Music Dump - Jay Z's Pink Floyd Understanding Jens Lekman's Dubstep One Hit Wonder

Music Dump - Jay Z's Pink Floyd Understanding Jens Lekman's Dubstep One Hit Wonder

100 & Single: Three Rules To Define The Term "One-Hit Wonder" In 2012 by Chris Molanphy (Village Voice): If I asked you if The Knack was a one hit wonder, you'd say yes. "My Sharona!" WRONG. They had another single, 'Good Girls Don't', which was a #11 single in the US. But "My Sharona" (or "Jessie's Girl" by Rick Springfield or "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice to name two other not-actually-a-one-hit-wonders) feels like a one hit wonder. Chris Molanphy tries to get to the bottom of this terribly important question: how do we define a one-hit-wonder?

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Beyond Lies The Wub: A History Of Dubstep by Joseph L. Flatley (The Verge): K-Mart commercials now use dubstep to try to appeal to The Kids. That's right, K-Mart. The wub wub has gone mainstream. And Flatley's article authoritatively maps out the history of the genre, from how it emerged out of distinct genres in London, the way that some guy came up with the name a decade ago, and the way that the old afficionados of dubstep derisively call most of the dubstep you've heard names like 'brostep'.

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The House That Hova Built by Zadie Smith (New York Times): Zadie Smith, the British author of White Teeth, is a keen observer of humanity. And she builds a picture of Jay-Z so deftly in this profile/interview, showing the contradictions of a man making a countercultural artform who is worth half a billion dollars.

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Tim Rogers: The M+N Interview by Darren Levin (Mess+Noise): Tim Rogers' new album, Rogers Sings Rogerstein, has an air of mystery about it; Rogers claims to have written the album with someone from Cleveland in the US called Shel Rogerstein. He even gives Mess+Noise Rogerstein's phone number, and they dutifully included audio of Rogerstein's answering message. Of course, nobody seems to have ever heard of Rogerstein in their life. I wonder what the actual quite famous person called Shel Silverstein (who wrote 'A Boy Named Sue') would have thought of the whole charade (AH Cayley's comparison of Rogers to the famously chameleonic Peter Sellers is quite illuminating really). Elsewhere in Levin's interview Rogers is entertaining, worryingly self-deprecatory, and insightful, and totally uninterested in rehashing the glory days of his old band (sadly, it sounds like Hourly Daily isn't getting the 3CD deluxe edition any time soon).

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Jens Lekman Is An Ear by John Taylor (Interview Magazine): The title of the article comes from Lekman saying 'in a world full of mouths, I want to be an ear' to the interviewer. What Lekman is actually saying is that when fans write him letters, he figures they just want to be listened to, that they don't actually want to hear his advice. So he lets them know they've been listened to. Of course, Interview magazine has him mostly being a mouth, which is good, because there's good stories here - Lekman talks about playing in Alaska (they were so excited that somebody was playing music to them!), South Korea (there was a riot, Beatlemania-style), and his centenarian olive-oil eating fans in a small town in Italy.

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How To Really Understand Pink Floyd by Tom Scharpling (BuzzFeed Music): Pink Floyd are the kind of band who've been around so long, and changed so much, that they have different eras of their music have different fans. Like, some people really love the stuff they put out when Syd Barrett was their singer, and hate everything afterwards. Other people love The Wall and Roger Waters' ponderous and not-particularly-tuneful explorations of his psyche in his later solo career. Yet more people love their mid-70s period, the one with Dark Side Of The Moon. Nobody likes Momentary Lapse Of Reason though, apparently. In any case, if you've ever wondered what all the fuss is about, this isn't a bad place to start. (And also, BuzzFeed's new Music section is worth watching - BuzzFeed is a 'cute things and memes' kind of website which has, oddly, successfully branched out into US politics, and they look to be trying new things).

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Honky-Tonk Women: The Female Artists Who Made It Big In Country Music by Sean O'Hagan (The Guardian): Country music is a pretty conservative kind of thing. After all, it's the music of the south of the USA, which is a conservative, religious kind of place. The kind of place that doesn't look terribly kindly upon women who don't want to follow traditional roles, sometimes. So for the first women who've wanted to make it in country music, it was a hard road. Jean Shepard tells O'Hagan that Hank Williams himself told her that there wasn't much room in country music for a woman singer. The genre had been around for a long time, after all, before Patsy Cline became one of the first big female country singers. And it was even harder for Bonnie Guitar, who was for a long time the only female producer and session guitarist. 

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I Told You I Was Freaky by Robert Forster (The Monthly): Improbably, those lovable losers from NZ are big news these days. Jemaine is even the villain in the latest Men In Black movie. And Forster reviews their recent stadium-size live shows here in Australia, marvelling at their comedic musical skills (one of the things that really does set Flight Of The Conchords apart from a lot of other musical comedy is their range - they can write satire, they can write musical parodies, they can write silly, and their music is genuinely well-constructed unlike a lot of musical comedians) and also at the awkwardness of their stage show, which Forster saw as too long and underproduced.

Tim Byron

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