This has not been a great year for women mega-pop artists. Lady Gaga’s Artpop fell flat, as well as Britney Spears’s Britney Jean. Sure, there was Miley Cyrus’s Bangerz but one could argue that her on-and-offstage antics suggest that she was more focused on getting press than creating music with longevity. What will make Beyoncé, the album Beyoncé Knowles surprise-dropped last Friday, stand out is partly the lackluster playing field and partly because the digital-only format which includes 14 well-produced, highly stylized videos to accompany the 14-track album (with three additional bonus videos) has satiated the public’s appetite for Netflix-style entertainment.
This 200th mixtape is a return to lo-fi roots. Stick Shift Records, a DIY feminist punk record label run by two ladies out of their apartment in Burlington, VT, curated this compilation of bands from all over the world. It's sort of a compilation of B-sides from bands whose albums Stick Shift has released, featuring a range of punk rock styles.
This month's new music roundup is heavy on the dance music—consider it a DIY antidote to the gray sky and wintery weather. We've got music from Ghana, Berlin, Portland, Brooklyn, the UK, and the tippy-tippy top of Cape Cod. Plus, we've got guitars and remixes and cow hearts to boot. Read below the jump for what was on the feminist music boilerplate in November!
Until this week, I was only peripherally aware of Lily Allen. Sure, I’d downloaded “Fuck You” and “Smile,” her funny pop confections with a bracing dash of intelligence. But I never qualified as a Lily Allen fan, and in fact had kind of forgotten she was a thing until the Internet blew up with a heated debated about the video for her new song “Hard Out Here.”
This XIGGA playlist is an afrofuturistic journey through time, space, and energy. It embraces the XIGGA afrophilocosmology that affirms the funky fresh and courageous ways that people navigate being both on the margins and at the center. Deep inside us lives a spirit that is bold and capable of afroastral flight. When we tap into the origins of our people, the truth of our spirits and the bass-beats of our hearts, we are capable of magic. It is true, our people could fly, and we do.
Before their set on the second night of a residency at Minneapolis music venue Icehouse rap trio GRRRL PRTY invited nearly a dozen female friends, each in matching GRRRL snapbacks, to dance and take over the stage. This was after a long night of sets from Chicago's Psalm One and Fluff Nasty, and Minneapolis rappers The Lioness and BdotCroc. The night was front-to-back female artists, a rarity for any show but a rarity for a hip-hop show especially.
Bitch is at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin, Texas, this weekend! Now in its 8th year, FFFFest (Fx4, to abbrev-loving Austinites) is the only genre-based festival in the country, with stages for comedy, hip hop/electronica, punk/metal, and indie rock. We were last at Auditorium Shores two years ago, and it's good to be back. Read on for our discoveries and recommendations for the rest of the weekend! If you're at the Fest, let us know who you're most excited about in the comments.
I started swing dancing in college as a way to meet people. That quickly led to a swing dancing obsession I still haven't recovered from.
For me, there's something about that nice eight-count beat that really picks me off my feet and cheers me up. So, to counteract the increasingly chilly weather, consistent downpours, and shorter days, I've assembled the cheeriest and most upbeat swing songs I could find. (Swing dancing also led to a significant liking for blues dancing, which may have leaked a bit into this mixtape—I just love Nina Simone too much.) So put on your dancing shoes and give it a listen!
Autumn is a glut of new music and bands on tour, so it's precisely zero surprising that our new music roundup for October is our longest yet. This month, we've got the world premiere of a new video by Julia Weldon, a song by a band called Hand Job Academy, and much, much more.
I started to listen to music a little differently after becoming a parent. It wasn't just about shielding little ears from raunchy talk and grown-up lyrics, although when my four-year-old started asking to listen to "Stacy's Mom," I realized I still had plenty to learn about this editing process. But I also found myself becoming much more attuned to songs about children and parents, and realizing that songs I'd listened to with neutral ears in the past were becoming almost unbearably sad to hear now. Case in point: Iron and Wine's "Upward Over the Mountain," sung from the point of view of a deadbeat son to his stalwart mother, made me tear up from the opening line and had me in full sobs by the end. So from joyous to cautionary, wistful to bittersweet, here's a selection of songs that capture parent-child relationships in all their lovely, messy, and overwhelming humanity.