Welcome to the BroBible New Music Round-Up, where we see what new music has been released this week and can assure you that any sensitive information included has been thoroughly vetted and redacted when needed. For more follow me on Twitter: @ryanoconnell79
The Weeknd, Travis Scott, SZA “Power is Power”
God bless Game of Thrones. Those kids are trying as hard as they can to get people to watch that show. At some point something will click for them. It has too.
Their latest attempt to draw some eye balls is For The Throne, an album of music inspired by the show. The album is set to be released on April 26, two days before this season’s third episode, and last week they released two songs from it, one by Maren Morris and one by The Lumineers. Both were good.
A week later “Power is Power” has been released and recency bias aside, this track is better than those other two. It features it’s own three-headed dragon of SZA, The Weeknd and Travis Scott and some production that is equal parts haunting and menacing. The scatter shots of piano throughout are especially delightful.
The rest of the album features Thrones-inspired tracks from A$AP Rocky and Joey Bada$$, The National, Mumford & Sons, Lil Peep featuring Ty Dolla $ign and Chloe x Halle among others.
Now please, would someone watch Game of Thrones?
Beck “Saw Lightning”
Guys, Fun Beck is back!
I love Fun Beck. I appreciate serious and somber Beck, but fun Beck is great. Fun Beck, and I’m not trying to be cute here, is where it’s at.
Recently Beck contributed a song to a Music Inspired by the Film Roma compilation. The song was not from Fun Beck. Fun Beck dropped a tune with The Lonely Island guys and Robyn that was from The Lego Movie 2 soundtrack and Fun Beck also collaborated on a summer jam candidate with Cage the Elephant. The signs have been there and this song confirms it. Fun Beck is back!
At least for now.
But we’ll take it!
His new track “Saw Lightning,” which was released earlier this week, is off of his upcoming album Hyperspace. It’s his first new album since 2017’s Colors. “Saw Lightning” is vintage Fun Beck. It’s frantic and all over the place, plus fun as hell. Fun Beck also has a pretty heavy hitter joining him on the track, as Pharrell Williams helped out with production and contributions on drums and keyboards. Williams’ voice is also heard at times, although what he’s actually saying is anyone’s guess.
Fun Beck (fingers crossed) joins Cage the Elephant and Spoon on tour this summer.
Beyoncé HOMECOMING: THE LIVE ALBUM
How does Bey keep this shit a secret? This is a 100% serious question because I am baffled by it.
Lemonade. No one saw it coming. It just showed up.
Her album with Jay-Z? Same thing.
Now, a few days after the Netflix documentary, HOMECOMING, was released, she’s at it again, surprising everyone with a live album that features her devastating and kick the doors down amazing 2018 Coachella set. That set included over 100 dancers, an Jay-Z cameo, a Destiny’s Child reunion, a Solange appearance and a full HBCU marching band. Songs were incorporated from everyone from Master P to Juvenile and tributes paid to Fela Kuti and Nina Simone.
Pitchfork, who are notoriously stingy when it comes to dishing out praise, called the performance “one for the ages.”
Me, not as stingy, said, “yeah, obviously. It’s effin’ Beyoncé guys.”
The 40-song album features Bey’s entire Coachella set, as well as a cover of Frankie Beverly and Maze’s “Before I Let Go” and a recording of her daughter Blue Ivy singing the hymn “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”
Not included, but definitely something I’d love to see, is the non-disclosure agreement Bey must be using. Does it threaten a person’s life? I bet it does.
Cage the Elephant Social Clues
When it comes to subject matter on their fifth album, Cage the Elephant aren’t out there telling new stories. On Social Cues, the band is tackling fame and the dark side of the mountain that people forget exists, i.e. the side that is comprised of exhaustion and disillusion and the remnants of one’s sanity.
“People always say/Man, at least you’re on the radio,” singer Matt Schultz sings on the title track, seemingly responding to those who might want to take issue with him taking issue. My dudes, famous people have problems too. Has no one seen A Star is Born?
The Kentucky band worked with John Hill for Social Cues and Hill, known for his work with Eminem, Rihanna and Portugal. The Man brought some pop sensibilities to the band’s raw sound. The end result is “a band-driven tension of cleverly drawn shadows and silver-lining choruses that suggest Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers if they had been raised on the Cure and Berlin-era David Bowie instead of the Byrds and the Zombies.”
You had me at “Tom Petty” Rolling Stone.
Here’s my question. Given the relatively shaky ground that rock music is on heading into the summer of 2019, are Cage the Elephant considered a top tier rock band? I want to say no, but then I think about it and I’m not really sure who would be there instead of them. And I’m taking pure rock ‘n roll, so let’s leave The 1975 out of it. Looking at some of the big festivals happening this summer, it’s hard finding a straight up rock band at the top of any of the bills. The Strokes headline the third night of Governors Ball, but that might speak more to the festival’s location and the band’s connection with New York City than the band’s overall relevance.
I don’t know. Just something to think about I guess.
Elsewhere in Music…
This Week in Ha, They Should
Stay Classy Fox News
The death of rapper Nipsey Hussle has stirred a lot of emotions in people both from inside and outside of the music community. Yet one of those emotions hasn’t really been humor. Cue Laura Ingraham of Fox News.
The host of The Ingraham Angle took to mocking Hussle while showing clips of his memorial service in L.A. and trying to demonize Hussle, saying “this dear artist recently released a song called “FDT” — eff Donald Trump.”” Does it matter that the portion of the song, which is by Y.G., that played during the segment didn’t even feature Hussle?
Please. Of course it didn’t.
In response, rappers such as T.I., Snoop Dogg and The Game all called for Ingraham to be fired.
Yeah, good luck with that guys.
Montreal Rock City
For those of us on the east coast, Montreal holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts as the place they went to after they turned 18, but before they turned 21, so they could drink legally. The Canadian city now is about to become cherished by another group of people: metal heads.
Craig Sauvé, a Montreal resident and member of the city’s city council, recently was able to get a declaration passed, officially naming Montreal “a heavy metal city.” Sauvé managed to get bipartisan support for the bill, even though one City Council member wanted an amendment added, in which concern was expressed about some of the downsides of metal, mainly the scary kinds of metal that sounds like demons crawling through your speakers wanting to devour your soul.
“It’s an immense thrill to be able to talk about this art form that I love so dearly,” Sauvé told the Montreal Gazette after the City Council unanimously approved his resolution. “I’m still an active fan. I listen to a lot of it.”
Yeah Craig, we get that you listen to it a lot it. Everyone does.
Checking In On Drake, The World’s Worst Sports Fan
This Week’s Best Non-Music Related Tweet
See you next week!