Weekly Music Fix: Passion Pit, Owen Pallet, Tila, M.I.A, T&S, Kelly Rowland & More

Welcome to Audiostraddle’s weekly music fix! Will it actually be published weekly? I’m not great with deadlines, so only time will tell. But I’ll be interested in hearing what you think of this new seg and if you’d like to see it again in the future. Like next week, for example.

I’ve been waiting with bated breath for the release of Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland, but in the meantime the setlist of the film’s first soundtrack has been announced (there will be three!). Titled Almost Alice, the compilation features custom tracks from Robert Smith (The Cure), Pete Wentz and Mark Hoppus, Owl City, Tokio Hotel, Franz Ferdinand and more. Curiously, the coveted opening track has been handed to Avril Lavigne.
Former Destiny’s Child singer Kelly Rolland has been announced as the surprise performer at the 2010 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, which is the biggest gay pride event in the world. While I was secretly hoping it would be Kylie, I’ve seen Kelly do her thing on the dance floor and feel like she’s won’t leave anyone disappointed.

Does America really have enough enthusiasm for two big talent shows? Strangely concerned about over-exposure, Simon Cowell has announced that he’s jumping his the Idol ship to focus on the launch of the newer and shinier talent show, “The X Factor”. Cowell will finish this out this current season of Idol alongside Ellen, Kara and Randy, after which I suspect the Idol franchise will get canned. It’s also been announced that the Idol series has been “rested” in Australia.

Music By Day has compiled a list of the top 10 selling vinyl albums of 2009. It’s worth a look, but may not make you blink.

Speaking to BBC 6 Music, Elly Jackson from La Roux has warned that the next release may be less mainstream compared to last June’s self-titled debut. “We’re going to make the record that me and Ben want to make, but I have a feeling its going to be less mainstream.”

Interview Magazine speaks with Owen Pallett
, Canadian music genius and artist of the moment about his highly anticipated new record Heartland – out now – and his deep love for Mariah Carey. “I think she’s actually one of the most significant musicians of the last ten years… She started the decade as the biggest selling artist of all time, but one who was a complete pariah who everyone hated, and she had gone completely crazy, and by the end of this decade she’s made, I think, probably the most successful comeback in music history.”
Has anyone listened to Heartland yet? Give us your review, I hear it’s phenomenal.

Love her or hate her, but Yoko Ono knows how to orchestrate the ultimate comeback. In what will be their first gig in a whopping 40 years, the Plastic Ono Band will be playing at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on February 16. The show will include original members Eric Clapton and Klaus Voorman, as well as some amazing guest appearances by Bette Midler, Paul Simon, Thurston Moore  Kim Gordon, Sean Lennon and Yuka Honda. True Story: Riese and I saw Sean Lennon and Yuka Honda play the Mercury Lounge once and it blew my mind, their contributions alone should make this night nothing short of amazing.

Everyone’s favourite Canadians have kicked off their 2010 Canadian tour, playing Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton with An Horse in tow. Check out the new blogs and photos from the tour, highlights include something called snow-shoeing and a visit with the national women’s hockey team.

This week both Guy Richie and Tila Tequila decided to start up their own record labels. Tila has put a call out for new artists and producers to sign, promising to release your record and not take a dime. According to Undercover music, Guy Richie already has his first signing lined up – an Irish folk outfit called The Punchbowl Band that play at his local pub. If he does music like he does film, the first signing will be a hit and then everything that follows will pay homage to it.

k.d. has never released a Greatest Hits collection before and so now she’s making up for lost time with a double-disc release titled Recollection which drops Feb 9 and features all the hits as well as a new interpretation of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” which I’m really excited about. The double disc release will be followed by an epic deluxe edition that includes an album of unreleased recordings and dvd of music videos.
Five years in the making, Hole’s lovely ex-bassist Melissa Auf der Maur has finally released the title track and its accompanying video clip from her upcoming release, Out Of Our Minds. According to Spinner, OOOM is an expansive multimedia project that includes the album, live performance, a comic book and a 28-minute film starring and conceived by Auf der Maur and directed by Tony Stone. What do you think?

Pitchfork believes that this could be a preview of the new video from M.I.A’s upcoming album.

After taking names with Manners in 2009, Passion Pit are powering on in the new year. Once they’re done with Australia, Japan and Europe, they’ll be heading back foe a spring US tour. Here are the dates, go get ’em.

Check out Aussie pop star Gabrielle Climi‘s new video clip for “On A Mission”. She’s explored her “inner disco diva” with this space age music video that channels a little Kylie and a little Blondie. If you’re a little surprised by the not-as-hooky new sound, take a moment to remember just how grating “Sweet About Me” became after the 10 millionth spin on the radio. Just sayin’, be careful what you wish for.

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Founding member. Former writer. Still loves Autostraddle with her whole heart.

Crystal has written 320 articles for us.


    • So true, I saw them in Glasgow last year and they were amazing! Also the crowd was very weird mix of people, so clearly everyone loves them.

  1. speaking of M.I.A she was inspired by waiting on the phone for 3 hours with Verizon the title of the song is “I’m Down Like Your Internet Connection” Apparently the workers on the phone sing the chorus. via gizmodo

  2. Cowell pulled the same trick about 6 years in the UK when idol was flailing. He scrapped it as having run it’s course and instead announced The XFactor, a completely new and different show where some people sing every week and some other people vote for their favourites. Worryingly, it worked. Look forward to more weekly music fixes!

      • Good point, I can’t wait to add it to all my future Christmas carol playlists. Though the sadist in me loves the fact that Rage and the Xfactor winner are on the same label so money went to the same people regardless.

        • Haa true. And even if it wasn’t Cowell giving the orders, thousands of facebook followers did what they were told and bought a song that shouts “fuck you I won’t do what you tell me!” which is fun irony.

          Don’t imagine it would’ve worked as well if they’d tried to get an unknown independent label artist to the top though.

          • Exactly, the irony was beautiful. But was still amazing to watch unfold. Personally, instead of an unknown I would of chosen something equally annoying that is a testiment to consumerism. For example, it has been far too long since Bob the Builder was number one…. I mean can he fix it? Yes he can. Slogans like that can win any campaign.

          • Is it just me, or does Charlie and lola’s chicken’s body appear to be a pineapple? Which, although probably delicious, is possibly genetic modification gone too far EVEN for the Xfactor? That said, I am all over that campaign.

          • Okay I’m totally lost as to what you guys are talking about. Did someone sing “Killing In The Name Of” on the X factor and as a result it reached #1 on the charts? I missed it.

          • @ Crystal haha the exact opposite! The x factor final has been around the week before Christmas for what feels like the last thousand years and so the winner always got the Christmas #1 . This year people got fed up of it and Simon Cowell and there was a massive facebook campaign to get Rage Against The Machine as #1 instead, which was hilarious. Probs they were also helped by how the single this year was a terrible cover of The climb, which was a major error on someone’s part!

          • Oh okay, I understand now, that’s really quite clever and funny. I’d heard mentions of Rage being #1 at Christmas but I’d missed why / where / how.

            I assumed it was actually performed on the show because in Australia when a popular Idol contestant sings a good cover, the original track sometimes appears on the iTunes charts the next week.

  3. Man, why couldn’t this have posted Monday when I needed to think of Mariah Carey as the top selling female artist in the ’90s for pub quiz? This could’ve been the difference between an abysmal 14th place showing and a slightly closer to having any dignity 13th place showing. :P

    I love Melissa Auf der Maur, but I’m still not sure about the new song. It seems like one that may grow on me when I’m not watching the video (unattended bleeding makes me nervous).

    Can’t wait for Alice and Wonderland! Has anyone been to see the Burton exhibit at moma?

    • Tim Burton @ MoMA is awesome. the Mars Attacks stuff is fantastic and i had no idea he was involved although it makes sense. I really enjoyed the sketches- all that art history course work I suppose. I want to go back- the day I went it was very crowded.

    • yes! the fact that she has a new(ish) perfume confused me to no end. & just in case anyone was wondering, it’s not great.

  4. I definitely would like to read a regular music article on AS, be it weekly, bi-monthly, whatever.

    Call me crazy but I actually like Avril Lavigne. Well, “Let Go” and “Under My Skin” were good I should say – “The Best Damn Thing” not so much.

    • Thanks for the vote, I will do my best!

      Foist, I’ve grown to respect your taste in music over the past few months and so I’m going to trust your judgment regarding Avril. To be honest I have never given Avril’s music a chance, ’cause I’ve toured with her and dislike her as a human being. With passion.

      • Lol, I like how you restrained yourself there, Crystal. Trust me, you can be as blunt as you want, you won’t hurt my feelings. So yeah, we’re talking about back when I listened exclusively to “mainstream” music. I honestly haven’t much listened to her songs since high school but I’ll admit there was a time and place her music appealed to me (except Sk8er Boi, I never liked that song). I still love the acoustic version of “Nobody’s Home” though and it was actually the first “real” song I learned to play on my acoustic guitar. So there’s that. IDK, a lot about music is context for me so I’m probably biased w/r/t Avril. And on that cryptic note, I’ve realized I have quite a collection of Canadian music.

        • Yeah, Sk8r Boi was a horrible song. With horrible spelling. Ok I just listened to “Nobody’s Home” and I can see its appeal. It would be hypocritical for me to claim to dislike it when I’ll listen to Michelle Branch and Hilary Duff and Vanessa Carlton and all those artists that produce a similar brand of pop ballad. But I’m going to anyway. I hate it because it’s Avril. If anyone else had sang it then it’d probably have been one of my favourite pop songs that year.

          I listen to a lot of Canadian music. Is Raine Maida in your collection? I’m fairly certain that he and I are supposed to be friends.

          • That’s understandable. Don’t worry, I’m not trying to change anyone’s mind about Avril but I do find the disparity between fans and non-fans interesting. I think I fall somewhere in the middle though.

            I need to check out Raine Maida’s solo stuff further – he has some interesting things going on in the songs I’ve heard so far on his MySpace page. Very unique, pretty cool IMO.

            I’ve got one out of left field for you. I’m not sure if this is your type of music but have you heard of a band called “controller.controller” from Toronto?

  5. I am not even allowed to listen to k.d.’s Hallelujah that is on ‘hymns of the 49th parallel’ in public because it makes me feel too many feelings and i usually need to cry and that doesn’t work well at work or in the mall, you know? I am super excited that she is doing another one – great news.

    • Yeah, she definitely knows how to interpret that track.

      Pop quiz: do many of you like k.d.? I’m thinking about reviewing the release but it’s hard to make a call on whether she has many fans here…

  6. I’d love a review of Recollection. I don’t listen to k.d. now, but I grew up on her. (My dad was a big fan… he also loved the Indigo Girls and Ani. No wonder I’m queer.)

  7. Pingback: Weekly Music Fix: Passion Pit, Owen Pallet, Tila, M.I.A, T&S … | Drakz Free Online Service

  8. I would love a review of the K.D. Lang cd because I have to admit to knowing nothing at the moment. I thought at first “Yeah, that’d be cool ’cause I like that one song she did…” then quickly realized I was thinking of Melissa Etheridge. I fail at lesbian music knowledge. Help? :P

    • Hah! Okay I’ve asked the record company to hook me up. If they do, I’ll be back here to school you on the kd collection.

      • K.D. Lang is pretty awesome. I look forward to this. Her cover of A case of you is really good. Also Rachelwashere you need to get on that.

  9. Whoa. I love you Autostraddle. I also love M.I.A. I feel like a heads up is in order regarding the link to her “choice words”. This isn’t pop culture fun gossip. Following this story, you’ll see murdered children. I’m sickened and sad, and confused as to why links to such events are accompanied by facts about k.d.lang’s record sales.

    • I definitely wasn’t making light of the MIA story by reporting it on this page. However I appreciate that you have found it offensive and so the link has been deleted with my apologies.

      • Given what has been going on in Sri Lanka, the photos were exactly what I expected her to tweet. Def. worth reporting, but maybe just a warning preceding the link would be good.

    • Lots of other music sites mentioned the MIA story and video and so if it wasn’t mentioned here then I’d want to know why Tila’s record label is considered newsworthy but MIA’s message about war isn’t. I know it’s impossible to please everyone but if this site only ran fun news stories then I wouldn’t read it.

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