If you’ve ever paid attention to the Mercury Prize, the BBC Sound Of poll or basically any other situation where artists are rewarded for their good work, you’ll know that we Brits are really good at complaining about the people who get left out. Call it the underdog spirit, but you’ll find ten blogs bemoaning the fact that Captain Pretention and the Tear Stains (so emotional, so ahead of their time) didn’t make the cut, to every one person saying “well done Arctic Monkeys”.
Jon Hopkins rounds off an incredible year with a dark and industrial toned video for Collider, from his Mercury nominated and end of year list dominating record Immunity.
Take a look above.
Listen: Royal Blood - Out Of The Black
I don’t hold with the insidious theory that making brilliant art is a young man’s game – or, in the words of Sickboy in Trainspotting, that “you have it, then you lose it”. It’s a trope that’s been with us since the beginning of rock’n’roll, dammit since the romantic poets, that idea that inspiration is intrinsically tied up with the energy of youth, that great works come like a bolt from the blue and artists are best off dying young rather than chasing round in ever-decreasing circles trying to relight your creative fire the rest of your sorry life.
If R. Kelly Makes Us So Uncomfortable, Why Do We Keep Listening?
One of the internet’s most distinct qualities is that it’s got the memory of a goddamn minnow. The recent leak of R. Kelly’s Black Panties has brought with it the same questions that we’ve been asking of Kelly for years: Is it OK to like his music despite the fact that he more than probably has had sex with multiple minors?
Britney Spears: Capitalism’s Last Stand
Imagine being Britney Spears. You can’t, right? You can try, but you can’t come close to understanding what it must be like to be that famous. So famous that within hours of your latest single dropping it hit #1 in 36 countries. So famous that when you go through a break-up it’s treated as world news, above rapes and murders and fires and all that not fun stuff. So famous that when you pop out a child, it’s as though you split the Atom. Being a pop star is beyond the limits of conventional thought.
Meet the Real Rick Ross
“Freeway” Rick Ross sits at a corner booth at Denny’s on Crenshaw Blvd. in Los Angeles and stirs his Earl Grey tea and adds a spot of honey. “Someone wants to buy ten T-shirts. He’s a new hustler,” he says ecstatically as he puts down his cell phone. He smiles and brushes off the egg scramble he accidently dropped on his T-shirt, which reads “THE REAL RICK ROSS IS NOT A RAPPER.” He now is selling shirts like these, as opposed to crack.
The now 53-year-old drug kingpin was introduced to cocaine dealing at age 19 and spent the next three decades in and out of prison for various offenses. He first got into trouble for selling stolen auto parts when he was in his early-20s. His most publicized arrest was in 1995, when he was set up by notorious smuggler and government agent Oscar Danilo Blandon and the DEA, for trying to purchase more than 100 kilograms of cocaine. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, but, after a Federal Court of Appeals case, his sentence was eventually reduced to 14 years. He was released from prison on September 29, 2009.
Ross still recalls the poverty of his youth. “BeforeI started selling drugs, our cabinet doors were falling off at my mom’s house. We had holes in the cabinets where rats used to come up. We had roaches. It was just terrible.” He continues, “When I started having money, I rebuilt my mom’s house. I wanted a better life for myself, so I sold drugs. It’s what I knew.”
These days, Ross is currently working on numerous projects, one of which is getting financial backing for a Nick Cassavetes-helmed feature biopic about himself. In a similar vein, the documentary A Crack in the System by director-producer Marc Levin will be released in the spring. Ross is currently writing and editing his autobiography Freeway Rick Ross: The Untold Autobiography with journalist Cathy Scott, which will be released in February. The book will chronicle Ross’s life and attempt to explain the decisions he has made. There also is a cable TV miniseries based on the book that’s currently in development with producer Mark Wolper, who’s also executive producing a remake of the miniseries Roots for History.
Noisey: When you were three, you watched your mother Annie Mae Mauldin kill your uncle George with a handgun. What was that experience like? How has it affected you to this day?
Rick Ross:I loved my uncle. At the time, he was probably the man in my life, and I looked up to him. I loved the way he drove his car. He used to do a little trick every time he came home. He would always open the door and stick his foot out of it, like he was stopping the car like The Flintstones. I got a kick out of it. To lose him was devastating. Having him gone and my mom in jail for a period of time was hard. She was away from me, so now I’m in a strange place with strange people living with my mom’s boyfriend’s mother.
How long was your mother in prison for? Did you resent her for killing your uncle?
I don’t remember. It was a short period. She got off with self-defense, I believe. They didn’t keep her. I understood what she was going through, and I know my mom wasn’t somebody who just killed people. My mom was a Christian, churchgoing person. I was there when my uncle stabbed my auntie, so I saw that, too. I saw the blood. I was standing right on the side of my mom when she shot my uncle. I could even hear him breathing when he was lying on the floor trying to get his breath.
I Found The Russian Die Antwoord
While scrolling through the darkest depths of the internet late at night, I found what can only be best described as a Russian mental patient’s answer to Die Antwoord. They’re called Little Big, and their “best” video, “Everyday I’m Drinking”, features dubstep, dwarves, scary clowns and bears getting fucked. Apart from dangerous driving, it’s literally got every great stereotype that you could ever want from a Russian music video.