THE BLOG

29
Feb

Crystal Castles to release new album this Spring

Crystal Castles have announced that their new album will be released later this year.

It will be their first LP following singer Alice Glass’ departure over a year ago, with Ethan Kath keeping his promise to unveil new material without her, Pitchfork reports.

Kath announced today (February 29) that fans can expect the follow-up to 2012’s (iii) will arrive this Spring.

The as-yet-untitled LP will be Crystal Castles’ fourth release overall but the first featuring Glass’ replacement Edith Frances.

Dan Dennison/NME

Kath will serve as main songwriter and producer, with the new record set to include the songs ‘Frail’ and ‘Decide’, both of which were released in 2015.

Following their album announcement, the band has also confirmed a string of North American festival dates, including two shows at SXSW. See below.

03-11 New Orleans, LA – Buku Music + Arts Project
03-12 Phoenix, AZ – VIVA PHX
03-13 Santa Ana, CA – Burgerama – The Observatory OC
03-16 Austin, TX – Scoot Inn (SXSW)
03-17 Austin, TX – Stubb’s (SXSW)
03-19 Miami, FL – Ultra Music Festival
04-02 Athens, GA – Slingshot Festival, Georgia Theatre
06-12 Chicago, IL – Spring Awakening
07-22 Seattle, WA – Capitol Hill Block Party
08-05 Castellon, Spain – Arenal Sound Festival
08-26 Reading, England – Reading & Leeds Festival
08-27 Leeds, England – Reading & Leeds Festival

The news comes after Crystal Castles played their first UK live dates since Glass left, with the band performing at the NME Awards Shows 2016 with Austin, Texas earlier this month.

Crystal Castles formed in Toronto in 2004 and went on to release three studio LPs – 2008’s ‘(i)’, 2010’s ‘(ii) and 2012’s ‘(iii)’. During their career, the band worked with Cure frontman Robert Smith on 2010 single ‘Not In Love’ and also took part in the NME Awards Tour in 2011 alongside Magnetic Man, The Vaccines and Everything Everything.

Glass’ last show as part of the duo was on October 4, 2013 in Mexico.

RIP Crystal Castles: The Duo’s Deranged Career In 15 Thrilling Photos

Crystal Castles to release new album this Spring

29
Feb

Watch a teaser for Iron Maiden's new 'Legacy of the Beast' computer game

Iron Maiden have released a trailer for their upcoming video game, ‘Legacy of the Beast’.

The heavy metal titans have released a cinematic trailer for the forthcoming computer game, although no official release date has been released to accompany the video.

The new interactive game will be release on Android and iOS as an app. In the trailer – which you can view below – Maiden’s long running mascot, Eddie, takes battle with the devil, depicting the classic Iron Maiden artwork of 1982’s classic ‘Run to The Hills’.

According to Team Rock, ‘Legacy Of The Beast’ is being developed by Vancouver-based Roadhouse Interactive. They have been working with Maiden’s management firm Phantom Music Management and have been given access to the band’s back catalogue. “As a lifelong fan, I have always thought that Maiden’s music, lyrics and cast of characters would provide the perfect basis for a deep RPG experience” says Roadhouse CEO James Hursthouse said:

“With this game we’re creating an outstanding RPG that will appeal to all mobile gamers, including those discovering Maiden for the first time” he continued, explaining the game’s potential reach.

Read more: Iron Maiden confirmed as 2016 Download Festival headliner

The news follows recent announcement that the band have undertaken their latest ‘Book of Souls’ World Tour, which next lands in Mexico on March 1. Iron Maiden kicked off their 2016 ‘Book of Souls’ world tour on February 24, with brand new videos of their opening show shared online.

The band took to the stage in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, last night for the opening show of their latest world tour. In the show – which contained a raft of classic tracks – they took to the stage with a special intro video sequence which you can watch below.

According to Blabbermouth, Maiden – fronted by vocalist Bruce Dickinson – rattled through classic cuts such as ‘The Number of The Beast’, ‘Fear of The Dark’ and ‘Hallowed Be Thy Name’. You can watch 4 out of the fourteen tracks played in the YouTube players below.

Read more: Iron Maiden only UK show for 2016 confirmed as Download Festival headliner

Fans gathered at Cardiff Airport to watch Iron Maiden depart on The Book of Souls tour on ‘Ed Force One’, their custom-decorated Boeing 747 on February 19

The band’s world tour plane is captained by frontman Bruce Dickinson, who is a passionate and highly qualified pilot as well as fronting the metal legends. The band named ‘Ed Force One’ after their zombie mascot Eddie, who features on the plane’s tail design.

Iron Maiden live-tweeted the departure of the Boeing with both a Periscope video and a number of images posted to their social media account, as they left for Fort Lauderdale in Florida.

Here are a some of the tweets:

We're getting ready for take-off on #EdForceOne in about an hour. Who's ready to see her fly? pic.twitter.com/bQWM34FMWK— Iron Maiden (@IronMaiden) February 19, 2016

✈️ @IronMaiden and #EdForceOne are on their way to @FLLFlyer to begin their tour. Track all flights with #ABD666. pic.twitter.com/34G6ZHRUPd— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) February 19, 2016

Get ready to wave! @IronMaiden we're getting close to departure time #EdForceOne pic.twitter.com/bbZ1ClPCph— Cardiff Airport (@Cardiff_Airport) February 19, 2016

Dickinson spoke of the upgrade to a new, larger 747, saying: “The greatest benefit of traveling in a 747 is that because of its colossal size and freight capacity we can carry our stage production and all our stage equipment and desks in the cargo hold without having to make any of the immense structural modifications needed to do this on the previous 757, the extent of which fans will have noted on the Flight 666 DVD.”

Dickinson recovered from throat cancer last year, with bassist Steve Harris speaking about how the singer was on top form during the recording of ‘The Book of Souls’, despite having cancer during the recording:

Harris says “there was no inkling of it [the cancer]” while the band made ‘The Book Of Souls’. “He’d finished all his vocal bits completely anyway and there were some other bits and pieces we were doing. Really, we didn’t know anything – he didn’t show any signs at all.”

Dickinson plans to release a memoir in 2017, following the band’s return from the 35 date world tour.

Watch a teaser for Iron Maiden's new 'Legacy of the Beast' computer game

29
Feb

Asking Alexandria, Sleeping with Sirens and more added to Reading and Leeds 2016 Line-up

Asking Alexandria, Sleeping with Sirens and Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes were among the ten new line-up announcements for Reading and Leeds 2016.

Radio 1 Rock Show presenter Daniel P Carter announced the additions to the line-up on his show last night (February 28) at 8pm.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes and Sleeping with Sirens will join headliners Foals, Disclosure and Red Hot Chilli Peppers on the main stage over the festival weekend.

Meanwhile bands set to play the Pit Stage include Dillinger Escape Plan, Asking Alexandria, Fearless Vampire Killers, Creeper, Citizen, Wakrat, Dead! and Kvelertak.

These additions will also be joined by Eagles of Death Metal, Slaves, Twenty One Pilots and Parkway Drive over the August Bank Holiday weekend (August 26-28).

Newly announced additions:

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes
Asking Alexandria
Sleeping with Sirens
Dillinger Escape Plan
FVK – Fearless Vampire Killers
Creeper
Citizen
Wakrat
Dead!
Kvelertak

Previously announced:

Red Hot Chili Peppers
The 1975
Courteeners
Boy Better Know
Twenty One Pilots
Eagles Of Death Metal
Slaves
Hinds
Rat Boy
DJ EZ
Foals
Disclosure
Jack Ü
Imagine Dragons
Two Door Cinema Club
Fetty Wap
Crystal Castles
Parkway Drive
Nothing But Thieves
The Internet
Oliver Heldens
Hannah Wants
Kurupt FM Presents: Champagne Steam Rooms
CassetteBoy vs DJ Rubbish

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes have recently cancelled their February/March European tour due their frontman falling ill, with the band tweeting:

“If you know Frank, you’ll know he is more bummed than anyone. Go wish him a speedy recovery so we can hit the rest of this tour! ”

Reading and Leeds 2016 co-headliners, Foals, previously about their line-up slot: “We’re absolutely buzzing to be headlining Reading & Leeds this year. It’s a dream come true. We’ve worked our way up on our own terms & to be given the chance to headline one of world’s most iconic festivals is a huge achievement for us & hopefully a sign for all bands, that, if you stick to your guns & focus on what matters, you’ll get there & smash it. Onwards & upwards friends. Long live the guitar band.”

Asking Alexandria, Sleeping with Sirens and more added to Reading and Leeds 2016 Line-up

29
Feb

Kanye West begins work on 'Turbo Grafx 16' and shares studio image on Instagram

Kanye West has today revealed that work on his next studio album, ‘Turbo Grafx 16’, has officially begun.

West’s friend, Ibn Jasper, uploaded a picture of the album’s studio sessions on Sunday (February 28), which showed West seemingly collaborating and laying down tracks with Mike Dean and Plain Pat, as well as artist Kid Cudi. West release The Life of Pablo, his seventh studio album earlier this month (February 2015).

“TURBO GRAFX 16 day 1#PABLo #MikeDean #CUDi #PlainPat,” read the caption. View the Instagram post below.

TURBO GRAFX 16 day 1 #PABLo #MikeDean #CUDi #PlainPat A photo posted by @ibnjasper on Feb 29, 2016 at 1:34am PST

According to Billboard, West also revealed that he’s got other tracks with Drake, Future and Young Thug in the stash. He also previewed the Jay Z-sampling track ‘Closest Thing To Einstein’ at a VIP party in Los Angeles’ 1OAK club.

Over the weekend, Kanye West revealed the title for his next album (27 February), which he claims is going to drop later this summer.

Taking to Twitter, the rapper revealed the “nerdy” album title is a homage to his favourite games console from when he was a kid.

My next album is titled "Turbo Grafx 16" as of now…— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) 27 February 2016

If I'm not at the show next year then there is no show.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) 24 February 2016

Ye originally announced the news of his next album in the middle of a long Twitter rant about the Grammys.

New album coming this summer— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) 24 February 2016

You might remember that ‘Life Of Pablo’, which Kanye released earlier this month, went through more than a few different titles, including ‘Waves’, ‘Swish’ and ‘So Help Me God’, so there’s no telling how long this one could stick around for.

Kanye’s current album has only been released on Tidal and hasn’t received an official chart position, as the streaming service doesn’t want to release figures.

Kanye West begins work on 'Turbo Grafx 16' and shares studio image on Instagram

29
Feb

Miles Kane's former band The Little Flames to release 'lost' album

Miles Kane’s former band The Little Flames are set to release a ‘lost’ album later this week.

According to Live 4 Ever, the Liverpool-based group will release ‘The Day Is Not Today’ on Friday (March 4) as part of a series of reissues from the Deltasonic label.

It will also be available as limited edition coloured vinyl on Record Store Day on Saturday, April 16.

Speaking of the LP, Kane says: “I’m excited to finally be able to drop the needle in this particular groove. I had a lot of good times with The Flames and I have very fond memories of making this record.

Press

“Every time I listen to these songs I think of Alan Wills and I’m forever grateful for the opportunity he and Joe Fearon gave me. I’m delighted that everyone is able to now hear what we collectively created.”

Kane and Co recorded ‘The Day Is Not Today’ with producer Tore Johansson in Sweden, but a release date was never set thanks to the band’s split after mastering sessions in 2007.

Meanwhile, Kane recently revealed during a joint interview with his The Last Shadow Puppets bandmate Alex Turner Q why he decided against joining the Arctic Monkeys ten years ago.

Asked whether Kane ever came close to joining the Monkeys when the Sheffield rockers replaced former bassist Andy Nicholson in 2006, Turner replied: “Well… no. I think because that was when [Kane] just started [short-lived band] The Rascals. That was just all happening as well”.

Zackery Michael/Press

Kane attributed his decision to never join Turner’s band as his desire to be in the lime light. He is quoted as saying: “I really wanted to be a frontman at that time. I hadn’t been a frontman. I had a hard-on for that.”

The Last Shadow Puppets recently announced details of their second album ‘Everything You’ve Come To Expect’, which will be released on April 1.

Miles Kane's former band The Little Flames to release 'lost' album

29
Feb

Grime rapper Skepta helped build a children's playground in a Nigerian village

UK grime artist Skepta has recently revealed how he helped to build and set up a children’s play area in a Nigerian village it was reported today (February 29).

The Boy Better Know rapper – who is born to Nigerian parents – has been helping to set up the children’s play area and has unveiled pictures via his Instagram page.

According to Noisey, Skepta – real name Joseph Adenuga – posted the photos via his instagram account with the message: “I want to give them that house in Nigeria,” he says, talking about his parents (his mother officially opened the playground. “Finished, done, built. For them to look back on this and say, ‘You know what? That’s what we went to England for.” You can view the pictures below.

Me and my Dad been talking about making a place for the children to play in his village in Nigeria. He sent me these pics and my heart is smiling, I told him to wait for me to come and add the finishing touches but he wanted my Mum to open it before she flew to London tomorrow haha, sweet boy ting. Safe journey Mum. Love A photo posted by SKEPTA (@skeptagram) on Feb 28, 2016 at 1:06pm PST

The Queen, Mrs Adenuga opening the playground – Ijebu Ode, Nigeria. February 27th 2016. A photo posted by SKEPTA (@skeptagram) on Feb 28, 2016 at 1:11pm PST

Gonna keep developing this playground and hope we inspire kids to get into activities and maybe find talents they never knew they had. More life A photo posted by SKEPTA (@skeptagram) on Feb 28, 2016 at 1:15pm PST

“Me and my Dad been talking about making a place for the children to play in his village in Nigeria,” he also wrote on Instagram. “He sent me these pics and my heart is smiling, I told him to wait for me to come and add the finishing touches but he wanted my Mum to open it before she flew to London tomorrow haha, sweet boy ting.”

Meanwhile, Skepta joined forces with surprise guest Drake to round off a Section Boyz gig last week after the 2016 Brit Awards ceremony on Wednesday evening (February 24).

Earlier in the night, the Toronto rapper had joined Rihanna on stage at the Brit Awards to perform her single ‘Work’ with her.

The Fader reports that he headed straight from the O2 Arena, where the awards ceremony was being held, to Village Underground in Shoreditch, where Section Boyz were headlining.

My Brothers @Skepta @Drake Just Came And Locked Off The #Sectionedtour To Much Love For The Ovo BBk Family — 6/6 SECTiON BOYZ (@SectionBoyz_) February 25, 2016

The south London rap crew performed Drake’s track ‘Jumpman’ with the rapper and Skepta to a screaming crowd at the 1,000 capacity venue. You can watch footage of the performance below.

Twitter users are also suggesting that Drake has signed with Skepta’s collective Boy Better Know. Lady Leshurr tweeted: “Drake is signed to BBK. The music game has changed differently. Big up Skepta #KING”.

Drake is signed to BBK.The Music game has changed differently. Big up Skepta #KING— #QUEENOFTHESCENETOUR (@LadyLeshurr) February 24, 2016

BBC 1Xtra DJ Sian Anderson also wrote: “skepta signed drake to bbk?! i ammmm screammmming ahahahujjdfh what a guy!”

skepta signed drake to bbk?! i ammmm screammmming ahahahujjdfh what a guy!— Andie. (@SianAnderson) February 24, 2016

My ones. #OVO #Section A photo posted by SKEPTA (@skeptagram) on Feb 24, 2016 at 3:09pm PST

Grime rapper Skepta helped build a children's playground in a Nigerian village

29
Feb

Alleged new Frank Ocean music leaks online after 'top secret listening party'

New music has apparently leaked online from OFWGKTA member and soul singer Frank Ocean, it has emerged today (February 29).

Ocean – who released album ‘Channel Orange’ to critical acclaim in 2012 and picked up a Grammy award in the process – has reportedly held a secret listening party on Sunday night premièring new music, with as yet untitled snippets being uploaded to Soundcloud.

According to Fuse, the ‘Thinkin’ About You’ singer may have hosted a top secret VIP listening on Sunday night. The tunes were uploaded by a photographer to Soundcloud but have since been deleted.

Getty

The photographer captioned clips with “very very secret frank ocean listening party” and “#FRANKOCEAN NEW ALBUM SOUNDING ANGELIC AS FUCK” but video footage has been released with what sounds like Ocean’s vocals in the background.

You can watch the video posted by the mystery user here.

In April 2015, Ocean posted a picture to his Tumblr, teasing what could have been a possible album release. “I got two versions. I got twoooo versions #ISSUE1 #ALBUM3 #JULY2015 #BOYSDONTCRY,” wrote Ocean, who sat with a stack of magazines titled Boys Don’t Cry in the picture, which you can view here.

Ocean’s management are yet to confirm the leaked music (19.00 GMT, February 29)

Alleged new Frank Ocean music leaks online after 'top secret listening party'

29
Feb

Cream drummer Ginger Baker cancels tour dates due to 'serious heart problems'

Cream drummer Ginger Baker has scrapped all of his upcoming tour dates after being diagnosed with “serious heart problems”.

Baker confirmed the news on his official blog in a post titled ‘Ginger is shocked by the news of his health’, writing: “Just seen doctor… big shock… no more gigs for this old drummer… everything is off… of all things I never thought it would be my heart…”

His team later issued an important announcement via Facebook, stating: “To all fans; it is with great sadness that we announce the cancellation of all shows. Ginger’s doctor’s have insisted that he have complete rest due to diagnosis of serious heart problems.

“We hope you will all join with his family in wishing him well. God bless Ginger Baker.”

Press

Back in 2013, Baker revealed during an interview with Rolling Stone that his health was “not good”, adding: “It’s troubling. At the end of the gig I’m absolutely exhausted.

“I’ve got degenerative osteoarthritis, which is extremely painful and I’m on a regiment with a health service pain management control. Apart from that I’ve got COPD from smoking.”

Fans on Facebook went on to express their concern over his smoking, with his team reassuring his followers that Baker “gave up smoking months ago”.

Back in October, Baker performed as part of a tribute to mark the one-year anniversary of Cream bassist Jack Bruce’s death.

Cream drummer Ginger Baker cancels tour dates due to 'serious heart problems'

29
Feb

Noel Gallagher to perform at Blackpool seaside this summer

Noel Gallagher will play Lytham Festival this summer.

The week-long event takes place on the Flyde Coast from August 1-7, with the former Oasis member playing Festival Arena on Lytham Green on Thursday, August 4. Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday (March 4). It’s the first time Gallagher has played on the coast since Oasis performed in Blackpool in October 1995.

Festival director Peter Taylor said of the news: “We are absolutely delighted to announce that Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds are to headline the Thursday night at Lytham Festival 2016.”

“Noel is without question a British music legend and cultural icon who has written some of the biggest and best anthems of the last 30 years,” he continued.

NME

Gallagher will play an array of festivals dates this summer, including Wales’ Festival No. 6 and Kendal Calling.

Noel Gallagher previously shared his thoughts on playing festival shows, saying: “Just get up there and give it 75%! One always has to save some for the after show you see!”

Last year, Noel Gallagher said he’d be interested in making an album with Ashcroft.

Asked by NME whether he would work with Gallagher, Ashcroft recently replied: “It’s a great compliment for Noel to say something like that, and in the future who knows what might happen. I wish things like this would’ve happened years ago.”

Noel Gallagher to perform at Blackpool seaside this summer

29
Feb

The 1975 on course for second chart-topping album

The 1975 look set to claim the top spot on this week’s Official Albums Chart with their latest collection, ‘I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It’.

According to the Official Charts Company, the Matthew Healy-fronted band is currently outselling the rest of the Top Three combined, putting it in a strong position to keep the top spot until Friday’s Official Chart reveal.

If they secure it, it’ll be their second Number One album, following their self-titled debut in 2013.

Press
 
Meanwhile, last week’s Number One Adele slips to 2 with ’25’ and David Bowie’s ‘Best of Bowie’ collection completes the Top Three.
 
Rounding out this week’s Top Five are Justin Bieber ’s ‘Purpose’ at Number Four and former chart toppers Coldplay , whose album ‘A Head Full of Dreams’ holds at Five.

Meanwhile, over on the Official Singles Chart, Rihanna’s ‘Work’ is just 8,000 combined sales behind current chart-toppers Lukas Graham’s ‘7 Years’, which has been Number One for three weeks.

Getty

Rihanna’s sales surge has been boosted by her raunchy performance of ‘Work’ alongside Drake at The Brit Awards last Wednesday (February 24).

Another act also enjoying a post-Brits uplift are Coldplay; their Beyonce collaboration ‘Hymn For The Weekend’ is up another seven places to Number Three.
 
Completing today’s Update Top Five are Jonas Blue & Dakota’s ‘Fast Car’ at Number Four and Mike Posner’s ‘I Took A Pill In Ibiza’, which looks set to enter this week’s Top Ten after jumping six places to Number Five.

The 1975 on course for second chart-topping album

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