Stop Singing About Drugs: A Bored, Exasperated Plea to 21st-Century Musicians

We had some gentle fun at Wavves’ expense yesterday, but even we have to admit that his new album, Afraid of Heights, is a whole lot better than his earlier work, mainly because he’s actually bothered to write songs this time around. Still, we do have one gripe about the album, namely the fact that it took us no time at all to tick the weed reference off our bingo card — it takes precisely one minute and 14 seconds for Nathan Williams to sing “first we gotta get high.” Yes, people, this may shock you, but Williams is really rather fond of smoking marijuana. Good for him, but really, isn’t it long past time that bands stopped singing about drugs? It’s so… boring. … Read More

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Exclusive: Play Flavorwire’s Wavves Bingo

Over the last few months, we’ve gone a little bingo crazy here at Flavorwire — we’ve settled down to tick off key moments in Girls, dealt with the (unfortunately vomit-heavy) pitfalls of New Year’s Eve, and kept track of the relatives on Thanksgiving. Now we’re extending the concept to another area that begs for some bingo action: song lyrics! We’re starting with Afraid of Heights, the new album by Wavves, because, frankly, ticking off every time he mentions weed is pretty much the most enjoyable thing we can envisage doing with it (although, in fairness, it’s way better than his previous work). Anyway, we listened through the whole thing, and we’re pretty sure we scored a pretty comprehensive bingo. Bam. … Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. “Dull Tool,” a new Fiona Apple song that will be featured on the soundtrack for Judd Apatow’s upcoming comedy This Is 40, has leaked online. Give it a listen here. (On a related note, if you missed the heartbreaking handwritten letter Apple posted yesterday that explains why she’s canceling her upcoming South… Read More

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10 of the Most Unnecessary Side Projects in Music History

Things about which we are tired of hearing include: Wavves. As such, we greeted the news that Nathan Williams has a bitchin’ new side project with his bro with stony indifference — frankly, the last thing anyone needs to hear at this point is Wavves and his brother making a hip-hop record under the adolescent-tastic name Sweet Valley. (You’ll never guess, but he’s done an interview with VICE about it, in which he answers the hard-hitting question “Are you bored with rock ‘n’ roll?” with a deeply heartfelt “Yeah, I suppose so. At times.”) Still, it’s not the most gratuitously unnecessary side project in music history… Not compared to the ones after the jump. … Read More

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10 Albums You Need to Hear in August

The last couple of weeks have been a pretty dire time for album releases, but happily, there’s respite to be had in August — there’s a fair selection of worthwhile records due out over the next four weeks, and as ever, we’ve pored over the release schedules to bring you our selection of the 10 best, along with a quick roundup of other notable upcoming releases. There’s an eclectic selection to be found after the jump: everything from cerebral piano-led ambience to neo-dreampop and the return of Ariel Pink — and at least one genuine album of the year contender. (Spoiler alert: SWANS.) Let us know in the comments section what’s on your shopping list for August. … Read More

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The 10 Best 21st-Century Stoner Anthems

As stoners around the country are no doubt only too aware, it’s 4/20 today, which means it’s time to smoke yourself into a coma in solidarity with fellow ganja-lovers around the world. For the last couple of years we’ve amused ourselves composing 4/20 mixtapes to soundtrack your smoking efforts, but this year we thought we’d do something different. We came across High Times“Best 25 Pot Songs of All Time” recently, and we couldn’t help but notice they were all from before the turn of the millennium — mostly from the ’60s, predictably enough. We don’t buy stoner conservatism any more than any other sort of conservatism, so we thought we’d put together a list of 21st-century stoner anthems. Did we miss anything? Let us know before you descend into oblivion. … Read More

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Wavves to Score MTV Hipster Show ‘I Just Want My Pants Back’

Wavves’ Nathan Williams is totally down with big-business brand integration. Remember when he and girlfriend Best Coast recorded a duet for exclusive release on Target’s Christmas compilation? And how about his “Post Acid” video, created for Mountain Dew? Well, now Williams is lending his cred (such as it is, at this… Read More

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The Flavorpill Mixtape LIX: Radiohead, Liturgy, Lupe Fiasco

If it were up to us, this week would be officially known as Johnny Cash week. The Man in Black’s birthday is Friday — he would be 79 — and if there’s a better way to celebrate it than to pour some instant coffee laced with whiskey and sidle up to a pile of tunes, we don’t know what it is. So we got him (and you) this great big haul of tracks, from a monstrous black metal ballad from Liturgy to another peek at Lupe Fiasco’s upcoming CD. Enjoy, and don’t forget to right click + save as or scroll down to grab it all. … Read More

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10 Music Videos That Glamorize Drug Use [NSFW]

Watching the video for “Synchronize,” Discodeine’s new collaboration with Jarvis Cocker, we couldn’t help but be taken with its darkly beautiful, drug-laced imagery. And it occurred to us that, despite the undeniable synergy between drug-taking and music-making, we actually don’t see too many controlled substances in music videos — perhaps because that shit is bound to get you banned from TV, not to mention condemned as a horrible influence. Now, we certainly don’t endorse (or even, in all cases, understand) the behavior in the clips below, but we can’t deny that they do make drugs look awfully glamorous. … Read More

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10 Wondrous Drug-Themed Album Covers

When you name your mixtape Cocaine Waitress, you’d better have the artwork to back it up. And thanks to The Awl, we now know exactly what the cover to that album, by the Atlanta rapper Diamond, looks like. It is so deadpan wonderful that it made us think about all the other incredible drug-themed record covers we’ve seen over the years. Check out ten of our favorites, picturing everything from heroin to sizzurp, after the jump and link us to any we missed. … Read More

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