Happy Monday, everyone. We bring good tidings to brighten your wintry day: The music blogosphere was abuzz this weekend over the triumphant return of one of R&B’s most enigmatic characters, D’Angelo! (Though we are still awaiting word on the whereabouts of his long-lost shirt). We have this story below, as well as the one about the time David Bowie rejected Coldplay’s Chris Martin. And then we have a bounty of new tracks from the likes of Modest Mouse, ILoveMakkonen, Chance the Rapper, and a collaboration between Kanye and Keef. And to top things off we have the weirdest Skrillex video of all time.
It’s been fourteen long years since D’Angelo’s much lauded second album, Voodoo. In the time since, the tortured neo-soul artist has had more than his fair share of troubles, be they legal, substance-related, or creative. In 2008, Spin asked,”What the hell happened?” but had little by way of answers. Shortly thereafter, the reclusive musician returned from his self-imposed sabbatical, committed to a European tour, and, rumor had it, began working on a new album. The sudden release of that album, Black Messiah, was announced via Instagram by collaborator Questlove yesterday, and is already available to stream and download. Listen to the first single, “Sugah Daddy”, above. We are very happy he is back in our lives. [Consequence of Sound]
Wiz Khalifa is the latest musician to endure the unpredictable, insane antics of The Eric Andre Show. Watch the rapper keep his cool in an interview as a raccoon sniffs around his feet and a bad George Clooney impersonator bursts out of the host’s desk. [Pigeons & Planes]
Ariana Grande takes a page from the Beyoncé 7/11 book of cheap music videos, making her latest, for her holiday paycheck “Santa Tell Me”, at home during a slumber party. [Celebuzz]
Last week, David Bowie was recognized at the BBC Music Awards, where he was nominated for Artist of the Year. In paying respects to the rock-god, Coldplay’s Chris Martin shared, with good humor, that he once asked Bowie to provide guest vocals on a Coldplay track. After listening to the track, Bowie kindly called Martin to decline, saying that it was not up to his standards and not one of Martin’s best. Slow clap and a tip of the hat to Bowie. [NME]
Childish Gambino, aka Donald Glover, has disappeared from social media. The Because the Internet Emmy-nominee suddenly and without explanation wiped all content from both his Twitter and Instagram feeds, leaving fans to speculate why. The leading theory is that Glover is participating in a social media blackout in support of Blackout For Human Rights, and to protest the recent grand jury decisions regarding police brutality against African American victims. Complex notes that Glover’s manager, Famuel Rothstein, has also changed his Twitter profile to support Blackout. [Billboard]
Noisey has dug up a fascinating hour long documentary by Russian filmmaker Egor Trubnikoff, exploring Michael Jackson’s bizarre and problematic visit to Moscow for his 1993 “Dangerous” tour. One revelation being that the cheapest ticket to the show was the equivalent of the average Moscowite’s monthly income.
Tenured alt rockers Modest Mouse have announced their forthcoming album, Strangers to Ourselves, will be released March 3, 2015. Today, they premiere the first single, “Lampshades on Fire”, exclusively through 89.3 The Current and it is available to stream now. Though much too short, Lampshades sounds like ModMo of yore, and makes us quite excited for March 3.
And the new tracks don’t stop there! In quick succession, we have…
ILoveMakkonen’s melodramatic, sing-songy “Swerve”, produced by Mike Will Made It and Marz. [Pigeons & Planes]
Drake sounding dominant as ever and doing most of the heavy lifting on OB OBRIEN’s zealous track, “Schemin’ Up”. Also featured is Canadian newcomer P. Reign. [Stereogum]
Chance the Rapper jumps on fellow Chi-town rapper Lucki Eck$ track, “Stevie Wonder”. [Noisey]
Two more Windy City rappers teaming up for a trac. Here we have Kanye West and Chief Keef’s long-awaited, auto-tune-laced “Nobody”. Sosa does the rapping while West does the backing. CK’s album is out tomorrow. [Complex]
That pesky Sony email hack has revealed some more mildly entertaining peeks behind the curtain of Hollywood. According to an email sent from his creative assistant, Kanye West is currently working on an “immersive” cinematic experience, a concept of which he tested in Cannes a couple years back. and now wants to build it into a feature film. Also revealed, in an email from director Jonathan Levine to Sony head Amy Pascal, Kanye may appear alongside new buddy Seth Rogen in an upcoming teaser: “We’ll have an XMAS tease for 2015. We have a specific idea to attach to The Interview that will crush. Seth, Joe [Gordon Levitt], and [Anthony] Mackie reenacting the scene from Big on the floor piano at FAO Schwartz with Kanye West. It’s fucking awesome.” [Daily Beast]
We will be back with more Music Dispatch on Wednesday, but, before we go, here’s a super-fun, week-old video from Giraffage, featuring puppy-faced space travelers. Enjoy. [Stereogum]