This week we learned that social networking monolith Facebook is still making ludicrous amounts of money – despite some of us being over it, and many others just seeing it as part of the furniture. So-called “social media” can have plenty of benefits, but it’s also a distracting, unforgiving cesspit, full of trolls, acquaintances you don’t actually know and random people lusting for approve by way of subscriber numbers.
“I know some fans thought I wouldn’t rap like this again, but the writer’s block is over” hollers a defiant Kanye West on new single, ‘No More Parties in LA’. The ever-opinionated rapper shrugs off criticism of his recent eccentricities, and his last album, Yeezus – which critics loved, but some fans detested – with this dangerously confident track. This is West returning to the funk loops of his early records, courtesy of Madlib, and the effect is immediately enticing. Continue reading
News that David Bowie, the musician, fashion iconic and eccentric innovator, passed away today, after an 18-month battle with cancer, has shocked the world.
As I write, tributes continue to be posted by millions on social media, and if all the Bowie obituaries and editorials that have appeared in the last 12 hours were printed out and pasted together there could well be enough paper to cast a tether into space to rescue Major Tom. Continue reading
What do you get when you cross four ordinary-looking girls, with crappy smartphone photos of nights out and amateurish, yet endearing, home recordings? You get Hinds (fka Deers): a girl group enthralled by the garage rock of Mac DeMarco, Ty Segall and the Black Lips. While their intentionally rough sound presents an approachable façade, debut album Leave Me Alone is more fuzz than punk rock originality. Continue reading
Long-time fans of musician and producer, Danger Mouse, will know that his musical palette is as wide as his hair is big. 30th Century Records is a brand-new imprint label set up by the Mouse to look for “things that I like or that I connect with in some way that maybe other people are not”. This inaugural release features 11 unknown, or barely known, artists, and is a stimulating appetiser to what 30th Century may bring us in the months and years to come. Continue reading
New year, new vibe. Kicking off my 2016 JOTW series is a young musician whose interest in science often marks her from the ‘expected’ behaviour of most female stars her age. Fifteen-year-old Willow Smith, daughter of rapper, actor and all-round smooth operator, Will Smith, has dropped a delectable new single with the help of producer Mark Redito. Continue reading