TV last night, but we should not discount the rare chance to see Jenny Lewis singing next to Ryan Adams, the man who co-produced most of her great 2014 album The Voyager. Adams and Lewis have been touring and performing together lately. And last night, when Lewis was the musical guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Adams joined her impressively large backing band (which includes emerging singer/songwriter Natalie Prass), adding a sick solo or two. They played on the show’s outdoor festival stage, which how now been made up to look extra-Christmasy. On the show proper, they did “She’s Not Me,” a song Adams covered recently. And as an online bonus, they also did the single “Just One Of The Guys.” Watch both performances below.
The Foo Fighters promotional tour for Sonic Highways never seems to end: after a week-long residency on Letterman, an 8-episode HBO series, and appearances on Ellen, Howard Stern, and 60 Minutes, the band still thought it was necessary to make an appearance on Jimmy Fallon, which they did last night. They performed “I Am A River,” and you can watch below.
Last night, Stephen Colbert ended his incredible nine-year run as host of The Colbert Report, airing his final episode. In the show’s last-ever segment, Colbert brought a vast and head-spinning array of celebrity guests to the stage, and they all teamed up to sing the 1939 standard “We’ll Meet Again.” (It’s the same song that ended another work of great American satire, Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove.) There were plenty of musical figures up there with Jon Stewart and Big Bird and Tom Brokaw and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Eliot Spitzer: Michael Stipe, Jeff Tweedy, Randy Newman, Willie Nelson, Cyndi Lauper, Ric Ocasek, Peter Frampton, Barry Manilow, Pussy Riot, Toby Keith. But “We’ll Meet Again” wasn’t the show’s final moment.
In early 2012, when he was still just a promising major-label R&B prospect with one album to his credit, Miguel released his Art Dealer Chic EP series. Those three EPs established Miguel as a powerful, strange, masterful songwriting force and set him apart from his peers. Not long afterward, he released his woozy, psychedelic, sexed-out breakout Kaleidoscope Dream, which turned him into a major star. And now he’s gone back to that EP well. Last night, with no advance warning, Miguel dropped three brand-new songs on Soundcloud, and they’re all pretty incredible. The EP doesn’t have a title, at least not one that Miguel’s announced yet, though the words Art Dealer Chic are written in the background of that very suggestive cover art. But its three songs still hang together as a cohesive work. Opening track “NWA” features the veteran L.A. rapper Kurupt, and it’s a slick, funky slow-burner with some spaghetti-western guitar. “HollywoodDreams” is a mellow, instinctive soul-rocker with a serious hook to it. Miguel teased the closing track “Coffee” on Instagram a couple of months ago, and it’s a conversational, easy, devastating slow jam. Taken together, all three songs make Miguel sound like a 2014 version of prime-era Prince. This is a small piece of work, just under 10 minutes of new music, but it’s a deeply impressive one, and I really hope it’s indicative of whatever Miguel’s got in the works for the next album. Listen to all three below.
The drunk driving crash that left four people dead and almost two dozen injured at this year’s South By Southwest is now being brought to court. The Associated Press reports that seven lawsuits have been filed against the organizations who put together the festival, accusing them of serious safety lapses that led to Rashad Owens crashing through a barricade the night of March 13th after fleeing from police officers following a traffic stop. Owens has been in jail since the crash on capital murder charges.