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OutKast comeback: Andre 3000 and Big Boi rock Coachella

“I know it’s kind of weird… 20 years later.” Andre 3000’s last words from OutKast’s 90-minute performance summarized the nostalgia, bizarre ambivalence, adrenal brilliance, and unadulterated joy that surrounded the duo’s much-trumpeted reunion at the 2014 Coachella Music Festival.

You didn’t need to guess at the level of anticipation; you merely had to listen to the squeals on the Indio field.  From the smoke machines and fog to the humid red lights and scarred American flag backdrop, to their magnetic charisma and take-it-or-leave-it attitude, the moment felt closer to a big-tent revival than a reunion.

If you wanted the greatest-hits set, you got it: from first song ”B.O.B. (Bombs Over Baghdad)” to the finale, an aloof rendition of “Hey Ya.” There were guest spots from Janelle Monae, Future, and long-time Dungeon Family hook guru, Sleepy Brown (even if the majority of the young Indio crowd inevitably mistook him for the late Isaac Hayes). But if you expected the OutKast Super Fun-Fun Happy Hour, you might have been gravely disappointed. READ FULL STORY

Wu-Tang Clan to release one copy of new album, sell it for millions

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When Wu-Tang Clan does something, they do it all the way. Case in point: The group’s crazy secret new album strategy that the world learned about yesterday in an extensive Forbes story.

As the product’s official website indicates, the legendary rap team’s stealthy new record is called The Wu – Once Upon a Time in Shaolin. There’ll only be one copy of the album… like, ever. It’ll be grandly “presented in a hand carved nickel-silver box designed by the British Moroccan artist Yahya,” and yes, it looks as fancy as it sounds. Before that one copy is sold, though, civilians can listen to the album when it embarks on an ambitious tour of museums, galleries, festivals, and other such happenings around the world. Then after that, the item will go up for sale, with an expected price range somewhere in the multi-millions.

Deep breath, guys:

READ FULL STORY

The xx live at the Armory in New York: On the scene

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There may not be many new tricks in the modern concert handbook (
not good ones, anyway) but it was hard not to feel like a part of something special last night at the xx show at New York’s Park Avenue Armory.

The British dream-pop trio’s run in the historic New York space certainly defies typical rock-show math: 11 nights, each with two 50-minute performances for an audience of no more than 40 people, in a room so enormous (the main hall is 55,000 square feet) that it looks scaled to aircraft carriers, not humans.

In fact, the actual performance space was surprisingly small—at least at first. After being ushered in through a side door into a cramped basement room, the evening’s forty golden-ticket holders were led like obedient hostages through a winding series of sheetrock-dusted corridors and into a modest square that looked like the war room of a Bond villain, with its rubberized floor and black-clad minions. The minions, of course, were the band: Identically poker-faced, angularly coiffed, and completely silent as the audience filed in and were instructed to stand around the perimeter.

“Should we all take our clothes off now?” A friend leaned over and whispered. And it did have a little bit of a Wicker Man-meets-Eyes Wide Shut vibe, as if we were about to witness either a virgin sacrifice or a wild goat orgy. But then the first notes of music rang out: the spare, shimmering guitar line of the band’s 2012 single “Angels.” READ FULL STORY

Kate Bush returning to stage after 35 years

This woman’s work is not done — Kate Bush, twirling alt icon and high priestess of hill running, will return to the stage for the first time since 1979, she announced today.

You’ll have to be British or buy a pretty expensive airplane ticket to see her though; so far, she’s only confirmed 15 concerts at the Hammersmith Apollo in London, beginning Aug. 26.

The singer unofficially retired from touring after just one six-week run in the late ’70s for various reasons, including a fear of flying and the accidental death of her lighting director, 21-year-old Bill Duffield.

According to the London Telegraph, Bush, 55, has become the most popular search term on ticket selling site Viagogo since her announcement, beating out demand for tickets for the likes of Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, and Katy Perry.

NeedToBreathe's 'The Heart': Watch the video here -- EXCLUSIVE

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The latest song from the South Carolina rockers NEEDTOBREATHE will be on the band’s upcoming fifth album, Rivers in the Wasteland, due April 15. But for now you can see the official video for the track, co-written by brothers Bear and Bo Rinehart, exclusively on EW.com: READ FULL STORY

This radio station's been playing Nelly's 'Hot in Herre' on a loop... since Friday

How hot can it possibly get?

A radio station in San Fransisco has been playing Nelly’s 2002 hit “Hot in Herre” on an endless loop since Friday afternoon. And not because a DJ has gone insane: The loop is part of a publicity stunt. Monday night, the Univision-owned Latino Mix 105.7 is relaunching as Hot 105.7, RadioInsights.com reports. Once the switch happens, the Nelly flashback will stop.

The “Hot In Herre” loop has inspired the hashtag #Nelly1057, which Nelly himself has naturally jumped on.

If you’re not in the Bay area, never fear; put a band-aid on your face and relive 2002 below: READ FULL STORY

SXSW: Jack Antonoff, Vic Mensa shine at Woodie Awards

Since its inception, MTV’s Woodies Festival has acted as one of SXSW’s great clearinghouses of acts who are poised to break. Though the 1975, Childish Gambino, and Iggy Azalea held the headlining slots, the afternoon fest seemed built around only the second live performance for Jack Antonoff’s new band Bleachers.

The fun. guitarist’s side group dropped its first single “I Wanna Get Better” about a month ago, and it has been searching for a momentum push. Perhaps Antonoff should have chosen a better single — the borderline strident “I Wanna Get Better” appeared to be the outlier during Bleachers’ brief set, with the rest of the material made up of the sort of dark, slippery guitar pop that could score the best kind of John Hughes movie. As a band leader, Antonoff’s croon and cadence eerily match those of the Killers’ Brandon Flowers’, though considering Flowers is one of the great frontmen of this generation, that should probably be considered a compliment. Of the songs introduced, the ominous “Shadow” and the anthemic “Wild Heart” both sound like potential breakout hits, though if all else fails, they have a perfectly fine future as a Tom Petty cover band, since their run through “Don’t Come Around Here No More” was the highlight of the entire afternoon.

The other big breakout was Vic Mensa, the Chicago-based rapper who is a member of the Save Money crew alongside Chance the Rapper (among others). READ FULL STORY

J.Lo's 'I Luh Ya Papi' turns the tables on rap videos: Watch it here

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Sick of all the under-dressed ladies that rappers like to have decorating their sets like sexy lawn ornaments? So is Jennifer Lopez.

That’s why she decided to put men in tiny bikini bottoms, slather them in oil and perch them around the pool. No, I’m not (just) describing her home life: It’s J. Lo’s new music video!

On American Idol Thursday night, Lopez unveiled her video for “I Luh Ya Papi” — a clip that turns the tables on rap video stereotypes. And it’s pretty glorious. At one point she’s on a yacht, pouring champagne in some guy’s Speedo. This isn’t exactly moving us past the sexual objectification of music videos, but it sure is fun to watch:

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SXSW Music 2014: 20 acts to see

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The annual South By Southwest festival/conference/conventio-con is underway, with the music getting started in earnest on Tuesday and rolling headlong through Saturday night.

This year’s event has its share of big name visitors: Lady Gaga will be delivering the keynote address and performing, and the likes of Coldplay, Kendrick Lamar, Soundgarden, and Pitbull will be headlining a series of shows as part of the iTunes Festival.

But SXSW was originally designed as a showcase for new music, a place where baby bands could get their first big taste of exposure and where those artists who were about to break finally actually broke. EW will be on the ground covering acts both big and small, including these 20 on-the-cusp artists we’re going out of our way to check out.

Temples: Throwback psychedelia is hard to do, but this British quartet blends just the right amount of crushing beauty and off-kilter left turns.

Angel Olsen: In the grand tradition of PJ Harvey, Olsen marries muscular guitar with her delicate warble for blow-away blasts of folk-rock and power blues.

Perfect Pussy: Despite their censor-baiting name (and what honestly seems like a pretty standard-issue fuzz-punk sound), there’s a lot of buzz on this Syracuse foursome.

Sleepy Kitty: For fans of Sleigh Bells — but sub in post-grunge jangle for noisecore.

Cloud Nothings: Noisy Cleveland-based anarchists nearly made it big with their exceptional 2012 album Attack on Memory. Could the bigger, badder, forthcoming Here and Nowhere Else put them over the top?

Vertical Scratchers: Ultra-fuzzy indie jangle care of a pair of blissed out Californians.

SKATERS: Four New Yorkers who split the difference between driving punk surges and carefully-curated sonic tapestries, all wrapped in a whatever-man sneer.

ScHoolboy Q: Sure, he topped the charts with his latest album OxyMoron, but the top lieutenant in Kendrick Lamar’s army is ready to take the next step into household name-ness.

Chet Faker: The Australian’s downtempo bedroom R&B that would swerve dangerously into the cheese lane were it not for bearded mastermind Nick Murphy’s convincingly syrupy baritone.

You Blew It!: Don’t look now, but an emo revival is about to kick into gear, and this Orlando-based combo are the finest purveyors of the new pollution.

Oh Honey: Nothing but positive jams for this strummy, soulful Brooklyn duo. Like Matt & Kim with better production values.

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Daft Punk/Jay Z collaboration leaks -- LISTEN

Wow.

A Daft Punk/Jay Z collaboration has leaked; Pitchfork confirms it’s real (and that Kanye wasn’t involved). It’s not clear whether the song is a leftover from Jay’s Magna Carta Holy Grail or Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories (or neither),and it’s currently unknown if an official release  for the track, called “Computerized,” is planned. (A rep did not immediately return request for confirmation that the track is legit.)

(As some have pointed out, it’s also possible that the whole thing is just an internet Franken-baby; that keyboard line is a loop from Daft Punk’s Tron: Legacy track “Son of Flynn”, but the date and source of the Jay Z verse is still unknown.)

So how does it sound? Listen below to find out: READ FULL STORY

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