Lily Allen has announced the name of her new record with the following post on Instagram: “Oh Christ” adorned with the above photo. This is amazing. Kanye West is going to hate this so much, and I can’t wait to see his reaction.
And here’s the video for the second single off Sheezus, “Hot Air Balloon,” featuring Allen all blinged out and in fine form.
It’s amazing what the exposure from being featured on the closing credits of an episode of Girls can do for you. It’s not that Broncho’s (soft “ch”) blend of garage punk with obvious pop hooks wouldn’t stand up on its own, but being christened with Lena Dunham’s seal of approval is an automatic 7″ seller. It also helps that the song is an instant earworm for anyone with a penchant for unpretentious old school DIY punk. I love the simplicity of this song. And the swagger. It rocks.
I’m so glad I pre-ordered this album before hearing a single note. You earn that type of loyalty when you put out a mind blower like 2002’s Neon Golden. Both tracks I’ve heard off the forthcoming Sub Pop release, Close to the Glass, have exceeded expectations. “Kong” harkens back to the band’s poppier, Dinosaur Jr. period explored on 12 and Shrink, respectively. While very few bands could swing two albums on the level of Neon Golden in one career, The Notwist is never a band to underestimate.
Continuing promotion for 2013’s startlingly haunting Once I Was An Eagle, Laura Marling recorded an intimate (is there any other type from her?) session for eTown, a program on NPR, where she premiered the live staple “Born To Love.” She also covered Townes Van Zandt’s “Colorado Girl.” I. Can’t. Look. Away.
The Numero Group‘s meticulous reissue campaign of Unwound’s storied discography continues with Rat Conspiracy. Collecting the band’s Kill Rock Stars debut, Fake Train, it’s expansive follow-up, New Plastic Ideas, and an assortment of 7″ singles, radio sessions, and compilation appearances, Rat Conspiracy reveals the band arching towards its creative apex. Limited to 1000 pressings, this 32-track collection is packed with seminal punk fury, house show photographs, and a 10,000 word narrative. The set is available for pre-order now before it’s March 18th release.
“What Was Wound” from New Plastic Ideas:
As we continue to wonder whether or not this extended Blur reunion will actually produce any new music, lead-singer Damon Albarn puts us off once again with his first proper solo album. Due April 29 on XL, Everyday Robots is an exploration of time and memory against a backdrop of hazy, electronic ether and, of course, Albarn’s languorous voice.
His quips to Rolling Stone recently suggest Blur is taking a backseat to his myriad other endeavors:
“I was playing in Japan — what day is it now? — on Tuesday, I played at the Budokan with Blur. There’s one song called “To the End,” and it’s the end of that period, and it’s the last gig we were planning to do together for the foreseeable future.”
So, it sounds like a new Blur record won’t happen any time soon, if ever. Everyday Robots may have to fill the void.
Arctic Monkeys racked up again at the Brit Awards this year, taking home Best British Group for the fourth time and its well-deserved third Best British Album for AM. Lead singer Alex Turner used the occasion to drop an irony-laced speech that was a winking piss-take on the “state” of rock ‘n roll. Reactions have been hilariously all over the map. Peaches Geldof called him an “ungrateful twat,” but I dare say she didn’t pick up on any of Turner’s subversive humor. The comment section on this subject at The Guardian is a goldmine.
Full transcript of Turner’s mic-dropping speech:
“That rock’n’roll, ay? That rock’n’roll, it just won’t go away. It might hibernate from time to time, sink back into the swamp. I think the cyclical nature of the universe in which it exists demands that it acquiesce to some of its rules. But it’s always waiting there, just around the corner, ready to make its way back through the sludge and smash through the glass ceiling, looking better than ever. Yeah, that rock’n’roll, it seems like it’s faded away sometimes, but it will never die. And there’s nothing you can do about it. Invoice me for the microphone if you need to.”