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Tag: Q&A (1-10 of 100)

Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner talks Bonnaroo

Nearly a decade after they achieved buzz-band status in America with arch Britpop ditties like “I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor” and “Fake Tales of San Francisco,” Arctic Monkeys have become bona fide stadium stars—literally.

Armed with a fuller, Josh Homme-assisted sound and a long-nurtured fan base, the band has graduated to sell-out crowds at venues like Madison Square Garden and L.A.’s Staples Center, both of which they’ll be playing on a massive tour this summer that includes a stop at Tennesee’s Bonaroo Music & Arts Festival this weekend.

We tracked down frontman Alex Turner, 28, on the road in Germany and got him to talk tequila, two-way pagers, and how .
EW: How have the Germans been treating you?
Alex Turner: I just got here. Did a sound check. Then a very nice German lady served me some beef stroganoff, and I was absolutely famished, so that went down a treat. I’m going to talk to you, then take a nap, and I’m going to go play a rock show. It’s not that bad a day, really. READ FULL STORY

Iggy Azalea on chicken franchising, Australian rap, and learning from Beyonce: An EW Q&A

Iggy-Azaelia.jpg

She’s still only 23, but it’s been a slow burn for Iggy Azalea. Born Amethyst Kelly, she left her home nation of Australia when she was 16 years old to pursue her hip-hop dreams. She’s been on the mix tape radar since 2011’s Ignorant Art, and has already teamed up with the likes of T.I., B.o.B, Mac Miller, Diplo, and Sean Paul.

Her proper debut album The New Classic has been in limbo for a while, but it’s finally hitting store shelves on April 18. Last week, EW caught up with Azalea in Manhattan Peruvian chicken emporium Pio Pio for a talk about art, nipples, and Katy Perry. 

READ FULL STORY

Spike Jonze previews this Sunday's YouTube Music Awards, featuring Eminem, Lady Gaga, and Arcade Fire

Director Spike Jonze has had a busy 2013: He produced Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa (currently the number one movie in the country), his next directorial effort Her is set to roll out at Christmas, and this Sunday, he’ll oversee the first ever YouTube Music Awards.

The show, which celebrates both high-octane stars and viral upstarts, will beam live from New York City’s Pier 36 and will feature performances by Eminem, Lady Gaga, and Arcade Fire. The whole thing will be hosted by Jason Schwartzman and Reggie Watts and will air live (naturally) on YouTube beginning at 6 p.m. Eastern on Sunday.

But what will the show actually look like, and how will it differentiate itself from the other music award shows crowding the calendar? Jonze spoke to EW about the process of putting it together, the goals for the evening, and more.

Entertainment Weekly: How long have you been working on this show? How did you get involved?
Spike Jonze: About six months ago, YouTube approached Vice and I about creating and producing their first music awards. It seemed like such a natural thing both for them and for me. I’ve always loved YouTube and the idea that anyone can make something and put it up. There’s no gatekeeper anymore—someone can just be creative and share it.

We came up with the idea that this night should be all about making things. So we’re giving awards to people who made things this year, but we’re also trying to make the whole awards show feel like a YouTube video. It’s about being creative and making things, and one of the main parts of that is we’re making live music videos with these artists, and as opposed to artists performing on a stage to an audience, though there might be some of that too if that’s the idea. It’s more about making these live videos in front of and with the audience that is there.

So will the artists be performing in full-scripted, narrative-type videos?
Some of them will be more straightforward performance videos, but some will be more conceptual. READ FULL STORY

Paramore's Hayley Williams on touring, Zedd, and fighting

Paramore have hit a lot of milestones this year: They released their first album as a trio, scored their first entry into the radio top 10 with the single “Still Into You,” and are about to embark on their biggest arena tour yet—including their first headlining spot at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

The trek kicks off tomorrow night in Seattle (complete dates are here), but before she packed for the road, singer Hayley Williams took some time out to talk about the new run, the damage done during the “Still Into You” video, and how she ended up on Zedd’s “Stay the Night.”

Entertainment Weekly: You’ve been at this a while, but these are some of the biggest rooms you’ve ever played coming up on this tour. Do you still get nervous?
Hayley Williams: I still get nervous. I get nervous before every show, even if it’s small. I just want everything to be perfect. We’re sort of perfectionists until we get out there, and then once we get out there, anything goes. I have really big butterflies — I’m kind of freaking out about all these rooms. I’m really excited and, like, throwing up in my mouth about Madison Square Garden.

So what sort of show are you putting on in Madison Square Garden?
Have you ever seen that war scene in Metallica’s show? We’re not doing that. [Laughs] We have never actually done a big production. We generally tend to show up on stage with our gear and a backdrop and some pretty lights. So we put a lot more thought into this show. The set list is longer; we’re playing almost two hours every night. I feel so old—I cannot believe we’re playing two hours a night! But when we’re playing it goes by so fast for me. READ FULL STORY

Joy Williams tries to explain the Civil Wars break-up: 'It's been a hard, painful season of my life'

They officially have the number-one record in the country this week — and one of the most-acclaimed albums of the year so far — but the Civil Wars’ Joy Williams and John Paul White won’t be touring to support it. In fact, the estranged duo are very famously not talking to one another at all. Williams did talk to EW, however, about making the album, separating truth from artistic license, and generally setting the record straight:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Is it weird approaching every interview for your new record knowing you’ll have to address the hiatus?
JOY WILLIAMS:
Yeah, some days it’s really difficult just because I believe so much in the caliber of the music that we made that it’s hard for me that we can’t just focus on the music. That being said, I understand why people are curious about it. It’s something that I’m curious about, too, frankly. READ FULL STORY

Courtney Love on making new music, getting back to acting, and more: An EW Q&A

Courtney Love is currently on tour through the end of this month, ripping through sets featuring Hole songs that sound as fresh as they did two decades ago. And after laying relatively low for a while, she’s got a lot coming up: A new album, a book, and a whole lot of social media suggestions. On her way to the airport, Love called in to give us updates on everything happening in Loveland.

EW: What inspired this tour you’re on?
Courtney Love: I was supposed to have a single out right now. Someone promised me a unicorn and then another unicorn, and then none of the unicorns came. I’m really pretty experienced now, so when people promise me unicorns, I really want to buy them, but I’m also really quick to say, “OK, f— off if there’s no unicorn coming.” But this is a fun tour. We have a guy named Ginger who is a brilliant guitar player. He’s like a [Billy] Corgan kind of guy, in the sense that he’s very gifted and very very loud. I have two very loud guitar players, so I’m always afraid my vocals will get drowned out. I’m also going to L.A. for a few days. I’m trying out for a film and I’m trying out for an HBO show, and I have a meeting for a Showtime show.

So you’re getting back into acting?
I have a new agent for the first time in a long time, and people thought—and for a while this was true—that I wasn’t interested in acting. But now I am, and I’m pursuing it really aggressively. I might even have to move back to L.A. to pursue it. We’ll see. I mean, I’m not Liev Schreiber, and I’m not going to play MacBeth at the Public [Theater], you know?

Do you relish the idea of moving back to Los Angeles after living in New York? READ FULL STORY

Spacehog's Royston Langdon on getting the band back together, auditioning for Velvet Revolver, and one fateful motorcycle ride

If you remember 1995, you remember the neo-glam modern-rock radio smash “In the Meantime” — and the band that made it, the Langdon-brothers-helmed Spacehog.

After the breakout success of their debut, Resident Alien, the group followed with a critically-beloved cult classic, The Chinese Album, that failed to catch on commercially, and then The Hogyssey before going their separate ways. Along the way, they experimented with different bands, went over rocky personal paths (including frontman Royston Langdon’s marriage and subsequent divorce from actress Liv Tyler), and generally tried to find their way.

Now older and wiser but still obsessed with glam sweetness, Spacehog are back. They released their long-awaited fourth album As It Is on Earth last month, and they’re currently on the road in support of it. EW caught up with frontman Royston Langdon to discuss his long hiatus, how he nearly became the singer of Velvet Revolver, and how he feels about “In the Meantime” nearly two decades later.

Entertainment Weekly: The Hogyssey came out all the way back in 2001. How did Spacehog dissipate?
Royston Langdon: It was a lot of things. We’d spent a lot of time touring intensely for the first two or three years, after the release of Resident AlienThe Chinese Album came pretty easily and was a similar kind of experience to the first record, and it was pretty critically well-received but not so well-received commercially. So then we spent some time in the wilderness without a label. When we finally made The Hogyssey, there was a lot of creative differences with the label and within the group. I’ve never really been happy with that record, so touring that record in 2001 was hard work. We were pulling in all different directions, which is not good for a band. Our show final show was supposed to be on the eighth of September in 2011. READ FULL STORY

Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump on being back at No. 1, hanging with Elton John, and why he loves Shostakovich

Fall Out Boy hadn’t released an album in nearly five years, but that didn’t stop Save Rock and Roll from debuting at No. 1 a few weeks back.

Though they’ve reached that pinnacle before (the group’s 2007 album Infinity On High also debuted in the top spot), it remains a major accomplishment for a band whom many in the industry had dismissed as kings of a genre whose time had passed.

Still, frontman Patrick Stump isn’t letting it go to his head. “I think there’s a lot of outside pressure to be focused on [numbers], but we try to focus on making the music,” Stump says. “When you’re No. 1 or No. 300, you still get to play and write the songs.”

In an extended conversation with EW, Stump talks about the creation of Save Rock and Roll, what it’s like to work with Pete Wentz, and why Elton John knows more about music than just about anybody.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was the first song that came together for Save Rock and Roll?
PATRICK STUMP:
“Where Did the Party Go” was the first one. Pete and I had been throwing around a lot of ideas, and sometimes Pete speaks in really funny kind of riddles. That’s one of the classic things that used to frustrate me, when people would complain about our long song titles that don’t make any sense and don’t have any relation to the song. I always thought, “You need to talk to Pete Wentz, because when you hang out with him for 10 minutes, you realize that’s how that guy talks.” He threw this puzzle at me, and he wanted me to combine a whole bunch of songs and feelings that were so disparate. As a trained musician, I thought, “Those things literally can’t go together.” But in trying to do it, not only did I surprise myself, but he was going, “Yeah, that’s it!” It was the first song that felt like the band. It’s a great song and an important song to have on the record, but the most important thing is the story behind it because it was the song that really opened up the record for us. And there’s a hint of where we wanted to go on that, because it sounds a lot like old Fall Out Boy and nothing like old Fall Out Boy.

Your records have really evolved quite a bit over time, so what do you consider “old” Fall Out Boy?
One of the things we wanted to toy around with was taking those hallmarks that people identified with us and taking them out of the superficial definitions. People talk to me all the time about emo, and I have no problem with having been identified with that, but make no mistake, we never planned on being an emo band. That was never a talk that we had. When Pete got that haircut, it was just him doing his own weird thing.  Everything about it was kind of accidental. So there’s a temptation to focus on recapturing that spirit we had in 2003, and I can’t disagree with that, because that’s when the band discovered themselves. But I think we really tried to make a Fall Out Boy record without any of the genre involved. READ FULL STORY

Depeche Mode's Dave Gahan on 'Delta Machine,' inspiring Frank Ocean, and what his band has in common with Led Zeppelin

Depeche Mode just released their 13th album Delta Machine, their strongest outing of the 21st century. Though they’ve been at it for over three decades, they show few signs of slowing and remain as relevant as ever: They’re constantly being covered (“Just Can’t Get Enough,” the band’s first single, showed up this season on Glee), and as frontman Dave Gahan points out, also regularly providing inspiration for a new generation of boundary-pushing artists.

EW: Your new album Delta Machine was made both in New York, where you live, and in California where Martin Gore has his studio. How does Depeche Mode work being a bi-coastal operation?
Dave Gahan: Depeche Mode is a bit of a revolving door when it comes to other people that work on our record since Alan Wilder left the band 20 years ago. We’ve had to adapt to different ways of working on things. This time we worked with Chris Berg who is a Swedish musician, and he’s worked with bands like Fever Ray and the Knife. He does sort of hardcore electronic stuff. He fit right in, he knew exactly what he was doing, he was very bold, he had great ideas. Martin and I both need a different angle, and that’s what makes it interesting. But to answer your question, yes, Martin’s out there in California, I’m here in New York, so basically we just the recording in half. He has a nice studio in his house, too. This record was really kind of a pleasure to make with Martin. He’s in great shape, he’s writing great songs. He’s as positive as we get as musicians. We’ve come a long way together, we see our strengths and we’ve come to this place where we have a very strong musical bond. I think that just happens with time. Being in a band, you spend the first 10 years chasing something. You spend the next 10 years trying to hold onto it. We’ve spent the last 10 years just kind of doing our own thing. I think there’s a great strength in having the courage and also having the support to do what you want to do when you’re an artist in any way shape or form. And we’ve been lucky to have some great people working with us.

You say you and Martin are positive, but Delta Machine is still pretty dark. Where does that come from?
That’s just in us. READ FULL STORY

Paramore's Hayley Williams on new album, moving to Los Angeles, and Blondie

In December 2010, Paramore members Josh and Zac Farro abruptly left the group, leaving a lot of questions hanging in the air. Would they continue on? Would charismatic singer Hayley Williams embark on a solo career? Would the band’s sound change completely?

Today, those questions are finally answered. The just-released Paramore, the band’s fourth album, pushes the now-trio’s vision forward. Though the band—Williams, guitarist Taylor York, and bassist Jeremy Davis—hasn’t entirely left its snotty pop-punk roots behind, they’ve fully embraced elements of New Wave, garage rock, and bubbly electro-pop.

The key to Paramore‘s coherence is Williams, whose voice has picked up more colors and whose lyrics are at their most direct and expansive on the new album. EW caught up with Williams via phone a few weeks back, where she talked about her bouts of writers’ block, the weirdness involved in choosing a producer, and the importance of the Warped Tour. And be sure to check out their just-released video for “Still Into You” at the bottom.

Entertainment Weekly: What was the first song that came together for Paramore?
Hayley Williams: “Proof” was the first song that we came up with. It was one of the first sets of lyrics I came up with, and I had this melody idea for it and I took it to Taylor, and like the next day we had the song. So that one came really easily, but then we had two and a half months of the worst writers’ block you could possibly imagine. That’s when we wrote the interludes. We needed something to laugh about and soften the blow that we couldn’t write any songs that we loved. And it was weird, because as soon as those interludes were done, the songs started happening. We realized we don’t need to take ourselves so seriously.

What was driving that writers’ block? What were you thinking while in the midst of it?
I was in this crazy depression about it. READ FULL STORY

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