<p>Lady Gaga</p>

Lady Gaga

Lollapalooza lineup analysis: What's wrong and what's right with this picture?

Is Lollapalooza the best America can get from a mainstream fest?

Lollapalooza is taking a stab at becoming the country's most appealing, mainstream festival in the country, and it's never become more apparent that it has with the announcement of 2010's headliners.

As previously reported, Green Day, Lady Gaga, Soundgarden, Arcade Fire, The Strokes and Phoenix are the big names from this year, peppered in the secondary with many rock-centric acts like Spoon, The National, MGMT, Social Distortion and Devo. If only Jay-Z were in that mainline announcement, it'd cover the trifecta of rock, pop and hip-hop (but it was Coachella that nabbed that one early).

Check this out: HitFix's Melinda Newman and I sort out what's hot and what's not from Lolla 2010. Do you disagree?

It's a sea change from last year's somewhat nostaligic lineup for rock fans, with fest founder Perry Ferrell's reunited Jane's Addiction, Depeche Mode, Lou Reed and even, debateably, Tool. The Killers and Kings of Leon rounded that out, plus there was the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the sole act to keep the thing from turning into a 100% sausage party.

[More on Lollapalooza after the jump...]

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Song Of The Day: Robyn's dark dance 'None of Dem'

Platinum-haired firebrand preps three albums for 2010

"None of dees beats are raw / None of dees beats ever break the law." Robyn should give herself some credit: many of the beats in her new track "None of Dem" are pretty earth-bending.

Listen to the track here.

Sour, dark, sultry, sassy, the track achieves the mood with the sound of action on a gun, '80s synths and her otherworldly voice stacked in spots like a soul sister of La Roux.

And those lush ascending notes? Sound familiar? Royksopp! I know, I missed them too!

The slow burn won't be for everyone -- the waiting IS the hardest part -- but we foresee some incredible remixes gearing up for summer, for those who want a more traditional house anthem.

It's the first we've heard of Robyn this year, as she prepares three albums. You heard me. Three. Not to discount from her ambitious schedule, but the first of these, "Body Talk Pt. 1" is only eight songs long, tracklist below (you want sassy? Just look at Track One). It's due June 14 featuring first single "Dancing on My Own."

Here is the tracklist for "Body Talk Pt. 1":

1. Don’t F*cking Tell Me What To Do
2. Fembot
3. Dancing On My Own
4. Cry When You Get Older
5. Dance Hall Queen
6. None Of Dem
7. Hang With Me (acoustic)
8. Jag Vet En Dejlig Rosa

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<p>Antlers singer Peter Silberman</p>
<br />

Antlers singer Peter Silberman

Credit: Kyle Dean Reinford

Indie rock gets a wine pairing, with The Antlers

How vino and independent music meet, and why it works

Hey, at least it's not Jager.

In what was described as a "innovative/interactive lifestyle platform that partners wine with live music and technology," downtown New York wine bar In Vino hosted Viewtopia, with indie band The Antlers playing in the key of Merlot.

Organizers from Cali's Wente Vineyard encouraged drink pairings like their juicy Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon/paired with bro-rock band The Hold Steady or the Riverbank Riesling/paired with West Indian Girl, members of which were on site. The Antlers -- who have lately been playing to rooms in the thousands, rather than the night's crowd of 50 -- split up their quiet storm set (broadcast live online, with technology to interact with other users) and in between, a rep for the winery would talk about the featured beverages. They were described in terms anybody could understand, but also in jargon that could pass in band one-sheeter bios ("dexterous," "moody," "bright").

The coupling of popular music and the drinking experience is nothing particularly new: doubtless our ancestors were pounding back drog when the first drum beat boomed from the cave. Schlitz used to have a music Festival. Jagermeister has a tour (mmm, tastes like Korn) and Red Bull has a record label. From Budweiser to Hennessey, liquor and beer companies put their stamp on "cool" fest-specific CD compilations, and in sponsorships/partnerships, music video placements, the ilk.

Last year, I attended a similar event hosted by Blackstone winery. Wines were consumed through the filter of acts like CSS, Beach Boys and Iron & Wine (I see what you did there), as tasters' feelings about their various wines were influenced by the music itself. It's a fact: loud dance music largely makes girls want to shop, just as Massive Attack makes me want to bathe in Zinfandel.

Two instances does not a trend make, but surely there must be other indie rock and wine events in the country. And I can see a connection between such bands and wine as an alcohol, at least loosely: "independent" artists such as The Antlers appeal to a certain listener, an exclusive or tastemaking consumer. With the light touch of brushes on a three-piece kit from drummer Michael Lerner, to the wiles and whimpers of singer Peter Silberman's vibrato. It's intimate and insular, an air we're conditioned to feel when we drink wine (The Verve : chardonnay :: Leonard Cohen : whiskey).

The Antlers revealed they're headlong into recording a new album, the follow-up to last year's phenomenal "Hospice." They warned their online audience and their fellow bar attendees not to expect entirely the same sound of this forthcoming effort. They head out on tour in the coming days.

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<p>Freelance Whales</p>

Freelance Whales

On The Rise: Freelance Whales

Watch: 'Generator 2nd Floor' music video from breaking New York band

Who: Freelance Whales (Judah Dadone, Kevin Read, Doris Cellar, Jake Hyman, Chuck Criss)

What: New York-based indie-pop crew led by the goosey melodies of frontman Judah Dadone. The band formed over Craigslist and in about a year managed to sign a joint venture with Frenchkiss and Mom & Pop records.

The band is re-releasing its first self-released record, "Weathervanes" through those labels, with single "Generator 2nd Floor" leading the way, video below.

When: "Weathervanes" is out on Tuesday (April 13); They're just setting out on tour through June 13, some headlining, as well as some opening slots for Sweden's Shout Out Louds. All dates here.

Why: As far as the labels go, there's few indies as hot right now as Frenchkiss (I mean, just look at 'em), and Mom & Pop know what they're doing: the co. is headed up by the former A&R titan for Sire, who signed Rage, Pearl Jam, Tegan & Sara, you get the picture.

As for music... There's a lot going on here. Glockespiels, electric and acoustic stringed instruments, vocal harmonies, cute-instrument jam-outs. It's not so light as to call it precious, but not as heavy as the lyrical topics insinuate (ghosts, haunting). Dadone's voice reminds me of Nate Ruess (The Format / fun.), some Sufjan Stevens. And in a band full of adorable people, the dude is positively adorbs.

Watch: Freelance Whales, "Generator 2nd Floor"

[Video after the jump...]

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Devo wants your help on finishing its album, and why this is genius

The Devo Song Study is audience testing for a full album

Devo has recorded several songs for its new album -- the band's first in 20 years -- and wants you to help determine which songs make the cut.

The DEVO Inc. Devo Song Study has been launched, and in it, fans are advised to pick 12 out of 16 songs (song snippets, really) they think should make the album. "This interactive test will gauge your exact opinion on matters of musical taste and is the latest technological wrinkle in facilitating DEVO’s ongoing mission to appeal to everybody," read a release. Check out our coverage of their first audience-informed stunt, and the first single "Fresh."

It's audience testing. Cheekily, but not, in that, no doubt, Devo will put the chosen top 12 songs onto their album, no telling what happens to the rejected four.

It's all in corporate speak, with a hoaky-looking stock photo corporate yuppie guy and his signature, urging us on "in an effort to comply with the growing need for appealing sonic products in the mass market." The wink comes with our narrator during the song selection process, an oddball with an indescribable accent, who awkwardly encourages you into the rock, "listening" with you on giant headphones as he drinks a glass of milk, dabs lip balm on his lips and bops out of time in a stilted sway.

[More on Devo after the break...]

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<p>ICP's &quot;Miracles&quot;: Hell yes, that's a giraffe</p>

ICP's "Miracles": Hell yes, that's a giraffe

Watch: No, this Insane Clown Posse music video is not an SNL Digital Short

I mean, just look at it

You thought today would be just a normal Thursday? Didn't you? But, I mean, how did Thursday come to be, y'know? Like, how does that even work?

And pelicans, and magnets? The sh*t just doesn't drop a smartbomb on your cranium from nowhere. Aren't you inspired by f*ckin' rainbows, RAINBOWS, if you just open your facepaint-covered eyelids every once and a while?

And the high fructose corn syrup in your Faygo? That sh*t doesn't just flavor itself.

I wanna float on a cloud of cotton candy. I want to soar into the air on a computer-generated turret and point my fingers skyward like guns (of love and wonderment) and turn these drab black clothes inside out for the illusion of starting over.

All because of the Insane Clown Posse's new music video for "Miracles."

Juggalos, rejoice in the advancement of technology. Poets, release your tears into the crevices of your keyboards. Perfection has been achieved, and it's -- as ICP says -- pure motherf*cking magic, right?

[Video after the jump...]

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<p>Thom Yorke</p>

Thom Yorke

Watch: Thom Yorke debuts new solo material at tour kickoff

And what does Flea do?

Thom Yorke and his band Atoms For Peace kicked off their U.S. solo trek over the last two nights in New York, and the Radiohead frontman brought with him some new material to mull.

"A Walk Down the Staircase," below, is a mopey, falsetto number on just guitar in this instance, but if the British singer plans on revamping it for an album like "The Eraser," expect, perhaps, in the future some glitchy rhythmic thumps and ethereal atmospherics. It's a darker tune than Yorke's unusually smiley attitude insinuates, which he addresses in the clip. "I'll stop when it gets boring..."

He also returned to the piano for a new song "Daily Mail," which we already alerted you to.

The supergroup of a band does a knock-up job revisiting "The Eraser," and letting Yorke take the spotlight, though Flea's blue hair and his standing-in-place dance moves are an eyeful on their own.

Click here for Atoms of Peace tour dates. Next show is tomorrow, April 8, in Boston.

[Video after the jump...]

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<p>Mates of State</p>

Mates of State

Death Cab, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Waits songs on Mates of State covers set

Listen now to the duo's take on Girls' Laura

Hey! It's almost summer! Good thing we have a new Mates of State album to serve as soundtrack, a covers set at that.

"Crushes (The Covers Mixtape) " is a 10-song set that the duo -- Jason Hammel and Kori Gardner -- produced themselves, with some help from The National producer Peter Katis. A diverse set of acts like Tom Watis, Belle & Sebastian, The Mars Volta, Fleetwood Mac and Nick Cave are having their songs included; Death Cab For Cutie also gets the covers treatment -- Ben Gibbard, after all, helped sing some on the Mates' last "Bring It Back" in 2008.

Below is a tracklist, and below that, a stream of the Mates of State performing indie buzz band Girls' "Laura." It's sunny, as could be predicted, but does have the crew breaking out of their normal structures of just drums, keyboards and vocal harmonies. Check out the turntable scratches and the drum machine, the omnipresent, buzzing bass and a dreamier delivery from Gardner. Download the track via their website matesofstate.com.

They promise that psycho-psych of The Mars Volta track "Son et Lumiere" is going "breezy" and Waits' "Long Way Home" came out as "an adrenalized anthem."

"We hadn't counted on this covers project making us approach our own songs in these new ways.  Too often in the past, we'd get stuck writing in a certain structure.  In dissecting these songs, taking out the biggest creative component--actually writing the song--we were more thoughtful of other musical aspects... In a sense, these other great bands made us a better band," the couple says in a statement.

No tour dates yet, though they pulled off a handful back in February.

1. Laura (Girls)
2. Son et Lumiere (The Mars Volta)
3. Sleep the Clock Around (Belle & Sebastian)
4. Technicolor Girls (Death Cab for Cutie)
5. Long Way Home (Tom Waits)
6. Love Letter (Nick Cave)
7. Second Hand News (Fleetwood Mac)
8. 17 Pink Sugar Elephants (Vashti Bunyan)
9. Roller Coaster Ride (Dear Nora)
10. True Love Will Find You in the End (Daniel Johnston)

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<p>Erykah Badu</p>

Erykah Badu

Credit: AP Photo

Watch: Erykah Badu's 'Window Seat' gets the Wanda Sykes treatment

Disorderly conduct gets a disorderly new look

Erykah Badu's "Window Seat" music video slash strip tease has been causing a stir in the debate on decency and artistry, but that doesn't mean we can't laugh about it. Ask Wanda Sykes.

The comedienne made her own version of the clip for "The Wanda Sykes Show," redubbed "Middle Seat." Just wait at least for the rhyming scheme for "pee."

Badu's video earned her a disorderly conduct charge after the clip caught on -- which comes with a $500 fine -- and at the very least, the discussion has people, perhaps, interested too in her new music. Her new album "New Amerykah Part Two (Return of the Ankh)" came out last week.

Sykes may not have a new album, and she may not have had the opportunity to bare-all, but she did introduce the term "badus" as a non proper noun.

 [Watch the clip after the jump...]

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<p>The Muppets' Statler and Waldorf in &quot;Stand By Me&quot;</p>

The Muppets' Statler and Waldorf in "Stand By Me"

Watch: The Muppets sing 'Stand By Me'

Is this all in advance of the new Muppets movie with Jason Segel? When's his cameo?

Just in time for Easter, there's a little rabbit-oriented violence, fresh from The Muppets.

Check out the video below where are a carniverous monster woos some susceptible bunnies to their doom by singing Ben E. King's classic "Stand By Me." But the power of song doesn't necessarily make this meal perfectly pleasant.

And Statler and Waldorf have at least a couple things to say about it.

This new clip comes about three months since The Muppets reared their moppy heads anew: back around the holidays, if you'll remember, "Bohemian Rhapsody" got a revamp by the whole Henson-created crew. It ended in the same way, too, with some well-loved characters happening upon the clip on the "computer." Very meta, guys.

These may be sprouting up increasingly due to the fact that a new Muppets movie is in the works. For real. The real reality is that Jason Segel, if you'll remember, has been cast as the human lead in the next, untitled adventure. Maybe he'll have something for us on the YouTubes soon, too?

 [Watch the clip after the jump...]

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