Chris Martins



  • TobyMac / Photo by Getty Images

    Who Charted? TobyMac Scores for the Big Guy, Alanis Exemplifies Irony

    First! Where would TobyMac be without you? Well, he probably wouldn't be able to afford as many fancy fitted hats and, God forbid, that flavor-saver might go ungroomed for a day. Perhaps more importantly, he wouldn't be setting records for the surprisingly underserved Christian music community. The rapper-singer guy's sixth album Eye On It debuted last week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, making it the first chart-topping Christian release since 1997, when LeAnn Rimes broke through with You Light Up My Life. The only other long-player on high in the chart's history came that same year with Bob Carlisle's Butterfly Kisses (Shades of Grace). (Perhaps it's time to revive that career with a Fifty Shades of Grey crossover. What’s that? Oh, right, probably not.) TobyMac led Digital Albums as well, but his total sales, per Nielson SoundScan, were a relatively middling 69,000.

  • Lady Gaga / Photo by Getty Images

    Lady Gaga's Born This Way Ball Heads to North America in 2013

    Lady Gaga is pretty much in the news always, but it's not usually for honest-to-goodness functional newsworthiness. (She has, in the last 24 hours, ridden a bicycle, gotten a tattoo, and reduced her alcohol content.) This morning she announced the first North American installment of her globe-trotting Born This Way Ball via Twitter. The massive tour kicked off in South Korea in April, and will hit Vancouver for its first 2013 stop on January 11 before dipping down into the States and running through mid-March. No openers have been announced yet, but Gaga has a tradition of hand-picking lesser-knowns to break, so here's hoping for Django Django or Trinidad James. The Lady's fourth album ARTPOP is due out in 2013 and is reported to include collaborations with BTW European opener Zedd, SPIN cover star Azealia Banks and, yes, Whitesnake guiarist Doug Aldrich.

  • Sinkane / Photo by Phil Di Fiore

    Yeasayer's Sudan-Born Sinkane Signs With DFA

    Sudanese-born Ahmed Gallab has been a lot of things to a lot of people — most notably, a touring multi-instrumentalist in outfits as diverse as Yeasayer, Caribou, and Of Montreal. But as of this announcement, he'll be best known as Sinkane, the latest disco-damaged signee to James Murphy's DFA Records. The New York-based singer-producer will release his debut LP Mars on October 23, and we've got a pair of album cuts that display his unique sensibility. The funked-up cool soul of "Runnin'" brings to mind ascendant '70s hit "Fly Like an Eagle," while the mellower "Jeeper Creeper" basks in reverbed haze and desert shimmer.

  • Ben Folds Five

    Ben Folds Five Return With 'Erase Me': Preview Their First LP in 13 Years

    It's been 13 years since seminal piano-poppers Ben Folds Five released a proper album, but the ringing silence (is that a diminished seventh we hear?) shall come to an end on September 18 with the arrival of The Sound of the Life of the Mind. Actually, let's push that date up to now, since SPIN has a fresh stream of the forthcoming long-player's first official premiere, "Erase Me." The brand new song takes on a tried and true topic for the Folds: love gone wrong. Between the soulful psych passages reminiscent of Rodriguez and the blurty falsetto'ed piano-pounding sections, "Erase Me" covers a lot of ground with impressive energy and astounding grace. Honestly, it's awesome. And a clear case-maker that the world needs its BFF back. In case you were wondering, the LP's unwieldy title comes from the name of a collaboration therein with High Fidelity author Nick Hornby.

  • Simone White's 'Never Be That Tough' Video

    Simone White Depicts Doomed Bear-Human Romance in 'Never Be That Tough' Clip

    The heartbreaking animated video for Simone White's "Never Be That Tough" is a classic tale, really: bear falls in love with woman, bear pretends he's a man, woman teaches man-bear his true nature, bear-bear eats woman.

  • Cold Cave Start Over With Members of Blood Brothers, AFI, Samhain

    Cold Cave Start Over With Members of Blood Brothers, AFI, Samhain

    In a supergroup-relevant superannouncement, the darkwave ducks of Cold Cave have shared that they'll not only be touring with Divine Fits (members of Wolf Parade, Spoon and New Bomb Turks), but that they're starting anew with a star-studded lineup. Via handwritten note, CC main brain and freshly minted Los Angeleno Wes Eisold unveiled his new band: guitarist Cody Votolato (Blood Brothers), drummer London May (Danzig's Samhain!), bassist Hunter Burgan (AFI) and noisenik David Scott Stone (LCD Soundsystem, the Melvins, No Age). After a pair of West Coast warm-up dates in October, the five-piece will hit the road with the Fits. Upon returning in early November, they'll enter the studio as a group to begin recording Cold Cave's third LP.

  • Guns N' Roses Auction Off Old Clothes Dryer

    Guns N' Roses Auction Off Old Clothes Dryer

    Life is sweaty for a road-doggin', arena-crushing, bandana-sporting group of hard rockers like Guns N' Roses. At least, it was. The band is currently auctioning off a bunch of old, random gear via eBay and included in the bounty is — wait for it — a clothes dryer.. As the AV Club helpfully tells us, it's a W-10 Kenmore Ultra Fabric Care Electric to be exact, and it comes in a GN'R-stenciled road case that's got a hole punched out where the venting duct would go. So yes, that means you can use the machine without removing it from its fancy rock'n'roll house.. And think how fancy and rock'n'roll your house can be with this compact and functional (well, no promises there — buyer beware) addition!

  • Rihanna / Photo by Getty Images

    Rihanna and A$AP Rocky Get Steamy on 'Cockiness' Remix

    MTV has announced that Rihanna will be opening the Video Music Awards with a pair live collabos — "We Found Love" with Calvin Harris and the brand new "Cockiness (Love It)" remix featuring a verse from A$AP Rocky. Her deliciously disgusting team-up with Harlem's resident Pretty Motherfucker was released in streaming form only moments before, and is embedded below. Rocky dives right into the track, spitting fast over the minimal exotic beat before RiRi's steamy chorus. She outdoes him on innuendo 10-1, and the song's otherwise unchanged, but the interplay is a worthy quick-and-dirty thrill nonetheless. The pair apparently first connected at Coachella earlier this year and, according to, um, Ryan Seacrest, "got cozy ... sipping on rum and champagne and flirting a little bit." Consider this the next aggressive action in a very hot cold war.

  • PSY

    'Gangnam Style' PSY Signs With Bieber's Dream Team

    A belated welcome back from the holiday. If you celebrated Labor Day by doing things with people, there's a very good chance that you wound up listening to, watching the video for, or otherwise discussing that oddly dressed K-Pop star with the horse dance everybody's gotta have, PSY. What? Who? If you don't know the name, we'd bet "Gangnam Style" will ring a bell. The video for the song has been viewed over 100 million times via YouTube, with 80 million of those clicks happening over a mere 45 days. It is, most likely, the most widely known Korean-made song to ever exist. Which is why it should come as no surprise that Justin Bieber's manager Scooter Braun wants a piece. In a clip uploaded to PSY's YouTube channel on Monday, the pair announced their plans and clinked plastic cups of the Korean rice booze soju. "So me and PSY here," says Braun.

  • Krist Novoselic with the Vaselines

    Nirvana's Krist Novoselic Joins the Vaselines for 'Sunbeam'

    Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic surprised Seattle's Bumbershoot festival on Monday by joining twee-pop Scots the Vaselines onstage for their song "Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam." The reclusive local appeared clad in all black and wailed on an accordion (!) before bidding his fans adieu with a small wave. While his choice of instrument was unprecedented, the collaboration certainly has its roots: Nirvana covered the same song in 1994 for their hallowed MTV Unplugged performance. Novoselic interviewed the Vaselines' Eugene Kelly for Seattle Weekly last week where, in the midst of a casual chat about nostalgia, Novoselic brought up his newfound obsession with the squeezebox: "I've actually been playing a lot of accordion. I'm obsessed with it. It's really crazy. I don't know what the hell happened to me.

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