Chris Martins

writer

Biography

  • Matt & Kim 'Lightning Remixes' Nude Cover

    Matt & Kim Are Totally Nude on 'Lightning Remixes' Cover

    When we spoke to Matt Johnson about making Matt & Kim's Lightning last year, he explained that he was "excited to do as little possible to the songs production-wise and still have them be strong." Now the duo are moving in the opposite direction, wrangling a diverse cast of producers to rework their fourth LP on Lightning Remixes. Oh, and that's them above, naked on the cover of the thing.The Adam and Eve-channelling artwork will, in fact, only be featured on the limited-edition vinyl version of the 11-song set — a more modest cover will accompany the digital release, while the topless edition will be clothed with a reusable sticker while on record store shelves.

  • Kurt Vile Nine Inch Nails 'Down in It' Cover Video

    See Kurt Vile 'Do White Rap' in Cover of Nine Inch Nails' 'Down in It'

    Sometime the cover stars align. Philly rock bard Kurt Vile was SPIN's June cover subject backed by the hazy power of his Essential Wakin on a Pretty Daze. Nine Inch Nails are our September headliners, with the brand new Hesitation Marks streaming freely as of today. Now the former has covered the latter for The A.V. Club's long-running "A.V. Undercover" video series, and the results are an unusual confluence of drawling psych-folk and industrial angst.For his song, Vile chose NIN's 1989 hit "Down in It" because, well, "It's the weirdest thing we could do," he says in the clip.

  • Open Mike Eagle 'Qualifiers' Stream Dorner Tookie Hellfyre

    Open Mike Eagle Humble-Brags With Art-Rap Aplomb on 'Qualifiers'

    Los Angeles' long-running Project Blowed community has been heating back up of late. Scene O.G. Aceyalone recently shared stately videos for "Pass the Hint" and "Leanin' on Slick," and indie-rap poster-boy Busdriver just dropped his raving mad remix of Migo's inescapable "Versace." Now the Hellfyre Club imprint run by Nocando is prepping the release of Dorner vs. Tookie, a mixtape that will amass the talents of like-minded MCs and producers under a name that at least seems to pit the founder of the Crips against the LAPD officer who went postal on his former department-mates.The first taste of the project can be heard below, as hard-hustling Blowdian Open Mike Eagle debuts his "Qualifiers," a humble-brag of the most stylish order.

  • Kal Marks 'Where a River Starts and Ends' Stream

    Kal Marks Gush Heavy Strangeness on 'Where a River Starts and Ends'

    Bostonian trio Kal Marks have given their debut studio album a title that's less than optimistic: Life Is Murder. But the band's sound, though heavy at times, is hardly a bummer. They cut their sludge with deliciously odd angst, and sweeten the stylistic melting pot with lively melodies. Take "Where a River Starts and Ends," streaming below. After 30 seconds of peaceful plucking, things get decidedly bent, with Carl Shane's vocals blurting into the fore like a robot who's just figured out how to sing: "This is where the river starts, though I know nothing could be perfect / These are the places we passed though on our journey through the rapids." He unveils his tale backed by bassist Mike Geacone and drummer Nick Egersheim, who help morph the groove into a mercurial hybrid of Dinosaur Jr., Black Sabbath, and Modest Mouse.

  • Eminem 'Berzerk' Stream MMLP2 Marshall Mathers

    Eminem Unleashes Punk-Rap Throwback 'Berzerk'

    On Sunday night, Eminem announced the details of his eighth album, The Marshall Mathers LP 2, via a pair of MTV VMA commercials.Those ads included select noise from the November 5 set's first proper single "Berzerk," revealing a hard-edged sound hearkening back to the Beastie Boys' early '90s output. (The second clip also included a visual shout-out to the "So What'cha Want" video.) In a bout of fired-up extreme yelping, Eminem puckishly announced his intent: "Let's take it back to straight hip-hop and start it from scratch / I'm bout to bloody this jack up so everybody get back / That's why my pen needs a pad 'cause my rhymes' on the raaaaaaag."This evening, the Detroit rap star premiered the full version of "Berzerk" on his SiriusXM channel Shade45.

  • MTV VMA Ratings Viewers Increase 10 Million

    MTV VMA Ratings Rebound Amid Miley Cyrus' Twerkfest

    Last year, MTV received a bit of an, ahem, reality check when its biggest annual night of music programming took a nosedive in the ratings department. Viewership for the Video Music Awards fell by half between 2011 and 2012, landing at a pretty piddling 6.1 million. But Sunday night's Miley Cyrus-assisted ceremony drew in an impressive 10.1 million sets of eyes — that's a 66 percent leap for the show, which has been the subject of headlines all day.This was the first year that the VMA were hosted at Brooklyn's Barclays Center and the move came with a redoubling of the network's promotional efforts, according to Billboard. On top of that, the list of confirmed talent for performances was particularly buff: Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Justin Timberlake, Robin Thicke, Bruno Mars, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Kanye West.

  • Joey Bada$$ 'Killuminati' Kendrick Lamar Control Response

    Joey Bada$$ Aims to Literally Torch Kendrick Lamar on 'Control' Response

    Kendrick Lamar's infamous rapper-eating "Control" verse has undoubtedly accomplished its two-fold goal: one, to put the Compton prince's name on the lips of hip-hop fans everywhere; and two, to inspire fellow MCs to step up their game via a little healthy competition. Responses have arrived in the form of misguided reactions from Lupe Fiasco and B.o.B., heavy warfare from Joe Budden and Uncle Murda, an effective skewering at the hands of A$AP Ferg, and a non-response response from RiFF RaFF, naturally. Now Brooklyn boom-bap classicist Joey Bada$$ enters the fray.The Summer Knights rhymer has unleashed "Killuminati Pt. 2," a Knxwledge-produced grit-bearing track that finds Bada$$ taking specific issue with Lamar's notorious "King of New York" line.

  • Charli XCX Britney Spears Writing New Album

    Charli XCX 'Freaking Out' After Being Asked to Write for Britney Spears

    Those who are paying attention know that Charli XCX is a "bubbly, starry-eyed, Disney-loving tween" in her heart of hearts — the title of the English singer's 2012 LP True Romance was not some sort of Goth-pop jest. She means it, and that's what makes her so good at what she does. Charli had a clutch hand in co-writing Icona Pop's breakthrough single "I Love It," and now she's working with Britney Spears on a potential song for the star's next album."I've been doing some writing for the Britney record," XCX told Digital Spy while at Reading Festival this past weekend. "I was freaking out. I didn't even want to go to the session I was so excited. I was so worried I would fuck it up. I was doing some stuff for that yesterday actually. Who knows how it will go. We've written one song and it's a great track and if she likes it then amazing.

  • Nicolas Jaar Darkside 11 Minutes Album Stream

    Nicolas Jaar's Darkside Share 11 Minutes of Instrumental Excellence

    Nicolas Jaar's Darkside project got a jumpstart by sharing an excellent album-length remix of Daft Punk's already Essential Random Access Memories in June. Now the New York producer and his partner Dave Harrington are flexing on their own material. Though we don't yet know the title of or release date for the pair's forthcoming full-length, we can hear the lovely first 11 minutes of the thing via the (very slowly moving) video above, and Jaar's new label Other People.The clip was filmed in Monticello and traces a plume of black smoke back to a burning structure surrounded by green woods. The music begins quietly, mostly ambient, and gradually picks up steam and definition. Little glitchy bits emerge among the whirring strings, a disembodied voice appears as a kick-drum pulse gets caught on loop.

  • Missy Elliott G-Dragon KCON Video 2013

    Watch Missy Elliott Stage a G-Dragon 'Coup d'Etat' at K-Pop Conference

    As predicted, Missy Elliott joined her fast-rapping South Korean cray(on) male counterpart G-Dragon on stage at Los Angeles' blowout K-Pop convention over the weekend. Though the supa-dupa-fly MC had been slated to perform at KCON 2013 on Sunday, August 25, her exact role was in question. But toward the end of the Seoul star's set, he hyped the crowd for one final song, and repaid their enthusiasm with a long whispered-about team-up with Miss E.The pair turned in a fevered performance of the as-yet untitled song from G-Dragon's forthcoming solo album Coup d'Etat. Elliott arrived with an appropriately hyped dance squad (one member of which grooved so hard that his sneaker popped off) and traded rapid-fire lines with the Big Bang leader. Despite the presence of the '90s rap superstar, G-Dragon still received the most fervent applause for his verses.

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