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Slipknot and Little Big Town Among Albums To Check Out: This Week In Music

October 21st, 2014 10:30am EDT
Slipknot and Little Big Town Among Albums To Check Out: This Wee
October 2014 continues to roll out big release after big release. Sales continue to leave more to be desired in general, but there’s always a gem or two. Arguably the week’s most notable albums come by way of Slipknot, Little Big Town, and T.I., not to mention Logic’s highly anticipated debut. Also in the mix is the ‘old school,’ which includes Neil Diamond and Aretha Franklin. This list focuses on nine albums to check out, but also lists others being released as well.

1) Slipknot, .5: The Gray Chapter (Roadrunner)

Masked metal band Slipknot return with their first new studio album ...
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11 Songs That Break Barriers

October 19th, 2014 4:00pm EDT
11 Songs That Break Barriers
Sometimes, you have to take a stand. Taking a stand isn’t always a popular move, nor is it always personally lucrative. Musically, ‘taking a stand’ often means that musicians promote an unpopular or not oft tread platform, theme, or cause. That means ultimately, these bold musicians look to break barriers and pave the way for acceptance, tolerance, and otherwise. Here are 13 songs that break barriers of some sort.

1) Hozier, “Take Me To Church” (Hozier, 2014)

“Take Me To Church” is nothing short of brilliant and progressive. Hozier makes sex sound sanctified, brings light to ...
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Music Spotlight: Hoodie Allen – A Musician You Should Know

October 15th, 2014 2:20pm EDT
Hoodie Allen
Pop-rapper Hoodie Allen did something in 2012 that many dream of doing – landing a top 10 album on the Billboard 200. That’s right, Allen’s EP All American debuted at #10 and sold 28,000 copies. For a relatively unknown artist, Allen’s debut was nothing short of remarkable. Take that a step further and compare Allen’s sales then to the sales many more established artists are debuting with today, and Ivy League graduate Steven Markowitz’s accomplishment is even more buzz-worthy. Oh and by the way, he dropped that EP independently!

Two years later, Hoodie Allen returns bigger and bette...
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Florida Georgia Line Leads Albums To Check Out: This Week In Music

October 14th, 2014 9:48am EDT
2014 Billboard Music Awards - Arrivals MGM Grand Garden Arena, M
October continues to be the ideal month for musicians to drop their albums – well at least from their perspective. This week’s crop of releases, dropping Tuesday, October 14, don’t quite have the ‘oomph’ of the last couple of weeks, but there’s still at least a potential surefire hit. Normally, U2 would be a sure bet, but you have to question how much an album issued for free will sell. Florida Georgia Line seems to be the favorites this week.

1) Florida Georgia Line, Anything Goes (Republic Nashville)

With bro-country a popular trend, Florida Georgia Line’s sophomore album Anything...
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2015 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Nominations Include Green Day, Nine Inch Nails, Lou Reed And More

October 9th, 2014 10:09am EDT
2015 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Nominations Include Green Day, N
The 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominations have been announced and once again, the eclectic group of musicians is not without its dark horses.

Making the cutoff just before the 25 year mark, both Green Day and Nine Inch Nails were nominated. The debut albums for both artists were in 1989. Green Day's debut EP "1,000 Hours" came out in April 1989, and Nine Inch Nails’ first album "Pretty Hate Machine" was released in October of 1989.

Also in the running for a prestigious spot in the Rock Hall are N.W.A, The Smiths, Lou Reed and Sting, The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Kraftwerk, Chic, ...
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10 Deceptively Written Songs

September 28th, 2014 4:00pm EDT
10 Deceptively Written Songs
Some songs just aren’t intended for literal interpretation. Some of the best-written songs are actually best interpreted figuratively. The 10 songs gracing this list are written cleverly, in a deceptive fashion. In other words, the lyrics (and sometimes title) transcend what’s literally being said. These 10 aren’t ‘classic’ examples – all are contemporary – but, the figurative, deceptiveness is definitely notable.

1) Hozier, “Take Me To Church" (Hozier, 2014)

Sure, the biblical book Song of Solomon is something else, but it’s highly doubtful that Hozier’s “Take Me To ...
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Barbra Streisand’s 'Partners' Beats Chris Brown for Top Spot on Billboard 200

September 25th, 2014 8:28am EDT
Barbra Streisand’s 'Partners' Beats Chris Brown for Top Spot on
Few 72-year olds can do it like Barbra Streisand. Who just landed another #1 album – Barbra Streisand! Duets album Partners not only debuted at #1, but did so with larger than expected numbers (196,000 copies). It also made history giving Streisand at least one #1 album in the past six decades. Go Barbra – it’s your birthday… well not really!

Chris Brown settles for the #2 spot behind Streisand, as X sells 146,000 copies. While Brown might be disappointed he didn’t score his third number one album, X performed better its first week than Fortune, which sold 135,000 copies. Maybe even ...
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10 Of The Most Controversial Songs Of The 10s

September 20th, 2014 1:00pm EDT
10 Of The Most Controversial Songs Of The 10s
Controversy has become commonplace in music, particularly in the 10s. Musicians are certainly taking more liberties, pushing the envelope more than ever before. Often, the weapon of choice is sex, but ultimately, there are few limitations to controversy anymore. Below are 10 of the more controversial songs of the 10s. Perhaps these don’t necessarily rank as the biggest offenders, but they have all raised eyebrows and/or drawn skeptics for some reason or another.

1) Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams & T.I., “Blurred Lines” (Blurred Lines, 2013)

“Blurred Lines” has controversy ...
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Christian Rapper Lecrae Takes ‘Anomaly’ To The Top Of Billboard 200

September 18th, 2014 8:31am EDT
Lecrae Anomaly
It’s rare that the Christian rapper debuts atop the Billboard 200. How rare – well it never happens – like “never ever.” Anyways, Lecrae made it happen this week as Anomaly outperformed early prognostications and sold 88,000 copies. Lecrae was able to hold off a strong second week from Maroon 5’s V (80,000 copies, #2) as well as what was thought to be a tight race with Jhené Aiko (Souled Out sold 70,000 copies, good for #3).

While Lecrae’s debut is celebratory, it is also another week where no albums moved 100,000 copies. Throw in the fact that besides Lecrae and Jhené Aiko, the top ...
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5 Musicians Experiencing A Horrible 2014 (With Bonus Tracks!)

September 17th, 2014 4:00pm EDT
5 Musicians Experiencing A Horrible 2014 (With Bonus Tracks!)
Not everybody is having a swell 2014. Some people are searching for employment, grieving over a loved one, or dealing with the heartbreak of a relationship. Others – those creatures called musicians – are dealing with some of the same things, not to mention flopped albums and a boatload of controversy. Here are five musicians experiencing a horrible 2014, with three honorable ‘bonus tracks’ thrown in.

1) Robin Thicke

It should take an army to beat Justin Bieber at the coveted top spot, but Robin Thicke has it “signed, sealed, and delivered” following nothing short of a dreadful yea...
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