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Tag: Things We Love (1-10 of 96)

Record Store Day: Clerks and owners across the country give us their best picks

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On April 19, more than 1,000 stores will roll out a limited-edition merch in honor of the eighth annual Record Store Day.

Before you line up Saturday morning with sleep in your eyes and cash in hand for a vinyl copy of Built to Spill’s Ultimate Alternative Wavers (pictured above) or Otis Redding’s Pain in My Heart, check out some great in-house picks below from the clerks, managers and owners of some of our favorite independently owned outlets across the country—and go to RecordStoreDay.com/Venues to locate more participating shops near you.

Newbury Comics, Boston
Alfred Chavez, Assistant Manager

Ray Parker Jr., Ghostbusters
“It’s the hit song he came out with—a.k.a. the theme to Ghostbusters! There are apparently rare remixes that are included. Like, what? I wonder if it’ll be like dance remixes. It’ll be phenomenal. And they’re putting it in a glow-in-the-dark vinyl format! I can already imagine playing that in my room, completely dark.”

Anamanaguchi, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World (Original Videogame Soundtrack)
“They did the entire score for Scott Pilgrim, one of my favorite movies. This will be the first time it’s released on vinyl form.”

Disclosure, Apollo
“They’re awesome.”

Reckless Records, Chicago
David Hofer, New Product Buyer READ FULL STORY

How we chose our 100 All-Time Greatest Albums

Hey, “LOL” and “NerdyGirl55″—we heard you. Nonetheless, here comes an explanation of how (and why) we picked our 100 Greatest Albums of All-Time list. Hopefully, Nerdy—do you mind if I call you Nerdy? Your EW.com comment condemning our list suggests some level of comfort and familiarity—you don’t throw your laptop against the wall, like you say you did your All-Time Greatest issue of the magazine, after reading this.

Like you, we love movies and TV and books and music—it’s our passion (and also, of course, our day job). And you know what? Love doesn’t always come easy. For instance, Love’s “psychedelic beauty” Forever Changes landed at No. 65 on our final list, but not without a lot of arguing and back and forth amongst the writers and editors. And that’s how, over time, a list like this takes form and gets made.

Everyone has their personal biases. My own top 100 list would have a few more Bowie records; The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars found itself at No. 34, but I’d happily add Hunky DoryStation to Station, and Scary Monsters. I’d also want to add at least one more from from the Who—Tommy, can you hear me?—in addition to Who’s Next (No. 39). To make room, I’d probably cut an album or two from the Beatles, maybe one from Dylan. (He has two on the list: Blood on the Tracks at No. 6, and Highway 61 Revisited at No. 27.) And, for that, I know more than a few of you would probably want to cut me.

But in order for a list like this to come to life, clearly those personal biases need to be put aside. Professionally, I can’t argue against the Beatles being the most important and significant act of the album era, which we thought would make the best parameters for a definitive Entertainment Weekly music list. (Imagine a greatest songs of all time list in which you had to size up a traditional folk staple like “Greensleeves” against “Eleanor Rigby.”) That’s why our oldest entry (1965′s Rubber Soul, the album the lovely ladies above are packing at the EMI factory in 1965, which ranks No. 46) and our top entry (Revolver, perched at No. 1) belong to the Fab Four: They ushered in and defined the album era, not to mention pop music generally for the past 50 years. (In a recent interview, über-producer Rick Rubin put it thusly: “It’s much bigger than four kids from Liverpool. For me the Beatles are proof of the existence of God. It’s so good and so far beyond everyone else that it’s not them.”)

Not surprisingly, we received a lot of mail about Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band not making our final list; demerits were given for, among other things, “Lovely Rita.” (Not to mention every terrible album featuring a sitar that came after.) But four of our 100 albums are by the Beatles, so the point of their importance is made; they dominate our list. However, we also needed to consider that there have been thousands of albums, and many very, very good to great ones of differing genres. (As much as we love classical and jazz, it made the most sense for us to reflect what we tend to cover in the magazine and what fills our readers’ iPods: pop, rock, and hip-hop.)

Plus, let’s face it:  It’s 2013, and for us to all assume nothing good happened in music after 1970 is just plain silly. So artists like Kayne West (No. 8 for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy) and Adele (No. 17 for 21) need to be weighed against the no-brainer entrants such as the Beatles and Rolling Stones. Which also means you need to consider legacy and what’s going on in the culture right now that refocuses the lens: Daft Punk’s Discovery jumped a few spots (to No. 24) from when we started this list several months ago, because there’s a strong argument (of which I am sure some of you will take me up on below) that they’re largely responsible for the global rise of EDM, and even though their recent Random Access Memories has received rave reviews, it’s Discovery that made their current success at all possible. As indispensable as Pearl Jam’s Ten seemed 20 years ago, it’s hard to not take into account every awful Creed album it paved the way for.

We also wish it were possible to cram 500 albums into a top 100 list. It’s not, of course, but hopefully the takeaway from our 100 Greatest Albums list is an accurate snapshot of the landscape, defining artists, and game-changing music moments over the past 50 years. We will certainly argue it is.

Daft Punk remix their summer smash 'Get Lucky' -- hear it here

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Were you up all night to get lucky? Well, let’s raise the bar.

Or let Daft Punk do it for you: France’s robot-pop overlords have doubled down on Random Access Memories‘ breakout four-minute hit “Get Lucky” with a ten-minute remix, released today.

It’s not drastically different, really, but it does mean you’ll have to reach for the repeat button half as much, so less stressful finger cardio for you, friend! Listen below:

READ FULL STORY

Stream Django Django's new remix album 'Hi Djinx' here -- EXCLUSIVE

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Last year, British pastiche rockers Django Django released their acclaimed self-titled debut in 2012 and it was good — like, really good.

Now they’re mixing it all up again with Hi Djinx, a full smorgasbord of remixes with help from Nick McCarthy, DJ Mujava, Adrian Sherwood, and others, and EW has an exclusive stream of the full album via Spotify. Take a listen below, and find the full tracklist after the jump: READ FULL STORY

John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John exceed your wildest expectations with Christmas music video

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What happened to Danny and Sandy after they flew Greased Lightning off into the sky? Evidently, they landed, grew middle-aged together, bought a plane — wait, what? They already had a flying car — and separated before the holidays just so that they could make a music video about coming back together. The clip also features a family reunion that has nothing to do with Danny or Sandy because, sure, why not.

What the hell am I talking about? I’m talking about this newly-released music video for the only original tune on Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta’s fantastically cheesy Christmas album. (EW’s Nakisha Williams calls it “Grease goes to Shady Pines.”)

The song, “I Think You Might Like It,” is supposed to be the “sequel” to “You’re The One That I Want.” In the sense that it’s an up-tempo duet between Travolta and Newton-John, it succeeds. In every other way… well, maybe you should just watch for yourself:

READ FULL STORY

Patti Smith live in L.A. -- still a musical shaman at 65

Back in the mid 1990s, as an 18-year-old college student living in New York City, I saw Patti Smith play her first show in 15 years at downtown punk palace CBGBs.

I was already obsessed with her music and writing — I covered songs from her rebellious, beautiful first album, 1975’s Horses, and had written a poem about her (yes, it was called Homage to Patti Smith). So I gripped a copy of the poem and a red rose to give her before the show, which I did, going back stage and handing them to her silently. She took them both, silently.

Later, pressed up against the stage with a friend, just below her microphone, I saw Smith launch into a three-hour show full of fury, power, sweat, and rock ‘n’ roll. On stage, singing with her arms raised, she tore the rose I gave her to shreds, stuffing half the petals in her pocket, and throwing the other half in the air, letting them shower down like bits of red rain.

To those who love Smith’s music — from the landmark Horses to this year’s Banga, filled with references to Russian literature, her old friend, late French actress Maria Schneider, Amy Winehouse, and 2011’s Japanese earthquake and tsunami — she’s more than a muse. She represents something else: the ability to be emotional, literary, musical, and free outside the confines of age, gender, time, and place;. She’s a constant reminder that soulful, smart music exists beyond the current scope of commercial pop for audiences who crave that kind of sustenance.

At Wednesday night’s intimate, private show at Apogee’s Berkeley Street Studio in Santa Monica for Los Angeles radio station KCRW (it will be broadcast Nov. 14 on the station’s Morning Becomes Eclectic), Smith proved her continued worth as a musician and performer. The crowd consisted of less than 200 people, including stars such as Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Tim Robbins, Ed Harris (wearing a fedora pulled over his face), and Ellen Page, who looked just as starry-eyed as everyone else in the packed space. READ FULL STORY

Norah Jones live on PBS' 'Live from the Artists Den': EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Reason #782 to love public television (no, seriously, Mitt!): the Live from the Artists Den series, now in its fifth season.

The charmingly peripatetic performance showcase has featured the likes of Adele, Elvis Costello, and Death Cab for Cutie in a host of non-traditional spaces, from a 1930s silent movie theater and the world’s oldest sailing vessel to the marble halls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Watch below as Norah Jones performs “Good Morning” at Brooklyn’s Green Building in a clip exclusively available on EW.com, and tune in Oct. 5 at 10pm (check local listings for channel info) when she officially kicks off the new season with a full show.

Also scheduled to follow her this fall are the Wallflowers, filmed at Bimbo’s 365 Club in San Francisco (Oct. 12), Rufus Wainwright at the Church of the Ascension on New York’s Fifth Avenue (Oc. 19) and Mayer Hawthorne at the historic Park Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles (Oct 26).

Anyway, on to Norah! READ FULL STORY

Gotye creates 'Somebody That I Used to Know' mega-mix from YouTube covers

“Call Me Maybe” has officially won the battle for Song of the Summer — but Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know” may yet win the war. Case in point: The following video, which goes a step further than all the other Gotye covers and parodies on YouTube by mashing those clips together, forming an ear worm-y whole that’s much greater than the sum of its lo-fi parts. It’s like the Megazord of Internet culture, only not nearly as cheesy.

Best of all, the video was assembled by Gotye himself: “Reluctant as I am to add to the mountain of interpretations of Somebody That I Used To Know seemingly taking over their own area of the internet, I couldn’t resist the massive remixability that such a large, varied yet connected bundle of source material offered,” he says on YouTube by way of explanation. Gotye: songwriter, videographer, word-maker-upper (remixability?). Marvel at his handiwork below.

READ FULL STORY

Frank Ocean's 'Channel Orange' -- the EW review

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Frank Ocean, Channel Orange (Def Jam)

If Southern California needs an avant-R&B soundtrack, let this be it: Ocean’s hypnotic major-label debut plays like an indie movie, with songs about sun-faded palm trees, cokeheads in Polo sweats, and strippers in Cleopatra makeup. (Think Drive by way of baby-maker-pop maestro Maxwell. )

A transplant from New Orleans, Ocean is less concerned with urban realism than with his own ‘80s-noir fantasy of what the city’s like, and his music captures that vibe perfectly, pulsing with electro-soul grooves, vintage jazz-funk, and Angelino-friendly cameos by John Mayer and Andre 3000.

Orange even echoes other great odes to California glitz (“Super Rich Kids” nods to Elton John’s “Bennie and the Jets,” while “Lost” references Eve and Gwen Stefani’s “Let Me Blow Ya Mind”). The Hollywood clichés are intentional—there’s a song called “Forrest Gump”—but Ocean’s smart about tweaking them, especially on the love songs, where he’s just as likely to praise a girl’s double-D’s as allude to his crush on a guy.

On the gorgeous “Bad Religion,” he pours his heart out to his taxi driver, crying over a relationship he’s sick of hiding. Considering that he just recently admitted he was once in love with a man,  it’s an especially poignant moment. “I could never make him love me,” Ocean broods. But with a confession this heartfelt, it’s hard to believe that’s true. B+
—Melissa Maerz

Read more on EW.com:
Def Jam: Early release of Frank Ocean’s ‘Channel Orange’ part of original marketing plan
Frank Ocean from Odd Future opens up about sexuality
Jay-Z and Kanye West’s ‘No Church in the Wild’ video: Watch it here

Best news of the day! Pink releases new single 'Blow Me (One Last Kiss)': Listen here

EW fave pop singer Pink hasn’t released a new song since last December, when she offered up the dead-on-arrival “Bridge of Light” for the Happy Feet Two soundtrack. The song went nowhere in the U.S., despite randomly hitting the Top 10 in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland.

For all intents and purposes, Pink hasn’t really released anything much of note in the music realm since she dropped “F—in’ Perfect” back in December 2010. It should be noted, of course, that she’s probably been rather busy with caring for her first kid with husband Cary Hart, daughter Willow Sage Hart, who was born last June. But in good news for all the Pink fans out there salivating for some new tunes from her: She has returned! And in fine form, with the feisty, upbeat single, “Blow Me (One Last Kiss),” which is cheeky from the get-go when you consider that title.

READ FULL STORY

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