Can you feel that? It's the swelling of anticipation for "The Dark Knight Rises" reaching a fever pitch. Pretty soon, the thing is gonna pop and all 165 minutes of the film will be unleashed and some may just faint with that "it's finally here!" ecstasy.
Tickets for IMAX screenings went on sale Monday, and most of the midnight screenings were pretty much zapped instantly. This after select theaters put theirs on sale back in January and, yep, sold out. Insanity. Here's hoping there's something really special underneath all that hype. (I'm sure there is.)
It was "in-the-works" for two-and-a-half years, but now it's confirmed today that St. Vincent and former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne will release an entire collaborative album, "Love This Giant." The 4AD/Todo Mundo effort will drop on Sept. 11, and has been preceded by the first song to arrive, "Who."
This jagged and melodic number bumps around with polyrhythms and unusual harmonies -- a la Dirty Projectors and tUnE-yArDs -- with a lot of belting from Byrne and angelic refrains from St. Vincent (aka vocalist and guitarist Annie Clark). The brass does a lot of carrying here, which I love: the horns give it some emotional weight to all the whimsy and 1,000-yard staring.
There will apparently be a lot of horns on the album overall, with help from the guys in Antibalas and The Dap-Kings helping out. Engineer and songwriter John Congleton of moody rock outfit The Paper Chase also lends a hand on programmed drums. Ten of the album's 12 tracks were co-written by Byrne and Clark, and each writing one individually.
And with a snap of your fingers, a new album has likely entered into the top 10 of NPR's year-end list.
Last year, the Television Critics Association Awards were hosted by Ron Effing Swanson himself, Nick Offerman. So perhaps the only way to top that in terms of finding someone capable of making very dangerous things was to recruit Bryan Cranston from "Breaking Bad" to emcee this year's awards.
It's Emmy nominating time once again, which means it's time for Fienberg and I to resume our annual tradition of predicting the people and shows we either wish will be nominated (me) or think will be (Dan). I pretend that I have an Emmy ballot and pick the six performers/shows per category that I'd be happiest to see nominated, while Dan runs down the contenders in each category, starting with the locks, then moving to the contenders and then the ridiculous longshots.
Next week Walt Disney Pictures will be premiering Pixar's "Brave" in conjunction with the Los Angeles Film Festival at the newly named Dolby Theatre (formerly the Kodak) in Hollywood. But while it promises to be a fun time for the event at hand, the fact that it's the grand re-opening of the space is what has me a little bit more excited.
See, I've never actually been in that room. No concerts, no Cirque du Soleil, no Academy Awards (I've never sought Oscar night credentials). So I'm happy to finally case the joint, as it were. But Dolby taking over the naming rights of the facility has also brought in the added attraction of its aural upgrades, namely the company's new Dolby Atmos technology, which was first revealed at CinemaCon in April.
Touted by Dolby as "the most significant development in audio since the arrival of surround sound," the promise of Atmos is an important one: keeping the theatrical experience unique and superior to what can be accomplished at home.
Welcome to another week of "So You Think You Can Dance" auditions, this time from Salt Lake City.
Once upon a time, I might have scoffed about the dance talent in Salt Lake City -- Remember... Dan doesn't know anything about dance -- but thanks to The CW's "Breaking Pointe," I know that Salt Lake City is home to Ballet West and it's a regular hoofing hub.
So... Thanks, "Breaking Pointe"!
The big question involves the tease from last week's promo promising that Salt Lake City would be home to our sexiest auditions yet. Color me intrigued!
No telling if rapper Big K.R.I.T. will earn a Grammy nomination for work off of his confusingly titled studio debut "Live from the Underground" or for his guest spots on tracks from Wiz Khalifa or Curren$y. But in case he wins any award, he already has an acceptance speech worked out.
"Thank You Kindly" really is a big, simple, slobbery wet kiss from the Mississippi-bred rhymer, a one-off thank-you-note on the heels of the release of "Underground" last week. That effort, as we learned today, bowed at No. 5 with 41,000 on the Billboard 200 album sales chart today.
"I wanted to thank all the fans for the support, so I did this one for ya’ll," he wrote on the song's SoundCloud page.
"Underground" had an enormous amount of support right off the bat, at least from its guesting musicians. From artists like B.B. King to Melanie Fiona to Ludacris to 2 Chainz.
In doing so, Jepsen becomes the first solo female to send her first Hot 100 entry to No. 1 since Ke$ha did so with “Tik Tok” in January 2010, according to Billboard. The song, which has been on the Hot 100 chart for 16 weeks, has already sold more than 3.3 million downloads.
There’s only one new entry into the Billboard Hot 100 Top 10 and that also belongs to a solo female: Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake” zooms 19-9 to become Perry’s 11th career top 10.
The rest of the Top 10 remains fairly static: “Somebody That I Used To Know” featuring Kimbra slips to No. 2 after eight weeks at No. 1, while Maroon 5’s “Payphone” featuring Wiz Khalifa and fun’s “We Are Young” featuring Janelle Monae stay at No. 3 and No. 4 respectively.
One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful” and Nicki Minaj’s “Starships” swap places with “Beautiful” rising one to No. 5 and “Starships” dropping one to No. 6. Flo Rida’s “Wild Ones” featuring Sia remains at No. 7.
Rihanna’s “Where Have You Been,” the singer’s 22nd Hot 100 Top 10 hit, rises one spot to No. 8 this week, while Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend” drops two spaces to No. 10. However, the news isn’t all bad for Bieber: “All Around The World” featuring Ludacris, another track from “Believe,” bows at No. 22, earning it Hot Shot Debut honors.
I loved the fifth season of "Mad Men" overall, but did not love the season finale, in part because I felt the show's creator Matthew Weiner spelled out the themes of the episode in less subtle fashion than usual.
So when Weiner was able to spare a few minutes this afternoon from the set of "You Are Here," his writing and directorial movie debut, among the things we discussed was whether or not he feels ths season has been more overt in its meaning than previous ones. We also talked about his reasons for writing Peggy out of the agency — if not necessarily off the show — how the show has changed as it's moved into the more famous half of the '60s, this season's obsession with science fiction, and more.
Given the limited amount of time we had, I tried not to rehash too much of the ground that was already covered in previous post-finale interviews Weiner gave to the New York Times and to Slate — both of them deal with Don's feelings about Megan, and about Weiner's belief that of course Joan would have accepted the indecent proposal in the Jaguar episode — and instead look at the finale, and the season, from other angles.
For the video for “Scream,” the second single from Usher’s excellent new album, “Looking 4 Myself,” the singer joined the cast of “Fuerza Bruta: Look Up,” a multimedia off-Broadway production that combines music, aerial imagery and other non-linear theatrical elements.
Usher played the part of the Running Man for two April performances and used the occasion to debut some of the new material. The result is a video that is far more interesting in conception and for the creativity of the pairing than in the actual watching.
Chris Brown has extremely rare on-camera interviews in promoting his forthcoming "Fortune" album, but he hit up "106 & Park" on Monday to unveil another new song as well as grin his way through a few softballs.
Prior to introducing the music video to "Don't Wake Me Up," Brown talked about where he keeps his Grammy Award and his neck tattoo, and thanked his fans for supporting him as he had to "go through what I went through" (his little nickname for "felony").
I'll spare you Brown's reference to Rihanna's "Birthday Cake" remix, underage girl jokes, the crotch-grab and the crying fans -- you can view each in the interview clips below. But I'd also recommend sparing yourself of the song. The generic dance tune puts Brown back into his "Transformers" voice, with a repeat of the word "up" more than five dozen times. He's actually a strong singer, so it's a surprise he's squandered a perfectly good Music Video In The Desert for a melody so tactless. Put 'er on mute and pretend you're privy to another one of Leo DiCaprio's dreams in "Inception" instead.
At this point, six of the 14 songs from the regular tracklist to "Fortune" are available for perusal. Brown will undoubtedly score another No. 1 with this effort. Since there's two more weeks before "Fortune" arrives on June 26, I'm positive there will be more songs previewed in the next few days. But do you think he should put a cap on the number of new drops? Or can it only help -- or hurt -- his bottom line?
Below the videos is the tracklist to "Fortune," and highlighted are the songs already available for stream or via video. Any of them your favorite?
Here is the tracklist for Chris Brown's "Fortune":
1. Turn Up The Music
2. Bassline 3. Till I Die (Ft. Big Sean & Wiz Khalifa) 4. Mirage (Ft. Nas)
5. Don’t Judge Me
7. Biggest Fan 8. Sweet Love 9. Strip (Ft. Kevin McCall)
10. Stuck On Stupid
11. 4 Years Old
12. Cadillac (Ft. Sevyn) 13. Don’t Wake Me Up (above)
14. Trumpet Lights (Ft. Sabrina Antoinette)
It is not every day that I am offered a sit-down interview with Vanilla Ice.
And, to be honest, I would not have expected it to go quite the way it did. After all, I remember the release of "Cool As Ice." I remember his pop culture moment and how absurd it was, and I can't claim to have been a fan.
In "That's My Boy," Rob Van Winkle shows up, once again transformed into Vanilla Ice, playing an exaggerated and ridiculous version of the persona that people know. It's one of those jokes that could easily fall flat, except he's actually very good at tweaking the public perception of him.
As we were waiting to do the interviews, my sons asked me who I was going to be talking to over the course of the day, and I listed the various people who were participating. When I mentioned "Vanilla Ice," they were immediately entertained by the name, and they started asking me questions about him.