Another week, and The Great Gatsby hype snowball rolls faster and gains more circumference. And, following the releases of new jams from the packed, Jay-Z-helmed soundtrack including Florence + The Machine’s big and loud "Over the Love," we’ve got another new offering this week.
This time, the new track comes from oh-so-relaxing British Medical Association-approved sleep aids The xx. It’s called “Together,” and it’s very gentle and slow-burning and nice, which are all adjectives one could use to describe a lot of songs by The xx.
The only thing is that after trailers featuring the bumping “No Church in the Wild” and the weird, yowling Filter cover of “Happy Together,” as well as bolder soundtrack offerings, and given the general over-the-top nature of Gatsby himself, Baz Luhrmann and, from first impressions, this movie, the track almost seems too subtle for something so totally, well, unsubtle. Listen below.
Even if Baz Luhrmann’s glittering, crazy-hyped adaptation of The Great Gatsby turns out to be too Baz Luhrmann to properly enjoy or fail to meet expectations, at least the Jay-Z-produced soundtrack has a few memorable gems to make it all worth the while. The latest track to drop from the Gatsby soundtrack is a powerful ballad from belter Florence Welch and her Machine, written from the perspective of or inspired by Daisy Buchanan, who doesn’t usually get to say enough in Gatsby interpretations, so good on Florence.
"Over the Love" combines the swells, flourishes and bring-on-the-pathos moments of some of the more memorable selections of the Florence + the Machine catalogue with pretty astute references to the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel itself. Daisy’s yellow dress is mentioned, and the refrain of "there’s a green light in my eyes" recalls the novel’s iconic closing paragraph. So, clearly, the band did their homework. The chorus is bigger than the disconnect between Jay Gatsby’s real and imagined lives. Listen to a stream of "Over the Love" over at GQ.
That one-year hiatus that Florence Welch is taking a break from touring? Performing Gimme Shelter onstage with the Rolling Stones on Thursday night in London doesn’t count.
The Florence + The Machine singer, who announced earlier this month that she would be taking time off to write a musical with a friend (… just go with it, she’s rich), joined Mick, Keith and the others for one of the concerts for the band’s 50th anniversary.
You can watch the performance — which kind of looked like a really awkward dance-off between two drunk relatives at a family reunion — below:
Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.
The dog days are over … or at least on hiatus. Florence Welch from the band Florence + The Machine is taking time off from music for an indeterminate amount of time to write a musical.
The 26-year-old songstress told London’s Evening Standard that she needs a break from touring and is looking to settle down — at least briefly — while writing a musical with one of her best friends, Sophie Hart-Walsh, a costume designer on Prince Of Persia and Pirates Of The Carribbean: On Stranger Tides. Welch has been on her self-imposed one-year break since August, according to NME.
"I’ve been on tour since I was 21. I need a break and to have the chance to do normal things, like go to the supermarket and hang out with my friends," Welch said. "I’ve only just moved out of my mum’s house, so I’d like to settle into my new place and start getting inspired again. If I started writing songs now, all they’d be about is tour buses and hotel rooms."
What could a Florence Welch musical possibly be about? Who knows, but there will probably be excellent costumes and makeup.
Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.
Famed fashion photographer David LaChapelle does more than snap pictures for advertising campaigns and pal around with the world’s most glamorous trans woman. LaChapelle has a very solid resume as a music video director.
The latest example of LaChapelle’s work is the just-released video for Florence and the Machine’s “Spectrum,” a sexy, dramatic, sparkly take on the powerful song.
But it’s been a long road getting there. From early ‘90s videos for artists like Penny Ford (we didn’t know either) through long-lasting collaborations with icons like Elton John and Christina Aguilera, LaChapelle has spent years making music videos—and some of them are pretty great. Here’s a look back at five favorites.
Amy Winehouse – "Tears Dry On Their Own"
Gwen Stefani feat. Eve – "Rich Girl"
Macy Gray – "She Ain’t Right For You"
The Vines – "Outtathaway"
The Dandy Warhols – "Not If You Were the Last Junkie on Earth"
It’s hard not to fall for Blood Orange, former Lightspeed Champion mastermind Dev Hynes’ R&B-tinged latest project. Indeed, in-the-know indie types have been rocking his debut, Coastal Grooves, since it dropped last summer.
Today Hynes released not one but three new treats for fans, including a new video for the Coastal Grooves track “I’m Sorry We Lied,” a remix of “Never Let Me Go” for his current Australian tour mates Florence and the Machine (listen here) and a remix of “Blue Jeans,” a song by a woman we once knew named Lana Del Rey (listen here)
Check out all three and, if you don’t have one already, develop a taste for Blood Orange.
“We never really do acoustic or unplugged things,” says Bethany Cosentino, the mastermind behind Best Coast. So it’s all the most exciting that an acoustic clip of the band, which just released its sophomore album, The Only Place, has surfaced.
Part of a Rhapsody session that included the songs “How They Want Me To Be” and “Last Year,” the just-released “No One Like You” video shows Cosentino and musical partner Bobb Bruno playing the heartbreaker of a tune outside of a park and completely acoustic, but without losing any of the intensity of the album version.
It’s not the first time a band has surprised us with an unplugged session, however. Here are some of our all-time favorites.
For the past four decades, on every New Year’s Eve, Dick Clark has emerged from his bioform preservation chamber at the center of the Earth to host ABC’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. The program is a cultural mainstay, and must-see TV for shut-ins and people in hospitals recovering from failed holiday suicide attempts. Entertainment Weekly got their hands on this year’s list of performers, and we’re starting to think ABC is taking liberties with the term “Rockin’.”
Performing at the Times Square studio before and after the ball drops will be Florence + the Machine, Nicki Minaj, LMFAO, The Band Perry, blink-182, OneRepublic, Gym Class Heroes, Taio Cruz, Will.i.am and Christina Perri. Sure, Nicki Minaj is cool, and Florence + the Machine are the best band on Anthropologie’s store-wide soundtrack, but the rest is a hodgepodge of crap, ‘90s throwback pop-punk, and more crap.
Ryan Seacrest, Jenny McCarthy, and Fergie will be co-hosting. Happy New Year, we guess?
Florence and the Machine, Ceremonials(Island Records) That Florence Welch nominally aligned herself with the machine makes good sense. Since the 2009 release of her chart-topping debut, Lungs, the 25-year-old English singer has transformed into something of a juggernaut, steamrolling through glossy editorials, awards ceremonies, and multicontinental tours. On her latest effort, produced by Paul Epworth—fresh from Adele’s 21—Welch swaps her pre-Raphaelite look for the harder-edged Modernism of Tamara Lempicka (don’t worry, she’s still a redhead). Recorded at Abbey Road Studios, Ceremonials trades in big themes—no less than love and death, guilt and violence—without seeming grandiose, and the result is every bit as rousing as Lungs. On single “Shake It Out,” a return to form is a step forward for Welch. –Megan Conway
David Lynch, Crazy Clown Time(Sunday Best Recordings) For fans, David Lynch’s break from filmmaking has been disconcerting. But it’s a comfort to know the enigmatic and fundamentally unsettling nature of his work is still alive, even if it arrives in the form of his new album, Crazy Clown Time. Though described by the director as “blues-inspired but not blues,” the music faithfully reflects that most American of genres. You can almost see the radiating blue light of Mulholland Drive’s Club Silencio (now a real club in Paris, backed by Lynch). The 14-song record seduces you into a haunted dream world, and if that sounds familiar, it’s because the music shares many elements with Lynch’s past collaborations with Angelo Badalamenti. “Strange and Unproductive Thinking” is essentially a spoken-word manifesto on how dental health effects mental health, while the title track approximates a psychosexual teen nightmare à la pre-elastic Laura Palmer. If you’re truly Lynch-obsessed, you’ll revel in the eccentricities, but if you’re just tuning in for the hype, you might need a lobotomy afterwards. —Hillary Weston
Wim, Wim(Modular Records) Aussie quintet WIM arrives in the States via Modular Records, home to a bevy of successful, eccentric musicians, including Architecture in Helsinki, Ladyhawke, the Rapture, and Cut Copy. But the group’s emotive, piano-based melodies and strong vocal harmonies are a strange fit for the label’s aesthetic. Their sound builds methodically and at times a little too conventionally, which can make their self-titled album a bit pedestrian. “John,” the strongest track, breaks away from the pack with its beautiful accordion introduction and innovative use of vocals at the bridge. Despite the lukewarm debut, though, WIM has promise, and with Modular backing them, they’re sure to succeed in this hemisphere.—Dana Drori
Korallreven, An Album by Korallreven(Acéphale Records) The debut effort from Swedish trance pop artists Daniel Tjäder (also of the Radio Dept.) and Marcus Joons, known collectively as Korallreven, follows closely on the heels of their ambitious August mix, A Dream Within a Dream. “As Young as Yesterday” sets an ambient tone for the 10 tracks, with breathy vocals from Taken by Trees singer Victoria Bergsman (who appears twice on the album) layered over a hypnotic medley of 808s and acoustic guitar. The result is as a crisp as autumn in Stockholm, punctuated by sudden bursts from electronic synths and drums to kick up the groove. —Nadeska Alexis
Carter Tanton, Freeclouds(Western Vinyl) The name may not ring a bell, but odds are good you’re familiar with Carter Tanton’s work: the New York-based musician used to front the band Tulsa, and his captivating vocal skills were showcased on the group’s much-heralded, My Morning Jacket–like 2007 EP I Was Submerged. Now a member of indie-rock outfit the Lower Dens, the singer-songwriter still managed to carve out some time to record and release his solo debut, Freeclouds. A number of the songs—not to mention the title—were inspired by David Bowie’s 1969 “Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud.” Tanton skillfully weaves his own bittersweet tales—all steeped in nostalgic Americana—over eclectic samples and twanging guitar chords. —NA
Atlas Sound, Parallax(4AD) Much like the albums that preceded it, Bradford Cox’s third solo effort, Parallax, features the Deerhunter frontman’s soothing and experimental sounds, but the LP is surprisingly poppy and uplifting, too. Traces of catchy rock songs can be found on tracks like “The Shakes” and “Te Amo.” Even melancholy terrain like “My Angel is Broken” is set against upbeat guitar riffs. Cox’s lyrics take center stage here, often repeating in succession to create rhythms that all but hypnotize the listener. The elegiac “Terra Incognita” and the folksy, haunting “Flagstaff” (which evolves into an experiment in lo-fi soundwaves) represent the album’s rare dark moments, but Cox raises the tempo for “Nightworks,” ending with an optimistic bang. —DD
Noel Gallagher, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds(Sour Mash/Mercury Records) More than a decade ago, a then fresh-faced Pete Doherty called Oasis’ Liam Gallagher “a town crier” and his brother, Noel, “a poet.” On High Flying Birds, Noel’s first full-length solo effort, the British rocker puts the full range of his rhapsodic talent on display—sans heavy guitars. Free from the confines of the band, he ventures into new territory while holding fast to his poetry. Instruments vary from song to song, shifting from moody minor keys to brassy oomph. The big band sound on “The Death of You and Me” is a throwback to ’70s Kinks. —HW