One thing that sets Bonnaroo apart from other similar music festivals is that it seems to have a unique sense of humor, both at the festival itself and in the hype leading up to the weekend. In what will hopefully be a first in the start to a tradition, Bonnaroo produced ‘BLAM’, The Bonnaroo Lineup Announcement Megathon, which was a live streamed hourlong telethon hosted by Weird Al. Throughout the Megathon, names were revealed slowly through games like ‘Bobbing For Meat’, celebrity guests like Jimmy Fallon, and from a talking pinata who shit out names. Yep, that happened. Think Pee Wee’s Playhouse mixed with Adult Swim and a heavy dose of Weird Al.This was all part of a three hour block of entertainment – hour one featured a mix of classic performances from years past, hour two was the Megathon which included performances from Portugal. The Man and Weird Al, and hour three is Mumford and Sons full set from 2011. Ticket information still hasn’t been revealed yet, but you can see the complete line-up below.Paul McCartneyMumford & SonsTom Petty & the HeartbreakersBjörkWilcoPretty LightsR. KellyWu-Tang ClanDaniel ToshThe NationalThe LumineersDavid Byrne & St. VincentPassion PitThe xxKendrick LamarGrizzly BearAnimal CollectiveOf Monsters and MenNasZZ TopBeach HouseMacklemore & Ryan LewisCat PowerEdward Sharpe & the Magnetic ZeroesA$AP RockyJim James“Weird Al” YankovicTame ImpalaSUPERJAMS:Soul SuperJam ft. Jim James with John Oates, Zigaboo Modeliste (of the Meters), Preservation Hall Jazz Band and more TBA!Ed Helms Bluegrass Situation Superjam with special guestsBoys NoizeGlen HansardGov’t MuleGaslight AnthemPortugal. The ManWolfgang GartnerBilly IdolSam Bush & Del McCouryDwight YoakamFoalsPorter RobinsonLocal NativesMatt & KimDirty ProjectorsTrombone ShortyJohn McLaughlin and the 4th DimensionNoam Pikelny & FriendsAmadou & MariamAlt-JFather John MistyBaronessThe Tallest Man On EarthWalk The MoonPreservation Hall Jazz BandA-TrakThe VaccinesEarl SweatshirtPaper DiamondHoly Ghost!Divine FitsMike BirbigliaPurity RingSwansFrank TurnerBig K.R.I.T.Allen StoneCultsLee Fields & The ExpressionsFatoumata DiawaraTwo GallantsThe SheepdogsFour TetCalexicoJapandroidsDeath GripsConspiratorWild NothingAraabMUZIKJohn FullbrightDjango DjangoHAIMKiller MikeAriel Pink’s Haunted GraffitiAction BronsonClockworktwenty | one | pilotsReptarDIIVMilo GreeneLord HuronFuturebirdsJason Isbell & The 400 UnitCharli XCXJEFF The BrotherhoodDrew Holcomb and the NeighborsSea WolfJD McPhersonTrixie WhitleyDeap VallyPatrick WatsonNicki Bluhm & the GramblersThe StepkidsAoife O’DonovanBombinoBernhoftMatthew E. WhiteWatch Daniel Tosh Announce the Lineup Here:
Every year at Ultra Music Festival, it seems like it’s easier to figure out which artists didn’t make the trip to Miami, rather than the ones who did. That’s because essentially everyone important who has touched a turntable over the past year makes their way down to South Beach for some sort of event. It’s impossible to see them all. But there are some people that no matter what, no matter who else the schedule conflicts with, you shouldn’t miss, because we’re not sure when they’ll be around again. Think Kraftwerk last year. Here’s our definitive list of people you definitely SHOULD NOT MISS.1. FaithlessSome of you newer EDM fans may not recognize the name, but UK based electronic band Faithless have been releasing hit singles since 1996 – when many Ultra attendees were wearing pacifiers that didn’t glow in the dark. The music still holds up by the way – listen to ‘Insomnia’, and tell me you haven’t heard those synths dropped by countless DJs over the past few years. These guys are bringing their full live/PA show to Ultra after a brief hiatus from touring. You will not want to miss this legendary group.2. Dog BloodIf Dog Blood isn’t a familiar name to you, the two producers who encompass it definitely are. Skrillex and Boys Noize, two of the biggest names in EDM, started creating new material together in 2012, releasing their debut single ‘Next Order/Middle Finger’. That’s about the extent of released material, so expect a slew of new stuff during their hour long set. Also – other than Coachella, this is probably your only chance to see these all stars share the booth.3. DJ Fresh (Live)Drum and bass has slowly been taking over America this year, but there still isn’t much representation at Ultra this year. Save for DJ Fresh, who’s coming straight from the UK to put on a show that is sure to blow minds on the Live Stage. Fresh is a member of drum and bass supergroup Bad Company, and the owner of next level drum and bass label Breakbeat with Adam F and Kaos, but you probably know him best from being remixed by the likes of Flux Pavilion and Doctor P, who turned his hit singles ‘Louder’ and ‘Gold Dust’ into anthems.4. The ‘A State Of Trance Tent’Alright, so this isn’t exactly fair, but the ‘A State Of Trance Tent’, curated by Armin Van Buuren, is always the highlight of any festival it appears at. Between Ferry Corsten and Markus Schulz announcing a new collaboration, and Armin Van Buuren’s upcoming album, this is the place to be weekend two. Walk in curious… leave a diehard trance fan.5. Swedish House Mafia (weekend 2)What, you thought it was going to be anything different? Even though these three guys are everywhere, this is advertised as their last show ever as a trio. Their stage set up, already massive, will be even bigger on Ultra’s biggest stage, and they’ve announced some sort of iPhone app that will allow the fans to interact with the stage. While there will definitely be a bunch of overlapping acts, this one is definitely this years most anticipated.
Marilyn Manson and rapper Gucci Mane, also known as “The Odd Couple”, have teamed up for a new track that will have all the ho’s going to Twerk City….oh yeah, by the way, it’s called “Wet Pussy.” Since meeting at the premiere of Spring Breakers, the two have apparently bonded over many things, especially women’s genitalia.To hear Marilyn Manson sing, “Bitch, your pussies solid gold….solid gold” is gold in and of itself. We would put plenty of money on this track getting all the hookers and ho’s twerking on the dance floor. Another line that we are big fans of is:“How big is your dick,I said how big is your mouth?I said how wet do your pussy get,that’s all I wanna know.”This is truly poetic stuff. William Wordsworth has officially turned over in his grave.There really isn’t much to say here, so we’ll just give you the song and let you be the judge:[via pigeonsandplanes.com]
For any Velvet Underground-enthusiasts seeking some Lou Reed memorabilia, this is your chance! The late VU frontman’s estate is auctioning off a majority of Reed’s gear, including two Kurzweil keyboards, a vintage distortion rack mount with foot switch, a Pendulum Stereo Preamp for acoustic instruments with a footswitch and three preamp modules.Proceeds from the sales will go to the Lou Reed Archive, dedicated to preserving the memory and legacy of the iconic musician. More items will be posted in the coming days, and those in the NYC area can sign up to get more information about certain items that will not be included in the auction. Furthermore, items more important to Reed, such as his guitars and amplifiers, will be donated to the Archive directly. Lou Reed was well known for both his songwriting and his sonic explorations. Always tinkering, Reed’s gear represents an important aspect of his musical legacy.-David Melamed (@DMelamz)
During the same week in which the Velvet Underground re-released their self-titled third studio album, including unreleased recordings and performances, another previously unseen piece of music history has surfaced. The only known color footage of the band, shot by Andy Warhol in 1967, is now available on YouTube.According to the YouTube description,“This newly unearthed film, which Warhol shot during a concert at the Boston Tea Party, features a variety of filmmaking techniques. Sudden in-and-out zooms, sweeping panning shots, in-camera edits that create single frame images and bursts of light like paparazzi flash bulbs going off mirror the kinesthetic experience of the Exploding Plastic Inevitable, with its strobe lights, whip dancers, colorful slide shows, multi-screen projections, liberal use of amphetamines, and overpowering sound. It is a significant find indeed for fans of the Velvets, being one of only two known films with synchronous sound of the band performing live, and this the only one in color. It’s fitting that it was shot at the Boston Tea Party, as the Beantown club became one of the band’s favorite, most-played venues, and was where a 16-year-old Jonathan Richman faithfully attended every show and befriended the group. Richman, who would later have his debut recordings produced by John Cale, and later yet record a song about the group, is just possibly seen in the background of this film.”
The Tupac Shakur biopic that was supposed to begin production in June has been put on hold indefinitely by director John Singleton. Even though the Boyz N’ the Hood and Poetic Justice director has a script, which has received the blessing from Shakur’s family, there are undisclosed logistical issues that still need to be figured out. Singleton said “We’ve got to get it right.”According to Rolling Stone, “You just want to get it right,” Singleton said, adding that he has casting choices in mind but would not disclose them. “I think the picture is not going to be good unless it’s offensive to some people…. When I’m making my movies, John Singleton movies, it’s really just my voice. So I can’t be listening to all the other suggestions of all these other people and shit.“So we’re not going to pull the trigger on that until it’s right,” he continued. “If somebody else wants to do something different then they can do something different. But if it’s going to be right, it’s going to be right. It’s going to be something that potentially adorns ‘Pac’s legacy.”The filmmaker has not given any indication of when he will move forward with the project, but has said that despite that fact there are many other Tupac related things that are currently in the works.[via Rolling Stone]
Prince has chosen to stream his upcoming Baltimore “Rally 4 Peace” concert through controversial new streaming service Tidal.How Tidal Came Crashing DownAlong with the 60-minute audio stream, Tidal has promised to match all donations made to support Baltimore youth charities. The performance will be offered “pre-paywall,” meaning users don’t need to subscribe to the service to listen to the concert.“I am honored to join Prince in his mission to inspire through the uniting power of music and be able to offer a platform where this moment can be shared globally,” Tidal owner Jay Z said in a statement. “We invite all to experience the music and contribute in their own way to promote peace, tolerance and understanding. Our prayers go out to Freddie Gray’s family and every family affected by brutality and senseless violence.”The “Rally 4 Peace” will take place at Baltimore’s Royal Farms Arena this Sunday, May 10. Stream it live at 9 PM EST here.
‘Supermassive’ leviathans of alternative rock, Muse, have released their seventh studio album, Drones this June. With their typical sinister musical design and apocalyptic themes, Matthew Bellamy (vocals, guitar, keyboards, synthesizer) along with Christopher Wolstenholme (bass, keyboards) and Dominic Howard (drums, synthesizer) have put together a variously-inspired concept-album touching on subjects of war, mind-control and revolution. The album’s protagonist starts off as a helpless and malleable subject whom becomes brainwashed, militarized and programmed to exist as a weapon of war; a drone. Eventually, he becomes aware of the oppression inflicted upon him, breaks free and becomes a revolutionary who fights against the fascist government.This Orwellian concept-album begins with a bang. The bass-heavy opener, “Dead Inside” pulsates with an electrified, industrial trudge seasoned with the Jeff Buckley-like falsetto of Matthew Bellamy‘s vocals. It’s a seemingly personal song of heartbreak and vulnerability, which conceptually separates itself from the overall narrative of the record.“Psycho,” the album’s lead single, gets the story rolling with its ferocious guitar riff, unyielding rhythm section and themes of brainwashing and militarization. Peppered with a call-and-response dialogue between drill sergeant and recruit, the main character essentially transforms himself from man to machine; an inhuman, robotic drone controlled by and killing for the powers that be. The opening riff will ring a bell with veteran Muse fans. It’s known as the “6305030 riff” and has been played frequently during Muse’s famously vivacious live performances. Floating through the spacey sound of “Aftermath” is our despondent lead character, weary and in need of love, refuge and companionship. Playing like a selection from Pink Floyd’s The Final Cut revised with a more contemporary slant, we begin to draw together and rise to an ultimate climax of soaring orchestration and the expressive vocal stylings of Matthew Bellamy. The epic finale, “The Globalist” is as Bellamy has been quoted as saying, “a prog-nightmare sequel to Citizen Erased,” a well-known favorite among Muse fans. “[The Globalist] is basically a narrative within itself about the rise and fall of a dictator, the end of the world, World War III and all the good stuff I like,” says Bellamy. The album finishes off with the haunting overlaying harmonies of the somber-sounding title track.At the end of the day, Drones is a fair record. The band plays it safe with the nuts-and-bolts of their signature sound, and have whipped-up what comes off as a satisfying yet elementary interpretation of an Orwell novel. The album’s cover artwork is by Matt Mahurin and has been recently heavily-criticized for its blatant simplicity. Whether that sentiment exists within the music of the album itself, is entirely up to the listener. Here come the drones!-By Joseph Conlon Our lead character becomes aware of his enslavement on the fourth track, “Mercy.” The chorus is larger than life and the lyrics cut straight through the heart. “Show me mercy from the powers that be. Show me mercy from the gutless and mean. Show me mercy from the killing machines. Show me mercy, can someone rescue me,” pleads an emotional Bellamy playing the part of a defected soldier.It is immediately followed by the lightning-fast guitar intro of “Reapers,” which lyrically reveals the gruesome horrors of modern warfare. The musical approach on this track is almost as if the band opened up a how-to-be-Rage Against The Machine-handbook, and adhered to the step-by-step instructions. Following the Tom Morello-inspired second guitar solo, the highly-derivative rocker even has a culminating breakdown nearly identical to the Rage smash-hit, “Freedom.”The authoritative puppet strings are cut during the mutinous sixth track, “The Handler” as well as on “Defector,” which features an excerpt from John F. Kennedy’s speech that followed the failed Bay of Pigs invasion of 1961. By the time “Revolt,” the impassioned ninth song arrives, the plot is in the thick of revolution. With its uplifting and inspiring chorus, the song holds a profound message encouraging awareness, activity and rebellion. A much-needed popular song for the times.
The final debut of the first set was a brand new song called “Mercury”. Unlike the previous three, which had been performed by each member’s solo band, “Mercury” was brand new, uncharted territory for Phish phans. Much like the three debuts from night one, which were all entirely unfamiliar, we can only guess that these tracks were written by Anastasio and writing partner Tom Marshall back in February. “Mercury” was more exploratory than any of the other debuts, with various sections and planetary analogies, and even featured a section with Jon Fishman on marimba lumina.While “Possum” closed out set one, it wasn’t until deep into set two where the real jamming began. After standard versions of “A Song I Heard The Ocean Sing”, “Waves”, “Wingsuit”, and “Farmhouse”, Phish broke into a thoroughly extended version of “Simple”. It was perhaps the first “type-II” jam of the tour, meaning they broke from the song’s structure and explored new key signatures and concepts, and it was straight fire. As was the following “First Tube”, closing out the set.With a “Bathtub Gin” encore, Phish said farewell to Bend, OR. The band will resume touring this Friday, July 24th, with an appearance at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA. Who knows what new songs they’ll bring out then? At any rate, the Bend, OR crowd surely seemed enthusiastic about Phish’s fantastic performances.[All photos by Greg Homolka]Setlist: Phish at Les Schwab Amphitheater, Bend, OR – 7/23/15Set 1: Stash, How Many People Are You?, Winterqueen, Heavy Rotation, Back on the Train, Scabbard, Maze, Mercury, PossumSet 2: A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing > Waves > Wingsuit, Farmhouse > Simple, First TubeEncore: Bathtub Gin Phish debut. Debut.Notes: This show was webcast via LivePhish. This show saw the debut of Mercury, and the Phish debuts of How Many People Are You? (Gordon/Murawski), Heavy Rotation (McConnell), and Scabbard (Anastasio). Do You Feel Like We Do was teased after Maze. Trey teased Little Drummer Boy at the end of Gin. Next up was “Winterqueen”, a track from 2014’s Fuego, and afterwards the band performed a debut version of Page McConnell’s song “Heavy Rotation”. McConnell wrote the song for his eponymous solo album, which was released in 2006-2007. The tune featured lighthearted verses that segued into some darker territory for the instrumental jam section. The song wasn’t entirely unfamiliar to the Phish repertoire, as Gordon was included in the recording of the song:The band then dropped into a funky groove with “Back On The Train”, which gave way to the Trey Anastasio Band track “Scabbard”.With a tricky instrumental opening and playful lyrics, “Scabbard” certainly has that signature Anastasio charm to it. Expect some heavy jamming on this tune throughout the tour. After the first set of last night’s performance at the Les Schwab Amphitheater in Bend, OR, Phish fans were left scratching their heads. Just when did Phish have time to learn all of these new songs?Every other song in the set was a debut! After an opening “Stash”, the band went head first into the Mike Gordon/Scott Murawski original “How Many People Are You?”. The funky upbeat number was featured heavily on Gordon’s recent solo tour, and is a welcome addition to the Phish canon. Page McConnell’s keys punctuated the piece nicely. Listen to a Gordon version below:
Leave it to Beats Antique to put their off-the-wall style on this dance music chart-topper from Major Lazer, the EDM project led by producer/DJ Diplo. Bringing their unique sound to the table, Beats Antique took this straightforward track and added their own element of weirdness into the mix. The result is simply contagious.Listen to the remix of “Too Original” below:Beats Antique is gearing up for their second-annual Creature Carnival tour this fall, with Moon Hooch and others yet to be announced. Don’t miss out!