Chris Martin fights the pop star, and it's love
When you're a rock star, you can probably make demands like, "I want to be a ninja in my next music video, but I don't want to change out of my tennis shoes."
If I were Chris Martin, that's what I'd do too. The Coldplay frontman fights many enemies and even Rihanna, who puts the "ire" in "desire" for the band's "Princess of China" single. The stylish video allows for the pop stars to get their "Crouching Tiger" on, with the Bajan singer having the added benefit of an unbelievable geisha get-up and a gorgeous fainting couch.
The two oscillate between admiring and dueling each other, finishing off their romance with a sad embrace in the end. Speaking of romance, check out Martin getting his "Bad Romance" on circa 3:16, all Yuri Bradac-ing the crap out of that chair. Yes, Chris, her dance is stunning and in slow-motion.
How was the opening act?
Ever want to know how the band behind ubiquitous "We Are Young" would fare on popular broadcast television? Pretty well, actually.
fun. took the stage to open the 2012 MTV Movie Awards during the live broadcast on Sunday night, tackling their hit "We Are Young" with the help of Janelle Monae, who features on the song. Donning matching white tuxedos with cropped pants, the band was joined by a mini-choir and the buoyant singer, who reversed her outfit to be mostly-black-clad. All looked postively amped.
Frontman Nate Ruess -- formerly of the Format -- came off almost overly eager, considering his breath control, but proved powerful and on-point with the excitement of the teen-endearing evening. Monae was very visible in the latter half of the song, much more evident than her criminally underutilized vocal part in the actual song.
"We Are Young" was a No. 1 hit on the Hot 100. The band is on tour now, and will remain eternally as such.
MTV's 'Generation Award' winner
Johnny Depp took home a "Generation Award" at tonight's MTV Movie Awards, but perhaps he felt more honored to be taking the stage with the Black Keys.
The Oscar-nominated actor performed on guitar to the Keys' summer jam "Gold on the Ceiling" on a stage in-the-round at the Los Angeles-based, live-broadcast ceremony. Depp was wordless during the song, allowing for singer Dan Auerbach's 50 shades of sexy to resonate against the uptempo jam.
After accepting his award from Aerosmith -- who are desperate to promote their "G.I. Joe" song "Legendary Child" and their new album, and who have very little to do with Johnny Depp -- Depp continued to play through the commercial with the blues-rock group on "Lonely Boy," which is also off their latest "El Camino."
Depp was quiet and appreciative in his speech, thanking legends Aerosmith and "up-and-coming legends the Black Keys." The presenting hosts reminded audiences that Depp dropped out of school at a young age to become a musician; he's been known to perform with other artists from Oasis to Marilyn Manson, and looked to Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards as his inspiration for the role of Jack Sparrow in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise films.
Two very different radio jams, one as a Young Money/G.O.O.D. Music mash-up
Lil Wayne may have recent conflict with Kanye West's G.O.O.D. camp -- specifically Pusha T -- but that hasn't kept him from releasing what has been suggested is the first song to arrive from his "I Am Not a Human Being 2" album.
"My Homies Still" features G.O.O.D. Music's Big Sean, from whom Weezy borrows heavily for the hook and even some of the rap's generally sunny outlook; he injects "Go stupid" from Sean's 2011 hit "Dance (A$$)" while he and his collaborator weave around girls, skating and a mix of both good and bad one-liners.
I can't stand how it opens. I grow to love it as it ends. Their voices are good together. Too bad their respective labels aren't.
Pusha T lobbed a little beef Lil Wayne's lil buddy Drake's and Young Money's way with his "Exodus 23:1," with veiled talk of "n*ggas" signing other "n*ggas" and "Contract all f*cked / Explain up I guess that means you all f*cked up." This was a little more than a week ago, after which Weezy Tweeted "F*ck pusha t and anybody that love em." About a day later, he dropped Pusha diss track "Goulish." (It wasn't... great.. They can't all be zingers, but you can actually give a response some time, Wayne.)
'I Just Started Hating Some People Today,' 'Blue Randy' and 'Silk Pillow' arrive
Funny Beck, blue Beck, rapping Beck. Fans got all three this week as the trailblazing singer-songwriter released a new single through Third Man Records with Jack White, and collaborated with Childish Gambino (aka Donald Glover) on a one-off posted to the rapper's website.
As previously reported, Beck Hansen dropped by White's Third Man Nashville studio at the tail-end of a album recording mission, with White producing and guesting what would be "I Just Started Hating Some People Today" with B-Side saddy "Blue Randy."
As was discussed in my interview with Third Man cohort Reggie Watts, the label loves to mix comedy with music, but that's been a part of Beck's history for years. He weaves his snark and deadpan with a country guitar performance and loping, cool melodies on this A-Side, grinding it to an halt with White screaming and a casual woman's voice showing you the door. Who he hates -- and if he really hates -- may not be the message, but it's a theme and that would fit perfectly well on White's solo effort "Blunderbuss."
The singer-songwriter goes into his typical bonkers wordplay mode on "Silk Pillow," rapping with Gambino in a bro-down of dorks dorking out. Beyond those obvious motifs, the co-production is what holds this attention-deficit ditty together. A fun outing for the boys, but not sure how long it will last for the community.
Stream "Silk Pillow" here. Enjoy Big Ghost's liner notes and that amusing "cover."
'Martha Marcy May Marlene' actor Brady Corbet directs
I'm still putting the words together on how I feel about Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros' new album "Here," but my feelings about the new video for single "Man on Fire" is simple: what a delight.
The clip, helmed by actor Brady Corbet, hits mostly schoolyards and gyms at high schools in New York with the purpose of capturing jubilant movements from cheerleaders, tumblers, step team, gymnasts, double-dutch champions and other shakers who are moving to, literally, their own beat. Proud mamas and sisters and coaches, the ilk, look on. It eventually leads to an abandoned lot where the New York City Ballet executes their choreography to the song, and let me tell you, there is nothing cuter than honest-to-god ballerinas busting out in Chuck Taylors.
Band crafts 40-minute silent film with Shepard Fairey's help
Rather, the rockers have released a 40-minute silent film that was crafted partly out of found footage to accompany each of "Americana's" 11 tracks. The opening scene features Young playing a writer who visits an art gallery -- which features works from designer Shepard Fairey -- "in hopes of finding illustrations for his new book about great American songs," according to NPR, which debuted the vid.
Young obviously finds what he's looking for, and thus starts "Americana," which is the Crazy-Horseian interpretation on classic songs like "Oh Susanna," "God Save the Queen" and "This Land Is Your Land." The remainder of the film is found footage from the silent film era, including works from director D.W. Griffith. Young -- under the name Bernard Shakey -- directed and cut the film.
Country pop singer reports in from the set of the Broadway-movie conversion
Apart from her country music career, Julianne Hough has built a reputation for showing up in musical films lately, including “Burlesque” with Christina Aguilera and the “Footloose” remake. Of course, the convincing powers of co-starring in a flick with Tom Cruise didn’t hurt to say “yes” to one more, now with cinematic adaptation of Broadway show “Rock of Ages.”
How to make straight guys rock-out with a gay kiss on the Sunset Strip
Julianne Hough’s character Sherrie in “Rock of Ages” arrives onto the scene in a floral-enhanced dress, with an obscenely cumbersome suitcase in hand while a skinny punk jerk is rattled between policemen and hookers. Skipping alongside ‘80s choppers and liquor ads, Sherrie sings “Just Like Paradize” as her nose points at a rack of girlie mags and cigarettes next to the Roxy. At the edge of her jaunt is one of the film’s fictional focal points, the Bourbon Room, sullied and dank like used chewing gum on the sidewalk. It’s like the opening of “Rock of Ages” is a whiskey-drunk “Wizard of Oz,” with the Sunset Strip as the Yellow Brick Road and the munchkins starring as gum-chewing, crimp-haired, Poison-baiting Lollipop Guild.
Curtain is lifted on Hugh Jackman plus Anne Hathaway's big musical number
Taking beloved stage musical "Les Misérables" to the big screen is no easy feat, but in the new teaser trailer that dropped today, it seems the newest incarnation's filmmakers at least got the scale right.
Featured in the clip is Professional High School Theater Girl Anne Hathaway singing her character Fantine's money shot "I Dreamed a Dream," as Hugh Jackman's Jean Valjean, Amanda Seyfried's pure-faced Cosette, Russel Crowe's militant Javert and others are revealed between sobs. There's even a blink of Samantha Barks, who is making a huge leap from stage to film as Eponine.
Victor Hugo's novel, set in 19th century, elegantly compounded the human condition and challenged the high and low ground of ethics and class loyalty, which made for good stage material and even romance when it was first adapted as plays -- and then as a musical in the 1980s. The music of that show is why the show is so fiercely defended and well-worn, because of its strong feminine arcs around Jean Valjean's hard-scrabble for redemption.
Which brings us back to size. What a stage musical can't do is reveal sweeping landscape aerials and assemble enough bodies to amp a student rebellion to scale. Capturing songs in close, quiet quarters also has the appeal of nixing full-throated stage sound, for much more intimate performances in-studio. Director Tom Hooper -- on whom every eye is fallen after "The King's Speech" -- seems unafraid to let the "Les Mis' actors look like dirt and, hopefully, let them act, fight and die like dirt, too, without the quick costume changes between acts.