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Tag: In the Studio (31-40 of 41)

'Glee' star Matthew Morrison on his upcoming album: 'I'm drawing inspiration from Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Sammy Davis, Jr.'

Matthew Morrison, nominated for a Golden Globe this weekend for Glee, is busy shooting the hit Fox series but took a break to talk about his new deal with Mercury Records and his upcoming album. The actor says that Mercury was the label who best understood his musical taste. “To be honest, they really were the people that got my vision,” admits Morrison. “What I’m creating has yet to be defined yet but I want it to be something very diverse. For me, music is about creating a mood. The best songs for me are songs that I just lose myself in.” While it’s tentatively scheduled to drop later this year, Morrison says he’s a little nervous about recording an album so quickly. “That seems pretty fast,” admits Morrison. “I don’t wanna put out a crap CD. I want it to be with substance. I don’t wanna be singing about money or handbags.” So, what will the album sound like? Think old-school. “I’m drawing my inspiration from like Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Jr. All those people that kind of did it all: film, TV, Broadway. I’m just so influenced by that music.”

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)

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Wyclef Jean raises over $2 million for Haiti: How you can help
‘Crazy Heart’: T Bone Burnett and Ryan Bingham talk about the movie’s music, Leonard Cohen, and onstage vomiting
Adam Lambert’s ‘Whataya Want From Me’ video: Whataya think of it?
Katy Perry in the studio: Producer Dr. Luke talks with EW

Radiohead 'definitely' planning new album in 2010, says guitarist

Here are six words to warm any Radiohead fan’s heart: “WE WILL BE MAKING AN ALBUM!” That’s what guitarist Ed O’Brien seems to have told (or shouted at) the NME, according to an interview in the latest issue of the U.K. magazine. Of course, we’ve known for some time that the band has been busy in the studio this year. It’s still very nice to get such direct new confirmation, especially after a widely-circulated interview with The Believer this summer in which frontman Thom Yorke appeared to be implying that the band might stick to one-off singles and such from now on.

O’Brien assures the NME that Yorke was “misquoted,” promising that the studio sessions Radiohead has booked for this winter will “definitely” lead to a full-length physical album in 2010. Hallelujah! In fact, he goes on at some length about how much he and the other band members love the tangible artwork that comes with vinyl and CDs. Given the gorgeous packaging that has accompanied each of Radiohead’s releases for the past decade and a half, I can’t say that’s a shock.

Is it too early to start speculating about what Radiohead’s LP8 might sound like? O’Brien tells the NME that this summer’s free single “These Are My Twisted Words” isn’t necessarily an indicator, which is too bad since I really love that song. Clearly Radiohead’s creative juices are flowing right now, though — just look at all the fantastic new material Yorke played at his recent solo shows. I trust them to come up with something mind-blowing once they get back into the studio.

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Avril Lavigne in the studio: An EW exclusive!

Avril Lavigne didn’t mean to start recording a new album. “It just happened,” she says of the still-untitled November 17th release. “I made a record without even feeling like I made a record.”

Sitting in a studio in Tarzana, Calif., with her feet — clad in a pair of vinyl hightops — propped up on a mixing board, the now 24 year old pop-punk princess barely looks a day older than she did when “Complicated” took the airwaves by storm in 2002. “I’m sitting on the piano writing in the foyer, and he’s in the studio, and it’s like, ‘Hey. I like that.’”

“He” is Lavigne’s husband (and Sum 41 frontman) Deryck Whibley, who has used the couple’s home studio to produce eight of the nine tracks she’s recorded so far. “I think this is taking the spirit of what she’s done on previous records so much further,” he says. “It’s way more meaningful, has more of an impact, more emotional. It makes me feel something more than the other stuff. And I wanted to match that musically with the track.”

Lavigne seems thrilled to have such a crack in-house production partner. “He knows me. We spend a lot of time together,” she laughs, in her habitual cackle. “And the cool thing is, if he’s recording something and I don’t like it, I can be like, ‘No, no, no, I don’t like that. More like this.’ Or I can walk in and be like, ‘Love it. Keep going.’”

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The Strokes' frontman Julian Casablancas announces solo album

We know what guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. and drummer Fabrizio Moretti have been up to in the years since the Strokes released their last album, 2006's First Impressions of Earth — and now we have word on frontman Julian Casablancas: he's finishing up a solo debut, scheduled for release this fall on Cult Records/RCA.

According to his publicist, eight tracks for the album, entitled Phrazes for the Young, were written and recorded over the last year in L.A., New York, and Nebraska (home to longtime Bright Eyes producer Mike Mogis, who contributes here).

Track titles include “River of Brake Lights,” “Glass” and “Ludlow St.”; Casablancas will reportedly announce a limited set of live appearances Stateside, before embarking on a full solo tour later in the year.

Watch the preview on his site, and tell us what you think of his new effort. Very spooky and atmospheric, no? Kind of an instrumental Brian Eno/Moby/Postal Service vibe going on, not at all the usual Strokes-ian garage-rock jangle:

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New albums on the way from Circulatory System...and the Olivia Tremor Control?

Circulatorysystemband_lA key item on my "seriously anticipated, possibly mythical projects" wish-list got checked off this month when Circulatory System’s second album finally got an official title and release date. I realize that band’s name may or may not mean much to you, but for fans like me, this is huge. Circulatory System rose from the ashes of the late, great band the Olivia Tremor Control at the close of the ’90s; put out a superb self-titled LP in 2001; then went more or less silent for the next eight years. If Signal Morning, due August 4, is even half as good as Circulatory System’s first album, it’ll be a true gift for anyone who digs psychedelic indie-folk orchestrations and joyous pop melodies. Read on after the jump for the Music Mix’s interview with Circulatory System frontman Will Cullen Hart about the new album — plus one unbelievably awesome tidbit about the future of the Olivia Tremor Control.

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The Alchemist preps new solo album, including Eminem collaboration

Alan "The Alchemist" Maman and Eminem go way back. They first met when Em had just signed to Interscope a decade ago. In 2005, the Alchemist went out on tour as Eminem’s DJ. And this year, he’s jumped back into that role, spinning for Em at performances like last week’s Jimmy Kimmel Live appearance. So when it came time for Alc to record his second solo album, naturally he reached out to his old pal for a guest verse. The Alchemist tells EW that the resulting tune featuring Eminem will be the title track on his album, Chemical Warfare, due this summer. "All the time and the patience that I had, waiting for the right time for us to work together [on a song], is coming full circle now," says the Alchemist.

Between the positive buzz surrounding Eminem’s own new work and the Alchemist’s highly distinguished resume as a producer (Dilated Peoples, Mobb Deep, Lil Wayne), this is definitely a pairing for hip-hop heads to get excited about. Check out the Alchemist’s current single "Smile" below, plus another Alchemist-produced classic after the jump, and let us know if you’re looking forward to "Chemical Warfare" as much as I am.

The Alchemist feat. Maxwell and Twista, "Smile"

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Leighton Meester exclusive: In the studio with the 'Gossip Girl' star

Leightonmeester_dlEW recently caught up with Gossip Girl star Leighton Meester in the recording studio, where she’s working on her still-unnamed debut album, due this fall (her first single is slated for July). The actress, who’s best known for her bitchy-one liners as Blair Waldorf, says the album will have an electro-pop sound, and she’s working with producers like Kenna (Lupe Fiasco, JoJo) and Polow da Don (The Pussycat Dolls, Fergie). "It’s very pop," she says. "You can listen to it on the radio. You can listen to it in your car. You can dance to it."

Meester offered us an exclusive listen to three of the album’s potential tracks. “Push and Pull” is an elegant anthem about making arelationship work; she says the song “takes my breath away.” On“Almost Perfect,” she takes a break from electro-pop for astripped-down ballad lamenting a lover’s lies. The song ends withMeester bluntly spitting, "F— you." "That was what we call an adlib,"she says. Then there’s the pulsing “Lights Out,”produced by J.R. Rotem (Britney Spears), which has her singing very un-CW things like, "Don’t turn the lightsout/I bet you like to watch." Meester plays coy when it comes to thesubject matter. "Who knows what I’m talking about? Everything is kindain metaphors." Maybe, we ask, she simply wants someone to spoon with? "Or fork." Even so, "there is somewhat of a sexual undertone to a lot of songs," she says. "I’m a grown woman [laughs]."

The 23-year-old actress actually began recording her music without a major-label deal. Some of her early tracks, like a cover of "Bette Davis Eyes," leaked onto the web, but Meester isn’t sure if they’ll make the album. "I’m still figuring it out," she says. "I loved the song and I loved the feel of it. That’s what the feel of the rest of the album is gonna be." One thing’s for certain: it will reveal some intimate details of Meester’s love life. "I’ve been through a lot as far as love," she says. "When I’m singing a song, I picture somebody in particular. A lot of it is to a guy." Which guy? Nice try: Meester won’t spill (the actress had reportedly been dating her GG co-star Sebastian Stan).

It turns out Meester hasloved music from a very young age. "I remember I was in the grocerystore with my mom when I was little and I heard ‘I Will Always LoveYou,’ " she says. "I must have been 3 or 4, and I went, ‘Mom, that mademy back tingle.’ She was like, "That’s what music is supposed to do.’ Iloved it."

Meester, who will also spend her summer hiatus shooting the Single White Female-esque thriller The Roommate,has been inspired by some musical giants. "I really love Madonna, CyndiLauper, and Debbie Harry," says the actress. "Gwen Stefani and Fergie, too. They’re very strong womenand have a completely unique sound." Meester also says she’s been grooving to Ladyhawke and Australian band Empire of the Sun. "I was in Paris and I listened to [their single 'Walking on a Dream']like 40 times a day. I love them." Cobra Starship is another band thatMeester enjoys, and she actually recorded a song, co-written by American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi, with the rockers (they’re also shooting a video together). One other person she really wants to work with? Her GG co-star Ed Westwick. "I would love that. I’ve thought about it a lot, so we’ll see. He’s very talented." 

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Apples in Stereo frontman talks 'Idol' cover, next album

Robertschneider_lThe Apples in Stereo’s Robert Schneider was as surprised as anyone to learn that this season’s American Idol contestants sang his song "Energy" in a Ford ad during last night’s show. "We’re on the road right now," Schneider tells the Music Mix. "My mom called me and said she’d just seen it. I was like, ‘Whoa!’ Then when we got to the hotel, we watched it online. It was pretty cool." Read on after the jump for a full Q&A with more on the Apples’ Idol moment and Schneider’s favorite Idol episode ever — plus details on Travelers in Space and Time, the new "sci-fi R&B" album they’re recording for a tentative Spring 2010 release, and why it won’t sound like anything the Apples have done before.

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Jason Castro talks about his debut album -- and reveals his 'Idol' picks

Jasoncastro_lTurns out Jason Castro had quite the head-start when Atlantic Records signed him this month. The dreadlocked American Idol alum tells the Music Mix that he’s already penned around 40 songs since last September. Next up: The long process of winnowing all that material down into a debut album. "I’m real excited," Castro says. "Tomorrow we’re getting together to see where we’re at. I’m hoping we’re ready to get into the studio." Tonight at 7 P.M. EST, Castro will host a live webcast on his official site, where he’ll perform a few songs and answer questions submitted by readers via the webcast’s chat function and/or on Twitter. In the meantime, you can read on after the jump for a full Music Mix Q&A on Castro’s songwriting partners, what he wants his album to sound like, and who he thinks will win this season of Idol.

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Vampire Weekend play charity gig, look for 'new sounds' with their second album

Ezrakoenig_lVampire Weekend has been taking some time off from touring lately to focus on recording the follow-up to their 2008 debut. When the anti-poverty ONE campaign asked them to play a charity show, though, the indie rockers agreed right away. "As a musician, sometimes it’s hard to figure out the best way that you can do anything for causes that you’re interested in," Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig tells the Music Mix. "Just living in New York City, and in my experience as a teacher in a low-income neighborhood before I was in a band, the inequalities stare you in the face. Any organization that’s spreading awareness of that kind of inequality is doing a good thing." So tomorrow night, the quartet will head down to Spartanburg, South Carolina, to play a celebration concert for Wofford College, the winners of the second annual ONE Campus Challenge to raise awareness of global poverty.

After that, it’ll be back to Brooklyn, where the band hopes to finish its second album in time for a September release. As with their debut, VW keyboardist Rostam Batmanglij is producing the sessions. "For the last month or so, it’s just been us by ourselves in this small studio, working every day," Koenig says. "It’s nice after having been on tour so much to be in a slightly different situation, but it’s pretty intense. We’re really trying hard to do everything that we want to do."

With the songwriting process more or less finished, Koenig says the band has moved on to refining its studio approach. "It’s definitely going to be a recognizably Vampire Weekend sound, but there are going to be new sounds. We’re trying to challenge ourselves not to use the same bag of tricks that we used on the first album — different instruments, stuff like that."

One new song that’s almost certain to wind up on the album is "White Sky," which Vampire Weekend brought to Jimmy Fallon last month. Notes Koenig: "The recorded version is very different from how we played it on Fallon. Because we were still working on the recording, we decided to do this very slow acoustic version [on TV]. The real version is more like how we’ve been playing it live. There’s a lot of synth sounds, and it’s a little more pumped up."

Koenig also revealed some of his favorite new music, giving shout-outs to VW pals Harlem Shakes, British electro act Metronomy, and Toy Selectah, a DJ with whom the band spent time on a recent tour of Mexico. "[Toy Selectah] just put out a free mixtape with cumbia and reggaeton mixes that he made of songs by people like Chromeo and Feist," Koenig raves. "He’s really incredible."

More from EW’s Music Mix:
Vampire Weekend perform new song, talk second album on Jimmy Fallon
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