Roadrunner Records - Slipknot's hard-hitting, aggressive metal anthems are getting…
- Posted by Spinner
10. The Post-Retirement Comeback
When Pavement announced that they're coming out of retirement for a 2010 tour, were we really shocked? The comeback story is one for the ages, literally, and now is as ripe a time as ever for disbanded bands to return to the spotlight for a few more rounds of touring -- and gobs of money. Phish, the Pixies, Blur and the Jesus and Mary Chain all have recently re-formed for the benefit of adoring fans and concert promoters.
9. Imitating Beatles Album Covers or Describing Anything as Like the Beatles at All
Yes, everyone who has ears knows that the Beatles were a pretty good band. That you still have the idea to spoof Fab Four album art in any form is, at this point, a massive no-no. The insert tray of Lucero's 2009 release '1372 Overton Park' depicts the band walking across a road in the style of 'Abbey Road.' A very Beatlesque picture. And while we're at it, referring to anything as "Beatlesque" can stop, too.
The Prince-patented, Kelly Clarkson-approved song-title shorthand has become a widely accepted convention. It was fine when the Purple One was dying '4 U' and Kelly was better off 'Since U Been Gone,' but Trey Songz's single 'LOL :-),' on which the R&B star actually enunciates the phrase "ell-oh-ell smiley face," takes this laziness to a whole new level. It's not that hard to say words anymore -- and we rue the inevitable day when a song called 'WTF' starts making the rounds.
7. Featuring ...
Remember when rappers made tracks without inviting all their boys, brothers, moms and managers to drop a verse? Neither do we. A couple of guests are welcome, but damn, Game -- 18 different rappers?! And note to mega-pop stars who already have a busy plate: You don't need to go around and sit in on every single record in production -- [cough, cough] Lil Wayne [cough, cough].
Yes, you hated the Bush administration and yes, you love you some Obama. But that sentiment is surely a popular one -- and one that people who attend concerts somewhat regularly will know, because they've heard it at every single show! Instead of the diss/praise banter, tell a family story or a knock-knock joke. It'll be way more original.
Zooey. Scarlett. Paris. Kevin Bacon. There seems to be an inherent desire for actors to cut a record. With that in mind, if you're an actor and have the recording studio in your sights, might we suggest getting together with an M. Ward-type figure à la She and Him, or at the very least, hire Pete Yorn as a consultant.
4. The Supergroup
What do bored members of popular bands do in their spare time? They get together with other like-minded, talented folks and record. Then release a record. Then tour. Like their old band, except this time everyone says they're super. This year had a plethora of offerings, with Chickenfoot (Sammy Hagar, Chad Smith, Joe Satriani and Michael Anthony), Monsters of Folk (Jim James, Conor Oberst, M. Ward and Mike Mogis) and Tinted Windows (James Iha, Taylor Hanson, Adam Schlesinger and Bun E. Carlos) all faring very well. But none made more of a splash than Them Crooked Vultures, the John Paul Jones-Dave Grohl-Josh Homme hard-rock trio, whose debut is out later this month. They're so super, they sold out shows all around the country before anyone heard a full song.
Fiona Apple prefers verbal barrages. Axl Rose pummels his fans mid-song. Cat Power likes to cower on the ground. And Oasis -- well, read the tabloids. It's not a rock show unless someone leaves crying, bloody or pee-pants drunk -- preferably the performer onstage. Recently, Ida Maria appeared to be deep in her cups during the disastrous Perez Hilton tour, Patrick Wolf threw a stool in Germany this past August, Jessica Simpson mangled some lyrics and went a little crazy, and Wavves freaked out in Barcelona, having to dodge shoes being thrown at them.
2. The Posthumous Album
Record labels know that music -- just like paintings and literature -- is worth more after its maker has gone on to meet his. 2Pac's peeps have reaped the biggest reward, having released an astounding eight albums since his death in 1996 -- twice as many as when he was alive. But with Michael Jackson joining the immortals and the staggering amount of money 'This Is It' is currently taking in worldwide, it's a safe bet we'll see many, many new projects from the once and future King of Pop in the next several years. Just ask Kurt Cobain, who celebrates not one but two record releases this month: a 20th anniversary edition of Nirvana's debut, 'Bleach,' and 'Live from Reading 1992.' Congrats, Kurt.
1. Yelling 'Free Bird'
Alas, the number one cliché in music doesn't come from the artists or the record labels. It emanates straight from the fan -- namely, the one idiot at every show who thinks requesting 'Free Bird' between songs is, like, dude, the funniest thing ever. It doesn't matter what band is onstage. Hipsters scream it because it's ironic. Metalheads shout it 'cause it's obnoxious. And Lynyrd Skynyrd fans yell it because, well, they actually want to hear it. Not even the freakin' Blue Man Group is safe anymore. Musical fads and fashions will change with the times, but 'Free Bird' requests will, unfortunately, live forever. Note: If you're a musician and find one of these in your audience, the best policy is to ignore. Maybe it'll then go away. (Probably not.)