A few quick notes on pop music producers

Tonight I went through the new Britney Spears album. It’s streaming on the AOL Music site. This is not a review of that album, although I do intend to write one because I find it an incredibly interesting listen and lesson on pop development. I’ve become intrigued with the production of pop music as of late, and this album only pushed me further down that path.

I just want to point out a few things that I discovered while researching the production of her album.

  1. Bloodshy & Avant = 2/3 of Miike Snow. Now I understand why Miike Snow makes great pop music: the guys in the band wrote Toxic.
  2. Benny Blanco, the guy who did a filthy, “raunchy, megahorny hip-hop” album with Spank Rock that I listened to a few summers ago writes songs for Britney Spears, Katy Perry, Ke$ha, Justin Bieber, and Ciara, to name a few.
  3. Darkchild kinda seems like a self-absorbed loudmouth.

OFWGKTA (Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All) #coachella2011

The Odd Future collective just DGAF

Is it wrong that I think of Odd Future as 2011’s Die Antwoord with way more staying power? Regardless, that’s how I approach these guys.

Quick facts: OFWGKTA stands for Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, which is shortened to Odd Future. Odd Future is a collective of about ten 17-23 year-old rappers and producers seemingly headed by Tyler, the Creator.

I first listened to Tyler, the Creator’s “Yonkers” after seeing Kanye West’s tweet declaring the video for the song “The video of 2011.” I have a thing for stark, simple, black-and-white videos (“Single Ladies“, “My Love“, “Drop It Like It’s Hot“, “On To The Next One“, I could go on…), and “Yonkers” keeps pace with the rest. It’s unique, and it keeps with Odd Future’s reputation as spouting shocking and ridiculous imagery through their lyrics.

The collective has been quite prolific since late 2008 (Pitchfork has a great review of their mixtapes), but hadn’t garnered a ton of attention until late last year. I’ve only just started going through the mixtapes and watching their performance at SXSW, but I’m hooked. I can’t pass up the allure of young energy breaking new ground without much regard for their elders. I’ll definitely be catching their set at Coachella this year.

Update: Pitchfork just posted an interview with Odd Future. It’s loaded with gems. My favorite is…

Pitchfork: Did you ever imagine you’d be playing at festivals like Coachella and SXSW a year ago?

Tyler, the Creator: I didn’t even know about Coachella a year ago. I knew about SXSW because N.E.R.D. played here. It was never my goal or intention to play one of those, and I never realized how important it was until recently. I’m a believer that if you keep saying shit’s gonna happen it will. Like, I always talked about how I wanted a trampoline, and now I have one.

Update 2: If this isn’t the best interview ever…

New York, NY for a few

The Strand bookstore from the small second level

I’m in Boston for my last spring break ever. I promised a friend that I’d eventually come out, and although it took me four years, I’m here. We spent the past few days in New York. I lived in the East Village and Lower East Side during the summer of 2009, and I learned then why people never leave.

Also true.
Nowadays, this typeface gets more attention than anything it communicates
Because you never know all of the ways you can calculate 15%...
The stairs in Dylan's Candy Bar. Willy Wonka anyone?
Mother bird regurgitating its child. Or something like that.
Badass diorama.
Badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, badger

Hanna trailer & new music from The Chemical Brothers

I’ve watched this trailer for Hanna probably ten times over the past few months, and I think the movie looks like it’s going to kick ass. At about 1:30 into the trailer, this song kicks in, and in the credits it says that the score is by The Chemical Brothers. Oh yes.

Well, now we have the full song that’s used in the trailer. It’s called Container Park, and it is indeed a Chem’s original.

Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie xx – The Crutch

I’ve gone through this album a couple times now. I love it. There are left turns all over the place. And not that Jamie xx deserves all the credit for the sound that The xx has carved out ¬†for themselves, but he is certainly¬†something to be respected on his own.

Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie xx – The Crutch