Blog Archive

I Like This: Stray from the Path

There’s been something of an awakening when it comes to politically-oriented music since the election of Donald Trump and the chaos sewn by Brexit. Kurtis recommends a couple of tracks from Stray from the Path, a metalcore band from Long Island. Their new album, Only Death Is Real, will be out September 8. We need [&hellip.. more

The Ongoing History of New Music Encore Presentation: Inside the Foo Fighters

I spent a Tuesday afternoon in Northridge, north of LA at 606 Studios, the home recording base of the Foo Fighters. I’d been invited to interview the whole band about anything and everything surrounding November’s release of the Sonic Highways album along with next month’s debut of the accompanying HBO series. From the outside, the [&hellip.. more

This Week’s Top 11 Playlist: 14 July 2017

There’s nothing like a weekend roadtrip with the windows down and the music turned up. And now that we’re in the middle of July, there’s a nice selection of summer-like songs to choose from. Here are eleven tracks that I hope you’ll blast out loud this weekend. Thanks to Mediazoic for the hosting. ARTIST SONG ALBUM [&hellip.. more

Even Spotify is Finding That There’s TOO MUCH MUSIC Out There

If you have a Spotify account (or an account with any other streamer, really), you have immediate access to more than 35 million songs and more are being added every day. There’s so much music online that something like 20% of the songs on Spotify haven’t been streamed by anyone. Not once. (Check out a [&hellip.. more

People Keep Pushing the Cassette Resurrection. Why?

This feature (via insists that cassettes are making a comeback. Last time I checked sales of cassettes in Canada–which was this past Monday–sales, which were already insignificant in the grand scheme of things, are down about 50% from where they were this time last year. Still, let’s give this misguided nostalgia a look.. more

John Lennon’s Rolls-Royce Goes on Tour

Rolls-Royce has been the motoring height of conspicuous consumption for decades. If you want to show the world that you’ve made it, nothing projects that like a nice Roller. When the Beatles started making significant dosh in the middle 60s, John Lennon went out and bought a Phantom V for himself. The car, delivered on [&hellip.. more

Coke Just Made 1,000 Songs Featuring People’s Names. Is Yours Here?

When was it that Coke started putting people’s names on labels? A couple of years ago? I guess I’ve just been unlucky because I’ve yet to find a bottle marked “Alan.” My personal problems aside, this campaign has been quite successful for the people at Coca-Cola, so they’ve expanded their “Share-a-Coke” plan into recorded music. [&hellip.. more

This New List of Highest-Paid Artists Shows How Important Touring Is Today

Billboard has this new list of the highest-paid musicians, breaking down their earnings by sales, publishing, streaming and touring. Of those four categories, the vast majority of the cash comes from playing live. Here are some examples. Pay special attention to the money made from both music sales and streaming vs touring. (All figures in [&hellip.. more

Random Music News for Friday, July 14, 2017

Happy Bastille Day! And here’s what’s making music news on July 14. Hardcore Trump supporter Kid Rock says he’s going to run for the US Senate. Wait: There’s unreleased music by David Bowie and Queen? Seriously. Wait: Vanilla Ice just bought “Under Pressure” from Queen for “Ice Ice Baby?” (Via Moe) And there’s a new [&hellip.. more

As Trent Reznor Hinted, There’s New Nine Inch Nails Music Today

Less than a week ago, Trent Reznor hinted that new music from Nine Inch Nails was imminent. True to his word, a track called “Less Than” appeared today, which is 20% of a new five-track EP entitled Add Violence. This is part two of a triptych of EPs that began with last December’s Not the [&hellip.. more

The 2017 Polaris Music Prize Short List is Here

After weeks of lobbying, kvetching and voting, the 200-ish music industry wonks of the Polaris Music Prize jury have narrowed down nearly 200 submissions to 40 (the Long List) and now to 10. The Short List for 2017 is here. One of these albums will be judged the best Canadian release of the last year [&hellip.. more

Vice Finds People Who are Proud to Admit They are Fans of Nickelback

I’ve never understood the disproportionate amount of hate directed at Nickelback. They’re a very competent hard-rockin’ band that has sold more than 50 million records. That means despite all their critics, they must have some fans, right? Vice set out to find these people and found them–at a Nickelback concert.. more

Prince Videos Back Online

Let’s not go crazy: Prince’s videos might be back online but that doesn’t mean he’s going to be everywhere. As of July 7, any and all videos Prince formally released were available on YouTube and Vevo. It’s not a huge number, just five: videos from Purple Rain. Fans can now watch “When Doves Cry,” “Let’s [&hellip.. more

Cool! A Mind-Controlled Musical Instrument

Scientists have been working on mind-control projects for decades. How can we use the electrical waves generated by our brains to materially affect something outside our skulls? Not only would this be a cool party trick, but think what this would mean for the disabled. The latest development is the Encephalophone, which is a musical [&hellip.. more

When are You Officially Too Old to Go to Clubs?

There comes that moment in every guy’s like when he becomes that creepy old guy at the dance club. Even if you’re not creepy and you’re there the love of the scene the music and the dancing, you have a best-before date. I can’t speak for women, but I’m sure there’s that time when that [&hellip.. more

Why Do the Irish Hate U2?

A couple of years ago, my wife and I went to Dublin where we hoped to visit some U2 landmarks. We wandered over to the tourist office off Grafton Street to find out if they could help. A red-haired guy greeted me at the counter. “Do you have anything like the London Walks tours for [&hellip.. more

The Musical Manure Bomber of Calgary

Musicians can be a quirky lot. Most of these quirks are (mostly) harmless. Sometimes, though, they move into realms of extreme weirdness. This brings me to the story of Calgary’s Cal Cavendish. From The story of Cal Cavendish is a thing of legend in the Canadian province of Alberta. In 1975, the country and [&hellip.. more

Random Music News for Thursday, July 13, 2017

Question: Will Donald Trump throw Donald Jr. under the bus over this whole Russia thing? And now, music news for July 13. Indie Week is coming up in Toronto in November. Here’s the first round of artist announcements.  Radiohead on playing a gig in Israel: “Playing a country isn’t the same as endorsing its government.” [&hellip.. more

PUP Wins $10,000 in the SOCAN Songwriting Prize

Toronto’s PUP has won the 12th annual English SOCAN Songwriting Prize for this track from their 2016, The Dream is Over. “DVP” was chosen by a panel of music industry wonks (me included) from a list of ten finalists. Along with the cash, receives a Yamaha PSR-S970 Keyboard, an Epiphone Masterbilt Century Olympic Guitar, and [&hellip.. more

Was the Fyre Festival Sabotaged by Witchcraft?

We’re still talking about the disaster that was the Fyre Festival earlier this year. Billy McFarland, the organizer, was arrested and charged with wire fraud. There are over a dozen lawsuits. People are calling it the biggest music scam in years. This one will be in the courts for a long time. If you know [&hellip.. more

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