The Wrap-Up brings you the largest music news stories of the week as well as information about new album and music video releases.
HEADLINES OF THE WEEK
1. Jack White had the best-selling vinyl of 2014
Jack White had a big 2014: he released his second solo album, Lazaretto, garnered 3 Grammy nominations, completed various international tour dates, spoke in a panel at Yale University, and refused to adjust any fall tour dates despite an ankle injury. Now, he can add this to his massive list of accomplishments: Lazaretto was the best-selling vinyl of 2014, with 86,707 albums sold in the United States and more than 150,000 copies sold worldwide. White is kicking off the new year with 6 arena shows in January, including a stop at the legendary Madison Square Garden on January 30. More information about the shows and tickets can be found at his website.
2. Billy Corgan revealed that he declined an offer to write for Miley Cyrus
In an interview with a French radio station, the Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan was asked if he would rather tour with Courtney Love or Miley Cyrus. He chose Miley and while discussing the reasoning behind his choice, he revealed that Miley’s people asked him to write a song for her. He declined, but stated that he wouldn’t mind writing with Miley in the future. Corgan’s complete thoughts on Cyrus are shown below.
We quickly forget that she was once a Disney kid, and part of what makes Miley seem dangerous in the culture is because of where she came from. If she was just some nobody who appeared like she is now, I don’t think people would have the same emotional response. The way I look at it is she’s very talented. As long as somebody’s talented, you can argue all day about should they do this should they not. But she’s very talented. She’s a very good singer. So at least I can stand back and say qualitatively that she’s a better pop star than 99.99% of them, even if I don’t like the music…
Actually, I was asked recently to get involved. But the problem is — and this is nothing against her — but that whole world in LA is they want you to write a bunch of songs, then the pop people pick through: “I want that one, I want that one.” I don’t do that. If she called me and said, “Would you write a song with me?,” I would consider it. Because again, she is very talented, and it would be a cool thing to explore. But I’m not going to write a song and sit by the fire, hoping that Miley will pick my song over the next stupid song.
3. Deer Tick completed a six-day anniversary residency at the Brooklyn Bowl
Providence’s own Deer Tick celebrated their tenth anniversary with six days of shows at the Brooklyn Bowl in New York. These shows will be featured in the band’s upcoming documentary directed by William Miller. At the first five shows, Deer Tick covered a different classic album, including the Beatles’ Meet the Beatles, Lou Reed’s Transformer, Devo’s Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!, and Elvis Costello’s My Aim Is True. Their New Year’s Eve set consisted entirely of songs requested by fans and even featured an appearance from Stevie Nicks, who performed “Rhiannon” with the band. Other special guests featured during the band’s residency include the Replacements’ Tommy Stinson, Vanessa Carlton, Taylor Goldsmith, and the Felice Brothers,.
4. Passion Pit’s Michael Angelakos released a series of new tracks
Starting on Monday, Passion Pit frontman Michael Angelakos released a series of tracks on his Soundcloud page, which hasn’t featured any new music for two years. Most of the tracks are predominantly instrumental, featuring the pitch-shifting and upbeat sound that is reminiscent of Passion Pit’s previous work. The majority of the songs also seem to be part of a new project from Angelakos called Eastern Shift. In August, Angelakos stated that Passion Pit’s third album is almost done. Hopefully we can hear more from Angelakos and the rest of Passion Pit in 2015.
5. Dave Grohl shared the full story behind the Foo Fighters’ “The River”
On The Tonight Show‘s web series, “How I Wrote That Song,” Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl shared more details about how the band wrote “The River” off their latest album, Sonic Highways. He explained that for Sonic Highways, the band traveled to eight different cities and in each city, they first recorded the instrumental track. Grohl then interviewed local figures amid additional studio work. On fourth or fifth day in the city, Grohl took the the interview transcripts to his hotel and selected words and sentences to add to his journal and ultimately, fit into the new song.
6. Thom Yorke unveiled a new song
Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke released “Youwouldn’tlikemewhenI’mangry” as a bonus track for his second album, Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes. The song features mellow electronic beats and Yorke’s haunting vocals. Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes was added to Yorke’s Bandcamp last week, but was originally released on BitTorrent and ended up being the the company’s most downloaded album of 2014 (excluding piracy).
Currently, you can “name your price” and download the new song from Yorke’s Bandcamp.
7. Michael Stripe, R.E.M. frontman, made his debut as a solo artist
On Monday, R.E.M. frontman Michael Stripe surprised the audience at Patti Smith’s Webster Hall show in New York by performing as her opening act. Stripe’s six-song set marks his first performance as a solo artist as well as his first significant live performance in nearly four years. The set included R.E.M. songs as well as interesting cover choices. He started with a cover of Vic Chesnutt’s “Lucinda Williams,” which was followed by “New York, New York.” He then covered Patti Smith’s “Wing” and performed R.E.M.’s “Saturn Return.” He finished his set with a cover of Perfume Genius’ “Hood” and R.E.M.’s “New Test Leper.”
8. High school yearbook photos of various music artists have been uncovered
On Monday, Gawker asked readers to submit photos of celebrities from their high school yearbooks. The post brought up photos of WBRU artists, including Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder (shown above and listed as Eddie Mueller) and Neon Tree’s Tyler Glenn (shown below), as well as Beyonce, Andrew WK, and Lauryn Hill.
9. Mac DeMarco is auctioning his old shoes for at least $21,000 on eBay
Exposure artist Mac DeMarco is holding an eBay auction to sell an old pair of Vans low-tops that he wore at various shows from July through December 2014. All proceeds from the eBay auction will go to the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls. The auction ends on Sunday and the current highest bid is $21,000. Along with a list of specific tour dates in which he used the shoes, DeMarco left the following words on his eBay page:
I’m selling an old pair of my shoes. I’ve John Hancocked the left shoe. Will anyone buy an old stinky pair of shoes? I don’t know. lets wait and see.I’ll probably throw some other crap in the box before shipping it, I dunno what.If you’re one of those kids who tried to take them off my feet while I was crowd surfing at some point this year, nice try jackass. But hey, here’s another opportunity for you to have them.All of the profit will go to Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls.
10. Noel Gallagher offered sympathy to his brother and former Oasis bandmate
Despite the high levels of tension between brothers and former Oasis members Noel and Liam Gallagher, Noel recently showed support for Liam, whose band Beady Eye broke up in October. Noel revealed to the Q, “I’m very fucking sad about Beady Eye, because I know they really wanted to make it work. I wanted it to work for them. I was out with [former Beady Eye member] Gem Archer the other night. The vibe I’m getting is that it was a shock, although not completely surprising.”
Regarding Liam’s future in music, Noel only had kind words: “I’m amazed Liam has chucked it in, but he won’t stay out of the limelight for long. I think Liam should make a solo record – put his balls on the line, put his name up in lights and go for it.”