Pazz & Jop critics’ poll. The venerable alt-weekly revealed the 2010 results last night, and you will be absolutely shocked to learn that after polling 708 music writers, the runaway winner in the albums category was Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Top honors in the singles category went to Cee Lo Green’s “F— You.” READ FULL STORY »Remember 2010? It seems so long ago now, but the year in music is never completely over until the Village Voice releases its annual
Tag: Kanye West (81-90 of 201)
Kanye West made a joke on Twitter. It went like this: “Yo Britney, I’m really happy for you and I’mma let you be #1, but me and Jay-Z single is one of the best songs of all time! LOL.” Get it? Britney Spears‘ new single “Hold It Against Me” had just beaten his and Jay-Z’s “H.A.M.” for the No. 1 spot on iTunes’ download chart, so West referred back to the words he infamously uttered to Taylor Swift at the VMAs in September 2009.Last Friday,
This context, plus the “LOL” at the end of the since deleted tweet, made it pretty obvious that he was just kidding around. But some people somehow convinced themselves that he meant to launch actual verbal hostilities against Spears. Egads! West had no choice but to return to Twitter yesterday evening to clarify his intentions. READ FULL STORY »
As promised, the first single from Kanye West and Jay-Z‘s collaborative album Watch the Throne debuted online today. After months of feverish speculation, we finally have an official taste of one of 2011′s most anticipated projects. Does it live up to those sky-high expectations?“H.A.M.” is here!
Listen at Watch the Throne‘s Facebook page and decide for yourself. After a few listens to “H.A.M.,” I’d say it’s a fierce opening statement that’s unlikely to disappoint fans of either artist. The song begins with a double-time flow from West over fizzy electro burbles and a ghostly vocal sample courtesy of hot producer Lex Luger (Rick Ross’ “B.M.F.,” Waka Flocka Flame’s “Hard in da Paint”). West is in full-on arrogant star mode, spitting slick hostilities laced with so many obscenities that I wonder how this song’s radio edit will sound. READ FULL STORY »
Britney Spears' 'Hold It Against Me,' Kanye West and Jay-Z's 'H.A.M' both come out Tuesday: Which are you most excited for?
January is usually a particularly sad month for pop music. Coming off the industry’s big-release-heavy fourth quarter, the top of the year is usually a time for new acts. This year, however, is rolling out a bit differently. Pop starlet Britney Spears is set set to drop new single “Hold It Against Me” on Jan. 11, and Kanye West and Jay-Z will debut “H.A.M,” the first single from their collaborative Watch the Throne effort, that day as well.
At this point, little is known about Kanye and Jay-Z’s collab. Kanye sort of let the cat out of the bag earlier this week, but cleared up the confusion last night by tweeting the single’s artwork and release date. With several crowns and vicious dogs barking, it’s a regal one, indeed. They’ve remained pretty tight-lipped about the record’s sound, opting not to reveal who produced it or even what the acronym stands for. On the other hand, there’s plenty of info out on Britney’s “Hold It Against Me.” As we reported last week, it was produced by hit-makers Max Martin (“DJ Got Us Fallin’ in Love,” “Dynamite”) and Dr. Luke (“California Gurls,” “We R Who We R”). A demo with singer/songwriter Bonnie McKee’s vocals leaked yesterday. Its knocking bass is not unlike the smashes those two producers flooded the airwaves with in 2010.
Check out our poll and read what Britney had to say about her single after the jump.
It’s the viral hit of the week: Josh Groban crooning selected bons mots from Kanye West’s Twitter account in his most sonorous tones. Since airing on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! and being posted on YouTube, the hilarious skit has racked up more than 1.2 million views.
“I’ve been blown away by the response,” Groban tells the Music Mix. We spoke with him today to find out how “Josh Groban’s The Best Tweets of Kanye West” came to be. Hit the jump to see the clip again and read our Q&A. READ FULL STORY »
Kanye West and Jay-Z‘s Watch the Throne project? West first announced that he and Jay-Z were collaborating on a five-song EP back in August. Two months later, he said they were amassing enough material for a full-length album. Bits of additional information and rumor have circulated since then, culminating in West’s proclamation at a New Year’s Eve party in Las Vegas last weekend (pictured): “Watch the Throne, coming in one week!”What’s happening with
Those are some tantalizing words for hip-hop fans. If only they were a little more plausible. West’s promise would presumably put Watch the Throne in your headphones this Friday, Jan. 7. Putting aside the fact that albums generally come out on Mondays or Tuesdays, that’s awfully soon for a project that’s received so little formal promotion to date. West’s label, Def Jam, hasn’t said a word about Watch the Throne; a label rep had no comment for this story. We haven’t heard any official singles or seen cover artwork. Watch the Throne isn’t listed for pre-order on Amazon or iTunes. West and Jay-Z haven’t even confirmed a specific release date outside of that one party. Parachuting an album onto the market with so little advance preparation would be a risky commercial move, to say the least.
That still leaves open the possibility that West plans to surprise everyone by posting Watch the Throne for download on his website this week. Maybe he’ll even be reviving his dormant “G.O.O.D. Fridays” free giveaway series for that purpose. But are Kanye West and Jay-Z the kind of artists who would give away an entire new album online with no regard for profit margins? Bold as such a move would be, it feels out of character for both of them. A more likely version of this scenario has West posting an individual new song from Watch the Throne on Friday, or perhaps finished versions of the original five tunes from this summer — a teaser course, not the whole meal.
Of course, there’s no predicting exactly what Kanye West has up his sleeve at any given moment. Who knows! When do you think we’ll get to hear Watch the Throne? Are you looking forward to this meeting of the minds?
(Follow The Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)
More news from EW.com’s Music Mix:
Kanye West and Jay-Z announce collab EP
Kanye West and Jay-Z are making a full album together
The version of Kanye West‘s “Monster” video that you may have seen today is an unfinished, unsanctioned leak. The video quality is fuzzy, some of the images appear to be watermarked placeholders, and the clip is currently available only as a YouTube stream that will no doubt soon be yanked by West’s label. Even as a rough cut, though, the “Monster” clip already has the entire Internet talking and debating. After all, “Monster” is an all-star selection from the year’s best album, and fans have been eagerly awaiting the video treatment for this incredible song since August.
Does the leaked video live up to the hype? That depends on your tolerance for arty shots of dead women in various states of undress. The clip as it stands now is full of half-naked female corpses — hanging from the ceiling by their necks as Rick Ross reclines, slumping over in bed next to West, sprawled face-down on a couch behind an uncomfortable-looking Jay-Z. At one point, West stands casually holding a woman’s blood-dripping severed head in one hand.
These are intentionally ghastly images, meant to disturb. In addition to being a fantastic posse cut, “Monster” is all about ugliness. West’s chorus proclaims that “Everybody knows I’m a motherf—ing monster.” Now you can see that metaphor played out quite literally. But to what end? Images of models who look like they’ve been murdered are nothing new in the fashion world. America’s Next Top Model centered a whole episode around this morbid theme in 2007, drawing deserved criticism from feminist commentators. Jezebel.com elaborated on “The Problem With Fashion’s Obsession With Death” (link contains NSFW images) over a year ago. Glamorizing violence against women this way as we enter 2011 isn’t just potentially pretty offensive to a lot of people — it’s played out and boring. I expect better from an artist as boundlessly creative as Kanye West.
It’s no coincidence that the leaked “Monster” video’s best sequence, wherein Nicki Minaj diabolically interrogates herself, doesn’t rely on the stale dead-model motif. I only wish the rest of the video were more like Minaj’s part — unsettling and edgy, dangerous and sexy, but also original. In fairness, the video does include several other non-corpse-strewn scenes, and again, this is only an unfinished leak, so it’s possible that West’s final version will be substantially different from what’s out there now.
In the meantime, have you seen the leaked “Monster” video? What do you think of its controversial imagery?
(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)
Kanye West, everyone! “Christmas in Harlem,” a jolly new tune featuring his protégés CyHi Da Prynce and Teyana Taylor that leaked online today, is a worthy addition to the holiday hip-hop canon. If you like classics of the genre like Run-DMC’s “Christmas in Hollis,” Ludacris’ “Ludacrismas,” and Jim Jones’ “Dipset Xmas Time,” you’ll love this.Merry Christmas from
“It’s 40 below the windchill/And we’re wiping snow off the windshield/But still, wonderful night to be alive, baby/And I’m so happy to be with my baby,” Kanye raps in his good-natured opening verse. Aww! He later compares himself to the title character from 2003′s Bad Santa, which is pretty hilarious. CyHi follows up with a slick verse, ending with the following ecumenical promise: “Happy Kwanzaa, and for the ones that aren’t Christian/Everybody gets gifts as long as I’m living!” Thanks, dude.
According to a tweet from CyHi, what leaked is an unfinished version: “The real one is coming!” And Kanye himself tweeted that “Christmas in Harlem” will eventually feature additional vocals from Cam’Ron, Jim Jones, Pusha T, Big Sean, and Musiq. This song is already so awesome that I can’t wait to hear the final track. Check out “Christmas in Harlem” after the jump and let us know if you agree.
Kanye West may not always win in the court of public opinion, but about half a million fans showed their support for the rapper’s fifth album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, which debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart with 496,000 copies sold. Fantasy bests his emotional 2008 album 808s & Heartbreak, which sold 450,000 units during its premiere week. Rapstress Nicki Minaj and her first album, Pink Friday, follow at No. 2, with an impressive 375,000 albums sold in its opening week.
Last week’s chart-topper, Susan Boyle’s The Gift, takes the backseat to the rap duo at No. 3 with 263,000 sets purchased. Check out the complete top 10 list below.
Dec. 1, 2010′s Billboard 200 albums top 10
No. 1 – Kanye West, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy: 496,000
No. 2 – Nicki Minaj, Pink Friday: with 375,000
No. 3 – Susan Boyle, The Gift: 263,000
No. 4 – Taylor Swift, Speak Now: 241,000
No. 5 – Jackie Evancho, O Holy Night: 142,000
No. 6 – Rihanna, Loud: 141,000
No. 7 – Justin Bieber, My Worlds Acoustic: 115,000
No. 8 – My Chemical Romance, Danger Days: the True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys: 112,000
No. 9 – Ne-Yo, Libra Scale: 112,000
No. 10 – Glee‘s Christmas: 108,000
(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)
“Hurricane” video. “We always knew there would be some images that would have a tough time getting through,” says the Thirty Seconds to Mars singer, who called the Music Mix while driving to the band’s next gig in Brighton, England today. “But we didn’t expect this kind of pushback that we’re getting now.”Jared Leto wasn’t completely surprised when TV networks refused to air his band’s racy
In fact, the “Hurricane” clip that 30STM submitted for TV had already been edited down from the original. “I had always planned on having an explicit version and then a version that was not so explicit,” Leto says. “The version that we were trying to get on broadcast is not the explicit version, and that’s still having a really difficult time.”
Leto wonders just why the networks were so offended by the video’s sexual images. “I’m not interested in provocation for provocation’s sake,” he says. “I just think it’s interesting that when you turn on the news or whatever else catches your interest, how much violence and negativity is available out there. As soon as it comes time for sexuality, it’s a big shock that people are sexual beings. It’s an interesting double standard to me.” READ FULL STORY »
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