Check Out Tyler, The Creator’s Gorgeous Blue & Pink ‘Tiny Desk’ Performance

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Tyler, the Creator stopped by the NPR “Tiny Desk” recording studio—the latest artist to perform for the ongoing series and the first to perform in the evening.

The rapper, whose album Flower Boy dropped this year, sang “Boredom,” “See You Again,” and “Glitter,” accompanied by two incredible backup singers and a full band. As “Tiny Desk” usually takes place during the day, Tyler also brought his own special lighting, bathing his stage in cool pinks and blues.

“See You Again” was actually originally written by Tyler for Zayn, but, as the rapper explained on Twitter earlier this year, he ended up keeping the song due to scheduling conflicts:

Flower Boy is up for Best Rap Album at the 2018 Grammy Awards. Take a look at the artist’s Tiny Desk performance below:

Kesha & Macklemore Announce Joint North American Tour

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People who graduated in high school in 2012 everywhere are rejoicing: Kesha and Macklemore have announced a co-headlining 2018 North American tour.

The pair revealed their big New Year’s plans via a cute video announcement in which Macklemore decides to give up music to become a roller blading coach, before Kesha gently suggests he tour with her instead. Macklemore and Kesha recently collaborated on the song “Good Old Days,” which appears on the rapper’s new album Gemini. 

The tour comes fresh after the news of Kesha’s first two Grammy nominations, for Best Pop Solo Performance and Best Pop Vocal Album. Her new album, Rainbow, is her first since 2012’s Warrior and her return to music after a terrible legal battle with her producer Dr. Luke.

Take a look at the announcement video below, as well as the upcoming tour dates. Then pre-order tickets for “The Adventures of Kesha & Macklemore Tour” here.

06-06 Phoenix, AZ – Ak-Chin Pavilion
06-08 Inglewood, CA – The Forum
06-09 Las Vegas, NV – Mandalay Bay Events Center
06-12 Chula Vista, CA – Mattress Firm Amphitheatre
06-14 Mountain View, CA – Shorline Amphitheatre
06-16 Salt Lake City, UT – USANA Amphitheatre
06-17 Denver, CO – Pepsi Center
06-20 Dallas, TX – Starplex Pavilion
06-22 Austin, TX – Austin360 Amphitheater
06-23 The Woodlands, TX – The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
06-25 Rogers, AR – Arkansas Music Pavilion
06-26 Kansas City, MO – Sprint Center
07-10 Maryland Heights, MO – Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre
07-11 Cincinnati, OH – Riverbend Music Center
07-13 Nashville, TN – Bridgestone Arena
07-14 Tinley Park, IL – Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre
07-16 Toronto, Ontario – Budweiser Stage
07-18 Clarkston, MI – DTE Energy Music Theatre
07-19 Noblesville, IN – Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center
07-21 Hershey, PA – Hersheypark Stadium
07-22 Darien Center, NY – Darien Lake Amphitheater
07-24 Mansfield, MA – Xfinity Center
07-25 Camden, NJ – BB&T Pavilion
07-27 Holmdel, NJ – PNC Bank Arts Center
07-28 Bristow, VA – Jiffy Lube Live
07-30 Wantagh, NY – Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater
08-01 Charlotte, NC – PNC Music Pavilion Charlotte
08-02 Atlanta, GA – Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood
08-04 Miami, FL – AmericanAirlines Arena
08-05 Tampa, FL – MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre

5 of This Year’s Biggest Golden Globes Snubs

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The Golden Globes nominations have arrived, and overall we’re pretty happy with those honored. Much love was given to Call Me By Your Name, including for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor for Timotheé Chalamet and Armie Hammer, respectively. The Shape of Water sits at the front of the pack with 7 nominations, and Big Little Lies follows with 6, including Best Actress noms for both Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon.

There were, however, several shocking snubs of fan favorite potential contenders, especially suprising since the Golden Globes typically cater more toward public opinion and media buzz than other awards shows. Below, we highlight the five biggest snubs of the season thus far.

The 75th Annual Golden Globes take place on January 7 and are hosted by Seth Meyers.

1. Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird

Seeing as Lady Bird is perhaps ours, and many critics’, favorite film of the year, currently sitting at 99% on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s a true shocker that Gerwig did not receive a highly-deserved Best Director nomination. Sadly, we instead see five men nominated. Hardly anything new in the highly mysoginistic category, but still, we’d thought maybe more progress had been made.

2. Jordan Peele, Get Out

Similarly to Gerwig’s snub, Jordan Peele was also shut out of the Best Director category for Get Out, even though the film is superbly refined in its vision, not to mention a worldwide box office of over $252 million.

3. Tiffany Hadish, Girls Trip 

Tiffany Hadish far and away stole the show in this summer’s mega blockbuster Girls Trip. She even earned Critics’ Choice nominations for Best Supporting Actress and Best Actress in a Comedy for her part as Dina. We expected the Golden Globes to be eager to continue lauding Hadish with praise. But, sadly, it’s not to be.

4. Best Screenplay, Get Out

As a frontrunner nominee for Best Original Screenplay at the Oscars, Get Out has already racked up 9 Best Screenplay nominations, and won the honor just recently at the Gotham Awards in New York City. So why was it shut out of Best Screenplay at the Golden Globes, while the far less-discussed film Molly’s Game was able to secure a spot?

5. Luca Guadagnino, Call Me By Your Name

We hate to complain—Call Me By Your Name is certainly getting its due praise this season. But at the Golden Globes, that praise stopped short of a Best Director nom for the openly gay Guadagnino, instead continuing to champion the long lineage of straight nominees. It’s shocking, really, since perhaps the greatest strength of the film is its direction and stunning visual impact.

alexa BlackBook Interview: Casey Spooner Sings About One-Night Stands and Open Relationships on his New Album

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IN the new year, cult-favorite band Fischerspooner will release Sir, its first album in 10 years. Casey Spooner, the 47-year-old lead singer of the electroclash outfit, is an ongoing force of creative change, using his subversive lyrics and audacious stage performances to challenge social convention.

Tell us about the new record. What inspired you to write it?

I knew very clearly that I wanted to make a record about contemporary homosexuality. At the time, I was in a long-term, open relationship, living this dream come true non-heteronormative life. But through the course of working on the record, my life went through so many crazy, dramatic changes that I could never have anticipated, and they ended up having a huge impact. My relationship unravelled, I lost my home, we had a lot of difficulty releasing the album, trouble with my family and death. So, the record became much more emotional. It’s about fame and pain, adventure and aging, romance and lust — it has a lot going on.

When did Michael Stipe get involved with the project?

I had written eleven songs and called him in to work on the twelfth. Within a couple of hours, he had come up with an amazing idea and completely shifted my perception of how to create musically. After a few months, he started really working on the record with me, dismantling and restructuring everything, and he had a lot of ideas about how he wanted me to sing — less this kind of cool, lower register character that I always played, and way more wild.

What was it like working so closely with another person on Fischerspooner, besides Warren?

Michael really made the songwriting more of a priority than the production. I never set out to be a singer, so it wasn’t something I defined myself by. That gave me a lot of freedom because I felt like I had nothing to lose. But when Michael came in, he really pushed me to develop my voice, and it was a very liberating and encouraging process that really helped me become a better singer. He just created a place where I could take risks and be vulnerable vocally for the first time.

You’ve called this record “your queerest yet.” What does that mean?

While we were working on one of the songs, Warren and I were talking and he wanted me to change the pronouns in the lyrics to make it more universal. I would’ve – and have – done that in the past, but this time, I said no. It occurred to me that when you make something universal, nobody is ever going to assume it’s a queer relationship — they’re always going to assume it’s straight. So, it was kind of a breakthrough for me that the concept ‘universal’ is actually very heteronormative. But it’s almost hard for me to think of making a record any other way. I’m just writing about my experience, singing about one night stands, and different kinds of connections that aren’t boy meets girl and they live happily ever after. More like, boy meets boy, they get married, they get a third boyfriend and have fun.

Did you have any hesitation about making such a personal record?

The thing is, a lot of people don’t want make a so-called gay record, because they feel that it ghetto-izes them, and that’s something I’ve wrestled with. But the reality is, I’ve learned a lot from straight people, so why can’t straight people learn from me? Why can’t they relate to my stories? We’re also living in a post-Trump universe, and I feel like it’s so much more important for us to have aggressively homosexual characters and content in the mainstream right now. There are so many people that are feeling really vulnerable and they need support so they don’t feel not alone, because it feels like the government is working against them. That’s probably the most important part about this record – it’s hopefully going to help other people feel comfortable about themselves in a culture that’s saying it’s okay to be a white supremacist, and to kill people who aren’t straight, white males.

 

Casey Spooner 
(pictured and above) describes his new Fischerspooner record as 
“his queerest yet.”

 

Do you think notions of gender and sexuality have changed in the industry?

What’s happening right now that’s so amazing, is that nothing has to be so clear. Some men are a little bit femme and some women are a little bit butch, some are neither, and they don’t have to go all out one way or the other. There’s a place for everyone, like a garden. There are all different kinds of plants that procreate in different ways and serve different purposes – sexuality functions in the same way.

What was the hardest part of making the album?

The actual recording process was great after Michael got involved. In the beginning, I was feeling a little lost and alone, but when we started working together, everything was fun. But outside of the studio, my whole life was collapsing, and I was clinging to this record as my only outlet. For me, the music was the easy part – it was the living that was hard. I mean, there were days when we were supposed to be recording, but I couldn’t even sing, because I was literally just weeping take after take. After my breakup, I went into my summer of not Eat, Pray, Love but live, tan, fuck.

You were in a really vulnerable space.

For sure. And Michael loved it! Every time we’d take a break, I’d come back to the studio, and he’d ask what happened. My experiences were just going right into the songs.

Is that something you’ve always done?

I always wrote from a similar place, but the editing process was different. And Warren wasn’t allowed to cut any of the vocals. In the past, he would have heavily edited things and pruned the lyrics he connected to. So, everything was a combination of our two perspectives. But these lyrics are from a really personal place, and it’s a more direct line of communication between me and the audience.

What do you want people to take away from Sir?

I want gay men and queer people to feel safe and emotionally connected to each other. Gay men, specifically – there are so many crazy, fucked up things, even as a white gay man, who has the most privilege in the queer realm. Still, gay men are wrestling so much with sex addiction and intimacy, drugs, and body dysmorphia. Those are the things that I’m really trying to talk about and deal with, so I can help people heal.

How do you think you’ve evolved as an artist?

I’m kind of terrified to say it, but I don’t know if I have. My ex-boyfriend actually just sent me a picture of myself from ‘97 – I’m 27-years-old, at a crazy performance in Williamsburg, dressed as a tiger wearing a jockstrap. It’s like, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Literally 20 years later, I’m still in a jockstrap, acting a fool.

 

Photos by Rinaldo Sata

Björk’s Breathtaking ‘Utopia’ Video Has Given Us Vertigo

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Björk’s video for “Utopia,” out today, is as insane and visually gorgeous as you’d expect from the Icelandic musical goddess. It also made me really dizzy and even slightly nauseous from sensory overload, in the best of ways.

It’s for the title track of her new album, and brings her to a fleshy pink, floating oasis, where the she plays a flute and is surrounded by other ethereal flute players. The visuals and audio combined provide something the likes of which has never really been seen before, and which takes a couple of viewings to settle into and to begin to pretend to understand.

“Utopia” follows her videos for “Blissing Me” and “The Gate.” It was directed by Warren Du Preez and Nick Thornton Jones. Take a look below.

 

alexa BlackBook: Style Icon: Edgar Ramirez Fashions a Vivid Portrayal of Legendary Designer Gianni Versace for ‘American Crime Story’

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On the cover: Versace blazer, similar styles $2,650 at Farfetch.com; Turtleneck, $650 at Versace.com

 

A FEW months before fashion designer Gianni Versace was murdered on the steps of his Miami Beach villa by serial killer Andrew Cunanan, then-20-year-old Edgar Ramirez visited his parents in the sun-kissed party city. “If you walked on Ocean Drive, you could feel the vitality and the energy,” the Venezuelan actor tells Alexa of those freewheeling days in 1997. “It was exhilarating, it was exuberant.”

Ramirez, now 40, is revisiting that glamorous — and tragic — time. The actor plays the legendary Italian couturier on FX’s 10-episode The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, premiering on Jan. 17.

 

Shirt, $195 at ThomasPink.com

 

It’s a departure for the square-jawed screen star, who has become a Hollywood go-to for variations on masculine archetypes: a deadbeat ex-husband opposite Jennifer Lawrence in Joy; a CIA operative in Zero Dark Thirty and Panamanian boxing legend Roberto Durán at the center of Hands of Stone, a biopic also starring Robert De Niro and Usher.

While Ramirez transformed himself into fighting shape for Hands of Stone, dieting and training for hours a day in Panama City gyms, he went in the opposite direction for his fashion-designer role. The normally fit leading man packed on 20 pounds, the Italian way — by indulging in endless plates of pasta — and used prosthetics for the first time. Sporting a receding hairline, graying coiffure, three-day stubble and a generous physique, he bears an uncanny resemblance to the late designer.

Cutting the weight is proving less enjoyable. “Now is when the fun part is over,” he says with a slightly gloomy tone in his voice. “Because I gotta lose it.”

 

 

Jacket, $2,895 and pants, $750, 
both at Valentino, 693 Fifth Ave.; 
James Perse T-shirt, $60 at MrPorter.com

 

His preparation for the part also included speaking to close friends of Versace, whose private life stood in stark contrast to the glorious excess of his brand’s image. “[People] remember the lush exuberance of the clothes and the sex appeal and the sexuality and the models and the parties,” Ramirez says. “But on the real, personal side, he was not a party animal. He used to go to bed very early and get up very early as well. It was very interesting to discover that side of him.”

Ramirez gained a newfound respect for the refined artist during his preparation. “He was a very cultivated man. He used to say that in order to be a fashion designer, in order to be an artist in general, you have to be very cultivated, you have to be very well-informed,” he says. “He wanted to be a musician before he became a fashion designer, so he took inspiration from a lot of different sources. It was great for me to try to act for a mind like that.”

It’s not a stretch for Ramirez to embody worldly charm. His mother was an attorney and his father was a military officer, which means he spent much of his childhood traveling the world and speaks five languages fluently. If he takes a journalistic approach to researching his characters, there’s good reason: He studied to be a political reporter at university in Caracas before pursuing his love of the performing arts. In 2003, his matinee-idol good looks helped land him a role in Cosita Rica, a Venezuelan telenovela. His Hollywood breakthrough came with a role in the 2005 action flick, Domino, and since then he has forged a reputation for portraying swaggering macho characters with both intensity and intelligent nuance.

 

Canali blazer, $1,429 at Farfetch.com; 
Sandro turtleneck, $345 at 
Bloomingdale’s, 1000 Third Ave.

 

The opportunity to share an unseen side of Versace is part of what drew him to this new project, in addition to working with American Crime Story executive producer Ryan Murphy.
While there is plenty of romantic passion in American Crime Story, it’s also a familial drama. The central relationship is between Gianni and his sister Donatella, played by a cigarette-smoking Penélope Cruz in tight dresses and a platinum wig. In the 20 years since her brother’s heartbreaking death, Donatella has taken over the brand’s creative direction and built it into a global luxury powerhouse, but here we get a glimpse at their early behind-the-scenes partnership, which could be — shall we say — lively.

Ramirez says that both he and Cruz, who is Spanish, understand the fiery temperament. “We can relate to volatile but strong and beautiful family relationships,” he continues with a laugh. “That’s a world I understand. Like when someone from another culture asks about you and your family, ‘Are you fighting?’ And you’re like, ‘No, this is how we talk!’”

Ramirez treasures the strong bonds he formed on set with his fellow actors. “Penélope and Ricky [Martin, who plays Gianni’s partner Antonio D’Amico] and I became good friends and it was great, there was a lot of compassion for each other,” he says. “It was really beautiful. Penélope is very family-oriented, there was a very great connection between us.”

 

Tallia Orange jacket, $375 at Macys.com; 
Shirt & Cufflinks, $195 & $225 at ThomasPink.com; Pants, $895 at DSquared2, 166 Spring St.; “Papal” derbies, 
$1,395 at ChristianLouboutin.com

 

While Ramirez loved the flashy Versace wardrobe, off-camera he favors low-key, timeless pieces that look stylish, never trendy; so much so that GQ magazine dubbed him “the king of good taste” earlier this year. “I love design in general,” says the star, who cuts a slick figure on the red carpet in narrow suits and classic tuxes. “I love architecture and, of course, fashion. There’s nothing random about how we dress or how we project [ourselves].”

When asked what he does during his time off, Ramirez falters because, well, he can’t remember the last time he had any. But, for an actor, that’s a good thing. “There are no off days,” he says with a laugh. “It’s great to be working and doing what you’re passionate about. I don’t take that for granted at all.” He had just touched down in Los Angeles from Miami, where he presented at the Latin Grammy Awards. The following day, he’ll head to Argentina to film the thriller La Quietud, all while promoting American Crime Story.

On Dec. 22, Netflix fantasy crime drama Bright opens, with Ramirez playing a blue-haired elf, alongside Will Smith’s human LAPD officer and Joel Edgerton’s orc cop. He’s also slated to appear again with Robert De Niro in an as-of-yet untitled flick directed by Jonathan Jakubowicz of Hands of Stone fame.

 

 

Tallia Orange blazer, $375 at Macys; Todd Snyder turtleneck, $278 at Bloomingdale’s, 1000 3rd Ave.; Balmain jeans, $1,290 at Neiman Marcus

 

Suddenly, Ramirez remembers what he likes to do with his free time — although with a schedule so jam-packed, maybe it should be obvious. “When I have a day off, I sleep,” he says. “I love to hibernate.”

Still, he insists that his off-duty time isn’t that different from anyone else’s. “I try to relax. It depends where I am and what activities are available. Exercise, work out, try to catch an art exhibition, whatever is available. Nothing out of the ordinary, honestly,” he says. “What we do is extraordinary, but that doesn’t make you an extraordinary person.”

 

Photos by Williams & Hirakawa, Fashion Editor: Serena French, Stylist: Anahita Moussavian, Grooming: Barbara Guillaume at 
Forward Artists using Oribe, Tailor: Erik Gavrilov for Sew Ponies

alexa BlackBook: Alison Mosshart, Don Lemon, Matthew Modine, Nia Vardalos, Leslie Odom Jr. & More Tell Us Their Christmas Wish Lists

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WISH LIST: ALISON MOSSHART

The musician, artist and sometime-model serves as lead vocalist for indie-rock band the Kills, as well as for Jack White’s supergroup, the Dead Weather.

 

Maria Tash 18-k rose-gold diamond earring, $975 at Net-A-Porter.com

 

“Maria Tash earrings are 
all beautiful, tiny 
and shiny.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: DON LEMON
New York-based journalist Lemon — who’s won both an Emmy and an Edward R. Murrow Award for his reporting — currently anchors the primetime cable news show CNN Tonight.

 

Ali: A Life by Jonathan Eig, $30 at Amazon.com

 

“As a kid, I saw Ali as this iconic figure — this black man who would have people hanging on his every word. 
But I didn’t get just how huge a figure he was until 
I was an adult. Everyone thinks taking a knee is a 
big deal, but think about being Muslim and saying 
you’re not going to fight in a war — jeopardizing 
your career. That took real courage.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: MATTHEW MODINE
“Scientists estimate that by 2050 there will be more tons of plastic in the ocean than fish,” says Modine, who appears on Stranger Things, streaming now on Netflix. “We have to be responsible consumers. Gifts like this will make your friends eco-warriors and demonstrate how you are hip, cool and a part of the solution.”

 

Bee’s Wrap (three pack), $20 at PatagoniaProvisions.com

 

“These food wraps are the perfect solution for eliminating plastic wrap. The anti-bacterial properties of the beeswax and jojoba oil help to keep food fresh and allow you to use the wrap again and again.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: NIA VARDALOS
Vardalos is now working on a play called Tiny Beautiful Things in New York. “As holiday shopping season approaches, I’ve eyeballed many corneapopping tiny beautiful things,” she says. “While many of us can’t exactly splurge on fanciful items, we can always drop loud and obvious hints!”

 

“Royal Strass” Swarovski-crystal adorned pumps, $3,995 at ChristianLouboutin.com

 

“If you’re like me and never want disco to die, then we can wear these redbottomed glittery shoes to every office meeting, to every rave and then to church the next day.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: LESLIE ODOM JR.

Odom Jr., who won the Best Actor Tony for his scene-stealing performance as Aaron Burr in Broadway’s Hamilton, now appears on the big screen in Murder on the Orient Express.

 

Get Out movie poster, $20 at 
Amazon.com

 

“I want a limited-edition Get Out poster framed — and signed by Jordan Peele, please — for my office. I haven’t gone to the theater to see a movie three times in 
… ever. I was entertained and inspired more than I can say. “

 

 

 

WISH LIST: AERIN LAUDER
Lauder is the image director for her family’s Estée Lauder brand, while also running her own popular beauty and home lifestyle company, AERIN.

 

Aspen Style, 
$85 at Assouline.com

 

“This book is high on my wish list. Not only because Aspen is such a special place to me, but also because the cover is so beautiful and will look amazing on any coffee table.”

 

 

 

WISH LIST: ELIZA COUPE
Actress Eliza Coupe, best known for her roles on Happy Endings, Scrubs and The Mindy Project, just returned to screens on the new Hulu series Future Man, directed by Seth Rogen.

 

Luxe gym bag, 
$165 at SweatyBetty.com

 

“I work out like a maniac and go through gym clothes and gym bags like crazy — Sweaty Betty makes the best workout gear!”

 

Illustrations by John Kenzie

Blondie and Joan Jett Team Up For Politically-Charged ‘Doom Or Destiny’ Video

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Today Blondie have released the music video for “Doom Or Destiny,” the opening track off of their new album Pollinator. The video casts Debbie Harry and special guest Joan Jett as news anchors in a wild alternate reality, where the President is a saggy puppet and the weather seems to indicate the imminent apocalypse. Or wait, that might actually just be our reality?

It’s a highly satirical commentary on the current political, social, and environmental turmoil, which seems to be reaching a breaking point. The song is written by Harry and Blondie’s Chris Stein, and the video directed by longtime collaborator Rob Roth.

Debbie says of the video:

“We wanted to comment on the bizarre state of media and news in the current political ‘idiocracy’ we are watching play out in real time and create our own news channel that dealt with current issues such as the environmental collapse, fossil fuels, bee population decline, global warming, sexism, patriarchy, Trump and Russia, feminism, consumerism, the marketing of war and more.”

The video is aware and funny, only heightened by the appearance of Jett. She explained in a statement: “Blondie – Debbie, Chris, Clem and everybody – have been my friends for more decades than I care to admit. They have their own style and were pioneers of the modern age of punk and rock. I am so proud to have been invited to contribute to ‘Doom or Destiny,’ I love the music and I love the message.”

Take a look below.

 

Watch The xx’s New Behind-the-Scenes Short Film About Their Berlin Lollapalooza Show

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The xx have released a new short film, titled We See You – Berlin, featuring backstage, behind-the-scenes moments with the band as well as interview footage with their most hardcore German fans.

It’s the first in a series of new clips that will offer insider glimpses into what it’s like being The xx. The film is directed by Sylvie Weber and shows the band as they prepare for their Lollapalooza Berlin concert this past September.

 

 

Related | The xx Collaborates with Raf Simons on ‘I Dare You’ Video

The xx have been on a world tour for nearly a year supporting their current studio album I See You. Revisit their Saturday Night Live performance of the album’s lead single, “On Hold,” below.