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Tag: Indie Rock (31-40 of 600)

Best and Worst 2013: The Worst Albums of the Year, starring Lil Wayne, Five Finger Death Punch, and John Fogerty

Let’s face it: Outside of a few exceptions, the bulk of the music that came out this year (or any given year) falls into the “pretty much okay” category. It takes a remarkable feat to cross the bridge from “merely disappointing” or “aggressively sub par” over to “truly, remarkably heinous.”

Which is to say: The five albums listed below aren’t merely boring or trite or annoying (though they are in fact all of those things). Each of the five long-players below had to go the extra mile. As many have taught us in the past, it takes quite a bit of work to be this terrible.

So here are EW’s picks for the five worst albums of 2013. They are all terrible. Let us never speak of them again. READ FULL STORY

Daft Punk, Elton John, The Clash, and other join Tony Hawk and Ben Harper for second 'Boards + Bands' charity auction

Last year, Tony Hawk launched the first Boards + Bands auction, which raised over $126,000 to build skate parks for at-risk youth by auctioning off custom skateboard decks featuring hand-written lyrics from famous artists — and this year, the participants include Daft Punk, Ben Harper, members of the Clash, Elton John, and John Lydon.

The idea is that Hawk’s friends donated decks they actually rode. Then Hawk sent those boards to some of his rock star friends, who wrote lyrics to their skateboarder-approved tunes on the decks. “Last Year’s Boards + Bands auction surpassed all expectations,” Hawk said in a statement. “This year we have equal caliber of skaters and musicians contributing, so I am looking forward to seeing the excitement (and high bidding) they bring.”

The auction kicks off tomorrow, December 5, at the auction’s official site. You can take a look at the wares available online, or if you’re in Los Angeles, check out the decks at the Grammy Museum. You can also donate to Hawk’s cause even if you don’t want to buy a custom Elton John skateboard.

Check out the highlights from last year’s auction below.

READ FULL STORY

Watch the 'Big Big Blood' video from Seattle surf-rock group La Luz -- EXCLUSIVE

The days may be getting shorter, but you can count on La Luz to bring the light.

That what the harmonizing all-girl group’s name means in Spanish, which is good, because they hail from gloomy ol’ Seattle. (Call it the Sunny Day Real Estate strategy?) “Big Big Blood” is the jaunty, reverb’d lead single from their new album It’s Alive, and you can watch the video for it exclusively here.

The song shares vibes with classic ’60s-style garage and doo-wop, while the clip, like the album’s title, evokes Roger Corman-era B-movie horror. Check it all out in the video below:

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Arcade Fire debut dreamy 'Afterlife' video: Watch it here

Arcade Fire have always been serious about visual presentation, but for the images surrounding their new album Reflektor, they’ve really gone to another level. Such is the case with the video for the just-released video for “Afterlife.”

The clip, directed by Emily Kai Bock (who has also done videos for Grizzly Bear and Grimes), tracks the dream lives of a father and his two sons and features lots of deep-focus black and white cinematography.

Because it’s a song from Reflektor, it’s also over seven minutes long and aggressively melancholy, so prepare to spill a few tears on your lunch salad.

Check out the video for Arcade Fire’s “Afterlife” below.  READ FULL STORY

This week in singles: New songs by Justin Bieber, Disclosure and Nile Rodgers, Angel Olsen, and more

Justin Bieber, “All Bad”
And on the sixth Music Monday, Bieber laid back in the cut. The latest song from his weekly series (leading up to the Christmas release of Believe, the movie) may not be the best one yet—“Heartbreaker” comes closest to “Cry Me a River”—but it’s the eeriest of the frankly downbeat, uniformly pretty collection. The line “females like to run their mouths” might be a deal-breaker coming from the weekend-warrior Justin seen in the tabloids, but hearing it from The-Weeknd-wannabe Justin on record, it actually starts to make sense. Behold the man-boy Bieber. READ FULL STORY

Arcade Fire announce 'Reflektor' tour for 2014

Perhaps by 2014, you will have fully ingested and processed Arcade Fire’s new album Reflektor and will thus be ready to enjoy them in a live setting. Luckily for you, they are indeed heading out on tour next year.

The Reflektor Tour kicks off on March 6 in Louisville, KY, and will take them through August 30 in Montreal. Tthe tour is broken up into three different legs: They’ll start off in hockey arenas and graduate to amphitheaters and other outdoor venues once the weather warms up.

Tickets go on sale November 22, so check out their official site for more details and purchase instructions.

Check out the whole list of tour dates below, and also give the “Reflektor” video another spin while you’re at it.  READ FULL STORY

Brooklyn band the Yellow Dogs at the center of murder-suicide investigation

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An indie rock band who transplanted themselves from Iran to Brooklyn is at the center of a still developing murder-suicide incident that has left four people dead.

The New York Times is reporting that early Monday morning, a gunman opened fire on Soroush Farazmand, Arash Farazmand, and Ali Eskandarian, three members of the Yellow Dogs, a group of Iranian expatriates who began in Tehran and had been operating out of a townhouse in the East Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn.

The assailant then turned the weapon on himself. The Wall Street Journal identified the shooter as Raefe Ahkbar, who was reportedly dismissed from the band for selling equipment.

Guitarist Soroush Farazmand, 27, and drummer Arash Farazmand, 28 were killed, along with their friend and fellow musician Ali Eskandarian, 35. Sasan Sadeghpourosko, 22, was shot twice in his right arm and is in stable condition. Two members, vocalist and guitarist Siavash ‘Obash’ Karampour,  24, and bassist Koory Mirzeai, 26, were not involved in the shooting.

The Yellow Dogs formed in Tehran and stayed largely underground in order to avoid the ire of the Iranian government. They moved to Brooklyn several years ago, fearing retaliation after being gaining wider exposure in Nobody Knows About Persian Cats, which won the Special Jury Prize at Cannes in 2009, and were in the process of seeking asylum in the United States.

The band performed at SXSW, supported well-known indie bands including !!!, and performed at rising-act venues like San Franciso’s Great American Music Hall, Chicago’s Empty Bottle; and New York’s Brooklyn Bowl and Glasslands.

Learn more about them and their history in the video below.

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Laurie Anderson on Lou Reed's last hours: 'I have never seen an expression as full of wonder'

Laurie Anderson already wrote a very touching, sweet tribute to her late husband Lou Reed, who passed away last Sunday, October 27. But in the pages of the current issue of Rolling Stone, she expands upon both her personal and professional life with Reed.

In the piece, she recounts how she first met Reed in Munich in 1992. She was familiar with some of his work — but admits that she had always assumed the Velvet Underground were British and was confused that Reed didn’t have an accent. Once they connected, they rarely looked back.

“Lou and I played music together, became best friends and then soul mates, traveled, listened to and criticized each other’s work, studied things together (butterfly hunting, meditation, kayaking),” Anderson wrote. “We made up ridiculous jokes; stopped smoking 20 times; fought; learned to hold our breath underwater; went to Africa; sang opera in elevators; made friends with unlikely people; followed each other on tour when we could; got a sweet piano-playing dog; shared a house that was separate from our own places; protected and loved each other. We were always seeing a lot of art and music and plays and shows, and I watched as he loved and appreciated other artists and musicians. He was always so generous. He knew how hard it was to do. We loved our life in the West Village and our friends; and in all, we did the best we could do.” READ FULL STORY

Charts: Arcade Fire open on top, Eminem set for huge debut

Back in 2010, Arcade Fire scored their first number one with The Suburbs, an album that would go on to win the Grammy for Album of the Year. The Canadian collective is back on top with their follow-up Reflektor, which opens its sales life at the top of the Billboard 200 with 140,000 copies sold. That’s a solid number, though its slightly below the kickoff week for The Suburbs, which picked up 156,000. 

Of course, Arcade Fire only spent a single week at number one last time around — The Suburbs was dethroned by Eminem’s Recovery, which had returned to the top of the chart in its eighth week of release. It looks like history will be repeating itself: Eminem’s just-released The Marshall Mathers LP 2 is on track to sell between 700,000 and 750,000 units this week, which would easily give Slim Shady his 11th chart-topper and the second-biggest opening of the year behind Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience.

That would also be right on pace with the opening week of Recovery, which opened with 741,000 copies sold. Of course, he’ll fall well short of the premiere week for 2000′s The Marshall Mathers LP, which hit a staggering 1.76 million copies. Em will even fall short of the first Marshall Mathers LP‘s second week, which saw it do another 800,000. Still, Slim Shady has shown remarkable durability despite shifting cultural allegiances and mixed reviews.

Eminem also finds himself on top of the Digital Songs chart this week, with “The Monster,” his Rihanna-assisted single, selling 373,000 downloads. READ FULL STORY

Southern psych rockers Wax Fang debut 'Hearts Are Made for Beating' video -- EXCLUSIVE

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You may know Louisville psych rockers Wax Fang from their many tour dates with fellow Kentucky beardos My Morning Jacket, or their guest-starring soundtrack role on a memorable episode of FOX’s American Dad this spring centered around “the surreal sci-fi aftermath of Jeff Fischer’s alien abduction.”

Or maybe this is your introduction to the band — in which case, enjoy this cinematic lesson on kids, cardiology (hearts, what are they made for?), and balloon-icide. Enjoy!

Watch “Hearts Are Made for Beating” below: READ FULL STORY

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