Everything’s gone f***ing Kylie Minogue this week, as the Aussie songstress’ grand pop LP Kiss Me Once is now streaming in full ahead of its March 18 release. And while it might seem like forever ago that we first heard the album’s lead single, “Into The Blue,” the song was just made available in the UK yesterday. Tacked onto some versions of the release is the ethereal dance-pop confection “Sparks,” a co-write that comes courtesy of two song-makers who’ve worked with Kylie before: Karen Poole (“Red Blooded Woman,” “Wow”) and Matt Schwartz (“Timebomb”).
Whether or not you think “Sparks” should have been included on Kiss Me Once proper (I say YES!), at least the song made it onto the Japanese version of the album as a bonus cut. Give it a listen below. More »
Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In foundation has launched a campaign to ban “bossy,” arguing that the word is a negative term that usually only gets lobbed at ambitious, striving young women. Beyonce, who earlier this year penned a feminist essay, has joined the campaign in a new PSA, along with Jennifer Garner, Jane Lynch, Condoleezza Rice and some other hugely successful women. (How is Kelis not in this, though??)
“I’m not bossy,” Bey says in the video, “I’m the boss.” Can’t argue with the queen on that one. Check it out below. More »
New Frank Ocean, everybody! Sure, it’s a wild collaboration for a shoe company, but still, new Frank Ocean, everybody! As part of Converse’s Three Artists series, Ocean linked up with Diplo plus Mick Jones and Paul Simonon of The Clash for “Hero.” It would’ve been easy to guess that Diplo’s island-inspired production is a good match for The Clash’s dub/reggae tendencies (he did sample the band on M.I.A.‘s “Paper Planes,” after all), but the thought of putting Frank Ocean into the mix is particularly inspired, and it works.
The track starts as hazy bit of summery, retro pop, but then it explodes into a driving, choir-backed chorus, as we get to hear Ocean take a rare break from crooner mode. After that, the song alternates between breezy sway and anthemic crunch.
Stream it or grab a free download below. More »
The tracklist for Iggy Azalea‘s debut The New Classic (out April 15) has hit iTunes. It comprises 15 tracks, including early singles “Change Your Life,” “Work” and “Bounce,” as well as her latest, “Fancy.” But it looks like the label has real trust in the Aussie MC’s ability to carry an album herself, as it’s pretty spare when it comes to guest spots: in addition to T.I. and Charli XCX, the album features only Rita Ora, Watch The Duck (uh, sure!) and Mavado (who was just featured on Rick Ross‘ Mastermind).
Album track “Impossible Is Nothing” also hit the Web late last night (March 9), and it’s a thudding piece of inspirational rap, sort of in the style of Angel Haze or Recovery-era Eminem. Hear the new song and check out the tracklist below. More »
We’re now only a week off from the March 18 release of Kylie Minogue‘s 12th studio album Kiss Me Once. We recently interviewed the Australian pop queen, who had this to say about the LP’s co-executive-producer Sia: “I didn’t know if it was something she had done or was interested in, or if maybe she just preferred writing and doing her own music. Anyway, she said yes immediately and I was thrilled, because I really admire her.”
Kiss Me Once is now streaming in full over at the Guardian‘s website. It opens with lead single “Into The Blue,” then carries on through Kylie’s collaborations with such songwriters and producers as Ariel Rechtshaid, Pharrell Williams, MNEK, Metro and, of course, Sia. We have a feeling this is one album you’ll be kissing several times over, for some time to come. Go give it a spin.
Lily Allen is onto something with this latest album era. First she stopped everyone in their tracks with the “Hard Out Here” video, then she charmed us with “Air Balloon” and the cheery “L8 CMMR.” That was followed by the announcement of her too-good-to-be-true album title, Sheezus. Now she has unveiled the cover artwork, and as you can see up top, it’s littered with adorable corgis and thus lives up to the high standard set by the name.
In addition, Allen announced the LP has a May 6 release date, posted the tracklist and premiered the music video for new song “Our Time.” The song is low-key electro ballad, and the visual involves Lily donning multiple wigs as she plays various characters during a wild night out, which results in her fighting a hot dog mascot version of herself and making out with other Lily in the back of a cab. As our intrepid Robbie Daw points out, it may or may not be a sly spoof of this legendary night.
Check out the “Our Time” video and Sheezus tracklist below. More »
Did You Hear?
:: Chipotle has sued Frank Ocean for $212,500, plus additional damages for failing to record a song for a marketing campaign. Ocean’s legal team says he took issue with Chipotle’s logo being prominently displayed and felt he was told he’d have final approval of the ad. The ad eventually went to Fiona Apple. [The Hollywood Reporter]
:: Luke Bryan and Blake Shelton will co-host his year’s Country Music Awards on April 6. Bryan, Shelton, Jason Aldean, Miranda Lambert, George Strait and Keith Urban are set to perform. [CBS]
:: Arcade Fire covered Prince‘s “Controversy” to kick off its encore at a Minneapolis concert on March 8. Halfway through its set, the band also performed “Rococo” with bits of Lady Gaga‘s “Do What U Want” and Black Eyed Peas‘ “I Gotta Feeling.” [Stereogum]
:: If it was up to Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, she wouldn’t have given her TEDx talk on feminism. “My brother and my best friend had organized this thing and sort of bullied me into speaking,” she says. Beyonce‘s “***Flawless” now samples this speech. [The Huffington Post]
After the jump, find out what music you can catch on TV today. More »
Foster The People may be a trio, but frontman Mark Foster sings alone for an unplugged version of Supermodel track “Fire Escape.” The acoustic lullaby begins at the Los Angeles apartment building where he used to live, then shifts its focus to its view of the city and neighboring Hollywood: pimps and prostitutes, younger folks replacing older ones.
“Los Angeles, I’ve been waiting for you to pick yourself up and change,” Foster sings.
Foster has said that he felt like a younger Hunter S. Thompson when he moved to L.A. at 18, as he quickly dove into “this Hollywood Hills subculture.” According to interviews and other recent singles (“Coming of Age,” “Pseudologia Fantastica”) off Foster The People’s sophomore album Supermodel (out March 18), Los Angeles has since inspired a newer, deeper fascination with what’s considered to be shallow. More »
Lady Gaga is confirmed as the keynote speaker at this year’s South by Southwest in Austin. Fuse News host John Norris will help lead the March 14 event.
Lady Gaga will also perform at the festival for the first time this year. Initially, she was denied a permit to do exactly what she wanted: perform on a 56-foot Doritos vending machine, at a parking lot in the middle of Austin. Rightfully so, organizers figured that the throngs of people going to see her would be unmanageable.
This time, Lady Gaga will sing at the Doritos #Boldstage at Stubbs. Sponsorship, however, isn’t the only reason why her SXSW appearance will be notable. More »
Rising rock band Kodaline joined One Direction‘s Harry Styles in the studio, the band revealed on Twitter. The end result? A song that “sounds massive.”
Recently, Kodaline recalled how Styles had popped up at a Los Angeles concert. “He just said he’s a big fan, he listened to our music all the time,” singer Steve Garrigan said to Perez Hilton. Last year, Kodaline earned a spot in BBC’s Sound of 2013 shortlist, joining the ranks of HAIM (Days Are Gone), AlunaGeorge (Body Music ) and Angel Haze (Dirty Gold).
On March 6, the same night that Kodaline recorded with Styles, the Irish band appeared on American Idol to perform the intimate ballad “All I Want,” off its debut album In A Perfect World. According to bassist Jason Boland, Idol judge-turned-mentor Randy Jackson wants to join the band (and replace him) because of that performance.
And, according to a drawing from their studio session, so does Styles. See Styles’ “portrait” of himself and Kodaline after the jump. More »