Solange and Anderson Paak lead our 21 most-anticipated albums of November

Often the last big records of the year arrive in November, making it a fair bet that Solange’s “imminent,” highly anticipated fourth album will drop in the next few weeks. There are also promising new efforts on the horizon from Anderson Paak, Dead Can Dance, Cupcakke, Josephine Foster, and Jeff Tweedy, plus exciting…

What’s so funny?: 25 singers cracking up at their own songs

Singers laugh for various reasons, not all of them sincere. Take, for instance, the laugh that closes out Joni Mitchell’s “Big Yellow Taxi”—a giggle some people find so fake, they made their own fan edits just to cut it out. There is intentional laughter, layered in to create a wild, maniacal atmosphere (“Thriller,” “…

What are you listening to this week?

Mary J. Blige has been through some shit. Depression, addiction, abusive relationships—not only is she not afraid to talk about these things, but she’s built a career out of it. Blige’s latest record, Strength Of A Woman, arrives in the middle of her acrimonious and much-publicized split from husband/manager Kendu…

Which is better: Pet Sounds or Sgt. Pepper’s?

This summer marks the 50th anniversary of the release of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band; The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds passed that milestone last year. The debate over which of these classic albums is superior has raged ever since they were released, and there is no easy victor on either side, even…

We must bear witness to this terrifyingly elaborate Star Wars-Sgt. Pepper’s mashup

It’s weird the way our relationships to the things we love as kids change over time. Sometimes we see the faults more clearly, but sometimes we become incapable of seeing those faults. Sometimes our fondness increases, letting us return to them time and again like a favorite sweatshirt, but other times their appeal…

Listen to this Sgt. Pepper’s outtake in honor of the album’s 50th anniversary

It was almost 50 years ago today that The Beatles’ seminal album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band came out. Look for a lot of celebratory exposition this summer, starting with a reissue of the entire album on May 26 on Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol/UMe, remastered by Giles Martin (son of Beatles producer George…

How A.V. Club staffers got their offspring to just say no to kids’ music

The A.V. Club, as you might have guessed, is staffed with no shortage of music nerds, casually tossing off comments about our vinyl collections and that obscure indie show we caught last week. Before we were parents, we naturally assumed that our excellent musical taste was something hereditary that we would pass on…

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