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
We were always big fans of now-defunct UK music weekly Melody Maker — it was always rather less self-important and more lighthearted than the NME — so we were chuffed to see that the Morrison Hotel Gallery in NYC is hosting a retrospective of work by one of the publication’s staff photographers, Barrie Wentzell. Wentzell shot for the magazine in the 1960s and 1970s, and the exhibition covers the years 1965-75, including portraits of Leonard Cohen, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, and various other luminaries of the era. The gallery has been kind enough to give us a sneak peek at some of the images, along with commentary from the photographer. See the photos and hear the stories behind them… Read More
Today at Flavorpill, we wished we could see the looks on a bunch of Rhode Islanders’ faces when they found out their 1979 Who concert tickets were redeemable for a 2013 show. We wanted this Irish Olympic commentator to narrate everything, forever. We wondered if this Korean song is the new… Read More
If you haven’t educated yourself about Pussy Riot, the anonymous, riot grrrl-inspired Russian punk band/activist collective, it’s time to read up. (We suggest the Guardian‘s coverage.) Three women alleged to be part of the group have been in jail for months and are currently on trial for hooliganism — a charge that could… Read More
You might think you’re a music fan, but have you ever spent hours painstakingly recreating the instruments of your favorite bands with gouache, cardboard, glitter and string? We didn’t think so. Hence the brilliance of Danish artist Rose Eken’s work, which we first spotted over at Dangerous Minds — the concept is disarmingly simple, but also completely unexpected and definitely wicked cool. Would you forgive us for saying that these drum kits rock? Click through to see some of our favorites from Eken’s 100 Drum Kits project, and then be sure to head over to her website to see even more of her work (including some gnarly guitars!). … Read More
Bob Egan isn’t the only person who’s photographing famous album covers superimposed over the locations where they were shot — in fact, the idea has become so popular that even advertisers have picked up on it — but he’s certainly doing more thorough research for his project than anyone else we’ve seen. At his website, PopSpots, Egan chronicles the detective work he does to find these places, providing multiple photos and maps that both show his process and help readers place the image within the city. While most of the covers (and other famous rock ‘n’ roll pictures) are from New York City, where Egan is a real estate agent, he’s also tracked Bob Dylan and The Who to London. See a few of our favorite PopShots photos below, and visit the site for a whole lot more. … Read More
If you’ve ever wondered what your favorite literary characters might be listening to while they save the world/contemplate existence/get into trouble, or hallucinated a soundtrack to go along with your favorite novels, well, us too. But wonder no more! Here, we sneak a look at the hypothetical iPods of some of literature’s most interesting characters. What would be on the personal playlists of Holden Caulfield or Elizabeth Bennett, Huck Finn or Harry Potter, Tintin or Humbert Humbert? Something revealing, we bet. Or at least something danceable. Read on for a cozy reading soundtrack, character study, or yet another way to emulate your favorite literary hero. This week: the confused narrator of Jeffrey Eugenides’ family epic, Cal Stephanides. … Read More
Martin Scorsese’s excellent new documentary George Harrison: Living in the Material World premieres tonight at the New York Film Festival; it will then run on HBO, in two parts, on Wednesday and Thursday night. Here are a few not-so-brief thoughts on how and why Scorsese has used rock music throughout his career.
Music moved me. It literally makes us move a certain way. It makes certain things happen. It’s equivalent to dancing, I guess. You know, you behaved a certain way. Some of the boys were able to swagger. Others pulled back. But the music scored our lives. I was taking it all in, pulling it together.
- Martin Scorsese, Conversations with Scorsese (2011) … Read More
How do you get people to pay attention to a conventional radio station in these days of Spotify and Pandora and Sirius and endless other mobile music services and gadgets? Well, a good ad campaign never hurt. We’re loving this new series of photos publicizing French rock station Ouï FM’s expansion to the provinces, which places classic album covers in uncannily appropriate settings in the rural towns it now serves. The Who Sings My Generation, with its clock tower cover, is perched atop a church in Cherbourg; Roxy Music’s Siren fits perfectly amid the rocky cliffs of Brest. What better way to remind us of how deeply rooted music is in our daily lives? Check out a few of our favorite images from the campaign after the jump, then visit Fubiz to see the rest. … Read More
We hear so much salacious gossip about feuds between musicians that this letter, spotted by Letters of Note, is a welcome antidote to all the negativity. Pete Townshend wrote his missive of praise for The Kinks after they supported The Who in Chicago, on Halloween 1969. Apparently, Ray Davies and co. were opening for a band that used to open for them because they’d been banned from touring the US back “over some Union hassle or Tax hassle” that ultimately hurt their fame stateside. (Chicagoist explains that Townshend is referring to a 1964 incident in which Davies clocked a musician’s union rep; our research shows that the fight actually happened in ’65.) Among other compliments, the Who guitarist praised The Kinks’ then-new album, Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire), writing, “I never thought they could ever best Village Green for sheer Kinksness but they appear to have done it.” Read the entire, adoring letter — typewritten on wonderfully kitschy Holiday Inn stationery — after the jump. … Read More