Entries tagged with: Kanye West
by Andrew Sacher
Angel Haze at Lollapalooza 2013 (more by James Richards IV)
Rapper Angel Haze has still not announced a release date for her much-anticipated debut LP, Dirty Gold, but last month she kicked off her #30Gold series, a month-long series of covers and freestyles over other songs to precede the album. The newest #30Gold installment is the cover of young British pop breakout John Newman's "Love Me Again." You can stream it below, along with covers/freestyles of Lana Del Rey, Miley Cyrus, Macklemore, A$AP Ferg, Kendrick Lamar, Drake, Jay Z, and Kanye West.
In her "Same Love" (Macklemore) freestyle, Angel Haze addresses her sexuality, rapping:
At age thirteen, my mom knew I wasn't straightRead the rest of the lyrics below. Following that song's release, she did an interview with Fusion TV, saying that if she to label herself (though she'd prefer not to) it'd be "pansexual." "To identify as pansexual to me means to just want love and to want a connection with anyone you can find it with," she said.
She didn't understand, but she had so much to say
She sat me on the couch, looked me straight in my face
And said you'll burn in hell or probably die of AIDS
It's funny now, but at thirteen it was pain
To be almost sure of who you are and have it ripped away
And I'm sorry if it's too real for some of you to fathom
But hate for who you love is not exactly what you'd imagine
And I guess it was disastrous
Because everything that happened afterwards was just madness
Locked away for two years to keep me on the inside
Because she'd rather see a part of me die than me thrive
And it's tougher when it's something you can't deny
And ignorance teaches us it's something you decide
You're driven by your choices, an optical illusion
Here's to understanding it's not always confusion
That freestyle isn't the only genuinely moving thing Angel Haze has done in recent memory. Last week, she posted a video of herself reading a poem she wrote titled "You Broke My Heart." You can watch that below, and to say the least, you'll feel her pain.
Streams, poem video, and "Same Love" lyrics below...
A Tribe Called Quest
As you may have heard, Kanye West's tour was plagued with some equipment damages which caused certain shows to be cancelled, but Kanye's since fully updated his tour schedule, and is set to pick things up again on 11/16 in Philly. As long as everything goes right this time, this means his NYC shows -- 11/19 & 20 at Barclays Center and 11/23 & 24 at MSG -- will happen according to plan. As discussed, the 11/19 & 11/23 shows are being opened by Kendrick Lamar, and the 11/20 & 11/24 shows are being opened by A Tribe Called Quest. Tickets for all four NYC shows are still available. Updated dates are listed below.
For ATCQ, these will be the legendary group's "final" shows. Tribe member Q-Tip tweeted, "In August, ATCQ did our last show FOR Cali. It's only right we do our FINAL 2 joints where we started...NYC."
Updated dates are listed below...
As discussed, Kanye West is going on his first solo headlining tour in five years, and as you may know, Kendrick Lamar is set to open most of it, but no openers were ever announced for the four NYC shows. Now it's finally been announced that Kendrick opens two of them, and the other two are being opened by... legendary Queens crew A Tribe Called Quest! The schedule for NYC looks like this:
November 19 - Barclays Center w/ Kendrick LamarTickets for all four shows are still available.
November 20 - Barclays Center w/ A Tribe Called Quest
November 23 - Madison Square Garden w/ Kendrick Lamar
November 24 - Madison Square Garden w/ A Tribe Called Quest
A Tribe Called Quest's Ali Shaheed Muhammad DJs the RSVPed-out NPR CMJ showcase that Pusha T (whose new album Kanye produced) plays.
Updated Kanye dates are listed below...
by Andrew Sacher
Pusha T spent most of the '00s as one half of respected hip hop duo Clipse, and more recently he's struck out on his own, releasing multiple mixtapes, and becoming a frequent Kanye collaborator. This week (10/8), he finally put out his first official solo album, My Name Is My Name, which was produced almost entirely (and executive produced) by Kanye West. You can hear hints of Yeezus in the production, but while 'Ye used his own record to see how far he could push the boundaries of hip hop, for this one he keeps his beautiful dark twisted fantasies within the classicist realm of the genre. 2 Chainz and Big Sean, who are becoming the dynamic duo of goofy guest verses, show up to lighten the mood on "Who I Am," The-Dream gives Pusha a dose of PBR&B (sorry) on "40 Acres," and Kendrick Lamar appears in characteristic game-murdering mode on what may be the album's best track, "Nosetalgia." You can watch the video for "Nostetalgia" (via NPR), along with a full stream of the album (via Myspace), below.
Pusha T is about to go on a UK tour with collaborators Chase & Status, but before that he'll play a couple US dates, including NPR's CMJ showcase, which happens on October 16 at Le Poisson Rouge. The rest of the lineup is stacked, including Syrian pop star Omar Souleyman (who has a new Four Tet-produced album on the way), NYC pop duo Cults (who have other shows too), and a DJ set from A Tribe Called Quest's Ali Shaheed Muhammad (who also DJed last year's NPR CMJ showcase). The show is free with RSVP, which opens today (10/10). Check @NPRHipHop and @NPRMusic for updates. If you can't make it, you can also watch the live stream on NPR Music.
All Pusha T dates are listed, along with the video and LP stream, below...
by Andrew Sacher
DOWNLOAD: Arca - &&&&& (MP3)
Arca at Le Poisson Rouge in March (more by PSquared)
It's been a pretty incredible year for Brooklyn-via-Venezuela producer Arca. It wasn't that long ago that he was playing around the forward thinking UNO scene with CFCF, SFV Acid, Mykki Blanco (whose career has also seriously escalated), and others. Now, he's taken on the role as co-producer for hot, rising, Young Turks-signed UK singer FKA twigs, and contributed to the dark, twisted production of Kanye West's Yeezus (along with another once-underground producer, Evian Christ).
Arca's next NYC show is the just-announced Pitchfork's FORMS and MoMA PS1-presented show in the VW Performance Dome at MoMA PS1 on October 6 from 4-7 PM (not the first time he's played MoMA PS1). The show is part of the venue's Sunday Sessions, and is with London director Jesse Kanda (who also directed FKA twigs' "Water Me" video). They'll be premiering a film that interprets a section of Arca's recent &&&&&, a mix that goes through Yeezus-style darkness, uplifting wordless vocals, clamoring percussion, and more in its 25+ minutes.
The MoMA PS1 show "will feature abstract renditions of Arca's music with a vocal ensemble led by Abby Fischer accompanied by lights and a set designed by video/art collective Thunderhorse." Tickets are on sale now.
Arca's &&&&& can be downloaded above, and streamed, along with FKA twigs' "Water Me" video and Kanye's "I'm In It" (prod. Arca, Evian Christ, etc), below...
Kanye West at Governors Ball 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Tickets for the NYC stops on Kanye West's tour at Barclays Center (11/19) and Madison Square Garden (11/23) went on sale this morning, and Kanye immediately added second dates for each venue (Barclays on 11/20, MSG on 11/24). Tickets for all four are on sale now.
Kendrick Lamar opens most of the tour, but hasn't been announced for the NYC shows (neither has anyone else). Updated dates are listed below...
Kanye, Charlie Wilson, The Roots & a choir on 'Fallon'
Kanye West recently announced a tour with Kendrick Lamar, and following that announcement he appeared on Late NIght with Jimmy Fallon to perform the closing track on Yeezus, "Bound 2." Kanye performed with backing from Fallon's house band The Roots, a choir doing the "bound to fall in love" vocal and Charlie Wilson joining him to sing his hook on the song. Check out the video of that performance below.
As discussed, Kanye's tour hits NYC on November 19 at Barclays Center and November 23 at Madison Square Garden. Tickets for both shows go on AEG/Venue/Radio/TM/Twitter/AmEx presales Thursday (9/12) at 10 AM (password: "YEEZUS"). General on-sale begins Friday (9/13) at 9 AM.
Kendrick, who we just caught at Williamsburg Park, hasn't been announced for the NYC shows (neither has anyone else).
Fallon video, and the list of all 'Yeezus' tour dates, below...
Kanye West has made recent festival appearances like NYC's Governors Ball and has gone on a collaborative tour with Jay Z, but the man behind two of rap's most acclaimed albums of the current decade hasn't actually gone on a solo headlining tour in five years. That will change this year though, as he's just announced North American dates spanning from October through December. Stacking the deck even more, another very exciting figure in today's rap world, Kendrick Lamar (who also played Governors Ball), will be opening.
The tour hits NYC for arena shows on November 19 at Barclays Center and November 23 at Madison Square Garden. Tickets for those shows go on sale Friday, September 13. All dates are listed below.
Kendrick isn't actually currently listed on either of the two NYC shows, but he will be in NYC to play Williamsburg Park on September 10 with Ab-Soul, Jay Rock, and Bishop Nehru. Tickets for that show are still available.
Jay Z just announced a tour too, including two nights at Barclays Center.
Meanwhile, there's a bunch of other great upcoming hip hop shows happening in NYC.
All Kanye dates are listed, along with the video for "Black Skinhead," below...
Grimes and 2 Chainz
Taylor Swift realizing *NSYNC appeared on stage
From many points in Brooklyn, one could look up and see the lit up blimp in the air hovering over the Barclays Center yesterday (8/25). It was where the overhead shots were being filmed during the pre-show which included the big crowds outside around the Brooklyn streets that MTV got closed down to create the red carpet for the VMAs....
A red carpet, set up on Dean Street near Flatbush Avenue, was completely invisible to many non-ticketed fans and the general public who were mainly cordoned in a pen at the Best Buy on Atlantic Avenue between Fort Greene Place and Sixth Avenue.Meanwhile, during the ceremony, we got performances from Kanye West (playing "Blood on the Leaves," not "Black Skinhead"), Justin Timberlake (on-stage *NSYNC reunion included), Drake, Kendrick Lamar (joining Robin Thicke, who, um, palled around with Miley Cyrus on stage), Lady Gaga (playing her new EDM-inspired single), and more.
Another penned area, at Sixth Avenue and Bergen Street, gave a small group of fans a distant peek at the carpet, but it was still a full city block away.
"Obviously they can't let everyone in for security reasons, but we can't see anything at all," said Donna Hall, 28, who came from Queens. "I've been out here with my friends since 3 p.m. and we've been trying to find the best vantage point possible, but we settled here because at least we could see a glimpse of the red carpet. [DNA Info]
Daft Punk didn't perform, but they did walk the red carpet and sit in the audience in their masks which they also wore to present 'Best Female Music Video' with Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers. They also debuted part of the video for "Lose Yourself to Dance."
Vampire Weekend, who are headlining the Barclays Center in September, presented an award to One Direction.
Jay-Z and Beyonce were strangely nowhere to be found.
Eminem also pulled a Jay Z and announced his new album, MMLP2 (the sequel to 2000's Marshall Mathers LP), in a commercial that aired during the VMAs. The album was executive produced by Dr. Dre and Rick Rubin, and it's due out November 5. Meanwhile, the single, "Berserk," will drop this Tuesday (8/27).
If you watched, what did you think? Should Miley Cyrus stop being so trashy? Should Robin Thicke stop being so creepy? Should Kanye stop being so serious? Does Justin Timberlake have really long arms? Does anyone really care that *NSYNC showed up (for a minute and a half)? If you didn't watch, or need a refresher, some videos from the night are below...
by Andrew Sacher
Drake at Made In America 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
As you may know, Drake has been dropping a handful of tracks ahead of the release of his new album, Nothing Was the Same (due out 9/17), though it's never been exactly clear which of these will actually end up on the album. His newest, "Hold On We're Going Home," sounds like Drake going Marvin going MJ, and it's sounding pretty dope this morning. Check out a radio rip, along with a stream of his other recent single, "All Me" (feat. 2 Chainz and Big Sean), below.
Drake's previously discussed tour with Miguel and Future hits the NYC-area on 10/26 at XL Center, 10/27 at Prudential Center, and 10/28 at Barclays Center. Tickets for those shows are still available.
Drake just played his annual OVO Fest last night (8/5), and the insane show included Kanye, The Weeknd, J Cole, Miguel, TLC, A$AP Rocky, Big Sean and more coming out to join him and perform their own songs. The setlist and new song streams below...
Kanye West at Governors Ball 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
As previously mentioned, this year, MTV's Video Music Awards will be taking place in Brooklyn at the Barclays Center on August 25. It was just announced that Kanye West will appearing at this year's VMAs to perform "Black Skinhead" off his recently released Yeezus. Lady Gaga will be performing as well, debuting her new single, "Applause" off her upcoming ARTPOP album, due out November 11. Admission to the VMAs is free, but do you need tickets. You can currently get free Pit tickets, though the other ticket options are all TBA. There's a Ticketmaster page for the event too, but no on-sale date is listed at the moment.
Nominees for this year's VMAs include Kendrick Lamar, Drake, A$AP Rocky, J. Cole, Beyonce, Miguel, Janelle Monae, Erykah Badu, The Weeknd, Justin Timberlake, Snoop Lion, Mumford & Sons, Vampire Weekend, Alt-J, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Flying Lotus, and more. Full list below.
Also, watch the video for "Black Skinhead," which uses similar elements to the visual that accompanies Kanye's live performances of the song, below...
Tame Impala at Terminal 5 in February (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
We know these kinds of listicles get published all the time, and that everyone will always find ways to argue them, but this one is kind of interesting. Rolling Stone published their '50 Greatest Live Acts Right Now' list, where they asked a panel of writers, industry figures, and artists, "who rules the road in 2013?" It's got much of the stuff you'd think Rolling Stone would have on this kind of list (like insisting The Rolling Stones and Bruce Springsteen are still better live than basically anyone else in 2013), but there's still some surprises, like the inclusion of Tame Impala amongst mainly rock/pop stars.
Check out the full list below...
by Andrew Sacher
Rapper/producer Travis Scott (who was an XXL Freshman this year) has been seeing his career elevated lately thanks to his production contributions on Kanye West's Yeezus and the work he did on Jay-Z's Yeezus-like "Crown" from his new album, Magna Carta Holy Grail. He's got his own free mixtape out, Owl Pharaoh (which dropped about a month before Yeezus), and while it's still not entirely convincing that that he's got it as a rapper, you can definitely hear some Yeezus blueprints taking shape on the mixtape. Kanye himself supposedly helped out a bit, and 'Ye collaborator Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) contributes his vocals to the track "Naked."
Travis Scott was in NYC back in May when his tour with Casey Veggies hit Brooklyn Bowl. The two rappers will continue touring together later this month in the West/Southwest, but before that, Travis returns to NYC for a 'Hot 97 Who's Next' show on Tuesday (7/16) at SOB's with Trips N Slim, Apollo The Great, and Coley Bernays. Peter Rosenberg and Shani Kulture will be hosting and DJ Juanyto is providing music. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
All dates are listed, along with a stream of Owl Pharaoh and some of his Kanye/Jay-Z collaborations, below...
by Andrew Sacher
We're still waiting til Tuesday (6/18) for one of the most anticipated albums of the year -- Kanye West's Yeezus -- to drop, but something tells us it may have surfaced on the internet a little early. Assuming what going around is the final version of the album, it's pretty consistent with Kanye's mini-rant at Governors Ball about not caring about the radio anymore; this is some of his most anti-commercial music yet. Rather than the lush string/horn arrangements he used on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, the melodic R&B-style beats of 808s and Heartbreaks or the borderline-electropop of Graduation, on Yeezus Kanye is all about dark, distorted synth maximalism. On "On Sight" those synths were reportedly worked on with Daft Punk, he's got a TNGHT (Hudson Mohawke & Lunice) track on "Blood on the Leaves," and that's Evian Christ on "I'm In It."
Update: It also includes production from Gesaffelstein, Arca and more.
He's pretty dark, lyrically, too and dominates most of the vocals on the record. Ye's been known to get heavy on the guest spots, but they're pretty low-key here. Not that they're coming from low-key people of course. The full version of "New Slaves" features Frank Ocean crooning at the end, a track called "Hold My Liquor" transitions from a Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver) hook into a Chief Keef hook, and rumor has it that "God" appears on "I Am a God." I guess he really is talking back.
Kanye also brought in outside producer/Def Jam founder Rick Rubin (who just discussed the album at length) to help him out.
What may very well be the official tracklist for the album is below. Check that out and let us know your thoughts on Yeezus.
You may have noticed these MSG show posters popping up around NYC....
Let's face it. Kanye West would never let anyone bill him 5th on a poster, but regardless, even with the typos, this concert bill popping up around NYC that claims Jay-Z, Dr. Dre, Pharrell Williams, Frank Ocean, Kanye West, Eminem, A$AP Rocky and Andre 3000 are playing Madison Square Garden on a "Thuesday" is sure to get more than a few people excited about a show that is not actually happening.
Who would do such a thing??? Well, the likely culprit is artist Andre Saraiva who allegedly pulled a similar stunt with Daft Punk, Phoenix, Air & more in Paris. A fake Beach Boys, Phoenix, Beastie Boys (really?), The Faint & Tame Impala poster has also been seen in LA.
Thanks Nick Masi for the photo!
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Yeezus / Bloc Party / fans chillin' in a kiddie pool
Governors Ball concluded on Sunday (6/9). We've already posted one set of pictures from that day, in addition to pictures of The xx, Deerhunter, and Portugal. The Man. We also posted videos, the setlist, and talked a bit about Kanye West's set. Now we've got pictures of Yeezus, in addition to Bloc Party, Beirut, Foals, Freddie Gibbs, and more in this post.
photo by Dana (distortion) Yavin, words by Andrew Sacher
Kanye West at Governors Ball - 6/9/13
Kanye West wrapped up this year's muddy, yet successful, Governors Ball on Randall's Island with an epic headlining set on the main stage (6/9). If you weren't close to the stage, it was hard to see him, but that didn't even matter because his elaborate light/visual show was a huge spectacle on his own. He had multiple layers of lights across the back end of the stage, and the screens were back and forth between showing ominous images and distorted shots of Kanye performing on stage. He didn't get as crazy as he has in the past with a rant, but he did go on a short one in the middle of "Clique" about how he doesn't care about radio or trying to sell a million records anymore, he just cares about music.
In addition to playing the hits, Kanye also played material off of his upcoming new album, Yeezus, including "Black Skinhead" and "New Slaves," which he did on SNL, and three others, one possibly named "On Site" and another possibly named "I Am A God." Check out videos of him playing all five new songs, along with his full Governors Ball setlist, below. More pictures (like the one above) coming soon.
Grizzly Bear in Austin in April (more by Tim Griffin)
The festival goes down on Randall's Island this weekend (6/7-9). We also just made a Spotify playlist of many of the artists we're excited to see this weekend. Listen to that below or on Spotify. Full Governors Ball schedule is also below...
Kanye West in Sweden in 2011 (more)
NYC festival Governors Ball is totally sold out of regular tickets, but if you weren't able to get yours and still want to go, there are still a few options. From now until Monday (5/27) at 11:59 PM, you can enter the Governors Ball Ticket Lottery. Entering the lottery gives you a chance to be selected to purchase either a 3-day pass or a single day ticket. More details on how the lottery works below.
Ticket lottery details and festival set times below...
Kanye on 'SNL'
Kanye West has had a busy weekend. On Thursday (5/16), he played a private show at Roseland for Adult Swim where he performed a few new songs. He also, as is his wont, let loose one of his stream-of-conscious rants, this time mostly about celebrity culture. You can watch video of that below.
One of the songs Kanye performed at Roseland was new track "New Slaves." A video for that song made its debut on Friday night (5/17), projected at, according to maps on Kanye's website, 66 locations around the world. Nine of them were in NYC, including two in Williamsburg: one being outside the Bedford Ave L stop, and the second on the Wythe Hotel, and there's video of the former below.
The song, which features a sample of 1969 single "Gyöngyhajú lány" by Hungarian rock band Omega and vocals from Frank Ocean, will feature on Kanye's follow-up to 2010's My Dark Twisted Fantasy which is, according to Pitchfork, titled Yeezus and has appearances from Daft Punk, Skrillex and more.
This activity was all centered around Kanye's appearance on Saturday Night Live's season finale hosted by Ben Afleck. (The teaser videos are below.) He performed "New Slaves" and debuted another new song, "Black Skinhead," and video of those, along with the other clips mentioned in this post, are below.
Kanye West @ Roseland Ballroom - 5/15/2013 (virgilabloh)
Kanye West @ Roseland Ballroom - 5/15/2013 (lacreated)
As mentioned, Kanye West played a private show for Adult Swim Wednesday night at Roseland Ballroom in NYC, ahead of his SNL appearance. New songs were played, in a Daft Punk-less tent pyramid thing. Watch a few videos below...
He may or may not be referring to the private "Upfront" show Kanye is playing for Adult Swim at Roseland. If it is the same show, then it is unclear why he used the term "Pop-Up". We'll find out soon!\
Kanye also plays SNL on Saturday and Governors Ball this summer.
Vampire Weekend on SNL - 5/11/13
Vampire Weekend are about to release their excellent new album, Modern Vampires of the City, this week (5/14) via XL (have you streamed it?), and ahead of that release they made their return to Saturday Night Live last night (5/11). They performed two of the new album's cuts, "Diane Young" and "Unbelievers." Kristen Wiig hosted. You can watch videos of both performances below. Next week (5/18) it's Kanye West.
SNL videos below...
Pusha T of Clipse has released a video for his new burner "Numbers on the Boards," from the forthcoming My Name Is My Name due in July. The track, produced by Don Cannon and Kanye West, features Mr Kardashian as well as Chief Keef for brief appearances in the video. Check that out below.
Deerhunter at Austin Psych Fest 2013 (more by Tim Griffin)
Governors Ball is less than a month away, and the fest has now released the daily schedule. They've done a pretty good job with not too many giant conflicts -- though there's a few like Grizzly Bear vs Beirut, Bloc Party vs The xx, Erykah Badu vs Beach House, and Nas vs Guns N Roses. Check out the daily line-ups across their four stages below.