On April Seriousness Day, Vinny from Vinesauce streamed himself playing and watching four instalments of an obscure but beloved video game franchise. What, you've never heard of Scrimmy Bingus "and the" Crungy Spingus? [more inside]
Felix Manuel, better known as Djrum (pronounced as "drum," evolved from his initial DJ Rum handle) blends hip hop, house, jungle and bass seamlessly in his mixes, plus splices the DNA of techno, dubstep, garage and grime in an attempt to make them, in his words, “live inside each other” in his own productions. This blending is not frenetic, but slow and methodical, often including extended clips from movies, such as heard in The Miracle. With a relatively scant 9 EPs and singles, including two splits, and one album to his name, you can get hear more of the scope of Felix Manuel's musical tastes from his mixes... [more inside]
Librarian Rhapsody: A parody of Bohemian Rhapsody, created by the Shoalhaven Library Staff to celebrate the end of the the school year. (Lyrics)
A trombone player loves - LOVES - Queen, and does the band proud by playing it all. It makes sense to do this, once you've heard it.
Spirit Phone is the latest album by Lemon Demon, aka Niel Cicierega (previously on Metafilter). [more inside]
Capsule’s Pride (Bikes) is a new mixtape of Akira-themed remixes from Toronto, CANADAAAAA!-based producer Bwana that has just been released by Glasgow-based LuckyMe Records. If you don’t want to stream it on Youtube while watching minimal music videos derived from the manga’s art, why not download it here (scroll down) and listen while browsing through the Otomblr.
"I talked to a woman who asked for anonymity because she’s still associated professionally with the University of Iowa. 'When I got to Iowa,' she told me, 'I was like, who the fuck are these people? And where are the adults?'" Jia Tolentino on Thomas Sayers Ellis, VIDA, and the "tradition" of bad behavior from powerful men in the creative fields.
"For the first time in 16 years, guitarist James Iha joined his former Smashing Pumpkins bandmates Billy Corgan and drummer Jimmy Chamberlin onstage" last night in Los Angeles. [more inside]
In Search of Johns' Kingdom A short documentary commissioned by The Calvert Journal, about a shadowy Russian music collective. For fans of Grimes, Aphex Twin, Dirty Beaches, Prince Rama. [more inside]
UK Garage Horse Racing (SLYT)
After a series of national selection processes, all 43 contestants for the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest are set. Two familiar faces (last year's winner, Måns Zelmerlöw, and 2013 host Petra Mede) will guide us through two semis and a Grand Final while hopefully also making sense of a new vote-counting system. Come for the camp, stay for the geopolitical intrigue. [more inside]
Love the music from the Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels? No? What about from Hell on Wheels or Making A Murderer? Perhaps Jane the Virgin? The composer behind these shows is Kevin Kiner and on his website, he's uploaded selections from his work on the above shows and a few more to listen to for free.
Francis Wayne "Frank" Sinatra, better known as Frank Sinatra Jr, died March 16th 2016 aged 72 of a heart attack while on tour in Florida. [more inside]
The Violin Thief by Geoff Edgers Philip Johnson was a promising musical prodigy. Then he stole a teacher’s prized Stradivarius. [more inside]
"March 12th marks the 25th anniversary of Out of Time’s release, which will be celebrated this fall in the form of a deluxe reissue from the band and Concord Music Group. Pitchfork decided to celebrate in our own way, speaking with R.E.M.’s Mike Mills — as well as friends and collaborators on the album and beyond — to recount Out of Time’s creation and the band’s central shift in the early ‘90s." An Oral History of R.E.M.’s Out of Time
One of the great composers of our time, Peter Maxwell Davies, has died. Some of his best known works include 8 Songs for a Mad King, Kommilitonen!, and 10 fantastic symphonies. The great anti-establishment composer was perhaps most well known, however, for a 2005 incident regarding eating swans that fell on his island home. Rest in peace, Max! [more inside]
Medieval Music - 'Hardcore' Party Mix -- "The most rhythmic, upbeat, party medieval music out there, put together in a mix." If you need something to cool down after that 40 minute set, YouTuber VacnaPaul also put together a two hour "daydream mix" of fantasy music, from the video game scores by Jeremy Soule.
Google’s Chrome Music Lab [Chrome recommended, not sure if it is required] is a collection of Chrome “experiments,” all featuring Web technologies like WebGL that run inside the Google Chrome browser. Google said that it created the experiments as part of Music In Our Schools month, but the experience should appeal to adults and kids alike: It’s like a Web-based Exploratorium for sound.
From Television To '10 Cloverfield Lane', A Composer Plays With Surprise - "When a film starts, 'you have anywhere from two to 10 seconds to get the audience's attention', score writer Bear McCreary says. He gained this and other advice from his mentor [Elmer Bernstein: 1,2 (previously)], whom he met by chance." (previously: 1,2)
Enter your name and birthday here, and you will get a personal Spotify playlist. (This is from a fathering site, so it prompts you to use your children's names/birthdays, but beware - the songs are not screened for child safety).
The name of this band is The Beginning Of The End. The Bahamas, 1970s. Three brothers and a friend, two albums of junkanoo-influenced funk: [more inside]
A tournament bracket of sad songs from 1980-2001. Vote for matchups and let's argue about sad music instead of politics. [more inside]
Fulfilling the performance-art vision of her spirit-muse Emily, Esperanza Spalding played the music of her forthcoming album Emily's D+Evolution in concert at BRIC House in Brooklyn, N.Y. [1h3m video] on Thursday, March 3. WFUV and NPR Music presented a live video webstream of the performance as part of the First Listen Live series. [more inside]
An amazing treasure trove of 8,000 Afropop tracks. The British Library just released this archive as part of their first online sound project within their Endangered Archives Programme (EAP). The recordings are from the state-supported Syliphone label and were released between 1958 to 1984. [more inside]
Up close and a little too personal with The Last Shadow Puppets. As I walk away, I try to suppress my ballooning sense that something wasn’t right back there. Is it normal to be asked up to a male musician’s room — even as a joke? Or cheek-kissed, repeatedly high-fived, and stared down? Even if he’s entirely harmless (and I’m sure that he is), is this the sort of thing that I should let go for the sake of my job? After music journalist Rachel Brodsky interviewed the U.K. orch-rock duo, she came away with a very different article than she'd set out to write.
The BBC teams up with the Orkestra Obsolete on the anniversary of New Order's Blue Monday to find out what it would sound like played on a diddley bow, hammered dulcimer, harmonium, zither, musical saw, and singing glasses.
Nkosinathi Maphumulo is a South African musician better known as Black Coffee. He has been devoted to making music since an early age, and even though he lost the use of his left arm in a car crash while growing up in a poor township, he has gone on to become a superstar in South African music. More than a marathon-session DJ (going so far as to DJ for 60 hours), he created a multimedia stadium show, where he played with a 24 piece orchestra and additional live percussion, keyboards and singers, who all spoke with love for the unique South African experience they created. [more inside]
The Girl Who Listened To Rush is a new song by Nerf Herder, full of love and references for the titular trio.
Songs of the Victorians is a website about four songs composed in Victorian England. The history behind them reveals forgotten details of the era: Juanita was composed by Caroline Norton, a pioneering feminist; The Lost Chord was a poem by Adelaide Anne Procter first published in a feminist journal, then set to music by (yes that) Arthur Sullivan; a part of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem Maud, which employs the cryptographical language of flowers, is set to music by Michael William Balfe and Sir Arthur Somervell, the former allowing performers to disguise or emphasize the disturbed emotions of the original, the latter makes the mental distress plain. The website was designed by digital humanities blogger and professor Joanna Swafford as a prototype for Augmented Notes, a system for highlighting sheet music visually while playing a sound file.
Gaelynn Lea is the winner of NPR Music's 2016 Tiny Desk Contest for her haunting composition, "Someday We'll Linger in the Sun" [more inside]
Swizz Beatz and Alicia Keys’s 5-year old son Egypt has produced his first rap beat. It’s been used on track five of Kendrick Lamar’s new album untitled unmastered, which is out now after being teased earlier this week by Top Dawg Entertainment label head Anthony Tiffith. The record exec also told fans to thank LeBron James for encouraging the drop. Two of the album’s tracks were first performed on episodes of The Colbert Report and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Tracklist and lyrics.
The George Kaiser Family Foundation and the University of Tulsa have acquired a huge trove of documents, tapes, and film from Bob Dylan. The (NYTimes) article describes many of the goodies.
Amazing Marble Machine Music [slyt]
Xtreme Now began while the Larson sisters were living on a black metal utopian commune on Vȫrmsi, a remote island off the coast of Estonia during the summer of 2012. There, Taraka had a near death experience ... which sparked a recurring sense of time-schizophrenia, or the physical sensation of existing in multiple time periods simultaneously ... “In the year 2067, I witnessed an aesthetic landscape where art museums are sponsored by energy drink beverages and beauty is determined by speed. I saw a vision of ancient tapestries stretched across half-pipes and people base-jumping off planes with the Mona Lisa smiling up from their parachutes. I saw art merge with extreme sports to form a new aesthetic language of ‘Speed Art.’ I realized that time travel was possible via the gateway of extreme sports, and I wanted to make music that would provide the score.”Mantra-obsessed, freak folk, ghost-modernist former skate-punk Krishha commune kids Prince Rama return with their most direct pop artifact yet, the extreme-sports inspired Xtreme Now (review). The album, due for official release on 4 March, can be streamed in its entirety on Stereogum. [more inside]
The internet is full of interesting ebbs and flows, and a current push-pull started with Beyoncé's video for 'Formation' (previously), which she also featured in her Super Bowl show. Then came the much-derided acoustic covers. Those covers inspired Nathan Zed to do a trap cover of 'Hey Jude', and the #TrapCovers really took off from there (more on Twitter)
The Fierce Courage of Nina Simone by Adam Shatz
A sequel to Ridley Scott's 1982 classic sci-fi "Blade Runner" has finally been assigned a release date in early 2018. The movie will be directed by Denis Villeneuve (most recently, "Sicario" and "Enemy"). But - who should score the new film? FACT Magazine presents who they would want to hear soundtracking Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford’s adventures with the replicants. [more inside]
Santigold is back with her third album, 99¢ (YT playlist), omnivorous pop in a post-genre age. She's been promoting the album throughout 2015, and enjoying the process this time around, trying to incorporate some of the joy from her son, Radek. She's been bending genres since her self-titled debut album, but this time around she's in a different place from her prior album, Master of My Make-Believe, which was fit for the dystopian end of the Age of Aquarius ... crackling with discontent, with a powerful cover designed by Kehinde Wiley (previously). [more inside]
Odetta sings The Foggy Dew
Odetta recorded a haunting version of ‘Foggy Dew’ for her third album My Eyes Have Seen (Vanguard records, 1959). Often referred to as “The Voice of the Civil Rights Movement”, the African-American Civil Rights activist, actress and singer’s debut album ‘Odetta Sings Ballads and Blues‘ was released on Tradition Records whose president and director was Paddy Clancy of the Clancy Brothers.[more inside]
How Randy Newman and His Family Have Shaped Movie Music for Generations by David Kamp [Vanity Fair] Sure, you know of the Oscar-winning composer behind Toy Story and his endearingly offbeat songwriting, but Newman, 72, is also the patriarch of a clan that has helped shape movie music since the talkies. [more inside]