Last week, news broke that the London Olympic Committee had chosen a song off the forthcoming Muse record to be the official song of the London 2012 Summer Olympics. With fan fare that can really only be generated by an international event like the Summer Olympic the song premiered on BBC Radio 1 and then quickly made its way to the rest of the music world.
An official video for the track titled “Survival” has now been released by the Olympic Committee using archival footage from past Olympic Games as the visual accompaniment.
Due to geographic restrictions imposed by the Olympic Committee, viewers must watch the video on YouTube.
Since its humble beginnings, the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival has grown into one of the most important events in modern music. Artists from every corner of the world trek to the California desert for two weekends of musical immersion.
But sadly, the festival is caught in a political battle.
Despite having just purchased the 300 acres Empire Polo Field used as the primary festival grounds, Goldenvoice co-founder Paul Tollett and vice president Skip Paige are wrestling with moving the concert to another city or unincorporated area of the Coachella Valley. The main issue is over a proposed tax that would be imposed upon on large-scale events.
The initiative proposed by councilman Sam Torres would take affect in 2014 and would equate to a five to ten percent tax on admissions fees. According to Tollett, that would come down to about $36 per ticket which translates into $4-6 million from ticket sales.
The Desert Sun, a local Coachella newspaper, obtained a series of text messages in which Paige tells an Indio official that “organizers are seriously considering moving the festival out of the city.”
“We think this tax is outrageous for all the things we’ve done with Indio,” Tollett told The Desert Sun. The paper goes on to say that Councilwoman Elaine Holmes warned the Indio City Council, saying “He can easily take it to Irvine or someplace else. We don’t want to scare that concert away.”
Torres admits that he’s looking to Goldenvoice to help bail the city out of a financial crisis. Goldenvoice’s Tollet is dumbfounded, saying “They’re singling out one business to put a tax on. Forget legal, is that even fair?”
The dialog is crystallized in one particular text message from Paige to Torres, “You know were moving right? All this is a game. Why in the world would we stay where we are not wanted. LQ [La Quinta] doesn’t want us, Indio wants to take all our profits. Its a joke.”
Although Tollet declined to comment on his partner’s text messages, he says that if this tax goes into effect, there will be no concert in 2014. “When I say there’s going to be no 2014, realize what I’m saying. The Coachella festival-goers have to bank on what I’m saying. I say no 2014, there are going to be people who set their wedding during April. I can’t come back in 2014. Once I say it, the dice are thrown.”
For a blow-by-blow account of the battle, head to the Desert Sun.
Serj Tankian of System of a Down’s newest solo album, Harakiri, will be available everywhere Thursday, July 12th. In anticipation of the release, Tankian has teamed with Red Bull to stream the album in full.
The Lebanese-born Armenian-American poet is interested in exposing is what he considers the mass suicide of animals; scientists are presuming other reasons for the multitudes of unexplained animal deaths all over the planet. This is the theme of the Harakiri’s title track. “I love creating relationships between things that don’t have pre-existing relationships,” explains Tankian. “Humor versus the politcal, versus the philosophical versus spiritual…”
“I wasn’t intending on writing another rock record and these songs just started coming to me. And I’m like f**k, I think I have a rock record.”
Watch an exclusive performance and Q&A webcast with Tankian, Thursday, July 12th at 12:30PM PT/3:30PM ET. Serj will perform songs from his forthcoming album Harakiri, which hits stores just days before on July 10th.
Harakiri is presently available for pre-order on his official website. $2 from the sale of each pre-order will be donated to a non-profit organization to fight global hunger.
System Of A Down Tour Dates:
08/02 Philadelphia, PA – Susquehanna Bank Center
08/04 Holmdel, NJ – PNC Bank Arts Center
08/05 Wantagh, NY – Nikon at Jones Beach Theater
08/07 Washington, DC – Verizon Center Arena
08/09 Boston, MA – Comcast Center
08/11 Montreal, QC – Heavy Metal Festival Parterre @ Parc Jean Drapeau
08/12 Toronto, ON – Heavy Metal Festival Downsview Park
Although the band has returned to their home of Richmond, Virginia, Lamb of God frontman Randy Blythe remains in Prague after shelling out $200,000 in bail.
The band had just arrived to the airport in the Czech Republic for a show at the Rock Cafe last week when he was arrested for the 2004 death of 19 year-old Daniel N., who was pushed off the stage during a show in 2004. Daniel allegedly hit his head and passed away two weeks later from a brain hemorrhage. In recently obtained video footage of all three times the fan was on-stage, metal site The Gauntlet, claims Blythe did not have enough interaction with the fan to cause the injury that ultimately lead to his death.
According to the band, Blythe was not solely at fault. A large security guard is said to have assisted in the pushing of the teen off the stage. According to MTV, Blythe faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted. Photos of Blythe’s court visit last week were posted to a local Czech news site.
Metalheads, in the form of fans and rock stars, showed their support this weekend by rallying behind #FreeRandyBlythe on Twitter.
Anthrax frontman Scott Ian went so far as to dedicate a song to Blythe at Saturday’s Rockstar Mayhem tour in San Bernardino, California. The on-stage announcement mirrored his comments on Twitter.
“It’s complete and utter bulls**t for him to be treated like a criminal for something he didn’t do. Now fans can see firsthand why there’s no stage diving anymore. Especially in the post-Darrell world we live in. It’s all fun and games until people get murdered, die and get arrested. Randy didn’t cause that fan’s death. That fan chose his path. People need to take responsibility for their actions no matter what the consequence. Of course it’s sad that this person died, it’s a tragedy, but it’s not Randy’s fault.”
Adrenaline PR, Lamb of God’s publicist, stated “under no circumstances was there a fight of any kind involved [during LAMB OF GOD's 2010 concert]. This incident deals with a fan that three times during the concert jumped the barricade and rushed Randy during the performance. It is alleged that the third time, security was not able to reach him and that Randy pushed him back into the audience where supposedly he fell and hit his head.”
Lamb of God were touring in support of their latest album titled Resolution.
Pennywise frontman Zoli Teglas is no stranger to pain. After all, he was jumped into the band via fistfight with behemoth guitarist Fletcher Dragge.
But during a performance in Germany last Friday, severe back pain was enough to bring him to his knees and send the singer straight to the hospital for emergency surgery.
The band quickly took to social media to update fans on Teglas’ condition. According to a post on Facebook, “Zoli was having back-pain throughout the tour, and at Full Force festival he collapsed on stage a few times during the set. He was taken to the emergency room where they said he needed an immediate operation, or risk the chance of paralysis.”
Immediately following Teglas’ surgery, the band updated the fans saying, “We would like to thank everyone who has expressed care and concern for Zoli after he collapsed on stage at the Full Force Festival due to lower back complications from a herniated disk. He had an emergency procedure done on his back on Saturday as a result of the severe back pain he had been experiencing throughout the tour. The surgery went as perfect as could be. He’s recovering very well and is already up and slowly moving around. Zoli is in good spirits and is recovering nicely. Unfortunately due to his recovery time, the last leg of the tour will be canceled.”
The band’s dates with fellow hard rockers, The Flatliners, in Hengelo and Schweinfurt are canceled.
James, a fan of the Pennywise on Facebook wrote, “God bless you, Zoli. Take your time and let it heal. It’s not just about touring; you want to be able to pick up your kids. Hell, you want to be able to MAKE those kids! LOL Hang in there, man.”
Pennywise is currently on tour promoting their latest album All Or Nothing, now available everywhere on Epitaph Records.
Blur just premiered two fresh tracks, breathing new life into fans’ hopes that the Britpop legends are on the road to more music. “Under the Westway” and “The Puritan” mark the band’s first new material since a one-off in 2010, with their last full-length album having hit stores over nine years ago in 2003.
The band took to an undisclosed London rooftop to debut the songs live via livestream earlier today. “Under the Westway” is a Bowie-esque ballad, front man Damon Albarn crooning, “The whole world gone/Fallen under the spell of the distance/between us when we communicate/still picking up short wave/Somewhere, they’re out in space.” “The Puritan” is sure to make fans jump like it’s the 90s again, mashing up synth-filled beats and swirly guitar riffs.
After each song, Blur participated in a Twitter interview with followers and fans. They waxed poetic on making art, talked pizza toppings, and everything in between.
The songs were written specially for the band’s upcoming sold-out show at London’s Hyde Park in August. However, both tracks had actually seen the stage prior to today’s official debut; “Under the Westway” at a Brit Awards War Child benefit show in London in February and “The Puritan” at London’s Poetry Olympics last month.
Blur had also teased the tracks to fans late last month with cryptic Twitter pictures featuring neon lettering, a photo of a freeway and lyric excerpts, along with the time and date of the debuts.
“Under the Westway” and “The Puritan” are available for digital download now via iTunes. A limited edition double sided 7-inch single will be available August 6.
Blur is also releasing a comprehensive box-set, including their seven studio albums, 65 unreleased songs, three DVDs, a collector’s book and more, out July 30.
Insiders who’ve heard The Killers report the new single as being in the vein of “When You Were Young,” regarding the song’s somewhat more rock-leaning instrumentation. “Runaways” is set to be the first single from The Killers’ long-awaited fourth full-length album, titled Battle Born, the name shared by their recording studio and home state of Nevada.
Rolling Stone, in a preview of their new album, report that “Runaways” dates back to at least 2009, when the band played it to a less-than-receptive audience in Santa Barbara, CA. The band were not daunted by initial reactions and chose to develop, and ultimately keep the track.
“It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done, no question,” says front man Brandon Flowers speaking about the album. “It’s the longest we’ve ever taken to make a record, and the longest I’ve ever spent on the lyrics. We thought we had enough songs, but then we realized that we didn’t, and so we had to pound away and grind it out until we were certain that we were ready.” Flowers continues, “I feel like there are a lot of live moments on this album, more than we’ve ever had before. I feel like people are going to be able to relate to and understand these songs.”
“Runaways” is scheduled to impact the planet on July 10th, months ahead of its album’s September release.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, front man Brandon Flowers gave some insight into the album’s title.
“In a sense, all Americans are battle born. Our ancestors came here for something better,” said Flowers. The title is also the name of the band’s studio and nickname for their home state of Nevada.
Confirmed song titles on the album include “Runaways,” “Carry Me Home,” “Flesh and Bone,” and “Heart Of A Girl.” Some producers that band have worked with are Steve Lillywhite and Brendan O’Brien.
Drummer Ronnie Vannucci said that Battle Born will be their “difficult fourth record” and that the music writing process is “living up” to its title.
Earlier this morning it was reported that Gotye had been pronounced dead by a CNN iReport.
At 4:32 AM EST, it was reported that Gotye had shot himself in the head with a 9mm handgun. “He was pronounced dead at 4.45AM, and the investigation concluded that the cause of death was suicide. It was confirmed shortly after by family and friends. He was quickly taken to the Central Montmorency Hospital, but died from his injuries shortly after. His family has stated that they plan a closed funeral.”
To which the dead man responded, “I’m not dead. #Pinkalbumtitles”
Not only is the “Somebody I Used To Know” songwriter not dead, but according to the Hollywood Reporter, the Aussie’s racked up a record-breaking number of tags on the music identification system known as Shazam. Just when you thought Gotye’s smash hit must have reached everyone on the planet, you’d have been wrong to the tune of 11.5 million clueless souls. The Shazam service matches a user-submitted snippet or “tag” to one stored in its database to identify the song and sell it’s user the full length track.
Nearly a year after its release, the Gotye Kimbra collaboration continues its domination of the charts, currently holding the #3 spot on Billboard’s Hot 100. The video alone has amassed a staggering 270 million views.
Butch Vig career as a producer dates back to 1982. Vig, currently known for his roll as co-foudner and drummer for Garbage, produced a laundry list of alternative rock’s best albums including Nirvana’s landmark album, Nevermind, Smashing Pumpkins’ seminal Gish and Siamese Dream. And now, through his new band, Emperors of Wyoming, Vig is set to release an eponymous country, yes country, album on September 17.
Emperors of Wyoming features Vig on drums, Pete and Frank Anderson, and Phil Davis. Formed in 2009, the band creates country and folk music using “cutting edge technology and ancient instruments.”
Despite Vig’s forays into other musical styles, Garbage continues to make music releasing Not Your Kind of People in May of this year—their first album since 2005′s Bleed Like Me—and launched a world tour in support of the new record. Will the same success follow with his country music efforts? Time will tell.
Sonny John Moore, better known by his stage name, Skrillex, has become a leading figure in electronic dance genre known as Dubstep. Like M83′s Anthony Gonzalez, Skrillex will also be taking his talents to the big screen. In a recent interview with Pitchfork, the film’s music supervisor, Randall Poster, revealed that Skrillex will indeed be scoring the upcoming feature film, Spring Breakers.
Surprisingly, Randall had actually never heard of Skrillex until recently. Spring Breakers director Harmony Korine (best known for Gummo and Kids), sent Randall links to Skrillex’s YouTube videos. The millions of views (“First of the Year(Equinox)” currently has over 60 million) initially caught Randall’s attention, but once he saw Skrillex perform live, he became a true fan, calling Skrillex “just brilliant.”
“I felt like I swallowed the music,” Randall continued. “It was like Alien, like it went into me.”
Since releasing his debut solo album, My Name Is Skrillex, in 2010, Skrillex has released three more solo EPs, has won three Grammy Awards, and has become one of the wealthiest DJs in the world.
Spring Breakers began production earlier this year and is scheduled to be released sometime next spring. It will star Selena Gomez, James Franco, and Ashley Benson.