Friday, December 31, 2010

Remix Of The Week: MC Lyte Ft. Missy Elliott "Cold Rock A Party"

It's New Year's Eve. MC Lyte and Missy are talking about rocking the party. You get the picture. Get into the video below:

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Album Review: Verse The End

On their debut EP Heavy Hearts And Counterparts, Nyack, New York-based quintet Verse The End bring together the often disparate worlds of pop, rock and metal. Combining pop melodies, crushing riffs and metallic power chords, the band creates a sound reminiscent of Killswitch Engage and Jimmy Eat World, or the Foo Fighters at their heaviest.

Double time bass drums abound on "Garden State Romance," while gentle piano keys glide alongside gargantuan guitars and retching screams on "Misery Missouri." Soaring harmonies and winding riffs mark "Scratching The Surface," which also incorporates a bit of synthesizer.

"Ripe With Envy," the EP's last track, switches up the formula slightly, shifting tempos from waltz-style swing to driving aggression. Lyrically the band consistently turns to themes of betrayal, heartbreak and other heavy-hearted material. "Seeing you with him/Has me exposed/Feeling diposed," vocalist Michael Berean sings on "Ripe With Envy" while "Garden State Romance" offers a similarly dim view of romance. "Just when I thought/You were something/Something I could hold onto/I'm finding mistakes/And fault lines."

 While the tracks can occasionally sound a little samey, Heavy Hearts and Counterparts is a hard, hooky gem that showcases a talented band with plenty of potential to become the next big thing.


Monday, December 27, 2010

R&B Legend Teena Marie Dies At 54

Legendary singer Teena Marie passed away Sunday at her California home. The singer's body was found by her daughter. She had apparently died in her sleep. According to

While no cause of death has been released, the singer's publicist Lynn Jeter said that Marie suffered a grand mal seizure -- a neurological event, marked by loss of consciousness and violent muscle contractions, according to the Mayo Clinic -- a month ago.

Born Mary Christine Brockert in Santa Monica, California, Marie established herself as one of R&B's most soulful vocalists. First signed to Motown Records in the late 70's, the singer amassed a string of enduring hits, including "Behind The Groove," "Square Biz," "Lovergirl" and "Fire and Desire" her 1981 duet with Rick James. She also racked up four Grammy nominations.

The singer's music also influenced younger hip hop and R&B acts like Nas, The Fugees  and Snoop Dogg, who routinely sampled her work. For those who aren't up on Lady T's catalogue of classics here's a quick review below:

Friday, December 24, 2010

Remix Of The Week: Boyz II Men Ft. Treach, Method Man, Busta Rhymes and Craig Mack

Boyz II Men linked up with almost all of the 90's East Coast rap elite on this track. Add Nas, LL and Biggie and you would've had "Flava In Ya Ear" part 2. But then again that would've been about a 8-minute remix. Which wouldn't be so bad, considering songs like Yeezy's "So Appalled" and "Monster," managed to go the distance. But I digress. Watch the clip below:

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Cut Copy Reveal Tracklisting For New Album

Cut Copy have released the track list for their upcoming disc Zonoscope. The album, set to come out on
February 8, will feature in-house production by band member Dan Whitford. The iTunes pre-order for the album began on December 21st, and those who order in advance will get an unreleased version of the album's first single "Take Me Over."

In addition Cut Copy have decided to treat fans by releasing an electro-pop styled remix of "Take Me Over." Produced by Tim Goldsworthy--who worked on the band's previous album, 2008's In Ghost Colours--the track is described by the band the type of remix that is "designed for a futuristic main room that fits over the top of the old main room." View the track listing for Zonoscope and listen to the remix below:

Zonoscope Tracklisting:

1. Need You Now
2. Take Me Over
3. Where I’m Going
4. Pharaohs & Pyramids
5. Blink and You’ll Miss a Revolution
6. Strange Nostalgia for the Future
7. This is All We’ve Got
8. Alisa
9. Hanging Onto Every Heartbeat
10. Corner of the Sky
11. Sun God

Take Me Over Thee Loving Hand Remix by Tim Goldsworthy by IndiesUnder

Songwriter Claims Beyonce Didn't Write On "Love In This Club II"

Songwriter Soundz, a.k.a Kenneth C. Coby, who has written hits for artists like Ciara and Trey Songz, claims Beyonce took publishing points for Usher's 2008 hit "Love In This Club Part II" when the superstar didn't write one word. According to

Mr Kenneth C. Coby went on to explain why starving writers accept to give up their rights to Beyonce for a good amount of money.
“Well, she promotes the record to the highest level. She’s the best in the game at promoting a record and when she does one of your records you’ll get a single, radio, commercials and movies. There are so many different types of money that comes with Beyonce when you do a record for her so it’s kind of like the price of admission – the price to get all the other aspects is that you have to pay a little bit.She’ll want a little publishing and that’s guaranteed; she’s going to ask for it and you’re going to give it to her; no ifs, ands or buts. She’s going to make that record the biggest hit in the world so give her that publishing. She’ll take about 20%.”
So did B pay for a smash single or simply pull a jack move? You be the judge.

Artist Profile: Hot Sugar

Nick Koenig, a.k.a Hot Sugar, may give Pretty Lights, electro pop's current reigning super producer, a run for the title of club king supremacy. The up and coming beat maker is already show an eclectic range of sonic tricks, from the grimy crunch of "Don't Cut Down My Tree"and the hip hop-soul inspired "Colorful" to the blunt funk of "F*ckable." Listen (and download) a few tracks below from his upcoming free digital EP Muscle Milk  below:

Find more artists like Hot Sugar at Myspace Music

Monday, December 20, 2010

Artist Profile: Neon Hitch

Neon Hitch has definitely lived an interesting life. Born in the London countryside, the singer grew up as part of a clan of traveling street performers before running off to live in India at sixteen. A stateside move to New York led to gigs writing and singing backup for acts like Ke$ha, Friday Night Boys and Weezer's Rivers Cuomo.

But with her debut Beg, Borrow and Steal, set for release next spring, Neon Hitch seems intent on getting her own share of the spotlight. Listening to quirky dance tracks like "What Starry Eyes Know," a fantastic cover of Snoop Dogg's "Drop It Like It's Hot," and the darkly catchy "Black and Blues," with its somber subject matter, provide evidence that she may not have to wait for long.

Find more artists like Neon Hitch at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Neon Hitch at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Neon Hitch at Myspace Music

Praxis Collaborate With Iggy Pop, Serj Tankian, Killah Priest On New Album

Experimental hard rockers Praxis have assembled an eclectic mix of collaborators for their upcoming release, entitled Profanation: Preparation for a Coming Darkness. Rock icon Iggy Pop, System Of A Down's Serj Tankian and Wu-Tang protege Killah Priest are a few of the guest stars that will appear on the new album, set for a January 25th release.

Collaborating is nothing new for the trio. Formed in the early nineties, the trio have worked with Bootsy Collins, Bernie Worrell, John Zorn and other creative powerhouses to shape their unique brand of music, a mix of aggressive rock, hip hop, funk and psychedelic.

Listen to the Profanation track "Furies" featuring Iggy Pop below:

Furies (feat. Iggy Pop) by MethodofDefiance

Artist Profile: Sasha Raskin

Jerusalem-based Sasha Raskin has cleverly named his musical style "electroacoustic," a fitting term that perfectly describes the singer's seamless blending of classic instruments and electronic noise. "Quantum Love" combines watery ambient sounds with tribal drums and a flute solo, while "Only Music" mixes drum n' bass rhythms and synths with everything from blasts of fat brass and funked-out guitars to plucked violin strings and jazzy saxophone lines. A must-listen for audio junkies.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Remix Of The Week: Brandy Ft. MC Lyte, Queen Latifah and Yo-Yo "I Wanna Be Down"

While this isn't much of a remix in the musical sense, MC Lyte, Latifah and Yo-Yo got flow for days. Watch below:

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Alice Cooper To Be Inducted Into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Shock rock pioneer Alice Cooper will join Neil Diamond, Tom Waits, Darlene Love and Dr. John as the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 2011 inductees. Cooper told Rolling Stone that he was thrilled that the original Alice Cooper band, which disbanded in 1976, would be inducted.

"I was elated and I called the original band guys immediately, and said, 'Well, remember when we started in high school?' [Laughs] 'Here we are. Only took 45 years.'"

Cooper, whose ghoulish image and dark theatrics have influenced other rock acts like KISS, Nine Inch Nails, Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson, said he was unsure if the band would ever get honored by the Hall of Fame committee, even with rock staples like "No More Mr. Nice Guy" and "School's Out."

"For a while, I think that people didn't take us seriously, musically. For years I was like, 'Well, you know, jeez, we had two Number One albums and 14 Top 40 hits and, like, 15 gold albums. I don't know what it takes for them to take us seriously.' "

Cooper also said the original lineup would perform at the ceremony, and talked about plans to work with the group's old producer Bob Erzin to record Welcome To My Nightmare II. Read the entire interview here.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Q&A: Unicorn Kid

It's been a busy year for Unicorn Kid. The Scotland teen spent much of 2010 remixing tracks for the likes of Gorillaz and the Pet Shop Boys, and rocking out at festivals with his unique brand of dub step-influenced chiptune. Indies and The Underground managed to catch up with the Kid to talk unicorns, production techniques, the inspiration behind the "Dream Catcher" video and using Gameboys as instruments.

How did you come with the name Unicorn Kid?
I was 16 when I first came up with the name, I think I was just heavy into unicorns at the time, the name has totally lost all meaning to me now.

What were your early musical influences? 
Even since I was really young I've listened to so much music across a broad spectrum of genres, I don't really think any of it has ever directly influenced my music as such, I've always tried to stay focused on my own idea and separate it from my listening habits. Sometimes I go through week long phases of only listening to one type of music, my tastes vary so much that if I didn't keep that separate that from my own music then it would probably all come out a mess. That being said I do listen to a lot of early video game sound tracks and a lot of chip music, I get a lot of rhythmic and textural inspiration from there.

When did you begin producing/making beats? 
I first began messing around with electronic music when I was 14, I got hold of this Casio VL-1 keyboard and would spend hours layering different drum patterns and melodies to make songs. I then started to experiment with circuit bent toys and through researching that found out about the 8-bit/chip music scene. 

You done a couple of remixes for Pet Shop Boys and The Gorillaz. What other artists would you like to collaborate with? 
I've been working with a few artists to add vocals on some tracks, I'm thrilled with everybody I'm lucky enough to be working with, although I don't think I can say whom yet. 

The video for "Dream Catcher" is, for lack of a better word, very dreamlike. What was the visual inspiration for the video? 
I came across this guy called Alan Jensen on Vimeo, he's my age and had been making these beautiful rich videos for songs that he liked, I found his email and contacted him about working on a video for me. Alan is based in the US so a friend and I had to shoot some of the footage for the video down at the beach then send it over to him, from there Alan mixed it with footage of his own then edited and coloured it all. The idea behind the video was to create something abstract, like something found on a sun-damaged VHS tape. 

You were enrolled in an art school in Edinburgh before deciding to pursue music full time. Have any artists or graphic designers had an influence on your visual style (i.e. album artwork, etc.)? 
Lately I've been taking a lot of inspiration from sports-based NES games like T&C Surf Designs and California Games, as well as 1980s teen movies like Thrashin' and Teen Witch. I've been basing all my current artwork around that nostalgic 1980s summer/beach aesthetic and displaying it in a pixel art/video game art context. I'm a big fan of artists such as Laura Brothers, Paul B Davis and Videogramo, I wouldn't say that there is any immediate influence there but I am fascinated by the raw digital nature of their work.

Being that your music is so digitized/electronic-based, is it hard to translate the sound into a live setting?

I think people's concept of what constitutes 'live music' is changing and the live performance of solely electronic music is perhaps becoming more widely accepted. Playing between guitar-based acts can be awkward sometimes, but if I'm doing a headline show then the crowd know what they are in for and are generally up for it, I just try to create as energetic an atmosphere as possible. 

What kind of sound your fans expect from your full-length album? 
I have spent most of the past year at home now and the things I have released during that time are quite different from the tracks I am working on for my album. I've been working with a bunch of different vocalists, they're all artists that I'm a huge fan of and I'm excited to get some of the vocal material out there, it's quite 'pop' I guess, and still stays true to my sound but is a lot more refined and well thought out than anything I've produced before. I've been trying to keep the musical and visual side of the project coherent so I guess you could say the artwork reflects how 'sunny' some of the new music is. 

Do you plan on adding vocals or guitars, keyboards and other instruments? 
Yeah, there are vocals on around half the album tracks. The only real hardware I've used on the new material is a Game Boy, everything else is computer generated. 

What are your upcoming plans? 
I'm working on finishing the album and working it into a new live set for the spring. I'm also working on a pixel art zine to coincide with the release of my first single from the album, it will contain pixel art based on the album's imagery and aesthetic, following a loose plot line about a teen girl who has fallen in love with a skateboarder from The Valley. 

Monday, December 13, 2010

Artist Profile: Juliette Commagere

Juliette Commagere started out as the keytar-wielding front woman for Hello Stranger, a 70's-inspired glam band that opened for rock acts like Foo Fighters and Kings of Leon. As a solo artist however, Commagere seems to have switched gears a little, ditching glam for a pop sound that's laid back, breezy, and occasionally aggressive.

Tracks like "Everything I Love" and "Queens Die Proudly" are full of twinkling electro sounds, sweet melodies and synths, while "Overcome" with its angelic chorus of high harmonies, guitars and bombastic drums shows she's not afraid to reach for the big ballad brass ring. Take a listen below:

Find more artists like Juliette Commagere at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Juliette Commagere at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Juliette Commagere at Myspace Music

Vid Pick: Juliette Commagere "Impact"

The singer's clip for the easy-going tropical pop single "Impact," combines eye-popping colors, a bit of high fashion gloss, psychedelic visuals and some Madonna-esque moves (Juliette may have taken a few looks  at "Vogue" and "Nothing Really Matters before shooting:), to create a simple, yet elegant video: Watch and download a remix for "Impact" below:

Impact Keepaway Remix

New Music: Melanie Fiona

The songstress placates fans with this new song of lost love. The track begins with gentle piano chords before bursting into a full-blown ballad, while Fiona's turns from low and husky to wailing as she mourns her man.

"Gone And Never Coming Back" got its debut at a show in London earlier this week, and will mostly like be included on the singer's sophomore album The MF Life, according to  Listen to it below:

Friday, December 10, 2010

Remix Of The Week: Tupac Ft. Dr. Dre "California Love"

A classic remix to a classic song, Dre decided to slow things down on this track, transforming it from rambunctious party-starter to a laid-back West Coast groove.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

New Music: B Slade Pays Tribute To Michael And Janet

I know what you're thinking. Damn that was fast! After releasing A Brilliant Catastrophe's Beta version less than a month a go, B Slade is coming out with another mixtape, this time in tribute to the Jacksons, specifically Michael and Janet. Dance Floor Arsonist: The Jack5on Magic Mixtape contains vocal homages to MJ that are almost scary in their similarity to the late King Of Pop, as well as covers of Janet classics like "Got Til It's Gone" and "Rhythm Nation." Listen to a few tracks below:

Sneak Peek: Kanye West's "Monster"

This short snippet of Yeezy's video for "Monster" shows Kanye and guest stars Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj and Rick Ross in separate scenes of macabre surrealism. The clip seems to draw on iconic videos like MJ's "Thriller," as well as raiding Marilyn Manson's and Lady Gaga's ("Paparazzi" specifically--peep the girls hanging from the ceiling) closets. The full video should be very interesting. Watch below:

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pretty Lights Releases New Video, Plans New Year's Shows

Derek Vincent Smith, a.k.a Pretty Lights, is ending 2010 with a bang. After recently releasing a new EP, Glowing In The Darkest Night--his third in less than a year--and a new video for "Future Blind," the super producer will cap the year by playing two New Year's Eve shows at Chicago's Congress Theater on December 30th and 31st. Supporting acts include Tobacco, Holy Fuck and Major Lazer.

Pretty Lights' three EPs of beats that mix funk, jazz, soul and hip hop have garnered 1 million downloads from the producer's website, while his elaborate live shows have lead to sold-out shows at Bonnaroo, Rothbury, the 10K  Lakes Festival and other venues in Europe and the U.S. You can download all three Pretty Lights EPs here. Watch the clip for "Future Blind" below:

Artist Profile: Midnight Juggernauts

Midnight Juggernauts seem hell bent on stretching the boundaries of electro-pop to their breaking point. The Australian trio packs their songs with seemingly every sound imaginable. Stacked synths that constantly shift between watery ambiance to frivolous pop to evocative darkness. Drums that draw equally from tribal and drum and bass influences slam alongside blasts of distorted guitar. Layered vocals that transform from smooth melodic harmonies to ominous, operatic bell tones add another element to a sound scape that's simultaneously danceable, psychedelic and not of this world. Listen to a few tracks from The Crystal Axis, the band's current release, below:


Find more artists like MIDNIGHT JUGGERNAUTS at Myspace Music

Find more artists like MIDNIGHT JUGGERNAUTS at Myspace Music

Find more artists like MIDNIGHT JUGGERNAUTS at Myspace Music

Artist Profile: Spirit Kid

Boston-based multi-instrumentalist Emeen Zarookian (a.k.a Spirit Kid), crafts a pure, melodic sound that manages to be sugary instead of saccharine. Check out the 60's pop style of "You Lift Me Up" and "My Imagination," filled with jangly guitars, "la la" hooks and harmonies reminiscent of The Beatles and The Beach Boys. Spirit Kid isn't a one trick though, as The Kinks-inspired "The World Doesn't Stop," and "Flytrap," with its funky riffs, organ, and falsetto "ooh, oohs" prove. Take a listen below:

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Yung Berg: Kanye Stole "Jesus Walks" From Me

 According to Yung Berg, Kanye went jacking for beats.

This definitely falls in the SMH category. In an interview with Mike T The Movie Star, rapper Yung Berg, of chain jacking and "Sexy Lady" fame, claims the Louis Vitton Don stole the beat for his 2004 hit "Jesus Walks" from Berg's demo tape.

"He stole the beat. The "Jesus Walks beat is exactly the way you hear it, or it's amplified to other sounds...for most part it's the same.

Read the rest here.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Remix Of The Week: 112 Ft. Mase and Notorious B.I.G. "Only You"

"I thought I told you we won't stop!" The 96' remix of 112's "Only You," with a hot verses from Biggie and Mase, making his on-record debut, stands out as one of the best cuts of Bad Boy's late 90's domination. Listen below:

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Daft Punk: Tron Legacy Preview

Check out this preview of the soundtrack to Disney's upcoming flick Tron Legacy, provided courtesy of Daft Punk. And true to form, the French house duo manage to create a sound that is slick and organic, danceable and surprisingly dramatic, with moody string arrangements that temporarily slow down the groove. But the sound is still avant garde enough to keep them at the cutting edge of dance music. Take a listen below:

Find more artists like Hollywood Records at Myspace Music

Artist Profile: Abbe May

When it comes to Australia's musical exports, pop divas like Kylie Minogue and Olivia Newton-John come to mind. However a new voice has risen, and its owner, Abbe May, couldn't be further from the world of dance pop. Tracks like "We Had A Real Good Time Togetherrr," and "Hawaiian Disease," full of primal, sexual energy, prove she can go toe to toe with the boys. Meanwhile oddball cuts like the goth-blues of "Jesus Gonna Be Here," and new single "Mammalian Locomotion," with its strange-but-instantly-catchy vocal melody and slow, plodding guitars, reveal Abbe May to a unique presence in the rock world. Listen to a few tracks below:

Find more artists like Abbe May at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Abbe May at Myspace Music

Find more artists like Abbe May at Myspace Music

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

First Listen: Lenny Kravitz

The veteran rocker is currently in the studio working on a new album. Watch a few short clips taken in the recording studio, as well as a full video for the new track "Come And Get It," below:

Lady Gaga Set To Release New Single

Lady Gaga's little monsters will have to wait a few more months for new music. The first single from the pop superstar's new album is set to drop in February 2011, according to fansite The singer described Born This Way "bad kids going to church, having fun on a high level," to site manager Alexander Melchert, and thanked fans for their support in a video post on the site. Watch the short clip below:

Vid Pick: Abbe May "Mammalian Locomotion"

According to Abbe May, the video clip for the Australian rocker's new single is designed to be "a reflection of the contradictory elements of fierceness and subtle femininity found in the song." These different elements take the form of three roller-blading women, while Abbe takes to the streets on a bike. It's pretty obvious who represents the fierceness and who symbolizes subtlety, but I'll let you be the judge.

Artist Profile: MoneyPenny

Electro-pop duo MoneyPenny, a collision to two Chicago nightlife personalities--Chess Hubbard, a.k.a DJ Mother Hubbard and Jessica Gonyea, a.k.a DJ A-Cup--create a sexy, flirty and fun sound that channels rock n' roll aggression and punk's bratty attitude but stays firmly planted in electronica beats.

Since forming in 2008, MoneyPenny have opened for acts like Robyn, The Bravery, The Heavy, Villains and Chromeo. The duo have also released a few tracks that showcase their diversity, like the light-hearted pop of "Destroy" and the dirtier, grimy grooves of the Stephen King-inspired "Christine" and "Say No." A short tour that includes stops in L.A. and Austin starts December 3rd. Take a listen to few tracks and download remixes of "Destroy" below:

Find more artists like MONEYPENNY at Myspace Music

Find more artists like MONEYPENNY at Myspace Music

Find more artists like MONEYPENNY at Myspace Music

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