<p>Tyson Ritter</p>

Tyson Ritter

Credit: HitFix

Watch: All-American Rejects' frontman talks 'Kids in the Street' and poisonous women

Band on the run as 'Beekeeper's Daughter' music video debuts

Tyson Ritter, in a few mere motions, slipped off his artfully ripped t-shirt in front of 15 people and slipped on a Mickey Mouse sweatshirt, all for the sake of being "twinsies," to match my last-ditch gray digs. He bounced on the balls of his feet between questions and smoothed his long hair during our interview at this year's 2012 Sundance Film Festival, cunningly throwing in a phrase like "bag of d*cks" with his philosophizing on his band's varietal fanbase.

Like their frontman, the All-American Rejects are kind of all over the place. The quartet has been finished with their newest album "Kids in the Street" for a year, and in between have been "finagling" with their record label Interscope and their core listeners, lining up dates with Warped Tour and mulling how to depart from the traditional album release cycle and the alt-pop mold.

"We're melodic, we have a pop orientation," Ritter tells me of "Kids," "but this record... has a story in it."

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<p>Bon Iver for &quot;Saturday Night Live&quot;</p>

Bon Iver for "Saturday Night Live"

Watch: Bon Iver on 'Saturday Night Live'; band announces West Coast shows

HitFix
B+
Readers
n/a
How'd Justin Vernon and his 8-piece band fare?

Bon Iver may not be a big fan of the Grammys at the moment, but that hasn't kept him from being on a pre-Awards blitz this month. Justin Vernon's stop-offs included his first appearance on "Saturday Night Live" over the weekend, performing his Grammy-nominated track "Holocene" and "Beth/Rest," both from his sophomore full-length "Bon Iver."

The soft-rock songs may feel sparse on record, but Vernon's eight-piece backing band made an example of how involved the production was. Check out the percussive elements of "Holocene," and take a deep breath. "Beth/Rest," the Jagjaguwar band's best impression homage to Steve Winwood is a rare performance of Vernon not singing in falsetto, which may be why it was chosen as the second track.

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<p>OK Go</p>

OK Go

Credit: Nathaniel Wood

Watch: OK Go's 'Needing/Getting' gets a musical instrument-playing car

HitFix
B+
Readers
n/a
Two-mile driving course makes the remix

What takes two miles of desert, four days of shooting, four months of prep, 1,000 instruments, a car sponsorship and a song? The new OK Go video, of course.

The Chicago rock act's new single "Needing/Getting" features a Chevy outfitted with boom mics and retractable pneumatic arms that play upended pianos, guitars grafted to fences, bottles dangling from archways and such. The quartet sits helps noise-make in the car, with an impressive effort from frontman Damian Kulash, who sings and drives like a maniac (he took stunt driving courses).

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<p>&nbsp;M.I.A. has a posse</p>

 M.I.A. has a posse

Today in New Music Videos: M.I.A., Miike Snow and Neon Indian

Take a ride with a crazy stuntwoman, 18th century aliens or a buxom 'toon

Three left-of-center, electronic-influenced acts -- M.I.A., Miike Snow and Neon Indian -- invite us into their imaginations with visually striking new videos. 

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<p>Beck</p>

Beck

Sasquatch! Music Festival: Jack White tours, Tenacious D's new album and... is Beck back?

Listen to new material from Tenacious D's 'Fenix'

The lineup for the 2012 Sasquatch! music festival has been unveiled, but headliners like Jack White, Tenacious D, Bon Iver and Beck bring tidings of other news with them.

White, for one, will be performing at additional festivals plus will be announcing more tour dates in support of his solo debut "Blunderbuss." He'll be taking the stage at the Gorge in George, Wash., on May 26, and will also be heading up the Hangout Music Fest in Gulf Shores, Ala., on May 18 and to London's Radio 1 Hackney Weekend 2012 over June 23-24. A press release indicates the former White Stripes leader will be posting additional dates and music news soon.

"Blunderbuss" is due April 24; click here to hear White's first single "Love Interruption."

Then there's Beck, who has rarely toured in the last four or five years. His slot at the fest may indicate there are larger things at work.

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<p>Here is a round thing, for your face.</p>

Here is a round thing, for your face.

Watch: Drake's 'Practice' gets a voyeuristic, YouTube-style, sexy-time video

Breaking news: There are hot girls in Drake's employ to enhance the size... of his singles

Nothing says "pain and regret in your sweat" like an ass akin to a wavin' flag.

That's the gist of Drake's "Practice" music video, featuring the sex-time moves of Kyra Chaos, a model frequently featured in Smooth Girl magazine. If you are unfamiliar with Smooth Girl magazine, I highly recommend checking it out on a 17-inch screen, brightly lit, in a well-populated and professional setting such as a coffee shop or in and around your boss' office.

For more than three minutes, Chaos indicates to her audience what they're missing -- more specifically, what Drake's got and you not. She presents her greatest asset in front of a mirror and to the viewer, lo-fi YouTube style, in a pair of jeggings and a chopped and screwed top. Her dance is only interrupted, at the end, by the non-euphemistic entry of Drake.

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<p>Madonna in &quot;Give Me All Your Luvin'&quot;</p>

Madonna in "Give Me All Your Luvin'"

Watch: Madonna, Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. in 'Give Me All Your Luvin'' video

Madge and the girls have some f-u-n in time for the Super Bowl

After months of seriously promoting her film "W.E." and dropping some ballsy pull quotes on the press in recent days, it's nice to see Madonna simply have some fun.

The veteran pop star snagged "Give Me All Your Luvin'" guests M.I.A. and Nick Minaj for this football-themed clip, the two rappers donning cheerleader outfits while Madonna gets the royal treatment from a team of real tough players. The hair-flipping, lace-rocking walk-about was helmed by Megaforce, whose treatment of videos like Kid Cudi's "Pursuit of Happiness" and Tame Impala's "Solitude Is Bliss" includes similar elements of the odd adventure, a little bit of cruelty and toying with dimension.

In "Luvin'," Madonna is beaming about 90% of the time. It's easy to see why. In a move that playfully panders to the NFL as it does parody it, Madge is in the middle, calling the shots, in four ferocious outfits. She throws a baby, walks on walls and brings it back to her '80s look with that Marilyn blonde knockoff. I still find M.I.A. and Nicki's contributions to be superfluous at best -- particularly with Roman reloading her "Y U Mad" sleeper line -- but it makes it feel more like a girls night out.

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<p>Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters</p>

Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters

Today in New Music Videos: M. Ward, Raekown, Foo Fighters and more

Liturgy, Die Antwoord and The Darkness' first song in seven years

Over the course of the last three days, there have been far too many new music videos to ignore -- from M. Ward, Foo Fighters, Liturgy, Raekwon, Die Antwoord and The Darkness -- so let's explore, shall we?

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<p>R. Kelly</p>

R. Kelly

Listen: R. Kelly wants to 'Share My Love' with you, in advance of new album

HitFix
A
Readers
A+
Kells is prepared to populate, disco-style

After today's sad announcement on the passing of Don Cornelius, it's hard not to hear any other news without that shading on it.

But this is a celebratory piece. Because R. Kelly's back, and he's disco, and it's a very specific nod to an era during which Cornelius reigned. Applause all around.

Kells' newest offering is "Share My Love," a track sent to radio today, steeped in 1970s soul and the R&B crooner's plan to help "populate" this big blue earth. It's a lot of familiar instrumentation from his last album, 2010's "Love Letter," with its groovy bassline and warm, flirty guitar, laced with twinkling keys and a humming, sensual orchestra.

Jill Scott and Anthony Hamilton successfully did the feel-good thing last year, so it's great to see that smiling, sexy sex is still popular in 2012.

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<p>Leonard Cohen's &quot;Old Ideas&quot;</p>

Leonard Cohen's "Old Ideas"

Review: Leonard Cohen's 'Old Ideas' reads better than it sounds

HitFix
B-
Readers
B+
Songwriter's first album in eight years is almost too perfect

 

For fans of Leonard Cohen’s songwriting, there are plenty of reasons to love “Old Ideas.” But for those eager for a great-sounding Leonard Cohen album, prepare for some disappointment.
 
At 77, the Canadian songsmith remains one of the most gifted lyricists and folk poets in pop music history. It’s taken eight years for this new studio release, its sites set on eternal bedfellows sex and death, and  it appears the bard is feeling his age advance.
 
“I love to speak with Leonard / He’s a sportsman and a shepherd / He’s a lazy bastard / Living in a suit,” he jokes in the first lines of album opener “Going Home,” an apparent start to that home-bound journey. He published all the lines to the song in the pages of The New Yorker – not Rolling Stone or the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame website – like managing his own expectations.
 
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