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Eminem goes nuts with Kid Rock, Kendrick Lamar, Rick Rubin in 'Berzerk' video: Watch it here

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If Eminem’s championship-level trolling appearance during Saturday night’s Notre Dame/Michigan game wasn’t proof enough of his special kind of whimsy, now there’s his just-premiered video for “Berzerk.”

The clip features guest appearances from Kendrick Lamar, track producer Rick Rubin, Kid Rock, and members of Slaughterhouse. There’s also ample footage of Billy Squier (whose “The Stroke” provides one of the samples that make up the Rubin-produced beat), some backyard wrestling shenanigans, a little riot video, and visual references to both the Beastie Boys’ “So What Cha Want” and Pharcyde’s “Drop.”

Oh, and there’s also a big-ass boombox in there.

It’s a visual feast that, in typical Slim Shady fashion, makes a strident track a lot more palatable. Watch “Berzerk” below.

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Kanye West and Jay Z each announce separate tours

Kanye West, who hasn’t gone on a solo tour since 2008, announced this morning that he’ll embark on The Yeezus Tour, a 23 city North American trek kicking off October 19 in Seattle (the same place West launched his Glow In the Dark tour back in ’08—Yeezy must really dig the Space Needle).

He’s bringing along summer festival VIP Kendrick Lamar as his opening act. Tickets go on sale next Friday, September 13 in most cities, and you can check out all of the dates and venues at the bottom of this post. And if you see your city listed — um, no return dates for you, Kazakhstan — be sure to let your local French bakery know when Kanye is coming; as we know, dude can be pretty demanding.

Not to be outdone, Jay Z also announced a new tour this morning. Jigga’s Magna Carter World Tour finally has its North American bookings, which will begin in St. Paul, Minnesota on November 30 (hope he’s packing a parka). The 34 date run will take him through the new year and includes a pair of stops at his home court in Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on January 12 and 13. Tickets go on sale Thursday, September 12, and the entirety of Jay’s run is below as well.

So the two biggest hip-hop acts in America are going on separate tours, hitting many of the same cities. Let’s assume that the tickets will be impossibly expensive (because let’s face it, most all concert tickets are impossibly expensive), and you can only afford to go to one this fall. Which one do you choose? Let us know in the comments.

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Labor Day Weekend music festivals: Where will you be?

Yes, it’s August 30, and it would take a flux capacitor to stop fall from coming. Whomp whomp.

But we say summer’s not over till somebody sings! Or in the case of the season’s final festivals, many, many bodies — bodies belonging to famous people with albums we enjoy.

Find our very anecdotal guide to some of the best fest options out there this long weekend, and tell us where you’ll be (and what we’ve missed) in the comments below.

The Everybody in the Pool Party: North Coast Music Festival (Chicago)

Featured artists: Passion Pit, Wu Tang, Afrojack, Nas, Gary Clark Jr., Nas, Mac Miller, the Disco Biscuits, Gary Clark Jr., Aluna George, Capital Cities, more.

The Heavy on Rock and Funny People Party: Bumbershoot  (Seattle)

Featured artists: Death Cab for Cutie, Fun., Heart, Kendrick Lamar, Bassnectar, Tegan & Sara, Alt-J, MGMT, Matt and Kim, the Breeders, plus comedians Marc Maron (with WTF Live), Patton Oswalt & Friends, Todd Barry, Reggie Watts, more.

The Made by Jay Z Party: Budweiser Made in America (Philadelphia)

Featured artists: Beyonce, Nine Inch Nails, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Queens of the Stone Age, Imagine Dragons, Public Enemy, 2 Chainz, Miguel, Emeli Sande, Kendrick Lamar, Wiz Khalifa, Solange, Haim, A$AP Rocky, AlunaGeorge, more.

The Sweaty Awesome Block Party:  Fool’s Gold Day Off (Brooklyn)

Featured artists: Duck Sauce, Danny Brown, A$AP Ferg, Migos, Run the Jewels, Unibros, more.

The Officially Bigger Than Glowsticks Dance Party:  Electric Zoo (Randalls Island, New York City)

Featured artists: Avicci, Tiesto, David Guetta, Bassnectar, Armand van Buuren, Sebastian Ingrosso, Steve Aoki, Zedd, Boys Noize, A-Trak, Above & Beyond, Knife Party, Benny Benassi, Baauer, Martin Solveig, Flux Pavilion, Alesso, Showtek

The Heartland Party: Warm Fest (Indianapolis)

Featured artists: Mayer Hawthorne, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Trombone Shorty & the Orleans Avenue, 3rd Bass, Delta Spirit, Big Head Todd & the Monsters, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.

 

Jay Z drops 'Holy Grail' video featuring Justin Timberlake: Watch it here

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Surprisingly, Jay Z didn’t make a single appearance at Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards, despite the fact that it took place inside the arena that he kinda-sorta had a hand in constructing. (Though he and Mrs. Carter did show up for the after-party.)

Perhaps he was just putting the finishing touches on the video for “Holy Grail,” the Justin Timberlake-featuring single that has been sitting in the top 10 since Magna Carta Holy Grail dropped. In the clip, directed by Anthony Mandler, Jigga contemplates Mike Tyson in front of the video monitors from 12 Monkeys inside Daniel Plainview’s dilapidated mansion while presiding over the nightmare feast from Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” video.

There’s a scantily-filled swimming pool and a tower of champagne glasses, as well as Timberlake crooning in front of a burning car. It’s pretty arresting, honestly, and the remixed iteration of the song is miles beyond the album version. 

The clip premiered on Facebook, but you can give it a spin below.  READ FULL STORY

Post VMAs sales spikes: Justin Timberlake and NSYNC top the list

Though NSYNC were only reunited for a total of 110 seconds during Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards, that was enough to get the long-dormant boy band back into the zeitgeist—and into the virtual wallets of music fans.

Justin Timberlake and his compatriots were among the biggest sales victors coming off the VMAs, which don’t tend to provide the same kind of spike as the Grammys but can definitely still make an impact: The NSYNC hits compilation Greatest Hits shot into the top 30 on the iTunes Albums chart in the wake of the combo’s performance of “Girlfriend” and “Bye Bye Bye” on MTV’s big show.

And while Timberlake’s current album The 20/20 Experience has been a top 10 staple on iTunes since its release, Sunday night’s show clearly boosted preorders of the forthcoming The 20/20 Experience: 2 of 2, which is one of three preorders currently sitting in the top 20. (The others are Miley Cyrus’ Bangerz and Katy Perry’s Prism; Lady Gaga’s ARTPOP rests just outside that space at 21.) READ FULL STORY

Eminem goes old school on new single 'Berzerk': Hear it here

Eminem’s work has always vacillated between super-serious and turned-to-11 goofballery. His last album, the multi-platinum Recoverywas mostly the former, so it makes sense that the first single from Slim Shady’s forthcoming new album MMLP2 would focus on the latter.

“Berzerk,” which was teased during Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards, premiered last night on Eminem’s SiriusXM station Shade 45. It was produced by Rick Rubin and finds Mr. Mathers darting between old-school references, including some Beastie Boys nods and a bite of Billy Squier’s “The Stroke.”  Listen below: READ FULL STORY

Russell Simmons on his new YouTube channel and the controversial 'Harriet Tubman Sex Tape'

Russell Simmons is no stranger to controversy: Over the course of his career as the business mastermind behind outlets like Def Jam Records and Def Comedy Jam, he’s gotten plenty of heat over content that was considered edgy, political, and vulgar. As he notes, “They almost shut down my company over Public Enemy.”

But the swirl of negativity surrounding Harriet Tubman Sex Tape, one of the shorts that is a part of his just-launched All Def Digital channel on YouTube, was too much. The piece, which depicted the famous titular abolitionist bedding an older white man she refers to as “Massa,” was taken down—though not without considerable hand-wringing from Simmons.

“For my entire life, I have been protective of artistic freedom and protective of artists,” he told EW via phone. “In the history of Def Comedy Jam or Def Poetry Jam or Def Jam Records, I have never censored an artist. But I took it down, because all the artists involved agreed it was okay. What broke my heart was how upset and enraged black women were.” READ FULL STORY

Eminem drops new song 'Survival': Hear it here

Guess who’s back? Back again? Shady’s back! Tell a video game fan!

There hasn’t been new Eminem music in a while, though he did announce that he’d have a new album out in 2013 thanks to a hat he was selling. Now comes a brand new track called “Survival,” which will not only appear on said upcoming album but also on the soundtrack to Call of Duty: Ghosts, the latest entry in the massively successful fist-person shooter franchise.

When we last heard Slim Shady, he was teaming up with his old pal Royce Da 5’9″ for the return of the team Bad Meets Evil, and they scored hits with “Fast Lane” and the Bruno Mars-assisted “Lighters.” The last time Marshall Mathers rapped solo, it was for 2010′s Recovery, which yielded the chart-toppers “Not Afraid” and “Love the Way You Lie.”

More details about Eminem’s new album, including a release date and a single, will be forthcoming. For now, give “Survival,” a guitar-heavy banger cut from the same cloth as “Won’t Back Down,” a listen below (though good luck hearing the lyrics underneath all that digital gunfire). UPDATE: Hear the non-shooty version below too.  READ FULL STORY

Drake responds to Amanda Bynes sex tweet: 'It's a little weird and disturbing'

Back in March, onetime Lucille Ball cypher and current professional crazy person Amanda Bynes unleashed what is undoubtedly the greatest tweet in the short history of Twitter: Apropos of nothing, she announced, “I want @drake to murder my vagina.”

A month later, she decided that he was ugly. How did Drake process Bynes’ shifting enthusiasm for him?

Very calmly but with profound confusion, as it turns out. In an interview with XXL, Drake was asked about the tweets and said, “I don’t even know who that is doing that or what that’s about. If that is her, I guess it’s a little weird and disturbing. It’s obviously a behavioral pattern that is way bigger than me. Whoever is behind it, whether it’s her or somebody else, they know people are paying attention so they keep it going.”

So to recap: Even if Bynes still wanted Drake to end the life of her birth canal, he wouldn’t be into it, and in fact would be skeptical that such a request was actually legitimate. Thanks, Internet!

Meanwhile, Bynes remains in involuntary psychiatric hold in California, and Drake’s new album Nothing Was the Same will be out in September.

Chris Brown says he may quit music

If his tweets are to be believed, we may not have Chris Brown to push around much longer.

Though the controversial R&B star has a new album coming at the end of the month called X, he announced on Twitter that he probably only has one other album left in him. “Don’t worry mainstream America,” he wrote, “After this X album, it’ll probably be my last album.” He followed that up with the statement, “Being famous is amazing when it’s for ur music and talent. I’m tired of being famous for a mistake I made when i was 18. I’m cool & over it!”

The “mistake” mentioned in that tweet is, presumably, his arrest for domestic assault after attacking then-girlfriend Rihanna the night before the Grammy Awards in 2009. (It should be noted, of course, that Brown was actually 19 when that incident occurred, but math is hard.) And he’s not done making mistakes—just yesterday, Brown turned himself into authorities in Los Angeles to be booked for a hit-and-run case against him.

Though this retirement idea probably won’t stick (the only stars whose retirements mean less than musicians are professional wrestlers), it should be noted that Brown’s nearly 13 million Twitter followers have been getting quite a stream of downers recently, including melancholy musings like “Home don’t feel like home. Too many empty rooms” and “Aspire to be great and the person you wanna be. Don’t conform because ur worth is more than any money or status. We live. We die.”

But with all that new time on his hands, what will Brown do with his time? Leave your suggestions in the comments.

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