Chris Martins



  • Kanye West Depeche Mode Personal Yeezus Black Skinhead Single

    Kanye West's 'Black Skinhead' Is Cleaned Up for Radio, Mashed Up for 'Personal Yeezus'

    Kanye West and Depeche Mode have more in common than one might think. The former has of late been toying with the idea that he may be a god (though not the God), while the latter's most enduring song is about one mortal playing the role of savior to another. Enter "Personal Yeezus," a mashup of West's Yeezus highlight "Black Skinhead" and D-Mode's "Personal Jesus." It doesn't hurt that there's that native shuffle beat girding both tracks.In related news, "Black Skinhead" will get the official single treatment, Billboard confirms. Despite West's early assertions that he'd eschew traditional means of promotion — "I have got a new strategy; it's called no strategy," he said at a Yeezus listening party — the aggressive track has received a radio edit and a video is in the works, possibly in time for the Fourth of July. Yeezus debuted at No.

  • Sic Alps 'Carrie Jean' Video She's on Top

    Watch Sic Alps Tell the Story of Prison Queen 'Carrie Jean'

    Sic Alps are hardly your standard San Fran garage-rock gang. Sure, they enjoy the fuzz and the clang like anyone else, but they pull heavily from classic psychedelia. Last year's fantastic self-titled album featured a nod or two to Sgt. Pepper's, and new song "Carrie Jean" owes a bit to Pink Floyd in parts. The darkly menacing track hails from their recently released She's on Top EP, via Drag City, and finds main man Mike Donovan singing about a woman who's behind bars. The accompanying video is ominous in its simplicity, interspersing close shots of a typewriter in action with ethereal images of people and patterns. The band holds it together nearly the entire length of the song, but things devolve gloriously in the end as the guitar makes angular outward jabs from the center of the dirge and wild whooping fills the air.

  • Cass McCombs 'Morning Star' Video

    Cass McCombs Asks What It's Like to Crap in the Cosmos on 'Morning Star'

    Mysterious folky Cass McCombs has made a point of maintaining privacy throughout his career, rarely granting interviews and never settling in one city for very long. It seems he's now got his eyes set on the most exotic of locales: outer space. And what he wants to do when he gets there is indeed a very private matter. On the new song "Morning Star," over lovely strumming and humble hand percussion, he queries ever so tenderly, "What's it like to shit in space?" McCombs being McCombs, he manages to infuse even that line with a certain wide-eyed philosophical curiosity. Meanwhile, the almost beachy song, though spare, is still a bit of a departure from Wit's End or Humor Risk, both from 2011 and tending toward the hushed and sluggish. Directed by Patrick O'Dell, the accompanying video includes vintage skateboarding footage that helps lend to the tracks breezy bygone vibes.

  • Joey Badass 95 Til Infinity Video Summer Knights

    Joey Bada$$ Menacingly Rides a Bike in '95 Til Infinity' Video

    On July 1, Joey Bada$$ will release his hotly anticipated Summer Knights mixtape, which so far looks to be a gruff and gritty set of throwback boom-bap assisted by DOOM, Alchemist, Statik Selektah, and Lee Bannon among others. One early, particularly nostalgic highlight from that set is "95 Til Infinity," whose title subs in Joey's year of birth for that of the classic Souls of Mischief hit "93 'Til Infinity." That song now gets a music video befitting its inspiration — which is a bit more Black Moon than Hieroglyphics — finding Bada$$ and pals stalking the streets of New York City rocking bucket hats (so many bucket hats), bicycles and, yes, one of those Beats by Dre pill speakers that's in every music video right now. Also, heads up for the Hiero third-eye T-shirt. oG $wank directs, and shares an endearing blooper at the end of the clip.

  • Jay-Z David Letterman Marquee New York Live

    Jigga Where? Jay-Z to Perform Atop David Letterman's Big Sign

    UPDATE: New York City has reportedly canceled the performance.Jay-Z will celebrate the impending release of his 12th studio album Magna Carta Holy Grail by performing on top of the marquee of Manhattan's iconic Ed Sullivan Theater. The free July 8 performance will coincide with an appearance from Hova on the Late Show With David Letterman, reports the New York Post. He apparently received permission from the city, who will have to shut down Broadway between West 53rd and 54th during rush hour as a result.As XXL explains, Jigga's plans for an awning takeover date back to 2010 when he'd hoped to perform with Eminem in the same location. At the time, he wasn't able to get the go-ahead from Mayor Bloomberg's office.

  • Twin Peaks 'Irene' Sunken Stream

    Twin Peaks the Band Channel 'Twin Peaks' the Show on Drifty Dreamer 'Irene'

    Best New Artists alums Twin Peaks are closing in on the release of Sunken, the Chicago garage-pop outfit's debut LP due July 9 on Autumn Tone. We first heard their surf'n'shred "chill guy" anthem "Stand in the Sand" in April, and then we saw the gang of 19-year-olds raise hell in the video for "Fast Eddie." Now we get to see the softer side of the band on "Irene," a dreamy swooner that seems perfectly fit for summer evenings spent out under the darkening sky. The shuffling drums and glistening guitars strike a careful balance between propulsion and drift, while Cadien Lake James coos about the complications of love. This slower song does a better job of bridging the young band to the music of their titular inspiration, David Lynch's Twin Peaks.

  • Rick Ross Rolex Bill 90K Lawsuit Maybach

    Rick Ross Maybe Kinda Sorta Forgot to Pay His Rolex Bill

    Rick Ross is being sued for not paying his Rolex bill. TMZ reports that the Maybach Music kingpin owes Houston, Texas ice outlet Johnny's Custom Jewelry nearly $90,000 for three diamond-studded wristwatches that the Florida rapper ordered last August. The lawsuit alleges that the pieces were delivered but never paid for, asking for $89,847.50 plus interest to settle the tab.TMZ has obtained a copy of the receipt, which shows two Rolexes made of 18-carat gold (one with 30 carats of diamonds, the other with seven), and a third two-tone watch with five carats of diamonds. They cost $55,000, $14,000, and $14,000, respectively. Calls to the Bawse's people apparently went unreturned, probably because Ross has no comeback for this: "Hey Ricky. How much did those watches cost you? U.O.E.N.O.?"Of course, it could be he was planning to pay, but then Reebok took away his millions.

  • Pillar Point 'Dreamin' 'Diamond Mine' Polyvinyl stream

    Hear Pillar Point's Surging Synth-Pop Fantasy 'Dreamin''

    Pillar Point likes to keep things mysterious. Little is known about the Seattle synth-and-song project, but the calming vocals and glistening production put the man seen above in a class with Active Child and Superhumanoids — new romantics whose approach to songcraft is as heartfelt as it is carefully composed. With a home now on Polyvinyl Records, Pillar Point has a 7-inch on the way later this year. The upbeat A-side "Diamond Mine" has been circulating for a bit and now we have "Dreamin'," a slowly surging song whose mood is neatly summed up by the first words uttered: "Like a summer dream." The combination of bass-line and beat gives the track a powerful earthly thrust, while our host paints a surreal picture of love in the clouds. For more, explore the Pillar Point and Polyvinyl sites. 

  • Soko Ariel Pink Monster Love Video

    Soko and Ariel Pink Actualize Some 'Monster Love' in Charming Short Film

    Actress and singer Soko has laid down years of groundwork in her native France, but she's now looking to expand her audience stateside. With an assist from Community Music — the label founded by Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe and Ima Robot — for both her recently released I Thought I Was an Alien LP and the forthcoming My Dreams Dictate My Reality, she should have more than a fighting chance. The VHS-shot short film above offers an able assist as well, setting a charming narrative to a pair of songs: the unreleased "Monster Love" featuring Ariel Pink, and Alien's "I Just Want to Make It New With You."Set to humble-yet-pretty bedroom pop, the Soko-directed clip follows a well-meaning monster's attempts to find romance in a city full of regular humans (and the occasional mermaid).

  • Franz Ferdinand 'Love Illumination' 'Right Action'

    Hear Franz Ferdinand's Well-Timed 'Love Illumination' and 'Right Action'

    Michaels of the world rejoice — Franz Ferdinand are dancing again. The Glaswegian post-punk posse are prepping their fourth full-length at last. Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action will be released on August 27 via Domino Records, and the first two tastes of the thing are available to stream now. Above you'll find "Love Illumination," an angular and crunchy groover that balances high-minded thought against visceral action (the FF M.O., essentially). In light of yesterday's big news, lyrics about finding "love elevation" in a "brave new world" feel perfectly timed. And below we have "Right Action," a disco-kissed track that seems to pull equally from the Talking Heads and the DFA Records stable. The war-whoops, hyperactive guitar, and blaring horns make the semi-titular track a very, very promising sign of what's to come.

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