<p>Tricia Helfer in the Black Keys' video for &quot;Howlin' For You&quot;</p>

Tricia Helfer in the Black Keys' video for "Howlin' For You"

Watch: Black Keys' 'Howlin for You' video is a tasteless movie trailer

'She'll bang ya... but then... she'll hang ya': awful and awesome

At first glance, the trailer for "Howlin' For You" looks like the campiest, worst and yet simultaneously awesome film of all time. And then Patrick Carney and Dan Auerbach show up. So, by proxy, is "Howlin' For You" the campiest, worst and awesomest music video of all time?

The Black Keys' "Howlin' for You" gets a cinematic makeover by Chris Marrs Piliero, who incidentally helmed the clip for the rock band's "Next Girl." Which is why the appearance of a stuffed dinosaur warrants a tip of the hat (or perhaps a wag of the finger): Piliero is no stranger to mixing tacky with the high-brow when it comes to the Black K... er, Las Teclas de Negro.

[Read more after the jump...]

Watch the video at iMDB.

Tricia Helfer "stars" as " a sexy assassin with a troubled past" who "unknowingly falls in love with the man who killed her father... Now, all grown up with an appetite for revenge, Alexa’s leaving a trail of bloody corpses and broken hearts in her wake."

Auerbach and Carney cameo as her two former loves, but "who would not have her." Co-starring Christian Serratos, "Sir" Todd Bridges, Sean Patrick Flanery, erm, Shaun White and other I-sorta-know-em actors, "Howlin' For You" is packed utter emptiness of the writing and more tacky than a company Christmas party. F-you, Hollywood, where's the Oscar nod for this li'l gem?

"Howlin' For You" is featured on the Black Keys' latest "Brothers."




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<p>The Strokes' &quot;Under Cover of Darkness&quot;</p>

The Strokes' "Under Cover of Darkness"

Credit: RCA

Download The Strokes' new 'Under Cover' single for free

Band to perform at SXSW: What do you think of the rock act's bounce-back?

It's nothing new, but it's certainly bringing back some good memories.

Back with their first new studio material in five years is the Strokes and their single "Under Cover of Darkness," from their forthcoming album "Angles."

The song is available for free download for 48 hours (starting at around 2:35 p.m. EST today, Feb. 9) via the band's website, for the small price of a herd of cattle some personal information, such as email.

The guitars and bass are pushed way, way forward, while Julian Casablancas' vocals take back seat. He queries, "Will you wait for me?" Well we already did, buddy, and you've zoomed the Dolorean back past "Earth," to "Room on Fire." It's less garage and rapturous snottiness, but a robust mix of full '90s modern rock (sans reverb bath, we're looking at you Kings Of Leon) and catchy '60s love songs. I half expected the band to bust into an a capella round at the end.

After this ditty is taken down, fans can sit tight with their YouTubes and Facebooks (OK, and the radio) until "Under the Cover of Darkness'" retail release on Feb. 15.

"Angles," as previously reported, is out on March 22.

In other Strokes news, their manager Ryan Gentles (I live in hope that's his real name) announced this on Twitter, said simply: "SXSW - The Strokes… more to come on thestrokes.com."

The Strokes have already been confirmed to help headline 2011 Coachella.

What do you think of the track? Do you like the direction the band is taking?

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<p>James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem</p>

James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem

LCD Soundsystem waving goodbye with one last show at MSG

Three hour concert to be "the end of an era"

We saw it coming: the signs were all there.

LCD Soundsystem is quitting the concert biz and has formally announced its final show, for April 2 at New York's Madison Square Garden

LCD Soundsystem: The Long Goodbye will be a three-hour farewell event, marking the first (and apparently) last time the group will play at the arena, for its longest set ever. In a release, LCD will perform "deep cuts" and "never-before played music spanning" the group's "decade-defining albums," including the self-titled set, "Sound of Silver," "This Is Happening," and (apparently?) James Murphy's Nike running mix "45:33."

The live band will consist of Murphy, Pat Mahoney, Nancy Whang, Al Doyle, Gavin Russon, Tyler Pope and Matt Thornley, "augmented by a choir, string and horn sections" and the promise of special guests. Liquid Liquid is set to open the show.

The band "will be observing a black and white clothing only dress code for the long goodbye. They respectfully request that the audience do the same." Get thee to a Uniqlo, perhaps.

Tickets go up on Feb. 11 via bowerypresents.com and ticketmaster.com.

Considering the breadth and depth of LCD's touring partners, collaborators and DFA legacy, I would expect some heavy-hitting, holy-sh*t moments. Three hours is a long time, and it ain't exactly a catalog of Prince proportions. Like any music festival, I would recommend comfortable footwear and a friend who goes with you that ain't afraid to dance.

Murphy has said before that he never intended for LCD Soundsystem to be the headlining, big-selling, brain-busting group that it was; perhaps he's just always felt more comfortable being the spinner, to a small room, something that could be elegantly appreciated in a dance hall more than a 75,000-capacity music fest or a basketball arena. That being said, after experiencing (that's right, experiencing) LCD as I did from Bowery to Bonnaroo, I wouldn't estimate the guy to go in half-assing MSG. They'll be "going out both on top and on their own terms." Circle the 11th with the brightest marker you can.

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<p>Jessica Lea Mayfield's &quot;Tell Me&quot;</p>

Jessica Lea Mayfield's "Tell Me"

Credit: Nonesuch

Album Review: Jessica Lea Mayfield's 'Tell Me'

Nonesuch effort produced by Black Keys' Dan Auerbach: Listen to the whole album

Jessica Lea Mayfield’s appeal is the extra breaths buried in her minimalist melodies, the uncomplicated lyrics sung with pangs and a lack of pretension, the mix of country and traditional Americana elements into typical acoustic fare. But the Ohio singer-songwriter’s Nonesuch debut is a little overburdened with production.

I say this with the knowledge that the Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach helmed the album, “Tell Me.” There were seemingly a million tracks at Mayfield’s disposal, and they’re filled with electric guitars and pristine drum tracks galore, but with her six-string plodding simply beside her plain voice. I find I know frustratingly little about her as a person and songwriter at the end of 11 tracks.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Cut Copy's &quot;Zonoscope&quot;</p>

Cut Copy's "Zonoscope"

Credit: Modular

Album Review: Cut Copy's 'Zonoscope'

Aussies' third full length will help you shake these winter blues

Cut Copy remains true to its name for its new full-length “Zonoscope,” chopping and screwing elements of popular and dance musics and yet somehow coming out clean on the other side with something memorable and unique.

In 2008, these Aussies proved they could make a dance album for people who say they don’t even like dance music, with “In Ghost Colours,” on par with the recent success of Hot Chip, Simian Mobile Disco, LCD or even Yeasayer. It was a finding of feet as album artists instead of relying solely on their luminous singles.

Three years later and Cut Copy has hit another one out of the ballpark, with the same eclectic remnants of pop music, fantasy and an hour of pure fun.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Jon Wurster in the New Pornographers' &quot;Moves&quot; video</p>

Jon Wurster in the New Pornographers' "Moves" video

Watch: 'SNL,' 'Daily Show' cast cameo in New Pornographers' 'Moves'

Paul Rudd, John Oliver, Bill Hader, John Hodgeman and more snort coke off of a pizza

The Beastie Boys recently had some famous friends star as the band itself in "Fight for Your Right Revisited"; now the New Pornographers have followed suit, in a vision of a biopic.

Paul Rudd with Bill Hader, John Oliver, John Hodgeman, Wyatt Cenac, Horatio Sanz, Todd Barry and numerous other comedians (plus Ted Leo in drag) all drop in for the music video.

The opening of the clip features those first two actors, in what clearly is definitely not a real film, but God knows it could be: "Expectant Dads" will send two zany dudes to Vegas -- as they're expecting their first babies. And, seriously, they made a website for the thing. Look.

Oh, but that's not even the bulk of this monster. "Moves: The Rise and Rise of The New Pornographers" is the main attraction, a preview of an imaginary movie about the indie rock band. Who plays who? You'll have to wait, but just know that a protest against Canadians, red-headed jokes, snorting coke off of a pizza and Brooklyn's cement shithole Death By Audio are all included in this little adventure through the band's fake past.

More info on the credits can be found on the Matador Records blog here.

"Moves" is cute and was culled from the rockers' latest album "Together," out now.

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<p>...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead's &quot;Tao of the Dead&quot;</p>

...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead's "Tao of the Dead"

Credit: Richter Scale Records/Superballmusic

Album Review: Trail of Dead's 'Tao of the Dead'

Hey Foo Fighters, are you listening?

As much as …And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead has garnered a reputation as a neo-prog band, they’ve made one of the most modern-rockiest albums in their career in “Tao of the Dead.”

It’s an album in two sections: an 11-song concept set for A-side and five-song suite for the B-side. The theme is a gander down the valley of the shadow of death, in essence, as Conrad Keely reports what the Other Side may look like through a series of exhilations on death and primal screams that the Foos should fully consider before shining off that new album of theirs.

“Summer of All Dead Souls” – previewed here – has all the elements of a rock radio stomper, but simmers down abruptly to “Cover the Days Like a Tidal Wave” where our narrator asks “Are you lost, again?”. Apropos, as the swell ominously builds with the help of some space-age synths and the skronking urgency of what sounds like 30 guitars.

A quartet of good ideas under three minutes makes a “Dead” processional, including the militaristic “Fall of the Empire” and surprisingly sunny “The Wasteland,” pushing those vocals way, way up front.

Those “Ebb Away” rumbles from the bass and the low strings on electric will bring you back to the mid-‘90s, when Smashing Pumpkins had not yet made “Machina” and Sonic Youth was still on DGC. The band then shines things off to the strains of repeating '70s-psych patterns, a pageant of all their misfit toys giving one last howl with the help of producer Chris “Frenchie” Smith.

Keely sometimes gets tangled up in the fantastical vocabulary that’s the heart of the “Tao” concept, but it’s at the very least entertaining. It teaches and reaches, the story turning on itself like the Dead are the villains and the goodly ghosts.

You can tell the Trail of Dead doesn’t take the whole thing too seriously, by naming its theme “Pure Radio Cosplay” twice on the first set – cosplaying being role-playing, a costume, a “pure radio” wink at the very gall of a concept composition to begin with, all in the key of D.

This, all before the unfortunate incident of “Part II.”

Side Two of this drama, titled “Strange News From Another Planet,” which the band wanted consumed in a 16-minute whole. There’s some chattering samples and the return of a half-hearted “theme” -- it’s not a good idea, especially after we just got off the Side One rollercoaster. “Know Your Honor” has melody to last it at least two minutes, but the lack dynamic doesn’t carry it right into the next shoegazey movement, “Rule By Being Just.” It meanders without punch – surprising, coming from producer Chris Coady (Beach House, Yeah Yeah Yeahs) -- and takes the wholesale aesthetic of “Part I” and spins it without the same ache.

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<p>Cold Cave: cold calling</p>

Cold Cave: cold calling

Credit: Matador

Song Of The Day: Cold Cave's 'The Great Pan Is Dead'

Download for free: Barrelling, electric misery

Everything about Cold Cave just screamed "bah humbug" to me. Their sour grapes promo photo looks like somebody watched too many hours of "The Kardashians." The title of their track "The Great Pan Is Dead" looks like it was pulled from a publishing template of Nostalgic Melancholia. Two artists that Pandora pulled up as a "like" Cold Cave were Xiu Xiu and Suicide.

And yet this song, culled from their forthcoming full-length "Cherish the Light Years," is one of the most mystifyingly electric, intuitive, ballsy demon exorcisms I've heard this year, at least from the synth-rock camp. Wesley Eisold moans about salvation and "crushing fears," as a machine gun of high-frequency keys will ward away any unwanted teenagers from your door stop. It's like literate Faint run through a grossly righteous mix and lush lessons from Spiritualized. I promise, those four minutes fly.

This is the first song on the forthcoming full-length... it existed in some half-finished way in my head for almost two years. It had to be the first song on the album and serve as a declaration of everything I want to assert through Cold Cave," Eisold explains. "It’s a love letter to the path that has led me to where I am now, to loss and love and friends and enemies and the dizzied and blurred ways of the world. This song and record is about magic, preservation, youth and movement... I miss a lot of people. I used to deal with that by assuring myself I’d see them again. I know that can’t be true. This song is dedicated to all of them."

So I was kinda wrong about the frownie-hipster thing, so sorry guys. This track is a real gem. Download it for free at the band's Tumblr.

"Cherish the Light Years" is out on April 5 via Matador.


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<p>Alex Turner</p>

Alex Turner

Credit: AP Photo

UPDATED: Sundance Sountracks Exclusive: Alex Turner's 'Submarine' songs out in March

Artic Monkeys frontman's solo tracks getting a digital release

“Submarine” certainly was a unique movie at Sundance, and with it came a similarly rare soundtrack.

Alex Turner, frontman for the Arctic Monkeys, headed up the charge with a handful of brand new solo tracks, and I can happily reveal when fans outside of film festivals can get a gander. 

“Submarine” soundtrack songs will be released digtally, under Turner’s name, on March 14 in the U.K., and in the U.S. some time during the same month, exact date TBA. It will be a “completely separate release than the new Monkeys album,” a spokesperson for Domino Records told HitFix. That would be the indie Co. behind the Arctic Monkeys’ music, publishing via EMI.

While its still unclear which songs will be on the as-yet-untitled set, Turner and the Weinstein company have a few to choose from: the tracks “Stuck on the Puzzle,” “Hiding Tonight,” “Glass in the Park,” “It’s Hard to Get Around the Wind” and “Piledriver Waltz” all made the cue. I smell EP.

UPDATE: In a release (2/7), Domino has given the effort a March 15 drop date in the U.S. The tracklist will include all six tracks mentioned.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>The Builders and the Butchers: thug lyfe</p>

The Builders and the Butchers: thug lyfe

Credit: Peter Blanchard

Song of the Day: The Builders and the Butcher's 'Lullaby,' plus video

On tour now with equally well-named Murder By Death

I don't know much about The Builders and the Butchers except that they're touring with Murder By Death, some righteous Midwesterners who have one of my favorite band names of all time.

But B&B have turned out a mighty good tune with a great video to match.

"Lullaby" features a little death by murder of its own, combating the serenity of its title with axes, a haunting and beards. Who doesn't like a long shot of slow-mo fire? Not this girl.

The track itself reminds me of the blues/garage heart of Two Gallants and O'Death, and of The Decemberist's Colin Meloy when he isn't hate-f*cking the dictionary. The drum mix took me aback for a moment, but then I'm like, What the hell, it's almost Friday, let that business all hang out; let that bass fritter away in what sounds like a tornado shelter while frontman Ryan Sollee yowls and yowls. It's the freakin' weekend.

The Builders and the Butchers, from Portland, Ore., are releasing their third full-length "Dead Reckoning" on Feb. 22.

Download "Lullaby" for free here, and watch it below:

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