Smashing Pumpkins

Don’t Believe the Nostalgia Machine: 1994 Was a Shitty Year for Music

It’s a strange thing to see an era you remember being regurgitated by the nostalgia machine. The last couple of years have been a constant stream of early-’90s anniversaries: Nevermind! Dazed and Confused! My So-Called Life! It’s not like we didn’t see this coming, of course — culture tends to move in generational 20ish-year cycles, so a resurgence of interest in the ’90s was inevitable. (And, of course, these days culture bloggers just love a good anniversary as an excuse for a think-piece, a trend from which this site is certainly not exempt.) Sure, the early ’90s were a rich flourishing of culture after the desert that was the late ’80s. But this year, we’re at the 20th anniversary of 1994. And listen: 1994 was shit. … Read More

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Why Are We Laughing at Billy Corgan’s Sad Decline?

“At one time, you’ve got it, and then you lose it, and it’s gone forever.” So said Sick Boy in Trainspotting, and for all that this pronouncement came in the context of a conversation conducted while shooting a dog in the arse with a pellet gun, it’s a pretty succinct summation of the trajectory of innumerable creative careers. You have it. Then you lose it. And that’s it. In entirely unrelated news, Billy Corgan is following up his eight-hour Siddartha marathon with a set at his Chicago tea shop based on “four sonic impressions on poems by the great Sufi mystic Rumi.” Oh, Billy. How did we get here? … Read More

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10 of the Most Self-Indulgent Albums of Our Time

Y’know what they say about buses — you wait forever for one, and then two turn up at once. So it has proven with Justin Timberlake albums, with the key difference that the albums that have arrived this year aren’t so much buses as a couple of those gigantic stretch limos from Aphex Twin’s “Windowlicker” video. Both volumes of his The 20/20 Experience are contenders for the most overlong and overblown albums of the year, which is a shame, because their predecessor — 2006’s Futuresex/Lovesounds — was a well-crafted, lean pop delight. Still, for all that it’s kinda self-indulgent, the Timberlake double-act still has a ways to go to rival some of the truly overblown and self-indulgent records people have made over the years. Behold: the hall of shame. … Read More

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The Strangest and Most Wonderful Parties in Music Video History

Yesterday, Buffalo-based band Lemuria released the video for their new single “Scienceless.” It’s based around a sort of pre-apocalyptic end-of-the-world party, with the band welcoming an alien invasion by partying like there’s literally no tomorrow. It’s pretty great, actually, and it got us thinking about some of the other interesting parties that have featured in music videos over the years — straight-up pool parties are dime-a-dozen, obviously, but these videos are rather more interesting than that. Well, hopefully, anyway. … Read More

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7 Music Videos More Destructive Than Vampire Weekend’s “Diane Young”

You’d think it would be hard for a music video that’s practically a still life to offend anyone, but this year prepster darlings Vampire Weekend have been taking heat for the video for new single “Diane Young,” which shows an old Saab bursting into flames with downtown Manhattan in the background. Frontman Ezra Koenig has clarified that the vehicles in question were old, out of order, and dirt cheap — and we’d like to remind the offended car lovers that Vampire Weekend are hardly the most extreme when it comes to making destructive music videos. Read on for the most chaotic clips, from combusting drum sets to a kids’ birthday party from hell to a Hunger Games-style rap epic. … Read More

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Courtney Love and James Iha Collaborate on New Single "This Is War"

What do Courtney Love and James Iha have in common? Well, besides being ’90s alt-rock survivors, both have had long, fraught relationships with Billy Corgan. (They also shared a band mate, Melissa Auf der Maur, but we digress.) So we can’t help but wonder what the Great Pumpkin might say about their collaboration on Love’s… Read More

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Smashing Pumpkins Announce ‘Mellon Collie’ Reissue and Deluxe Box Set

If you grew up in the 1990s, then you owned a copy of the Smashing Pumpkins’ Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness — perhaps, you had the two-cassette tape set, like we did. Now that the band that we once loved so dearly clearly no longer exists (and, as we’d like to point out to… Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. Out of precaution Tom Brokaw has been taken to a hospital in Charlotte after feeling light-headed during an appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. According to a statement from NBC News, “He is being evaluated and is in good spirits.” [via The Wrap]

Update from @tombrokaw: “All is well Early… Read More

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