If you've been paying any attention to the music industry lately, last night's Grammy awards held few surprises. Here are the highlights.
In what has to have been the most lively Grammy Awards ceremony in years, Daft Punk predictably went home with the top honors. The perennially silent robots won both Album of the Year for their Random Access Memories and Song of the Year, for the Pharell Williams collaboration Get Lucky. Taking the stage to accept the first award, the ever theatrically minded Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter kept mum, while collaborator and two-time Grammy award winner Paul Williams spoke for them. Opting for the classic “start with a joke” advice, Williams said: “Back when I was drinking and using, I used to imagine things that weren’t there… and then I got sober and two robots called me and asked me to make an album.”
The robots looked sharp on the red carpet - as sharp as anyone can, while wearing a blacked out helmet, that is.
Williams also expressed the robots’ pleasure at witnessing 33 same sex couples get married onstage to the tune of Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ Same Love earlier in the night: “All that love is fantastic.”
Continue reading: As Predicted, Daft Punk, Macklemore And Lorde Win Big At The Grammys
Here are our predictions for the major categories.
The Grammy Awards are known as the biggest night in music, the music industry equivalent to the Oscars. Unlike the Oscars, however, the Grammys are much more accepting of newcommers and in fact, the award show airing this Sunday will feature plenty of debutants, competing with seasoned artists. So with that in mind, it’s about time for everyone to place their bets. Let’s see who the favorites are to sweep this year’s Grammys.
With seven nominations, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis are expected to sweep the awards this year.
Record of the Year is one of the biggest categories at the award show. Out of the five nominees, Daft Punk’s Get Lucky seems like a no-brainer, but Lorde’s Royals, the unpredictable success of 2013 could come in and sweep this up last minute.
Continue reading: Grammys 2014 Predictions: Who Will Sweep The Major Awards?
The surviving Beatles will perform at the ceremony and fans are hoping the two will join each other on stage for a reunion performance
Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr are set to perform at this years 56th Grammy Awards, with their inclusion to the Grammys set list being announced this week by the music awards showcase. Although the organisers for the event have revealed that the pair will perform, they have yet to specify whether the two will appear on stage together at all, a prospect that most are hoping for.
Paul and Ringo will hopefully be performing together
The pair were announced as two of the latest confirmed acts to appear at the awards show, with fellow performers John Legend, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kacey Musgraves, Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, Sara Bareilles and Carole King also added to the bill.
Stevie Wonder and Daft Punk will collaborate at the 2014 Grammy Awards for a live performance, with Pharrell and Nile Rodgers joining in on the act.
The unexpected collaboration of Stevie Wonder and Daft Punk is set to take place at the 56th Grammy Awards later this month.
The French techno duo have been out of the public-eye since the release of 'Random Access Memories' back in May 2013.
But they will return in style as the pair will be joined by the US soul singing legend as well as Pharrell and Nile Rodger, who both appeared on Daft Punk's latest album, Rolling Stone reports.
Andy Peterson reviews the year's best dance and electronica releases.
Bonobo 'Late Night Tales' - With the DJ mix compilation more tired than Nigella Lawson's vanity mirror, LNT are still working miracles in the genre against the odds, mostly by avoiding the usual suspects. Simon Green channels all things unorthodox on this, the year's best from the stable.
Rae & Christian 'Mercury Rising' - 2013 seemed to be the year the chill out kings came back (we also saw releases from Nightmares on Wax and Morcheeba), but the veteran duo managed to sound both cool and now on 'Mercury Rising', enlisting as able helpers Sam Genders, Mark Foster and, the king of laid back himself, Jazzy Jeff.
Continue reading: Andy Peterson's Top 10 Albums Of 2013
This year saw the release of so many incredible albums, that trying to list the top 20 really doesn't do 2013 justice. However, after some strong analysis of what the year had to offer, we unveil the most listenable collections - from the super-hyped major label releases to the lesser-known but just as sensational offerings.
Vampire Weekend 'Modern Vampire in the City' - 'Modern Vampires in the City' makes it three for three for the New Yorkers and their latest release could very well be their best yet. It shows evolution for the band, but they have retained that essential quality that made 'Contra' and their self-titled debut such wonderfully upbeat and genuine pleasures to listen to each time. 'Modern Vampire in the City' is also the release that marks Vampire Weekend as a band that should be taken seriously, but one who you can still have immense fun with. 'Diane Young' is yet another indie floor filler, standing shoulder to shoulder with previous bangers 'A-Punk' and 'Cousins.' Where the album really excels, however, is when VW reach out to new quarters and sound completely inimitable. The yelps of 'Ya Hey' bring fun to a song that essentially deals with the theme of lost conviction, the graceful 'Hanna Hunt' erupts in the most complete song released this year and album opener 'Obvious Bicycle' sets the whole thing in motion with its refreshingly angelic melodies and steady, train-like clunks that lie beneath all the splendour. Vampire Weekend are no longer the Brooklyn minions rattling at the gates of eminence, the gates have been swung open for them and the welcoming committee should have made them feel rightly at home.
Continue reading: Contactmusic.com's Top Albums Of 2013
The Canadian rockers confirmed the news themselves via their Twitter
Arcade Fire are officially headliners at Glastonbury 2014! After much speculation and finger crossing, the Canadian alt-rockers have been confirmed as the first headline act for 2014's outing at Worth Farm in Somerset next June.
Arcade Fire will headline Glasto for the first time
The band confirmed their billing themselves, taking to Twitter to reveal a list of European dates due to take place in the same week at the end of June. As well as the stop off at Worthy Farm, AF will also be paying Rock In Roma and Villa Franca Di Verona a visit, as well as headlining a show at Marlay Park in Dublin. The band's own announcement was later followed up by a tweet from festival organiser Emily Eavis, with a statement from the festival's own Twitter page reading: "We're very pleased to announce that Arcade Fire will headline the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury 2014 on Friday 27th June."
Continue reading: Arcade Fire Confirmed As First Headlining Act For Glastonbury 2014
The electro duo will play at the awards and no doubt win a few too!
Daft Punk's infectious disco jam 'Get Lucky' may have woven its way into our memories of summer 2013 but winter may see the French electronic duo rewarded for their incredible latest album with one of the highest musical accolades: a Grammy.
The 2014 Grammy Awards Will Be Dominated By Daft Punk.
The prestigious annual ceremony will be held in January and aired live on television. As well as a dazzling evening of the world's biggest acts being awarded for what's been a pretty good year for music, Daft Punk have been confirmed as the evening's live musical entertainment, according to Rolling Stone.
Continue reading: Daft Punk Confirm Grammys Gig After Nominations Deluge
Despite winning acclaim and producing award-worthy releases, there were a number of notable absentees in the list of Grammy nominees for next year
The 2014 Grammy Awards will take place in January 2014, with the full list of nominees being revealed over the weekend. Jay-Z was the most capped nominee, with nine nods in total, whilst Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kendrick Lamar and Daft Punk were also among the list of potential winners, but there were a number of artists who were nowhere to be seen on the list of nominations.
After their shock win in 2011, Arcade Fire have been ignored this time
Despite their last album, The Suburbs, being a runaway success at the 2011 Grammy Awards, Arcade Fire are nowhere to be seen on next year's list. Their fourth album, Reflektor, was met with almost universal praise and some critics noted that it was an improvement form their latest release, but it seems as though the Grammy committee weren't as impressed as everyone else. The Canadian band don't even appear in the Best Alternative categories, however it is pleasing to see Tame Impala and Vampire Weekend among the nominees in this category, especially considering VW released one of the albums of the year with Modern Vampires of the City.
The video for Daft Punk's Instant Crush video is here, featuring Julian Casablancas.
Daft Punk have released the video for their track 'Instant Crush,' featuring The Strokes singer Julian Calablancas in mannequin form. The video for the latest single to be taken from Random Access Memories features the New Yorker dressed in his recognizable black leather jacket, singing alongside a mannequin version of himself, dressed in Napoleonic clothing. He is singing to a female mannequin. Oh and Daft Punk's famous helmets make an appearance.
Julian Casablancas Performing in Toronto
Daft Punk first met with Casablancas whilst working on the Tron: Legacy soundtrack in 2010, presenting the Strokes man with an instrumental demo track intended for use on a new album. The frontman responded favorably to the demo and provided the accompanying vocals - which would later become Instant Crush.
The revived format has enjoyed a renewed interest lately.
Annual sales of vinyl LPs has benefitted from a surge in sales in the past year, pushing the sales of records over the half million mark for the first time since 2003, reports The Independent. The regrowth in the popularity of the retro format is being attributed largely to releases from UK rockers Arctic Monkeys and French electronic act Daft Punk.
Arctic Monkeys Have Helped Vinyl Sales Recover.
"The LP is back in the groove," says Geoff Taylor - the chief executive of the BPI (British Phonographic Industry). "We're witnessing a renaissance for records - they're no longer retromania and are becoming the format of choice for more and more music fans. This year has been a treat for vinyl aficionados with releases from Daft Punk, David Bowie, Arctic Monkeys and Black Sabbath."
'AM" shot straight to the top of the album charts after shifting more than 157,000 units in it's first week
The Arctic Monkeys have done it again! Their fifth album to date has entered the chart at number one after a strong week of sales since last week's release, with AM racking up more than 157,000 in sold units in only a few days. What's more, the band have made history by being the first indie band to achieve the feat of earning five No. 1 albums back-to-back, making the feat all the more impressive.
The Arctics have assumed their place among rock royalty
AM, which was released via Domino Record on Monday, 9 September, is now the second most successful album of 2013 in terms of units sold in the first week. It sits behind only Daft Punk's Random Access Memories, which sold more than 165,000 copies during its first week of release in May, according to the Official Charts Company. The Sheffield band's fifth number one entry is also frontman Alex Turner's sixth number one entry, after his cinematic side project The Last Shadow Puppets topped the charts at the first time of asking with 2008's The Age of the Understatement.
Continue reading: Arctic Monkeys Make History With Their Fifth Consecutive Number One
Who can resist a choreographed routine on skates?
Stephen Colbert’s political satire might be top notch, but his dance skills are not to be overestimated. Last night, the Colbert Report host strapped on a pair of roller skates and boogied down to the sound of 'Get Lucky' – the Daft Punk/Pharrell Williams hit that’s become the inescapable soundtrack to this summer. The, um, energetic performance served as the kickoff for Colbert’s summer series of concerts or “StePhest Colbchella ‘013” – it’s what the cool kids call it.
Who knew Colbert posessed such hidden talents?
But, of course, the host dancing all by himself would have been a bit sad, so instead he brought in some friends – Hugh Laurie, Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon and even Colbert’s former colleague, Jon Stewart – still on leave from The Daily Show – joined in with some tight moves. Colbert’s moves turned out to be too much for the Colbert Report studio, so the shenanigans infiltrated the America’s Got Talent stage and even an interview with Bryan Cranston and the rest of the Breaking Bad cast – at which point Cranston simply joined in for an amazing 70s themed dance routine. We couldn’t do it justice. Just watch the video:
Who are the best new bands to see at Lollapalooza 2013?
You, being a seasoned festival-goer, will know that it’s Lollapalooza 2013 in Chicago’s Grant Park this weekend (August 2 – 4, 2013), which promises to play host to some of the biggest acts in the world as well as showcasing the most exciting and innovate new bands on the planet. And that’s what we’re here to concentrate on: the young, fresh and ready to impress.
It seems a long, long time since Disclosure’s first single Offline Dexterity, though the British electronic duo have gone from strength to strength in recent years and finally released their debut album, Settle, on PMR Records on June 2, 2013.It was met with both commercial and critical success, including a score of 9.1 from the notoriously picky musos at Pitchfork – no mean feat.
Sure, we’d rather see Disclosure in a club - perhaps in the early hours of the morning – though Lollapalooza-goers will have to settle for 6pm at The Grove, on Friday (August 2, 2013). Saying that, both Guy and Howard will be DJ’ing at The Mid club in Chicago’s West Town from 10pm on Friday.
Continue reading: Lollapalooza 2013: The Best New Bands Worth Checking Out
Jay-Z scored his first UK No.1 with Magna Carta Holy Grail.
Incredibly, Jay-Z has landed his first ever UK number one album, with Magna Carta Holy Grail storming the chart and holding off Mumford & Sons and Rod Stewart. The rapper's previous highest-charting album was the 2011 collaborate effort with Kanye West, Watch the Throne, which entered at No.3.
Holy Grail managed to hold off Mumford & Sons' Babel despite a surge in sales following the group's triumphant headlining show at the Glastonbury Festival. Jay-Z also comfortably outsold Rod Stewart's number-one album Time. Passenger took the third spot with All The Little Light, with Canadian crooner Michael Buble dropped two places to No.4 with To Be Loved.
Jay-Z has been performing in the UK this weekend, headlining the second night of the Wireless music festival at the Queen Elizabeth Park on the former Olympics site. "I feel the love tonight," Jay-Z, 43, told the crowd, "You've been an incredible audience tonight." The rapper - still one of the biggest hip-hop acts in the world - was joined by Timberlake during the encore for a rendition of Holy Grail.
Continue reading: Q. How Many UK No.1's Does Jay-Z Have? A. Less Than You Think
Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' is dominating the singles chart in the U.S.
'Blurred Lines,' Robin Thicke's huge breakout hit featuring that T.I. and Pharrell Williams, has topped the Billboard Hot 100 for the fifth week. The track also spends a sixth week at No.1 on the Digital Songs chart, selling 423,000 downloads - equalling last week's total and bettering the previous week's 423,000.
'Lines' is only the second song to sell at least 400,000 downloads in three tracking weeks, joining Gotye's massive hit 'Somebody That I Used To Know' featuring Kimbra, which reached the mark on charts dated April 28, May 5 and May 12, 2012, according to Billboard.com.
'Blurred Lines' has now sold 2.4 million copies date, though concerns still remain over the song's controversial video featuring various well-known models parading around nude while Thicke stands around in a suit.
Daft Punk will collaborate with Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers who helped make 'Get Lucky' track the hit of summer 2013.
Prior to the release of French electronic duo Daft Punk's latest album, Random Access Memories, few could have forecasted the unprecedented success of lead single 'Get Lucky' with over one million copies of the single sold since its release in April making the disco knee-jiggling track the year's UK bestseller and the most streamed Spotify track in 24 hours in history. Such was the hit power of 'Get Lucky' that Durex, inspired by the song title and subject matter, created a new line of 'Get Lucky' condoms featuring the band on the packet and a Japanese toy company unveiled a line of mini robo action figures of Guy Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter (AKA Daft Punk).
Daft Punk Have Always Hid Their Indetities Under Robot Masks.
Now, spurred on by the worldwide enthusiasm for their new disco-electronic sound, it has been revealed that Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers will work with Daft Punk once again in an exciting new project that plans to release previously unheard Chic master in his interview on DJAZZ.tv whilst at the Jazz à Vienne Festival 2013. The guitarist and producer explains how he came across some old Chic material in record label Warner's tape library: "I found in the Warner tape library some old, unreleased Chic masters that didn't belong to them that were in boxes that said Chic. But when you opened them up they had Johnny Mathis inside, my film scores, they had Nile Rodgers solo tracks, they had Chic tracks that were not designed for any project except for the guys working with me writing songs. So I'm going to finish that, and this is an exclusive: Daft Punk want to do at least one of them with me, because they respect the music; they understand."
Will Daft Punk make a surprise appearance?
Daft Punk might have the most successful single of the year, having recently hit the billion mark on sales for Get Lucky, but the band remains as mysterious as ever. Case in point: Glastonbury. Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo have not announced any tour dates following the release of Random Access Memories. Surely that’s impossible though, they have to promote the album somehow.
The robots at Glasto?
This seems to match up with bookies’ line of reasoning. Currently, the odds for the duo making a surprise appearance at the festival (which kicks off today) are set at 6/4, according to NME. For reference, the odds for Beady Eye (5/1), David Bowie (6/1) and Queens of the Stone Age (10/1) are also pretty high.
It isn't as good as the original, but the President's rendition of 'Get Lucky' is worth a listen
Viral videos featuring Barack Obama in some capacity rarely go by without a few 100,000 views at the very least, and one of the most recent videos to feature the President of the United States of America is a musical number that looks to continue this trend of exploiting Barack's popularity.
The YouTube channel Baracksdubs uploaded a video of the President 'singing' his own version of Daft Punk' 'Get Lucky,' mashing up speeches and audio clips from the President to recreate the opening verse and first chorus of the hit song by the French duo. Unoriginal; yes, but entertaining; you better believe it!
Baracksdubs have previously mashed up Barack's past statements to make 'Barack Obama Singing Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen' and 'Barack Obama Singing Can’t Touch This by M.C. Hammer,' but his version of 'Get Lucky' might be the best yet. What's more, the video also features clips from Barack's hilarious White House Correspondents' Association dinner video, in which the president pretends to be method actor Daniel Day-Lewis portraying the president for a Steven Spielberg-directed biopic.
Continue reading: Barack Obama's Version Of 'Get Lucky' Is An Internet Smash
Kanye West's new album has been leaked online days before its scheduled release, yet the thirty-six year old artist appears to be completely unconcerned.
Kanye West has had a turbulent few months. Amidst allegations of infidelity and the early birth of his daughter with Kim Kardashian, the Hip Hop star has had to deal with the betrayal of an unknown source, possibly from within his record company Def Jam. West's latest album, Yeezus, due to be released in the US on Tuesday (18th June) has been leaked online. The culprit is currently unknown and with so many people involved in all aspects of the albums production will be difficult to track down.
West's reaction to this, according to TMZ, has been somewhat blasé. This should come as a surprise for anyone considering the amount of time and effort which goes into making an album. However, when we think of all the personal issues West has dealt with, the early 'release' of his album will hardly be his primary concern.
Leaking an unreleased and highly anticipated album is not a new phenomenon. Earlier this year Daft Punk's album Random Access Memories was leaked whilst West's last album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy suffered the same fate. The hype surrounding the album has only been intensified by the leak, could this be a clever ploy on behalf of the record company to get West in the headlines?