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<p>&nbsp;Iggy Pop</p>

 Iggy Pop

Credit: AP Photo

Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino and Iggy Pop pair for a 'True Blood' duet

Plus, listen to Best Coast reinvent Fleetwood Mac's 'Rhiannon'

Best Coast’s Bethany Cosentino and Iggy Pop have paired together for “Let’s Boot and Rally,” a song that will be featured in the July 8 episode of HBO’s “True Blood.”

The tune, co-written by “True Blood’s” music supervisor Gary Calamar and James Combs, will premiere on Santa Monica’s KCRW (where Calamar also DJs) on July 5 at 10:20 a.m. Not much word on how it sounds yet, other than KCRW calls it a “punk rock duet.”

Cosentino expressed her excitement over recording with Iggy Pop on Best Coast’s twitter feed, while Iggy Pop said in a statement, “I’ve always liked to bit. I guess that means me a vampire. Does this mean I have a license to suck?” Oh, Iggy....

While we have to wait a hot minute to hear the collaboration, fans can listen to Best Coast’s cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Rhiannon” right now right here. The song is on the “Just Tell Me That You Want Me: A Tribute to Fleetwood Mac,” a tribute album out Aug. 14 that also features MGMT, Lykke Li and others.  NIcks' swirl has been replaced by Consentino's pep-rally perkiness.

As you can hear here, Best Coast takes the mystery and drama Stevie Nicks infused in the song and reinvents the tune as a complete pop turn filtered through a girl-group sensibility complete with hand claps. You’re either going to love it or hate it, but you have to give BC credit: they made the song their own.

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<p>Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum in &quot;Magic Mike.&quot;</p>

Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum in "Magic Mike."

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

The Lists: Top 10 performances in Steven Soderbergh films

With 'Magic Mike' on the way, a look at the actors who have excelled in his work

If it feels like just the other day that Steven Soderbergh released a new movie -- well, it pretty much was. Ahead of the supposed sabbatical from filmmaking he's threatening to make at the end of this year, the Oscar-winning director has been on a tear, perhaps hoping to churn out enough films in a short space of time that audiences won't miss him for a while. In the last 10 months, he's given us a double-shot of nifty genre action in "Contagion" and "Haywire," while this Friday sees the release of male-stripper comedy "Magic Mike" -- an unapologetically fizzy entertainment that is nonetheless scoring the director his strongest reviews in some time.

With 24 features now in the can for Soderbergh, it seemed appropriate to devote this week's edition of The Lists to his decidedly catholic, even eccentric, filmography, which runs the gamut from bright studio popcorners like "Ocean's Eleven" to classy prestige drama like "Traffic" to square-peg experiments like "The Girlfriend Experience" to such outright esoterica as "Schizopolis" -- but since I already offered a Top 10 Soderbergh films list a few years ago, I decided to shift focus to his equally wide-ranging work with actors.

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<p>Carly Rae Jepsen's &quot;Call Me Maybe&quot;</p>

Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe"

Are we in a new golden age of pop music? Here's why the answer is yes

Top 40 radio sounds better than it has in years: Carly Rae Jepsen, Bieber, Adele, fun.

Are we in a golden era of pop music?

Over the last 18 months, we’ve seen the tide turn from the hip-hop/urban cycle that had dominated pop radio for several years to a hybrid of pop/hip-hop. Now, we’re in the full flush of a pure pop resurgence. Beats were king for a very long time, now melody is pushing through again and the two are nestled comfortably together on the Hot 100 in the most diverse roster of artists and sounds to co-exist on the chart in decades.

Plus, there’s an influx of new artists pouring into pop, which is crucial for any movement to expand:  Two weeks ago, we saw a harmonic convergence that hasn’t occurred in 35 years: As Billboard noted, fun., Gotye, and Carly Rae Jepson logged consecutive No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, marking the first time since 1977 that baby acts have succeeded themselves in the top spot with their first charting single. Furthermore, these songs, all straight-ahead pop songs with melodies that you can sing to, are sticky with each spending multiple weeks at No. 1.

Throw in One Direction and The Wanted, plus Justin Bieber’s coming into his own as a pop artist so you have the all-important teen/tween idol factor covered; the continuation of success by strong R&B and rap-leaning artists like Nicki Minaj and Usher, and the ongoing integration of dance into Top 40 via artists like David Guetta (and his revolving line-up of guests) and there’s something for everyone.

How did the shift occur? First off, it happened simply because pop has always moved in trends. This current pop cycle won’t last forever: something more exciting will come in and replace it. I credit two artists with starting this round: Adele and Bruno Mars provided Top 40 radio with singles whose sound wasn’t in fashion with what was clogging playlists yet were too good to be denied. And props also go to Katy Perry and Rihanna for continually feeding the pop monster with non-stop hits. They have totally owned pop radio for the last two years and seldom been out of the Top 10.

So let’s rewind a bit and turn back the clock to the end of 2010: Mars’ massive “Just The Way You Are,” a soulful ballad with a chugging R&B beat (you can hear the shift starting there) was headed straight to No. 1 as Adele’s stomping (and also very rhythmic) “Rolling In the Deep” was hitting the airwaves, making inroads on a chart that had recently had little tolerance for straight-ahead singers.

If there had been no “Rollin in the Deep,”  which debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 exactly 18 months ago, I’m fairly convinced there would have been no “Somebody That I Used To Know” at No. 1. The biggest crossover hit in the last 25 years was a total game changer when it came to pop radio because it gave radio stations the freedom to expand their playlists.  “People never stopped liking pop records. [Top 40 program directors] stopped thinking pop records fit,” says Sean Ross. Ross was radio editor at Billboard during part of my time there and now writes the insightful “Ross on Radio” column for He knows more about trends in radio than anyone else I know, so I asked him why he thought this was happening. “After Adele, playing something seemingly exotic no longer felt like jeopardizing one’s job,” he says.

And from there, it gave artists the courage to try different things. Ross notes Taylor Swift’s “Eyes Open” from “The Hunger Games” and Katy Perry’s current shapeshifting single “Wide Awake,” which is already in the Top 10. Though “Eyes Open” peaked at No. 19, and its predecessor, the gorgeous “Safe & Sound” by Swift featuring the Civil Wars, stalled at No. 30 (and were driven more by downloads than airplay), they still made inroads and their radio spins helped give Swift’s career some additional heft.

Ross also points out that the connection between TV licensing and Top 40  radio has never been stronger:  Exhibit A, of course, being fun.’s “We Are Young” featuring Janelle Monae, which leapt straight from a Chevy commercial onto the upper reaches of the pop charts. Cast members of both “Glee” and “Smash” covered Adele’s “Rumour Has It” before it hit radio, plus the song logged several other placements, making it familiar to many before it ever went to radio.

Furthermore, while part of Top 40’s charm is its ability to produce one-hit wonders, it feels like many of the songs in this current era will age well: Most of Adele’s hits sound timeless, and “Somebody That I Used To Know” still sounds inventive and like nothing else around it with virtually no burnout factor. To be sure, the electroclash of LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem” already screams summer of 2011, but, sometimes, sounding dated isn’t a bad thing.

While it's tempting to ask how many of these artists will we still be hearing from five years from now, that's not the point of Top 40. The genre, now more so than it has ever been, is about the song, not the artist. That's what makes the strings of hits that artists like Rihanna and Katy Perry have been able to cobble together all the more impressive. By its very nature, pop music has a fleeting, of-the-moment, ephemeral quality that captures a certain moment.

Where do we go from here? I’d like to make a bold prediction: I bet six months from now, we see the totally abused and overused “featured artist” phenomenon greatly wane. Rappers are the ones who really started the culture for it by adding their friends and label mates on to tracks, often as a way to introduce new acts (Fun fact: Lil Wayne just logged his 100th (!!!) tune on the R&B chart not only because of his own success but because he’s been featured on so many songs by other artists). The trend caught hold and many pop acts started doing it because they wanted to work with certain rappers or they wanted their records to stand a better shot while Top 40 was so urban-leaning. It still has its place, but hopefully artists will be featured on a song because of creative and artistic decisions instead of solely marketing ones.

But in the meantime, for my fellow pop fans, join me as we hop in the car, put down the windows and hear Minaj’s “Starships” (a song that I love no matter what anyone else thinks) roll into “Somebody That I Used To Know,” which segues into “Call Me Maybe” and then Rihanna’s “Where Have You Been” and let’s sing along at the top of our lungs.

What do you think? 

Follow Melinda Newman on Twitter @HitfixMelinda

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<p>Sutton Foster and friends in &quot;Bunheads.&quot;</p>

Sutton Foster and friends in "Bunheads."

Credit: ABC Family

Review: 'Bunheads' - 'Inherit the Wind'

Michelle and Fanny adjust to their new circumstances, while the girls try to win a contest

A review of last night's "Bunheads" coming up just as soon as we talk about bunions and menopause...

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<p>Even Captain Kirk looks stumped about the identity of the villain in the sequel to 2009's 'Star Trek' reboot</p>

Even Captain Kirk looks stumped about the identity of the villain in the sequel to 2009's 'Star Trek' reboot

Credit: Paramount/Bad Robot

Which four characters will NOT appear in the next 'Star Trek' movie?

Roberto Orci drops some bread crumbs during an appearance on a talk show

At this point, the "Star Trek" crew has got to be enjoying the way people are going berserk over any tidbit of information that leaks out of the production, because so far, almost nothing solid is known about the film.

We know for sure that Klingons are involved, but only because of the game that Paramount and JJ Abrams played during the MTV Movie Awards.

We know that Benedict Cumberbatch is in the film, but we don't know who he's playing, and no matter how many times people insist that he's the new Khan, until we actually hear that confirmed, I'm not buying it.

Tracing back the story that has popped up everywhere online this evening, it appears that it all began with Roberto Orci during an appearance on "Ask Mr. Kern" this weekend.  Little wonder it was a good interview, since Hercules The Strong, one of the co-hosts of the show and an associate and friend from Ain't It Cool going back many years, has had an ongoing journalistic relationship with Orci since at least the days of "Alias."

Orci ended up agreeing to name four characters from the original series of "Star Trek" that would not appear in the sequel that is due out next summer.  Obviously, it would be big news if he or Abrams or Lindelof or Kurtzman said outright, "Khan is not in this movie," but that would be making it easy, and I get the feeling right now that the "Star Trek" team is perfectly happy to let people think it's Khan, whether it is or isn't.  If it's not, then I salute them for the fake-out that they've been waging simply by being quiet.

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As 'Ted' arrives in theaters, we pick our 25 favorite R-rated comedies

As 'Ted' arrives in theaters, we pick our 25 favorite R-rated comedies

From Mel Brooks to Judd Apatow, there's something special about the R-rated comedy

The R-rated comedy.  Even now, in 2012, it is something we notice.  It is hard fought, and when it works, it is transcendent.  There is something liberating about the R when you're talking about a comedy, something even more dangerous than with a drama, because in comedy, we can cut right to the darkest, weakest, sickest, saddest places and parts of ourselves, and we can make ourselves ridiculous.

In doing so, we would argue there is something healing, something that brings people together.  There is a reason for the #1 pick we made here,  the top of the list, the film we collectively picked as the best R-rated comedy of all time, and there is a story to go with it.

Although the film was made in 1975, it retains an urgent, contemporary feel because of just how gleefully it shattered taboo.  We haven't really gotten any more collectively sane about race or race language in this country, but we like to think we have.  Those moments when we are forced to admit that we're still not really doing it right are the hardest ones for us, and in Los Angeles, that was most of the early 90s.  There were any number of incidents that took place here that underlined the way race was still a potent and combustible force in our culture.  Rodney King in particular was a name that was a hot button flash card in Los Angeles culture.  If you lived here, you had the Rodney King conversation.  Not just once, either, but constantly for weeks or months.  It was ongoing.  And when the riots happened, I lived here in LA.  It was a scary time.  Things never felt more strained.  The OJ trial, the ongoing Michael Jackson tragedy/freak show, the Rampart scandal… on and on and on, different things that posed different difficult situational questions about how we felt about ourselves and each other.  It felt like it was impossible to get away from it.

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Blur set to debut two new tracks via Twitter on July 2

British group penned the songs for Aug. 12 Hyde Park gig

Blur will debut two songs via Twitter, we presume not 140 characters at a time, on July 2.

The British band wrote the new tracks, “Under the Westway” and “The Puritan,”  for its upcoming Hyde Park show on Aug. 12, which will close the London Olympics.

Fans can go to @blurofficial at 6:15 p.m. British Standard Time (that would be 1:15 p.m. EDT and 10:15 a.m. PDT, we think...) on July 2 to hear and watch the band play the songs, as well as listen to an interview--all beaming from an undisclosed London rooftop. Immediately following the performances, the songs will be available for download. A limited edition 7-inch single will come out Aug. 6.

[More after the jump...]

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Watch: Rick Ross and Meek Mill handle raw meat in 'So Sophisticated' video
Credit: Def Jam Recordings

Watch: Rick Ross and Meek Mill handle raw meat in 'So Sophisticated' video

Check out what else they get their hands on

Sophistication means different things to different people. For rapper Rick Ross, according to the video for “So Sophisticated,” it means hanging out with Meek Mill near his two Maybachs, giving a shout-out to the prison population, spending time in an abattoir with a sharp knife, rapping in a semi-undressed state,  name dropping the late, great Walter Payton, shilling Ciroc, and talking about women’s lady parts with words we can’t print. Different strokes...

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Cheila Lima and Ciomara Morais in &quot;All is Well.&quot;</p>

Cheila Lima and Ciomara Morais in "All is Well."

Credit: LX Filmes

Portuguese immigrant drama 'All is Well' wins big at LA Film Fest

'Beasts of the Southern Wild' picks up yet another trophy

The Los Angeles Film Festival, like many of its kind that are heavier on gathering highlights from previous fests than securing enviable premieres, is more valuable to locals than it is to international observers -- which is largely why I didn't realize it had been going on until it wrapped yesterday, with an unveiling of Steven Soderbergh's "Magic Mike." I'd been distracted by the overlapping event in Edinburgh, after all. I doubt there's a day on the calendar when a film festival isn't unfurling somewhere.

Anyway, the LAFF largely came to my attention when I read a report on the festival's award winners, announced yesterday.  Some of the choices were to be expected: having already taken multiple prizes at Cannes and Sundance, Benh Zeitlin's "Beasts of the Southern Wild" scored yet again, picking up the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature, a further indication of the film's broad reach. Wherever it goes, it's not just critics singing the post-Katrina film's praises: regular moviegoers are knocked sideways by it too. That's a powerful combination, and one that has to be considered when weighing up the film's Oscar chances: early bird or otherwise, we have a genuine contender here.

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Watch: Maroon 5's new video for 'One More Night' featuring Minka Kelly
Credit: A&M/Octone Records

Watch: Maroon 5's new video for 'One More Night' featuring Minka Kelly

The tale of a man and his goldfish

Love is a battlefield. At least for Maroon 5’s Adam Levine. In the group’s new video for “One More Night, “ he and his baby mama can’t live with each other but can’t live apart.  Or at least she feels that way.

Even though Levine is singing about not being able to do this anymore, it turns out it’s his wife, who has leaving on her mind. And when your wife is played by "Friday Night Lights'" Minka Kelly, that’s a pretty big loss. And the "FNL" connection doesn't end there: "FNL" developer Peter Berg directed the video.

[More after the jump...]

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Jennifer Lawrence and AMPAS president Tom Sherak announce the Best Picture nominees for last year's Oscars
Jennifer Lawrence and AMPAS president Tom Sherak announce the Best Picture nominees for last year's Oscars
Credit: AP Photo/Matt Sayles

Academy Board of Governors to meet and discuss potential rule changes

Can we hope for some Best Picture amendments?

How did you feel about the Best Picture scenario last year? As in, the rule change -- implemented last June -- that set us up for a final slate of anywhere from five to 10 nominees, depending on what number of contenders managed 5% of the Academy's #1 votes? Because now might be the time to voice those concerns, in case anyone who matters might be reading.

I realized the window on rules and eligibility changes was swiftly closing (as typically we get an announcement in mid-June), so I shot off an email to Academy brass pulse-taker Steve Pond at The Wrap. He tells me the committees from each branch meet and recommended rule changes to the Board of Governors following the Oscars each year and that the board will be meeting tomorrow to discuss the recent recommendations and perhaps enact some actual changes. The delay, he reckons, could have something to do with figuring out how to implement online voting, which could impact some of the procedures.

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<p>Aaron Johnson, Taylor Kitsch, and John Travolta co-star in Oliver Stone's new film 'Savages'</p>

Aaron Johnson, Taylor Kitsch, and John Travolta co-star in Oliver Stone's new film 'Savages'

Credit: Universal Pictures

Our exclusive look at Oliver Stone in action on the set of 'Savages'

What does his cast have to say about working with this behind-the-scenes wild man?

It's nice timing that a Blu-ray of "Born On The Fourth Of July" would show up at my house this morning, since Oliver Stone is on my mind right now.

There was a time when I would have named Oliver Stone on my very short list of the world's most exciting filmmakers every single year, but it's been a while since that was true, and that has seemed mainly to be a matter of him not connecting with the right piece of material, or him not making the most of the material he's had.  Even so, I've always been interested in what he's up to, and the films of his that I love, I love with an almost unreserved intensity.

One of the films we discussed when I recently sat down with Stone was "Scarface," which he wrote for director Brian De Palma.  The film is notorious for its excesses, of course, and Al Pacino's performance has become the stuff of legend.  It is a perfect example of a sort of manic coke aesthetic that was developing throughout the '80s.  By the time Stone started directing his own films instead of writing for other directors, he was running hot, cranking out these amazing overheated pieces of underworld pulp, exploring the ugly dirty parts of being a soldier, exposing the soft white underbelly of our financial world or war journalism.  He turned out a series of big movies about big ideas, movies that were expensive studio films but wildly political, defiantly opinionated.

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