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The Week In Pop: What Is Ed Sheeran Thinking?

In recent years, pop music’s landscape has been transforming more rapidly than ever. But even as genre boundaries collapse and notions of good taste invert and guitars become inherently retro, one archetype that refuses to die is the sensitive guy with an acoustic guitar. Note that American Idol’s prospective pop messiahs are now just a… More »

By: Chris DeVille / April 10, 2014 - 4:44 pm

Owen Pallett Explains The Genius Of Lady Gaga Using Music Theory

Now on his third in a series of articles examining the brilliant music theory behind ubiquitous pop hits, Owen Pallett might just have a brilliant recurring column in the works. Alas, Pallett says this latest installment will be his last. Beginning with an article analyzing through music theory the brilliance of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream,”More »

By: Miles Bowe / April 1, 2014 - 5:26 pm

The Week In Pop: Shakira And Latin Pop’s Too-Big-To-Fail Era

Shakira first entered my consciousness around the turn of the millennium courtesy of my high school Spanish teacher, a friendly young white American woman married to a man from Colombia. She and her husband, she often informed us, were huge Shakira fans, as was all of Latin America. Sometimes, in an effort to expose u… More »

By: Chris DeVille / March 27, 2014 - 4:48 pm

The Week In Pop: The Mis-MGMT Of Foster The People

Every few years, a musician achieves that rare combination of commercial dominance and critical acclaim — and therefore inspires lots of copycats — only to willfully retreat from the spotlight. This usually involves making an album designed to alienate mainstream audiences and/or distance the originator from the imitators. It also tends to create a vacuum… More »

By: Chris DeVille / March 20, 2014 - 3:58 pm

Watch Lady Gaga Get Doused In Neon Vomit While Riding A Mechanical S&M Pig At SXSW, Brought To You By Doritos

Lady Gaga’s off-then-on Doritos SXSWstravaganza went down last night, not at the giant parking lot vending machine stage but at the midsized amphitheater Stubb’s. Fans who attended had to prove their #Boldness by accepting a Doritos #Bold social media mission in advance of the event. During the climax of Gaga’s performance of ARTPOP anti-rape… More »

By: Chris DeVille / March 14, 2014 - 1:01 pm

Lady Gaga Is Playing SXSW In A Doritos Vending Machine After All

Last week, we reported that the city of Austin had denied Lady Gaga permission to perform on the Doritos stage, a giant vending machine that the company erects right in the middle of downtown Austin, a SXSW landmark you cannot miss. The city had opted not to give Doritos the permit on the entirely reasonable… More »

By: Tom Breihan / March 6, 2014 - 8:52 am

Austin Denies Permit For Lady Gaga To Play In A Giant Doritos Vending Machine At SXSW

Two years ago, one of the greatest, weirdest landmarks in downtown Austin during SXSW was the Doritos Stage, a gigantic monstrosity made up to look like an actual vending machine, with giant Doritos bags up front and people performing down where, on a regular-sized vending machine, the food would fall out. (Last year, the stage… More »

By: Tom Breihan / February 26, 2014 - 9:18 am

Watch U2 Play Jimmy Fallon’s First Tonight Show

Last night was the night Jimmy Fallon finally wrested control of The Tonight Show from Jay Leno’s fierce, demonic clutches. And Fallon’s first musical guest on the show was a big one: U2, there to hype up their forthcoming as-yet-untitled album. The band played two songs, and they did both in notable fashion. For their… More »

By: Tom Breihan / February 18, 2014 - 8:51 am

U2, Arcade Fire, Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake Booked For Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’s First Week

We, as a society, have finally shaken off the grim specter of Jay Leno, who hosted his last Tonight Show last week. Jimmy Fallon will take over the institution and move it back to its original home in New York next week, and The Hollywood Reporter has just pointed out the ridiculously stacked first-week guest… More »

By: Tom Breihan / February 10, 2014 - 12:58 pm

The Week In Pop: Stereogum’s New Weekly Pop Column

Welcome to The Week In Pop, Stereogum’s new weekly pop column. I’ll be here every Thursday with a look at mainstream pop music via essays, track reviews, chart updates, and more. The phrase “Stereogum’s weekly pop column” probably raises some questions, so let’s get to them right away:… More »

By: Chris DeVille / January 9, 2014 - 2:03 pm

The 10 Dumbest Azealia Banks Beefs Of 2013

There’s no better example of unrealized potential than Azealia Banks. It’s been over two years since “212” dropped and we’re still not sure when (or if) her oft-delayed debut album will ever be released. It’s frustrating to see a young artist prioritize petty feuds over making music, and it’s especially frustrating because I like Azealia’… More »

By: James Rettig / December 20, 2013 - 3:57 pm

The Year In Unconventional Album Launches, From artRave to Indiegogo To SNL

The literary giant Alexis Krauss said it best: It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. From big-budget campaigns to no-budget crowdfunding, the haves and have-nots alike made selling albums an art unto itself this year, staving off the format’s impending extinction for now and turning music fandom into an exceptionally… More »

By: Chris DeVille / December 20, 2013 - 10:21 am

Noel Gallagher Slams Reflektor, Praises Yeezus In 2013 Recap

Here’s how former Oasis co-leader Noel Gallagher describes his own personal 2013: “Fucking had a shit year. All I’ve done is sit around the house and become a fucking hypochondriac. Dog-shit year. Can’t wait until it’s over.” But Gallagher also has something to say about the year in music, and he’s said them in similarly… More »

By: Tom Breihan / December 5, 2013 - 12:39 pm

Watch SNL’s Kim & Kanye Talk Show, The Worst Cover Songs Of All Time, And Lady Gaga & R. Kelly Performance

Tonight’s Saturday Night Live gave us Waking Up With Kimye, a talk show in which Jay Pharaoh and Nasim Pedrad reprised their familiar impressions of shouty Kanye West and whiny Kim Kardashian. Pharoah’s West (which we last saw in his “I Am A Dog” parody) is pretty strong and included some “Black Skinhead”-y yelps to… More »

By: Scott Lapatine / November 17, 2013 - 1:19 am

The 10 Best Moments From The 2013 YouTube Music Awards

After an ambitious and awkward 90-minute production, the inaugural YouTube Music Awards have disappeared into a cloud of blue chalk dust. The ceremony, streamed live from a warehouse in New York, attempted to capture the madcap spirit of early MTV and only occasionally succeeded — and if success means a lot of eyeballs on the… More »

By: Chris DeVille / November 3, 2013 - 9:22 pm

Watch The YouTube Music Awards Feat. Performances By Arcade Fire, M.I.A., Earl Sweatshirt, & More

Grab some popcorn (but don’t dare smear butter on that keyboard) and cozy up in front of your laptop screen because the inaugural YouTube Music Awards are going down this evening live from New York’s Pier 36. Reggie Watts and Jason Schwartzman will host (crossing my fingers for an original-lineup Phantom Planet reunion), and Spike… More »

By: Chris DeVille / November 3, 2013 - 5:36 pm

HAIM To Play SNL Next Month

Pop-rock sister act HAIM, the heroes of 2013’s festival season and the band behind our Album Of The Week at the start of this month, have been announced as the musical guests on Saturday Night Live 11/23, with Hunger Games: Catching Fire’s Josh Hutcherson as host. Lady Gaga will be the host and musical guest… More »

By: Scott Lapatine / October 31, 2013 - 4:52 pm

Arcade Fire, Lady Gaga, Eminem To Play 1st YouTube Music Awards

Given the way people actually watch music videos these days, or even the way they straight-up listen to music, a YouTube Music Awards show makes way more sense than, say, the continued existence of the MTV Video Music Awards. And this fall, the website will kick off its first-ever annual awards show. As Billboard reports,… More »

By: Tom Breihan / October 1, 2013 - 9:14 am

Lady Gaga – “Applause (Empire Of The Sun Remix)”

Lady Gaga has recruited another indie staple for an official remix of ARTPOP lead single “Applause,” following Purity Ring’s take on it last week. This time, Australian synth-poppers Empire Of The Sun take a stab at the song. Fresh off the release of their sophomore album Ice on the Dune, the duo manages to transform… More »

By: James Rettig / September 24, 2013 - 11:20 am

Lady Gaga – “Applause (Purity Ring Remix)”

Purity Ring are stomping with the big dogs now. Lady Gaga has roped the Toronto spectral-synth duo into doing an official remix of “Applause,” her kinda-desperate new drama-nerd anthem. For the reworking, Purity Ring producer Corin Roddick removed everything besides the vocal track and built the gasping goth-dance track around it. Whatever Roddick does to… More »

By: Tom Breihan / September 20, 2013 - 10:59 am