Marc Hogan

writer

Biography

  • CANT, 'Dreams Come True' (Terrible/Warp)

    Besides playing in New York art-rock ensemble Grizzly Bear, Chris Taylor also runs his own Terrible label, producing like-minded acts Twin Shadow and the Morning Benders, plus recording as CANT (a collaboration with Twin Shadow's George Lewis Jr.). It's too bad Dreams Come True doesn't match the multi-talented multi-instrumentalist's active pace. This full-length debut confirms Taylor's love for Arthur Russell's underwater electronic grooves, but these fussy, avant-prog slow jams rarely come up for air. Only the fluttery, Grizzly Bear-like baroque pop of "She Found a Way Out" truly breathes.

  • The Drums, 'Portamento' (Frenchkiss)

    The Drums, 'Portamento' (Frenchkiss)

    With a foppish yodel and a jaunty guitar shuffle, this Brooklyn band's self-titled 2010 debut LP slotted easily alongside descendants of the Smiths and the Strokes. Maybe too easily. Guitarist Adam Kessler's exit makes room for a more overtly expansive approach on the Drums' just as solid sophomore outing, with chopped-up vocals, burbling synths, and cooing harmonies that should place them firmly in the sophisticated-yet-naive pop tradition of Saint Etienne or Swedish labels Service, Sincerely Yours, and Labrador. The Drums was as sunny as new romance, though; emotionally conflicted and at times misanthropic, Portamento is about finding out that only love can break your heart.

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    Gaga, Usher, U2 Duo to Play Clinton Tribute Show

    The nonprofit run by former President Bill Clinton is celebrating its 10th anniversary in a big way. Lady Gaga and Usher will perform at the October 15 concert, the William J. Clinton Foundation said this morning. U2's the Edge and Bono are also set to perform as an acoustic duo at the event, which takes place at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles and will stream live via Yahoo!. The foundation says it will announce other performers later. "A Decade of Difference: A Concert Celebrating 10 Years of the William J. Clinton Foundation" is intended to build exposure for the foundation's work, Clinton says in news release announcing the event. "In the past decade, commitments to my Clinton Global Initiative have improved the lives of more than 300 million people around the world," the former president says.

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    Bradford Cox Fronts Black Lips As Joey Ramone

    Halloween is six weeks off, but don't tell Deerhunter and Atlas Sound frontman Bradford Cox. He posed as Joey Ramone during the Black Lips' show Saturday night, complete with long black wig and black leather jacket. Watch their performance below (via Pitchfork and ifilmbands). Playing at Southern Comfort Lounge in Conley, GA, Cox joined the Lips for a cover of Bobby Freeman oldie "Do You Wanna Dance?". Of course, they did the song the Ramones' way. Cox's costumed appearance wasn't a total surprise. As Pitchfork points out, the Atlanta musician commandeered the Black Lips' Twitter feed earlier that same day, at one point typing, "There are rumors of a resurrected ghost making a guest appearance at tonight's show." As usual, Cox has plenty of other projects in the works. His latest Atlas Sound album, Parallax, is due out November 8 -- hear first taste "Terra Incognita" here.

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    French Electro Producer DJ Mehdi Dead at 34

    French electro producer DJ Mehdi has died, Consequence of Sound reports. Born Mehdi Favéris-Essadi, the 34-year-old reportedly died due to "an accident," though further details remain unclear. Known for massive electro-house productions, Mehdi released solo work as part of the Paris collective Ed Banger, and he collaborated with Chromeo and Justice's Xavider de Rosnay, as well as fellow French producers Riton, Cassius, and Busy P. On Twitter, DJ Cut Killer was apparently the first to make news of Mehdi's death public. Writing in French, the Moroccan-born DJ said, "DJ Mehdi !!! There are no words to tell you the sorrow which I feel... A friend goes from there... Rest in peace fréro." Other artists responding to Mehdi's death include Drake, Chromeo, Kid Sister, Miike Snow, Murs, and RJD2, who adds: "He had a great spirit about him.

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    LISTEN: Cool Mixes From Jamie xx

    Jamie xx has put his stamp on enough new music in the past few weeks to take up most of your morning. On August 27, the xx producer/percussionist and Gil Scott-Heron remixer spun a two-hour BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix, which you can check out here. This week, he's back with a 30-minute mix of house and garage for FACT magazine, which you can download here. Did we say "morning"? The FACT mix is actually better suited for late-night listening, and it features mostly moody, tranquil tracks-- including alternate takes on a couple of previous Jamie xx remixes. The BBC mix closes with a preview of Jamie xx's remix for Radiohead's The King of Limbs track "Bloom," which is set to show up on Radiohead remix compilation TKOL RMX 1234567 when it arrives October 11. Earlier this year, Jamie xx added a tinge of futuristic calypso on his import-only 12" single "Far Nearer," issued in the U.K.

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    St. Vincent to Sing for HBO's 'Boardwalk Empire'

    On the same day St. Vincent mastermind Annie Clark releases her brand-new album, Strange Mercy, comes word SPIN's September Style Issue cover subject will also be trying her hand at some much older music. Clark has added her name to the ranks of singers recording songs from the 1910s and 1920s for HBO's Boardwalk Empire, according to Billboard. She joins Justin Townes Earle, the Moldy Peaches' Adam Green, and New York Dolls' David Johansen in contributing tracks to the show's second season, which premieres Sept. 25. St. Vincent's Clark, in Los Angeles to perform for radio station KCRW and Amoeba Records, and Earle were set to go into the studio for Boardwalk Empire this week. That means they just missed the cut for the show's first soundtrack, which drops today via Elektra.

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    More 'Siamese'-Era Pumpkins Music Surfaces

    Billy Corgan's online record club is already proving to be a treasure trove for Smashing Pumpkins fans. Corgan launched the service recently by offering up an early version of Pumpkins' 1992 track "Drown" and a two-track demo of "Geek U.S.A.", both for the price of an e-mail address. Over the weekend, fan blog Hipsters United found another unreleased Siamese Dream-era take hidden on the Pumpkins website. Titled "Barb Wire," the rough track resembles little-known Smashing Pumpkins cut "Tulips" with the vocals submerged even lower in the mix. It's one of the band's heavier songs, with distorted guitar in the foreground even on the "Tulips" version. Here, the guitar sounds somewhat less heavily processed, with wailing mini-solos between verses. Check it out below. Corgan, who announced the record club in an August 20 YouTube video, has promised "so much more free stuff" on the way.

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    Radiohead's Greenwood Plays With Aphex Twin

    At the turn of the millennium, Radiohead and Aphex Twin were each separately responsible for helping drag alternative-rock fans kicking and screaming into the world of electronic music. In the early 1960s, Krzysztof Penderecki composed experimental pieces that made use of harsh, jostling dissonance, eventually making him a popular soundtrack choice for directors of ominous movies. Over the weekend, the three came together, as the Radiohead's Johnny Greenwood, Aphex Twin maestro Richard D.

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    Drake Posts Three New Tracks, Joined by Waka, Ross


    Drake's records suggest late nights at the club. The Canadian rapper-singer's blog, however, suggests he spent the wee hours of Saturday night in front of his computer, uploading three new tracks: "Club Paradise," the Rick Ross-featuring "Free Spirit," and a remix of Waka Flocka Flame's "Round of Applause." 

 "Club Paradise" and "Free Spirit" are both produced by 40, aka Noah Shebib, who has also worked on songs by Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, and Trey Songz in addition to Drake's Thank Me Later. On "Club Paradise," Drake returns to a familiar topic -- feeling out of place in the fast-money circuit -- as 40 supplies woozy slow-motion backing.

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