Frank Ocean

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2014

    The Rise of the Self-Serious Rappers

    Ta Nehisi-Coates' short profile of MF Doom, published in The New Yorker in 2009, finds the rapper describing his writing process: "When I'm doing a Doom record, I'm arranging it, I'm finding the voices. . . . All I have to do is listen to it and think, Oh shit, that will be funny. I write down wha ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 12, 2014

    Beastie Boys Square Is Probably Definitely Not Happening

    A plan to rename the intersection of Rivington and Ludlow Streets "Beastie Boys Square" received another set-back last night when Manhattan's Community Board 3 voted 5-1 against the motion. LeRoy McCarthy, whose idea was inspired by the iconic Paul's Boutique album cover, will now have one last sho ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 15, 2014

    The Village Voice's Pazz & Jop Critics' Poll: Top 10 Singles By Year, 1979-2013

    Singles were added to the Village Voice Pazz & Jop critics' poll for the music of 1979 issue. Before that, only albums were ranked in the poll, which began in 1971, then stopped for three years before returning for good in early 1975 to recap the music of 1974. Here's a rundown of the top ten singl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 26, 2013

    Eight Things You'll See and Hear At Phish's MSG Run

    By Richard Gehr Popular Vermont improv-rock quartet Phish turned 30 on December 2, ending their strongest year together since, oh, 1998 or so. Is it coincidence that the group's subsequent bad juju -- first a hiatus, then a breakup -- occurred during the horrific Bush administration? Or that the gr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 10, 2013

    Watch R. Kelly's Disgusting "Cookie" Video

    True story: A couple weeks ago I got the stream (loaded word here, I know) of R. Kelly's new album, Black Panties, which is out today. My 21-year-old female intern, Brittany Spanos, a native Chicagoan and fan of the R-uh, was in, sitting in the cube next to me. "Oh! The new R. Kelly just landed in m ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 5, 2013

    M.I.A. - Terminal 5 - 11/4/13

    Better Than: Flying like paper and getting high like planes. Between the beat cavalcade, the dizzying light show, the nonstop frenzy and a delivery so enigmatically unapologetic it could only be called her own, M.I.A.'s live show is a (mostly) successful demonstration in excess -- and even then th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 25, 2013

    Nile Rodgers Explains the "Deep Hidden Meaning" of "Get Lucky"

    If you've listened to the radio in the past week, chances are, you've heard a Nile Rodgers song--and probably more than one. Besides co-writing and playing guitar on Daft Punk's internationally chart-annihilating hit, "Get Lucky," Rodgers has produced so many number one singles and albums in the las ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 12, 2013

    Flume - Webster Hall - 9/11/13

    Better Than: The Adventurers Down Under. "Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi!" the audience chanted as keyboard crooner Chet Faker ambled onstage at Webster Hall, and what would have been your run-of-the-mill Wednesday night shitshow suddenly turned into Australia Night. Both Faker (whose real name is ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 29, 2013

    20 Years and 20 Edits: Ka's The Night's Gambit Is NYC Rap At Its Finest

    One of the most famous scenes in the landmark television show The Wire takes place in the early part of the first season. Three characters--who at this point the first-time viewer is likely to think of as nothing more than drug dealers--sit around a chessboard as one teaches the others how the game ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 2, 2013

    Joey Bada$$ on Summer Knights, and His Relationship With Jay-Z

    Joey Bada$$ is the face of new New York rap. The 18-year-old Brooklyn native flipped Internet fame into real-life buzz with his debut mixtape 1999 last year and became one of the city's most prodigious rhymers. His tender age belies his mature lyricism and Joey has already received cosigns from the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 28, 2013

    How Tipper Gore Helped the Geto Boys Popularize Southern Rap

    The same year the Berlin wall fell and signaled the creeping halt of the cold war, hip-hop group the Geto Boys released their second album with a revamped and newly galvanized lineup. The album, Grip It! On That Other Level, took the urban virtues of rap music and honed it on a diet of ultra violenc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 21, 2013

    Genesis Be's "Tampons and Tylenol" Is a Declaration of Women's Power

    For six years, Mississippi-born MC Genesis Be has stood out as an inimitable presence in the New York underground hip-hop scene. Arriving in 2007 when outsiders were still often faced with resistance, she's stood her ground and carved out a niche as one of the most heard female voices in the New Yor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 30, 2013

    Lana Del Rey's 'Great Gatsby' Greatness: Maybe Her Second Act Actually Doesn't Suck

    Remember when Lana Del Rey was controversial? If you're fortunate enough to have missed the back-and-forth that bitterly split the Internet toward the end of 2011 and beginning of 2012, the argument went something like this: Her dour Lolita shtick was phony, her music was caked in retrograde artifi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 28, 2013

    PSYched Out: The Today Show's Obsession With Psy

    One of television's longest-running programs, NBC's Today, has recently gone from venerable to vulnerable within the span of about a year. Thanks to more missteps than a line of drunken novice cloggers attempting the Riverdance, the morning show now finds itself routinely rated behind its main compe ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 20, 2013

    Portugal. the Man and Danger Mouse's Not-So-"Evil" Friendship

    When word started getting around about Portugal. the Man's next record, singer John Gourley put it out there that they'd be working with Brian Joseph Burton, aka Danger Mouse--of Gnarls Barkley, Gorillaz and The Grey Album fame--and that the band was toying with the idea of writing "their" Dark Side ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 15, 2013

    The Funniest Fake Entries in Kid Rock's Bartender Contest

    Last week, I wrote of my intent to win Jim Beam's Mix for Kid Rock contest, which will let one lucky winner follow the miscellaneous-genre legend to three stops on his "Best Night Ever" tour, filling him to the scruffy gills with Jim Beam cocktails each time. Since I couldn't figure out a way to r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 24, 2013

    Young Guru Ushers in the Era of the Engineer, Prefers De La to Tribe

    You know Young Guru as the super-engineer knob-twiddler behind hits from Jay-Z, Rick Ross and Drake, but last week he steeped out from behind the boards to deliver a lecture at N.Y.U.'s Clive Davis School of Recorded Music as part of his Era of the Engineer tour. In tandem with Grammy U, the session ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 15, 2013

    Brochella! Here Are the Best T-Shirts the Dudes Are Wearing

    As we mentioned earlier, the bros are freaking bringing it this year! Sure, we all know about the women who wear just about nothing, but the guys are getting exceedingly creative, particularly when it comes to their funny t-shirts. So it's time to give the men some props for combining humor with sty ... More >>

  • Music

    April 10, 2013

    The Making of Mykki Blanco

    Michael Quattlebaum Jr. takes rap beyond pronouns

  • Blogs

    April 9, 2013

    Crumpet-Baking Englishman James Blake Loves Jeremih's New Mixtape, Collabing with RZA

    For James Blake, the differences between his self-titled 2011 debut and its hotly anticipated follow-up, Overgrown, boil down to a pretty simple fact: He had no idea he was writing his way towards a record the first time around, and this time he did. "We came to about 10 songs and I thought, 'Oh, wo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 2, 2013

    I Want to Stop DJing to Make "Real Music," Will Fans Accept Me Despite My Past?

    Are you a musician? Is your group having issues? Ask Fan Landers! Critic Jessica Hopper has played in and managed bands, toured internationally, booked shows, produced records, worked as a publicist, and is the author of The Girls' Guide to Rocking, a how-to for teen ladies. She is here to help you ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 29, 2013

    Every Simile on Lil Wayne's I Am Not a Human Being II

    Lil Wayne has just released his tenth studio album, I Am Not a Human Being II. It's been 18 years since his first album: True Story as one half of The B.G.'z. In that time, he's been a lesser-known member of an embattled southern hip-hop group, a scrawny kid, a mixtape hero, the greatest rapper aliv ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 22, 2013

    Helado Negro Is the Carl Sandburg of Spanish Electronic Pop Music

    On a recent morning in Crown Heights, we met Roberto Carlos Lange, the Brooklyn by way of Miami master who makes music under the moniker Helado Negro and whose latest album, Invisible Life, was released on Asthmatic Kitty earlier this month. It's his most collaborative album to date -- with appearan ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 14, 2013

    Don't Compare 16-Year-Old Bishop Nehru To Joey Bada$$

    Hailing from upstate New York, 16-year-old rap tyke Bishop Nehru released his impressive Nehruvia mixtape last week (which you can stream below). Over 12 tracks, the project features Bishop (who named himself after 'Pac's character in Juice) dropping his buttery flow over instrumentals by MF Doom, M ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 8, 2013

    Shlohmo/Rustie - Output - 3/7/13

    Better Than: Spending six hours in a live action arcade game. Last night, from 10 p.m. until 4 in the morning D33J, Jackmaster, Oneman, Rustie and Shlohmo played to a high-spirited Williamsburg crowd which braved terrible weather to support some of the most exciting rising stars in electronic music ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 2, 2013

    "We Won": Producers Daedelus and Salva on the Rise of Electronic Dance Music

    As the boundaries that separate genres continue to dissolve, hip-hop and dance have formed an alliance that's bringing electronic producers to the forefront of popular music. For artists like Daedelus and Salva, who've been working with multiple genres for their entire careers, this evolution has be ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 22, 2013

    The Ten Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 2/22/13

    Here are the 10 best concerts around the city this weekend, in no particular order.

  • Blogs

    February 22, 2013

    Har Mar Superstar Brings in Doomtree's Mike Mictlan for Last Fridays

    For over a decade, Har Mar Superstar has been one of music's most consistently entertaining cult favorites. He's currently busier than ever, recently announcing his new album Bye Bye 17 in-between hosting his Nocturnal Emotions podcast and curating his monthly Last Fridays residency at the Knitting ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 22, 2013

    Get Lost in the Virulent Tumblr Maelstrom of Lady Lamb the Beekeeper's Aly Spaltro

    How best to tag the restless, reactive folk-pop of Lady Lamb the Beekeeper? So many ways, dude: rambunctious, precocious, invigorating, probing, sweet, exasperating, quirky, self-indulgent, lunging, crackers, too sane, even. The outfit led by Brooklyn's Aly Spaltro, 23 -- named after something she s ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 21, 2013

    Why Hip-Hop Purists Should Learn To Stop Worrying and Love Waka Flocka

    Tonight, Queens-born / Georgia-raised MC Waka Flocka takes the stage at B.B. Kings as part of the Waka Flocka and Friends concert. Unfortunately, a vocal sect of hip-hop purists here in the culture's birthplace have been anywhere from hesitant to downright dismissive of Flocka's brand of raucous rap ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 15, 2013

    Inside the Insane Clown Posse iPhone App

    While perusing Insane Clown Posse's Twitter timeline, like a person does, I came across something interesting: our favorite rap clowns announced a new update to their official smartphone app, which I didn't even know existed. For the advancement of pop journalism and human knowledge in general, I he ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 11, 2013

    SNL Sound-Off: Justin Bieber

    As expected, the Bieber/Bieber Saturday Night Live episode doled out plenty of lesbian haircut jabs and opportunities for the Canadian teen idol to bust out with the giggles in the middle of each skit. With a hilarious opening monologue that had Bieber handing out roses and misguided Black History M ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 11, 2013

    No One Trusts the Tastes of Teenage Girls, But Should: Why Justin Bieber Is the Next Beatles

    At what point did teen girls suddenly just become wrong? "Serious" music fans seem to have universally accepted a critique of quality that befalls any artist who willingly sells to the rabid teen girl market and stigmatized the fans who dare to sometimes be male or at least above the age of 18. It's ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 7, 2013

    Five Rappers Fans Love That Critics Can't Stand

    By Marcus Arman Not all rappers need critical adoration to achieve commercial success. Some use negative reviews as motivation, others dismiss them as hate, and a few of them probably don't know what constitutes a review. But it's commendable anytime an artist reaches some level of success. In fact ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 4, 2013

    The Ten Best Jazz Shows in NYC This Month

    See also: Ten Jazz Albums to Hear Before You Die

  • Blogs

    February 4, 2013

    Curren$y Smokes Tons of Weed, and Still Works Much Harder Than You

    Let that man multitask. In between bong snaps and awaiting a new episode of The Regular Show to come on New Orleans' rapper Currren$y is also having an extensive conversation with SOTC about the scattered array of topics potheads tend to have. Like about cartoons for instance. And snacks and shit. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 1, 2013

    You Guys Wanna See the World's Weirdest John Denver Concert?

    John Denver is coming to town, and he's bringing his old bandmates with him. Together, they're kicking off the "Rocky Mountain High Concert" U.S. tour in Westbury on Friday (at the NYCB Theatre at Westbury), and then looping back around to Best Buy Theatre on Tuesday, February 12. And they'll be pla ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 1, 2013

    Defend Your Ballot: Caitlin White, Pazz and Jop 2012 Contributor

    You can't really know where you're headed unless you know where you've been. For that reason, we're taking a look back at Pazz & Jop 2012 to drill down into the ballots of contributors and voters who participated. Maybe amongst the rubble we'll find clues about what lies ahead for music lovers in 20 ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 31, 2013

    Eight Quotes From Rihanna's Rolling Stone Cover That Attempt To Explain Her Relationship With Chris Brown

    Rihanna is gracing the cover of the March 2013 issue of Rolling Stone. In the story she addresses, for the first time, whatever the hell it is she and part-time pop star/part-time parking lot thug Chris Brown have together. We all know what brought us to this point; so no need to walk down memory la ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 29, 2013

    Sorry, Haters: Kitty Pryde Is Staying a While

    "It's a huge accident." That's how Kitty Beckwith characterizes the fact we're even talking, over chocolate tea at Tarallucci E Vino, about her unlikely success as a rapper. The alleged teenager made waves last year as Kitty Pryde, a Claire's employee from Daytona Beach who appeared, like all viral ... More >>

  • Music

    January 16, 2013

    Pazz & Jop: Miguel Is Living The Dream

    Sex takes center stage on his sophomore album

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2012

    How Do We Remember Things That Happen In The Past Without 'Best Of...' Lists?

    The minute December 1st was upon us, the Internet and print media alike began to fill its shelves and papers with content-heavy, link-heavy and rank-heavy lists, all of which give the reader some sort of guidance as to what actually happened over the past 365 days. Of course, we here at the Voice we ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 12, 2012

    Live: Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival Quakes Over Williamsburg

    Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival Various Venues Friday, November 9 and Saturday, November 10 Better Than:The EDM debate It's hard to believe the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival started five years ago in what used to be BKLYN Yard, now known as Gowanus Grove, and to those in the know (a/k/a e ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 21, 2012

    The Ten Best Concerts in New York This Weekend, 9/21/12

    In no particular order, here are ten can't-miss shows in New York this weekend. For the Voice's full rundown of New York concerts, hit up See Also: - All Tomorrow's Parties Preview: Founder Barry Hogan on the Festival's Move to New York City - Fear of a Talibam! Planet - ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 7, 2012

    Live: Madonna Brings Her Set Pieces, Sex Pieces, And Masterpieces To Yankee Stadium

    Madonna w/ Avicii Yankee Stadium Thursday, September 6 Better than: The VMAs. If ever you need a concise summary of Madonna's year, the billing for her New York dates will do nicely. There's Madonna, her name in no way styled to resemble that of a party drug. And there's Avicii, a Swedish stadium- ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 15, 2012

    The Top 3.66 Hip-Hop Songs Of The Week

    Hip-hop is at its best when artists collaborate, challenging one another to create their best work, and this week's best hip-hop tracks are highlighted by a collection of odd couples. DJ Khaled, of incessant yelling and inexplicably giving Ace Hood work, managed to put Nas, Scarface and DJ Premier o ... More >>

  • Music

    June 13, 2012
  • Music

    January 18, 2012
  • Blogs

    December 29, 2011

    The 11 Most Infuriating Songs Of 2011, No. 2: Lana Del Rey, "Video Games"

    The Song: Lana Del Rey, "Video Games." The Crimes: Irritated-alley-cat vocals; overwrought harps; fundamental misunderstanding of whether or not ironic critique of male-female mores can exist in the Hipster Runoff age; this poor girl's right thigh. In 2011 the phrase "Lana Del Rey" wasn't just the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2011

    Underwhelmed And Overstimulated, Part III: Occupying The Year Of The Woman Cliché In Hopes Of Blowing It Up

    Kanye West at Occupy Wall Street; confused woman. ​Sound of the City's year-end roundtable, with contributions from Tom Ewing, Eric Harvey, Maura Johnston, Nick Murray, and Katherine St. Asaph, continues. Follow along here. ... More >>

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