features

Forget Rihanna — the Best Video With a Social Message Wasn’t Nominated for a VMA

Every year when the MTV VMA nominations happen, several predictable things occur. Chuckleheads on social media make the same, super-original joke about MTV still playing music,…
James Grebey / July 21, 2015

Protomartyr Won’t Stop Until They Crash

Greg Ahee, guitarist for the post-punk band Protomartyr, tells me a quick story. He doesn’t remember exactly when — it was either after the release…
Kyle McGovern / July 21, 2015

HARD Summer’s Gary Richards Likes tUnE-yArDs, Thinks EDM Is ‘Pop Sh—t’

Three years ago, director Agata Alexander finally convinced Gary Richards to let her make the lineup announcement video for 2013’s HARD Summer the way she wanted: with…
Harley Brown / July 21, 2015

Nobody Is Nowhere: Willis Earl Beal Talks ‘Noctunes’ and His Hazy Future

Willis Earl Beal is hard to get ahold of. A mid-afternoon call to the casually drifting Chicago-born musician goes straight to his voicemail, which, naturally,…
Colin Joyce / July 20, 2015

Color Me Twice: The Violent Femmes Return to the Studio and Stage

The Violent Femmes began as a band of buskers on the streets of Milwaukee before permeating the American psyche and taking over the college radio…
Nolan Gawron / July 17, 2015

Sylvan Esso Are Giving Themselves ‘Full Permission to Just Make Bangers’

When SPIN first dials up Sylvan Esso’s Amelia Meath at the duo’s Durham, North Carolina, home, we’re greeted on multiple attempts with her charming sing-song-y…
James Grebey / July 17, 2015

The Moment Has Arrived for Tame Impala

Kevin Parker’s in Pittsburgh when he answers his phone. It’s early June and the 29-year-old Australian — the ambitious but self-effacing mastermind behind Tame Impala, one…
Kyle McGovern / July 17, 2015

Youth Lagoon Finds a ‘Unified Existence’ on ‘Savage Hills Ballroom’

Savage Hills Ballroom, Trevor Powers’ third album as Youth Lagoon, exists because of coincidence but, more importantly — and tragically — because of death. In the…
Harley Brown / July 16, 2015

Pleasure Leftists: Reformed Hardcore Punks and a Singer Like ‘Crying Dracula’

Who: Two members of Pleasure Leftists, bassist Steve Peffer and guitarist Kevin Jaworski, met when they attended Cleveland, Ohio’s nearby Lakewood High School together and thrashed their…
Harley Brown / July 15, 2015

Finally, the No. 1 Pop Song in the Country Is the Best Pop Song in the Country

It’s been a long, lonely winter atop the Billboard Hot 100 in 2015. We’d gotten mutliple weeks into July, over half the year already transpired, with…
Andrew Unterberger / July 14, 2015
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