The Wrap-Up: This Week in Music + 12 Cuts
The Wrap-Up brings you the 10 largest music news stories of the week as well as information about new album and music video releases.
HEADLINES OF THE WEEK
1. Modest Mouse releases new song “Lampshades on Fire” preceding their first album in eight years
On Tuesday the indie rock band Modest Mouse released their lead single, “Lampshades on Fire,” from their upcoming album Strangers to Ourselves. They’ve actually been playing the song regularly at live gigs for a few years but this will be its first time as an official release. The band revealed cover art (pictured above) for the March 2015 album last week on Instagram. This will be their first release in eight years, since the 2007 We Were Dead Before the Ships Even Sank. Rumor has it that they’ve collaborated on tracks with Big Boi (OutKast) and Krist Novoselic (Nirvana) and they recently introduced live three new songs, though no one knows the specifics of what will end up on the album. Listen to “Lampshades on Fire” below:
2. ALL THE ARTISTS work together to write a jingle in a new Australian sketch
Australian station Triple J just created a sketch that involves 40 artist–including Lorde, Diplo, Disclosure, Skrillex, Courtney Barnett, Little Dragon, First Aid Kit, Alt-J, Flume, Ben Folds, Reggie Watts, and Flight Facilities–attempting to group-write the ultimate catchy song. Chaos ensues.
3. Charli XCX performs on Letterman and SNL, plus her new album, SUCKER!
To publicize her brand-new album SUCKER this week, Charli XCX (the force behind Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy”) performed “Need Ur Luv” on “Late Show with David Letterman,” rocking and rolling on top of a piano played by Vampire Weekend’s Rostam Batmanglij. She was also the musical guest on this week’s SNL, performing “Boom Clap” and “Break the Rules.” Following on SUCKER (dropped Tuesday), the artist confirmed her plans to release a punk album in the near future.
4. Muse hints about new album
Early this week the band Muse shared a clip on Instagram captioned “Milan Strings,” which excited fans and caused speculation as to the content of their upcoming album. Comments included things like “The album will be the best thing for me in 2015,” ” I hope they’re going back to an Absolution sound pls!!!” and “nice classical strings…THEN DROP THE BIG RIFF.” Muse is currently working on their second studio album, set for release at some point in 2015. Frontman Matt Bellamy said recently that he expects their upcoming work to contain themes of “deep ecology, the empathy gap and world war 3.” via.
See the Insta post below.
5. Jack Antonoff and Charli XCX singing in a car
As part of Kia’s “In-Ride” ad campaign, Charli XCX and Jack Antonoff of Bleachers team up to cover each other’s songs (“Rollercoaster” and “Break the Rules”) while cruising through a psychedelic cityscape in the new Kia Soul.
6. Another awesome St. Vincent music video: “Birth in Reverse”
St. Vincent just released a colorful new video for the song “Birth in Reverse,” off of her self-titled album, released February this year. The clip feature’s Annie Clark’s signature “elegant mad scientist” look and feels like part artsy-concert-cideo and part surreal-drug-trip. See for yourself, below:
P. S. If you’re in to comparing things, here’s St. Vincent’s video for “Digital Witness” from a couple months ago.
7. Future Islands releases very-mini-documentary on themselves
As they reach the end of 2014–a year packed with grand success and endless hard work–the band reflects upon their time touring in a short film titled Road Dawgs. The seven-minute documentary, directed by Jay Buim, strikes a pleasantly sentimental note, including plenty of shots of pre-show prep, backstage conversations, sound checks and tour vans, while never taking itself too seriously. Also check out Pitchfork’s interview with the trio from the beginning of the year.
8. Music at the Oscars
The Academy Awards have just released their shortlist of nominees for the Best Original Song category, which for the 2015 awards includes songs by artist like Lana Del Rey, the Shins, Bon Iver, Lorde, Alicia Keys with Kendrick Lamar and Glen Campbell. via. The official Oscar nominations come out on January 15th but there is already overlap with the Golden Globe nominations in the same category, which were announced last week: Lana Del Rey’s “Big Eyes” from Big Eyes, John Legend and Common’s “Glory” from Selma, Patti Smith and Lenny Kaye’s “Mercy Is” from Noah, Sia’s Annie cut “Opportunity” and Lorde’s “Yellow Flicker Beat” from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1. via.
9. A Dylan concert for one
The exceedingly lucky Fredrik Wikingsson, a Bob Dylan lifetime fan, experienced a once-in-a-lifetime Dylan concert last month: a performance played just for him. The event was part of the Swedish film series Experiment Ensam, “where a lone person takes part in events that are usually reserved for large crowds” via. The project examines how group experiences (like a concert) shift their meaning when experienced alone. Wikingsson says it was deeply moving and so far removed from any other Bob Dylan concert, of which he has seen 20. Reflecting, he said “I’m both grateful and happy that I was the only one there. But once I stepped out of the theater, all confused and dizzy, it could have been more intense if I had someone to share it with. In that way, I’m torn about the experience.” via.
Watch the whole thing below:
10. Outstanding lineup announced for 2015 MusicNOW festival
It was announced this week that the 2015 MusicNOW festival (March 11-15) would feature The National, Sufjan Stevens, Perfume Genius and Arcade Fire’s Will Butler, among others. The festival, which was started in 2006, is a collaborative arts and music project in Ohio, led by The National’s frontman Bryce Dessner. Get more details and stay tuned for updates on the festival’s website.