While you were busy this week dealing with life, a thousand more hours of music were released and a million words were written about them. More importantly, one very saucy cover image of
-- Budding British pop singer
-- The cover of Nicki Minaj's forthcoming single, "Anaconda," was made public, offered in part to eclipse the middling performance of her last single, "Pills N Potions." It's done the job, with a host of memes, a Photoshop scandal and no doubt many awestruck adolescents trying to wrap their heads around their reigning favorite booty.
-- The annual Gathering of the Juggalos is the yang to Coachella's yin. Where the latter celebrates sun, lithe beauty and the latest fashion, the Gathering, hosted and founded by the Insane Clown Posse, celebrates flesh, face paint and clowns while pondering the miracles of nature. Judging by the many not-safe-for-work slide shows, this year's Juggalo party was as raucous as ever. But mashed with
-- The Los Angeles electronic music scene continues to blossom. But where once it was mostly centered on a post-hip hop beats scene, the emergent techno and house landscape has brought further attention. XLR8R Magazine goes long on "LA Story" to celebrate the labels, DJs and producers making a dent on the city's dance floors.
-- Young rock-star-to-be Courtney Barnett has been gradually, gracefully ascending as a performer while gathering a devoted tribe. And, as this live performance at KEXP illustrates, she's earning the attention honestly.
-- Also on
-- Not that anyone needs an excuse to post this devastating clip of James Brown, but the arrival of the biopic "Get On Up" seals the deal. Here's James Brown performing on "The T.A.M.I. Show" in 1964. It was recorded at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, a space that should be deemed a historic landmark as result.
-- At the risk of infecting your brain with another "Royals" earworm, New Zealand singer Lorde is back in the news. The magnetic singer will be curating the new "Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1" soundtrack. (And music supervisors the world over shift uncomfortably in their seats.)
-- "Jenny Lewis not only has a new album, she has a new wine." S. Irene Virbila writes on the singer's new bottle (available for purchase at the excellent Domaine LA wine shop). If you get too drunk on her wine, make sure to have
-- Got $60 million?
-- How did the whole notion of a "song of the summer" become so? "Essentially, no one was talking much about the idea of the Song of the Summer before the mid-'90s," writes Chris Molanphy at Slate, "and it's really accelerated in the last half-decade." A fascinating look at the history of an idea.
-- Win Butler talked touring, percussion and future music with me for Friday's story in The Times. The takeaway: After they close the tour at the end of August, "we're done touring for the foreseeable future," said Butler. More important for fans: He's feeling inspired to work on new material.
"Even at nighttime, I'm just so itchy to be creative again, and it's very hard to do on the road," he said. "I can definitely feel that. Even being home for a couple weeks, I just feel insane, like I want to think about other music and start to dream again."