<p>From &quot;Runaways&quot;</p>

From "Runaways"

Watch the Killers' 'Runaways' spacey music video

New single arrives ahead of 'Battle Born' September release

Do you ever just look at the stars and, like, confess your dreams? Do you see Brandon Flowers there, or is he the manifestation confession?

The Killers have unleashed their music video for single "Runaways," a combo of the abstract and performance video that leave vapor trails of fist-pumping, tear-streaming rock sonically akin to Asia's "Heat of the Moment." The band opts for brilliant pops of color with a lot of black background as frontman Flowers recounts his seemingly doomed romance. It also looks like the performance screen for "Rock Band," without the actual game. Everybody looks good, refreshed.

They should be. It's been four years since the band's last "Day & Age," and with the new album "Battle Born" due on Sept. 18, it will have been almost exactly two years since Flowers dropped his solo debut "Flamingo."

"Runaways" bowed on the Hot 100 this week after its first week of radio and sales, at No. 78.

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<p>Every opportunity I have to run this Darkness promotional photo, I&nbsp;will</p>

Every opportunity I have to run this Darkness promotional photo, I will

Credit: Wind-Up

Listen: The Darkness drop Radiohead cover on heels of 'Hot' single

'Everybody Have a Good Time': a bear in a bikini, hot girls in glasses, a Tommy gun

Finally. Cock-rockers The Darkness have released the studio version of their Radiohead cover "Street Spirit (Fade Out)." The prophecies have been fulfilled, the earth can now enter a period of raining frogs, the seven horsemen and all the trimmings of the 2012 apocalypse.

There are natural limitations to hair metal revisited, but the English band delivers in stripes on this track, particularly since "The Bends" original last for about 4:15 and this one clocks in (in my mind) at about 35 seconds, more or less. Tenacious D may have cornered the market on tongue-cheeking '80s hard-rock, but the Darkness are straight-up making out with it.

Listen to Darkness' version of "Street Spirit (Fade Out)" here.

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<p>From &quot;Give It Away&quot;</p>

From "Give It Away"

Watch: Andrew Bird's 'Give It Away' is a bummer birthday party

Piñata man is in the wrong line of work

Andrew Bird's music video for "Give It Away" features a Piñata Man who "plays" children's birthday parties. Piñata Man is obviously in the wrong line of work.

I'm sure this is a metaphor for something. Something. Also, it wasn't just your mom who was nuts growing up.

"Give It Away" is off of "Break It Yourself," a title which seems to have some bearings on piñatas everywhere. The album was released earlier this year.

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<p>Childish Gambino, aka Donald Glover</p>

Childish Gambino, aka Donald Glover

Watch: Childish Gambino's 'Fire Fly' vid is a sci-fi adventure

Donald Glover: now with more lens flare

One could say that the now-canceled TV show "Firefly" was simply ahead of its time. Childish Gambino's track "Fire Fly" makes a similar argument for why it's taking the rapper so long to be appreciated among peers.

The music video for the song is a little combination of both. The narrative features an underdog that very much looks like Donald Glover, put on the trail to intergalactic travel. But a more traditional action plot unravels, there's conflict, and dude even gets to kiss The Girl. Queue the lens flare.

"I used to get called 'Oreo' and 'faggot' / I used to get more laughs when I got laughed at / Oh you got a mixtape? That's fantastic," he raps. "It's hard to make Hov the footsteps you followin' / Especially when your n*ggas look like Carlton... No live shows, cause I can't find sponsors / For the only black kid at a Sufjan concert... Now I'm firefly like a burning kite / And you'sa fake f*ck like a Fleshlight."

Perhaps a "Revenge of the Nerds" plotline would be more befitting, but space travel also fulfills that "Living well..." adage.

"Firefly" is off of Gambino's "Camp," out last year, and he has a new mixtape "Royalty" out now, too. The actor/rapper's show "Community" is making buzz at the TCAs today, especially after NBC said its seeking broader comedies than it. Read all about it on HitFix.

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<p>Carly Rae Jepsen and Owl City</p>

Carly Rae Jepsen and Owl City

Credit: VEVO

Watch: Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen combine for a squeaky-clean 'Good Time'

Single will appear on both artists' forthoming albums

Sonically and thematically, Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen's "Good Time" occupies the space between Miley Cyrus' "Party in the U.S.A." and Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)." And it's accompanying music video is as predictably squeaky clean as fans have come to expect from Owl City mastermind Adam Young.

It's all Slurpees, fishin' poles and daisy chains for Young's band of marauding Hollister models and from "Call Me Maybe" star Jepsen's flower children's children. I need a toothbrush and a rare steak after all that sugar.

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<p>2 Chainz</p>

2 Chainz

Listen: Kanye West and 2 Chainz want a big booty girl for their 'Birthday Song'

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Gross, guys.

Fresh off the announcement that Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music label compilation has a due date, and that 2 Chainz is still not an official associate of the label, Ye and the Atlanta rapper have dropped "Birthday Song."

No, it's not the "Birthday Song" you know and love: "All I want for my birthday is a big booty girl."

I'm not even going to pretend I can look past the literal twist on "pay for play" exchange of sex acts for one's birthday, even when Rihanna says it. That, combined with lazy, entitled opening verse from 2 Chainz, the gender classicism and the abhorrent repeated "You in first place," means this won't sit well for some.

But if you don't like it, don't bring your drama to the table, West warns you "actresses."

For the record, ladies, a sweater is a perfectly nice gift (hell, so is a "coupe"). If your man -- famous rapper or not -- tells you to "do better" and insinuates you grab a friend to bring her into the bed for some crew-love, you can certainly inform him nary a birthday will be happy again until that sainted day when he's buried next to "two bitches."

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<p>Bat For Lashes, &quot;The Haunted Man&quot;</p>

Bat For Lashes, "The Haunted Man"

Credit: Capitol/EMI

Song Of The Day: Bat For Lashes is back with theatrical single 'Laura'

Should it be called 'Florence' or 'Mandy' instead?

Mercury Prize-nominated songwriter Bat For Lashes is back, and out the gate, she's... solemn.

"Laura" -- the first track from forthcoming album "The Haunted Man" -- has a music video featuring a haunted man and an interpretive dance honoring the song's namesake. The nervous, slow waltz showcases BfL's ringing voice, which would sound just marvelous in a velvet red curtained room.

But I also can't shake what it reminds me of: "Ooo Laura, you're more than a superstar" is eerily reminiscent of Barry Manilow's "Mandy" (or if you prefer The Simpsons version, "Margie / You came and found me a turkey"). The video is gorgeously shot, so any unintended Laura-Mandy-Margie similarities are forgiven.

"The Haunted Man" has a fantastic, NSFW album cover shot by nudes specialist Ryan McGinley, and will be out Oct. 23 via EMI.

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<p>Snoop Lion's &quot;La La La&quot; cover</p>

Snoop Lion's "La La La" cover

Credit: Vice

Listen: Snoop Dogg combines with Major Lazer for reggae effort Snoop Lion

HitFix
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'La La La' is la-la-lovely

There have been only a few instances lately where I felt inclined to turn up a Snoop Dogg tune. His new track, "La La La" under the Snoop Lion moniker, is one of them.

The West Coast rapper combined forces with "executive producers" Major Lazer and churned out this reggae-drenched weirdo. Diplo and Ariel Rechtshaid engineered the thing to sound like a legitimate island diamond, rather than a thin attempt to branch out into a traditionally un-Snoop genre.

But it doesn't take long to get from point A to point B, considering the weed-loving rhymer's affinity for reggae's greenest trope. It's what brought he and Willie Nelson together for a country ode "Roll Me Up" back this spring.

That cover art, though? Sad comedy.

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<p>Rita Ora</p>

Rita Ora

Credit: Roc Nation

Listen: Rita Ora, Roc Nation's new hope, drops rock-heavy 'Roc the Life'

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'ORA' delivery imminent: do you hear a superstar?

Rita Ora's "How We Do (Party)" made HitFix's top 25 2012 Summer Jams list. Will her new tune "Roc the Life" make it into the fall?

The title is a nod to her label home, Jay-Z's Roc Nation, which obviously hopes to attract a pop crossover crowd combining the rock influence with R&B vocal appeal. I can't help but to compare the refrain to "Roc the Life" to Nicki Minaj's "Moment 4 Life," but then again, Roc Nation/Def Jam is always interested giving Cash Money a run for it's, well, money. What's unique about this flirtation with top 40 is the live drum and guitar sounds, which operate outside of the pure, drop-the-bass dance tyranny that seems to have a stranglehold on most other solo female pop musicians on radio right now.

In other words, Pink should have put this one out instead of her wounded-animal single "Blow Me (One Last Kiss)."

"Roc the Life" is the newest single from the 21-year-old singer's cleverly titled "Ora," due Aug. 27. Do you hear gold?

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<p>Kanye West performs &quot;New God Flow&quot; at the BET Awards in July</p>

Kanye West performs "New God Flow" at the BET Awards in July

Credit: AP Photo

Kanye and Co. confirm September arrival of G.O.O.D. Music's 'Cruel Summer'

2 Chainz clarifies label position; Kanye still on media moratorium

With "Mercy" and "New God Flow" permanently added to this summer's spinlist, Kanye West and the rest of his G.O.O.D. Music crew are ready to proceed with the larger album. "Cruel Summer" will be out officially on Sept. 4, featuring verses and music from West, John Legend, Common, Kid Cudi, Pusha T, Big Sean, Q-Tip, Mr. Hudson, Teyana Taylor, Cyhi, D’Banj, Hit-Boy and 2 Chainz.

The latter artist -- who has been the featured rapper of the year, it seems -- is not officially signed to Ye's label, though he clarifies in an interview with Complex magazine that he and the esteemed Watch the Throne rhymer are still sussing out a deal.

"I’m not officially signed, paperwork-wise, to G.O.O.D. Music. But I have a great rapport with ’Ye. He called me before 'Watch the Throne' came out," the Atlanta-bred rapper said. "I’ve talked to ’Ye 1,000 times about trying to make this situation work for the both of us, so it won’t feel like anyone is getting used or anything... I came from a situation with [Disturbing tha Peace], being under [Ludacris], where I got a phobia. Sometimes when an artist signs another artist, they’re so worried about themselves. And with ’Ye, he helps everybody."

Yeezy is keeping his word on press blackout, considering his bumpy past with interviews, Twitter, public appearances, and basically everything else that doesn't involve him rapping. But a press release touted the successful run of his "Cruel Summer" video concept, a seven-screen experience that bowed at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year. It was conceptually built around the album, so if there is a live tour run of G.O.O.D. Music, perhaps fans will get a eyeful as well as an earful.

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