Chris Martins

writer

Biography

  • Alela Diane 'About Farewell' Album Song Stream

    Hear Alela Diane's 'About Farewell,' a Stirring Send-Off to Love Gone Wrong

    Nevada City native Alela Diane has come a long way since hand-packing (and decorating with lace) copies of her 2006 ghostly folk debut The Pirate's Gospel. Her knack for stringing together stirring melody and heavy subjects has evolved considerably, but she's also suffered setbacks.

  • Daft Punk Interview Random Access Memories Sucks Collaborators DJ Falcon

    Daft Punk: 'Our New Album Is Supposed to Really Suck'

    Daft Punk's Thomas Bangalter knows that bands aren't supposed to still be good 20 years into their career. In a rare interview with GQ, the helmeted man-droid drops a deep American cinema reference (what's French for "franchise"?) in order to explain his group's potential plight as they began to scrape together their first new album in eight years, Random Access Memories"In Scream 2, they have this discussion about how sequels always suck," he tells Zach Baron. "The thing we can ask ourselves at some point is like: We're making music for 20 years. How many bands and acts do you have that are still making good music after 20 years? It always sucks — almost always, you know? ...

  • Laura Marling 'Master Hunter' Video Ballet Eagle

    See Laura Marling's 'Master Hunter,' a Harrowing Dance Duet

    Last month, Laura Marling's "Master Hunter" came crashing out of the gate like an amped up combination of Bill Callahan's baritone blues and Fiona Apple's frenetic folk. The former comparison seems almost too fitting considering the title of her forthcoming album, Once I Was an Eagle, sounds like a retort to Callahan's 2009 masterpiece Sometimes I Wish We Were an Eagle. We've also heard the gentler, Dylanesque "Where Can I Go?" from the May 28 set (coming via Ribbon Music), but there's something about "Master Hunter" that's impossible to ignore. That forceful energy is captured and somewhat explained by the song's new video, in which Marling plays guitar and sings while a dangerous dance takes place in front of her. A waifish woman is beset upon by an aggressive man who overtakes her and simulates sex.

  • James Blake 'Retrograde' David Letterman Live

    James Blake Brings 'Retrograde' (and a Befuddling Synth) to 'Letterman'

    James Blake and his boys hit the Late Show With David Letterman last night to perform "Retrograde" and happily baffled the beloved host with their array of uncommon instruments. "Their stuff didn't arrive from England so we put together whatever we had backstage," he quips before the unlikely power trio launches into Overgrown's most starkly stirring track. It's a pitch-perfect rendition of the soulful track even if the scenery doesn't exactly set the mood (black velvet bedding seems more appropriate), finding Blake looping his ever-pained coo into a chorus of sexy woe. But once it's all said and done, Letterman isn't interested in the man who wrote the song so much as the guy playing the Moog Taurus 3 analog synthesizer. Paul Shaffer comes through with the explanation: "It's bass pedals really, but he plays it with his hands ...

  • Burnt Ones 'Web' Video You'll Never Walk Alone Burger

    See Burnt Ones' Acid-Fried 'Web' Video

    Burnt Ones just dropped their second album on the venerable Burger Records, also onetime home to our pals King Tuff and Ty Segall. You'll Never Walk Alone itself walks a dual path between hook-happy hits and fuzz-fried freakouts. Back in February we heard "Fountain of Youth," which tended toward the former and sported a transcendent chug that channeled that old "Spirit in the Sky." Today brings us the video for "Web," a song that'd rather languish in distorted guitar grind than come out to play in the sun. The video, directed by Rob Williamson, keeps things simple but psychedelic, with the band performing the lo-fi, low-key jammer in a hall full of mirrors. To get the full effect, pop on a pair of red-and-blues and viddy the thing in 3D.

  • Blur Will Attempt to Record a New Album in Hong Kong

    Blur Will Attempt to Record a New Album in Hong Kong

    This just in from China: Blur will be recording a new album, says Damon Albarn. Fresh off of their stunner of a Coachella reunion, the Brit-pop legends played Hong Kong's Asia World Expo this evening (May 6), and their singer shared "a secret," as BlurBalls reports."We were supposed to play in Japan next week, but due to unforeseen circumstances we were not able to go there," Albarn explains. "So we have a week in Hong Kong, and we thought it would be a good time to try and record another record." Cue deafening whoo-hoos.Blur premiered their first new songs since 2010 in July — "Under the Westway" and "The Puritan" — but they haven't released a proper album since 2003's woulda-been SPIN Essential Think Tank. In the past year and change, they've played the Olympics, dropped a 21-disc box set, and scooped up a lifetime achievement award.

  • Pink Birmingham Cancelled Kiss My Ass Open Letter ROTA Virus

    Pink to Jilted U.K. Fans: 'Kindly Kiss My Entire Ass'

    Last week, Pink was forced to cancel a previously postponed concert in England due to doctor's orders. She'd come down with simultaneous inner ear and respiratory infections, not to mention the intestinal disaster known as rotavirus, but some fans nevertheless responded with hate. Or, as the pop star herself put it in an open letter published on Saturday (May 4), they "turn[ed] on me like rabid dogs and question[ed] the moral fabric of my character."Rather than shrugging off the insults, however, the woman born Alecia Beth Moore fired up the flame-thrower. First things first, she explained that the situation was out of her hands, and apologized (again) anyhow. "I had absolutely no choice in the matter, no control over the circumstances, and physically could not get my sick ass on stage ... I sincerely apologize, AGAIN, for any inconvenience this may have caused you.

  • Lauryn Hill Pays Taxes Debt Million Dollars

    Lauryn Hill Going to Prison Despite Settling $900K Tax Debt

    Lauryn Hill has been sentenced to three months in prison, to be followed by three months of home confinement, despite having paid her long overdue taxes over the weekend. According to Reuters, the former Fugee settled her entire bill before her Monday (May 6) court date — an amount that came to about $900,000 in money owed to the federal government and the State of New Jersey, plus penalties, for a three-year stretch in which she failed to file.Before the payment went through, Hill was at risk of heading to jail for three years — one for each delinquent pay period from 2005 through 2007 — but early reports today predicted the sentence would be adjusted accordingly. ABC News reports that she made a "forceful statement" to Newark, New Jersey's U.S.

  • Chance the Rapper Nosaj Thing 'Paranoia' Video Yours Truly

    Watch Chance the Rapper and Nosaj Thing Craft 'Acid Rap' Standout 'Paranoia'

    Chance the Rapper's new Acid Rap mixtape is a stone-cold SPIN Essential delivered by one of our Real Hottest MCs in the Game. It's full of brash moments, brainy moments, jam-packed moments, and even the occasional minimal moment, as evidenced by the second half of "Pusha Man." Now we know that the cool calm latter portion of that song has a name of its own, "Paranoia," and that it was produced by Los Angeles beat artist (and Toro y Moi collaborator) Nosaj Thing. The video above, filmed for Yours Truly's "Songs From Scratch" series, captures the humble beginnings of that very track — Chance and Nosaj together in L.A.'s Ironworx Studio, experimenting with ideas until they get it right. The former talks a little bit about his process, the latter schools us on his history.

  • Vampire Weekend 'Hudson' Modern Vampires City Stream

    Hear Vampire Weekend's Morbid Marching Song 'Hudson'

    When they aren't busy cavorting around with Steve Buscemi, the men of Vampire Weekend seem to take pleasure in punching holes in their forthcoming third album Modern Vampires of the City. The latest leak is "Hudson," a song that sounds like none of the others we've heard to date. To recap, we first heard "Unbelievers" on Jimmy Kimmel Live, then studio versions of "Diane Young" and "Step," followed by session versions of "Obvious Bicycle" and "Everlasting Arms," and a lyrics video for "Ya Hey." Unlike its predecessors, "Hudson" is dark throughout, colored by bassy synth notes, ghostly string sounds, tense organ tones, and glitching drumline sputters. Ezra Koenig's lyrics and delivery are equally shaded and enigmatic as he sings of mortality as related to humankind's need to claim and name bits of the globe (more or less).

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Now Playing
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