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Charli XCX's Punk Cover of Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" Is Perfection


In addition to generally ruling with her own music (her recent album Sucker is great), Charli XCX knows her way around a cover, whether it's an ambient version of the Backstreet Boys' "I Want It That Way" or her own "Boom Clap," in effortless Japanese. Her latest is a re-working of Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" as a break-neck new-wave punk anthem, as performed above during a visit to BBC's Live Lounge, and it's really fun. She leaves the "this sick beat" part out for obvious reasons, but it rocks nonetheless.

Miley Cyrus is Bringing Her Short Film, "Tongue Tied," to the NYC Porn Film Festival


Nipples unfreed, Miley Cyrus can be seen playing with bondage straps and sticking her tongue out, as she often does, in "Tongue Tied," the pop-star's collaboration with filmmaker Quentin Jones. Originally part of Cyrus' Bangerz tour and then "untied" on Nowness, the short film is heading to the inaugural New York City Porn Festival in Bushwick on February 27th. Said to be "a weird experiment," Cyrus will surely be in good company at the festival alongside films like "Backdoored & Squirting" by early aughts reality star and MySpace OG Tila Tequila. Artist Amalia Ulman will also screen "The future ahead" that same night. James Franco's previously released Interior Leather Bar is showing Saturday, lest you think that our foremost celebrity/artist crossover has been forgotten.

The PornHub sponsored festival at Secret Project Robot starts Friday, February 27th and ends Sunday, March 1st. An all weekend pass -- including all the screenings, talks, and clothing optional parties -- will run you a cool $69.00, naturally, and you can get tickets here or just watch "Tongue Tied," above.

Our NYFW Party Mega Guide

NYFW Party Guide_02.jpg(Image by Avinash Hirdaramani)

New York Fashion comes at an interesting time this year: It coincides with Valentine's Day and the NBA All-Star games. That means there'll be a smorgasbord of parties to choose from, attracting fashion types, lovebirds and basketball fans alike. As always, we're compiling our mega round-up of all the best parties of the season -- and your odds of getting in. Keep checking back as our list will get updated daily with new parties being added throughout the next week and a half.

Rochambeaujourdandunn.jpegWHAT: Jourdan Dunn's 'Cell For Gratitude' Event
EXPECT: Jourdan Dunn and other leggy super models will descend on Amy Sacco's No. 8 for Dunn's second-annual 'Cell For Gratitude' party, whose proceeds will go toward fighting sickle cell disease. It's a cause that hits home for the model -- her son, Riley, suffers from the ailment -- and this year she's teamed up with eyewear brand Illesteva and label Rochambeau on a collaboration, which will be unveiled at the party. Oh, and before we forget -- you might get the chance to rub shoulders with Rihanna and Cara Delevingne: the singer and model both stopped by the inaugural event last season. 
WHERE: No. 8, 357 W. 16th St., New York City
WHEN: Tuesday, February 10th from 9pm-midnight
RSVP: Invite Only
EXPECT: The digital fashion retail platform, which asks tastemaking creatives to share their favorite items and brands that you can buy, celebrates the launch of their new mobile app with a banger at the Boom Boom Room.
WHERE: Boom Boom Room, 442 W. 13th St., New York City
WHEN: Wednesday, February 11th at 10:30pm
RSVP: Invite Only

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 3.22.03 PM.png(A pic from last season's NYNY party; Photo by Madison McGaw/BFAnyc.com)

WHAT: NYNY Fashion Week Kick-Off Party With Makonnen & the Timo Weiland After Party
EXPECT: A glamorous hodgepodge of fashion editors, models, designers, hip-hop heads, socials, DJs and random party kids will head to Up&Down to toast Timo Weiland's Fall collection and catch a set by rapper Makonnen. Too bad the party's not on a Tuesday. 
WHERE: Up&Down, 244 W. 14th St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th at 10pm
RSVP: Invite Only

russellwestrbooknyfw.jpgWHAT: Westbrook Frames Launch Party
EXPECT: Oklahoma City Thunder champ and best-dressed player in the NBA, Russell Westbrook, celebrates his limited-edition sunglasses collaboration with JackThreads with a party in a Soho townhouse. Kanye consigliere and Off-White designer, Virgil Abloh, will be DJing and treats will come courtesy of cronut guru Dominique Ansel.
WHERE: 214 Lafayette St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th from 9pm-midnight
RSVP: Invite Only

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 2.15.35 PM.pngWHAT: MADMAUS NYFW Party
EXPECT: Rising designer Christopher Lee Sauvé shows off his special collab with nightlife queen Amy Sacco at her venue No. 8. If the invite is anything to go by, there'll be lots of cute kids in mouse ear hats, a nod to Sauvé's 'MADMAUS' collection.
WHERE: No. 8, 357 W. 16th St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th at midnight
RSVP: Invite Only

BFA_10014_1205704.jpg(Jonathan Simkhai and models; Photo by Carly Erickson/BFAnyc.com)

WHAT: Jonathan Simkhai After Party
EXPECT: Models, editors, bloggers and fans of Simkhai's athletically-inclined, feminine designs will head to the Electric Room to raise a glass to his Fall collection.
WHERE: Electric Room at the Dream Downtown, 355 W. 16th St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th at 9pm

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 12.36.35 PM.pngWHAT: Essential Homme's NYFW Party
EXPECT: Cute boys and the girls (and boys) who love them will celebrate the magazine's spring fashion issue with a party featuring music by Twin Shadow, Angel + Dren and a surprise performance. Last season's special guest was Ja Rule, FYI. 
WHERE: Gansevoort Meatpacking Rooftop, 18 Ninth Ave., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th at 9:30pm
RSVP: Invite Only

BFA_9990_1201600.jpg(Creatures of the Wind's Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters; Photo by Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com)

WHAT: Creatures of the Wind After Party
EXPECT: The CFDA Award-winning designers will celebrate their Fall collection with a party at East Village tiki bar, Otto's Shrunken Head.
WHERE: Otto's Shrunken Head, 538 East 14th St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th from 9pm-1am

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 12.48.42 PM.pngWHAT: Todd Snyder After Party
EXPECT: Brookyn psych-pop band The Midnight Hollow will perform at a party celebrating the menswear designer's Fall collection.
WHERE: BonBonniere, 92 Ludlow St., New York City
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th from 9pm-11pm
RSVP: Invite Only

ONE.1 Mens NYFW Party
Really, really ridiculously good-looking male models will take a break from their catwalk duties when One Management throws them a party at Gold Bar.
Goldbar, 389 Broome St., New York City
Thursday, February 12th from 9pm-11pm
Invite Only

russellnyfw2.jpgWHAT: Barneys New York Hosts a Cocktail Party In Honor of Russell Westbrook
EXPECT: Before he takes the court at tge All-Star game, NBA star -- and budding eyewear designer -- Russell Westbrook will celebrate with Barneys New York.  
WHERE: Gramercy Park Hotel Terrace, 2 Lexington Ave., New York City
WHEN: Friday, February 13th from 7pm-10pm
RSVP: Invite Only

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 2.09.50 PM.pngWHAT: Concept Korea After Party Hosted by Fern Mallis
EXPECT: NYFW founder Fern Mallis hosts this bash for the collective of Korean designers showing at Lincoln Center this season.
WHERE: Le Bain at The Standard, High Line, 848 Washington St., New York City
WHEN: Friday, February 13th from 7pm-9pm
RSVP: Invite Only

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 3.12.13 PM.pngWHAT: Maybelline & MADE Cocktail Party
EXPECT: Cleveland Cavaliers player JR Smith and model -- and former PAPER Beautiful Person -- Gigi Hadid host the "Tip Off," a chance to celebrate ahead of MADE's two days of fashion presentations and runway shows at Milk Studios on Saturday and Sunday. Jus Ske and Va$htie will provide the night's soundtrack.
WHERE: Milk Penthouse, 450 W. 15th St., New York City
WHEN: Friday, February 13th from 8:30pm-10:30pm
RSVP: Invite Only

BFA_10767_1307844.jpg(Misha Nonoo, center, and friends; Photo by Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com)

WHAT: Misha Nonoo Cocktail Party
EXPECT: The rising British designer will celebrate her new collection with a daytime cocktail party at Hôtel Americano.
WHERE: Hôtel Americano, 518 W. 27th St., New York City
WHEN: Saturday, February 14th from 1pm-3pm
RSVP: Invite Only

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 12.23.11 PM.pngWHAT: Carmelo Anthony and Dom Pérignon's Lights Out Party
Fashion people getting a Sunday night second-wind will rub shoulders with basketball fans, NBA players, and celebrities at this All-Star game after party hosted by Carmelo Anthony and Dom Pérignon. Swizz Beatz will be DJing. 
Gilded Lily, 408 W. 15th St., New York City
Sunday, February 15 at 11pm
Invite Only

Listen to Madeon and Passion Pit's Feel Good Jam "Pay No Mind"


For his new single, Madeon teamed up with Passion Pit, who can always be counted on for unrelentingly upbeat synth-pop songs. The result is "Pay No Mind," a funk-infused EDM track off the French producer's debut album, Adventure. Also featuring Bastille's Dan Smith and Foster the People, Adventure is due out March 31st, but you can listen to the feel good jam "Pay No Mind," above, while you wait.

Watch Courtney Love and Letterman Discuss Buddhism, Energy and, Duh, Drugs


"Now, let's talk about drugs and drug usage." Yes, Dave. Let's. And while we have you and Courtney Love together once again, 11 years after she climbed onto your desk and flashed the world, let's also talk about Buddhism, the toxic "energy" arising from the now-resolved Love-Grohl feud and the new documentary Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, on which Frances Bean Cobain is an executive producer. (Awkwardest moment: Love segueing abruptly from the emotional trials of helping with the documentary to those of appearing in the hit show Empire!)

Watch three clips from last night's episode here.

Haim Serve Up Witchy Vibes for the "Pray to God" Music Video


Back in October, Calvin Harris linked up with goth princesses Haim for "Pray to God" and now the dance track finally has a music video. The EDM DJ knows that we're only here for Haim, so he smartly made the video all about them (plus some bears, wolves, and lions, which we are also here for). The visuals for "Pray to God" mainly consist of Haim standing against different backdrops, looking cool as fuck in long black witchy dresses, and at one point they ride horses. Overall, this is a pretty accurate depiction of what my heaven would look like! Watch the music video for "Pray to God," above.

Kanye West Graciously Agrees to Help Taylor Swift Record Music

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.33.01 PM.pngAfter Kanye West imparted his passionate manifesto unto the Grammys, as is tradition, the rapper visited Ryan Seacrest's radio show to clarify his comments regarding the award show and Album of the Year winner, Beck. West talked to the host about everything from the voices inside his head that made him do it, admiring Beck as an artist, and the general wackness of the Grammys. "[When Beck accepted his award] everybody was looking at me and people starting screaming, 'Kanye! Kanye! Kanye!' Okay that didn't really happen, these were the voices in my head," West joked about the moment on On Air. "But I just really didn't want to take away from Beck's moment or the time he has to talk. [When I walked on stage] it was kind of a joke, like the Grammys themselves," he added. Later he summed up the whole debacle with, "It's very hard for Kanye West to not be very true and vocal to what he feels." And who can really blame Kanye West for that? Certainly not Kanye West.
Kanye West also revealed to Seacrest that Taylor Swift, who West gave the Beck-treatment to at the 2009 VMAs, wants to get into the studio with him after the two selfied and made up at this year's Grammys. Personally, this is terrible apocalyptic news that completely ruined my morning and honestly felt like an intimate attack on my well being, but Kanye West sees it differently. As in, he actually thinks this is a good idea and will produce listenable music: "Any artist with an amazing point of view, perspective, fanbase -- I'm down to get in the studio and work with. I don't discriminate," Kanye explained. "If I could be involved in giving people any type of energy, advice in the studio -- whether you're Beyoncé, whether you're Taylor Swift, Jay Z or Beck, I'd like to be involved in that." Kanye West has done mediocre pop collaborations before, so I guess this really isn't all that different. Whatever. But all T-Swift shade aside, it looks like we can all expect some new music from the newly minted besties in the ever dimming future.

Listen to the full interview between Ryan Seacrest and Kanye West, below:

The 12 Best Sex Scenes In Movie History

In honor of Valentine's Day here are a dozen of my favorite sex scenes in movies -- and no I don't mean the pottery scene from Ghost...although the hilarious take off of that scene with Leslie Nielsen & Priscilla Presley in The Naked Gun 2 ½: The Smell Of Fear almost made the list.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.58.01 PM.png1. Don't Look Now
In this eerie, brilliant 1973 thriller by Nicholas Roeg set in Venice there is a fantastically edited sequence between a couple (Julie Christie & Donald Sutherland) making love and dressing in the morning that is truly erotic.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.58.23 PM.png2. Brokeback Mountain
The awkward, tender moment when the Wyoming ranch hand and the rodeo cowboy (Jake Gyllenhaal & Heath Ledger) finally got it on in the tent in Ang Lee's poignant 2005 film felt honest and mercifully didn't have audiences nervously snickering like they did when Michael Ontkean & Harry Hamlin kissed in Making Love (1982).

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.59.01 PM.png3. Coming Home
In Hal Ashby's 1978 film Jane Fonda plays a wife with a husband in combat in Vietnam who unexpectedly falls for a paralyzed vet (Jon Voight). The scene where he brings her to what seems like her first orgasm was sensitive and startling at the time.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.59.43 PM.png4. Y Tu Mamá También 
In this terrific 2001 Alfonso Cuarón film set in Mexico two teenage boys (Gael García Bernal & Diego Luna) go on a freewheeling road trip with this hot woman (Maribel Verdu) and the scene where all three tumble into bed is memorably hot.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.00.30 PM.png5. Love & Basketball 
Two Los Angeles neighbors (Omar Epps & Sanaa Lathan) both pursuing a basketball career fall for each other in the 2000 debut film by Gina Prince-Bythewood. The couple's beauty and chemistry in their sex scene is palpable.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.00.56 PM.png6. Last Tango In Paris
Bernardo Bertolucci's controversial 1972 film about an American widower (Marlon Brando) and a French girl (Maria Schneider) who begin an anonymous sex affair at a flat in Paris had that notorious scene where he humps her on the floor and lubes up with a stick of butter that impacted margarine sales for years.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.01.51 PM.png7. Unfaithful
This 2002 erotic thriller directed by Adrian Lynn is about a couple (Richard Gere & gorgeous Diane Lane) whose relationship goes dangerously awry when the wife begins a tryst after a chance encounter with a stranger (played by the smoking hot Olivier Martinez). The film wasn't all that -- but the electricity between Lane and Martinez was.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.03.08 PM.png8. The Big Easy
This immensely enjoyable 1987 film by Jim McBride stars Dennis Quaid as a New Orleans lieutenant investigating a murder who wrangles with a State District Attorney (the sublime Ellen Barkin). When those two hit the sheets it's better than Mardi Gras.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.04.28 PM.png9. Mulholland Drive
David Lynch at his best. This creepy 2001 neo-noir is about an aspiring actress (Naomi Watts) who befriends a beautiful amnesiac (Laura Elena). But the scene where the mystery woman climbs into the actress's bed and they get it on is hotter and more sensuous than the more clinical Blue Is The Warmest Color.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.05.54 PM.png10. American Translation
A little known 2011 oddity directed by Jean-Marc Barr about the demented love between a well-off American girl (Lizzie Brochere) and a strange handsome young French man she falls for (Pierre Perrier) -- who also happens to be a serial killer of gay men. But there's a standout scene in the movie where he does a sexy striptease to Electric Light Orchestra's "Showdown" while he straddles her in a chair that makes me insane.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.06.15 PM.png11. Two Moon Junction
The late great Zalman King was responsible for great soft core sex films like Nine ½ Weeks, Wild Orchids, and Red Shoe Diaries. But my all time favorite was this ludicrous 1988 film about an upper crust Southern belle (Sheilyn Fenn) who falls for a studly carney worker (Richard Tyson). There are so many ludicrously great sex scenes in this film I don't even know where to begin.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 1.08.08 PM.png12. Team America: World Police 
South Park creators Matt Stone & Trey Parker's inspired, gloriously insane 2004 puppet action film has the most offensive and hilarious marionette sex scene that would have Howdy Doody rolling over in his grave. Filthy and fun -- now isn't that what great sex is supposed to be?

Watch Jessie Ware's Surprising Video for "Champagne Kisses"


Jessie Ware is the queen of understatement, but the visuals for "Champagne Kisses" are strikingly absurd -- and, more predictably, gorgeous. In the video for her latest single off last year's Tough Love, Jessie Ware appears in various unnatural states (with an elongated neck, as a half-wooden, half-human creation, as Carmen Sandiego but with blue) against the backdrop of bright, crisp colors. Watch it, above.

Donald Robertson's Nutty New Book Celebrates the Icons of Fashion

2FashionisNuts_DonaldRobertson_AnnaWintour_MED.jpgAnna Wintour

Donald Robertson is the hardest-working genius in fashion. By day he's Head of Creative Development for Bobbi Brown. By night he uses paints, sharpies and duct tape to create a never-ending stream of artwork. His instagram feed is a must-view destination for style addicts worldwide and he's now launching his first book: Fashion Is Nuts, a 40-page collection of portraits of Robertson's favorite iconic faces of fashion painted on walnuts. Yes, walnuts. The book is printed in a limited run of 1000 copies, so shake your butts (and your walnuts) out to get a copy (you can find them HERE) before they're sold out. We chatted with Robertson to get the scoop.

What makes a person good to be drawn on a nut? Can someone with any shaped head be a nut or do they need certain types of features?
The person has to be slightly nuts, that's all.

Do you remember the first fashion person you were really interested in or inspired by?
Yes, everyone on the Jackson 5ive -- it was their Saturday morning cartoon. It's burned into my brain and my work.  A highly recommended Google!

Do you think people are flattered to be made into a nut or has anyone been insulted?
Pat McGrath was the only one I was worried about because her skin is so smooth. I searched for the smoothest walnut I could find. She just flipgrammed the whole Fashion Is Nuts book to her hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram yesterday. So I'm good. Ali, the manager at Sant Ambroeus showed Grace Coddington hers. She laughed, I'm told.

Is there ever a time you don't feel like working?
No. I'm a day and night laborer

Who are your portrait dream subjects?
I nailed them all in the book!

Fashion Is Nuts is available here. See more of Robertson's portraits below.

Yves Saint Laurent

2FashionisNuts_DonaldRobertson_IrisApfel_MED.jpgIris Apfel

2FashionisNuts_DonaldRobertson_HediSlimane_MED.gifHedi Slimane

Danny Masterson Tells Us About His Life in the Church of Scientology

Beck once told a New York magazine writer that Scientology is "always the last question journalists ask." And when Danny Masterson, actor, DJ, restaurateur and second-generation Scientologist, appeared on our cover six years ago, the topic of his beliefs was tucked into a single paragraph toward the end of the story. Reconnecting with Masterson last month, we asked if we could focus in on the religion -- "religious philosophy," as he calls it -- and why it works for him. As it turned out, we spoke with him just after he'd arrived to Sundance, where the already-controversial documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief was about to premiere. All the more reason to hear a bit of Masterson's story and ask some questions.

You're at Sundance, where Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief is about to premiere. 
I heard about that documentary; the documentary where they interviewed eight people who hate Scientology. Should be pretty interesting. I wonder if Sundance would allow a documentary of, like, eight people who hate Judaism. But you know, my religion's fair game, I guess, 'cause it's new.

When things like this documentary and the book Going Clear come out, does it make your life socially awkward?
I only heard about [the book] recently. I do read, I do go out, but no one had mentioned it to me. When I looked into it, I noticed that he couldn't publish that book in Canada or the UK because the libel laws are so much stricter than ours. And so when I asked about it, they're like, "Oh yeah, there's basically like 200 lies in the book and so in England and in Canada he couldn't even publish that book." Anyone can say anything about anything. How true it is, I guess that's up to the reader. If you're going to write something and you don't ask the people who actually do it, then what's the fucking point? We could all interview the KKK about what's cool about being white, but we don't. I don't know; it just seems retarded to me.

What are your first memories of Scientology?
I didn't really notice anything different in terms of my upbringing till I was in junior high school, maybe a little bit before that. I grew up in New York and it was just sort of like, everyone hated their parents and was always cheating and lying, and I was able to just be friends with my parents. A lot of people have that in their life, but I noticed that all my friends who were Scientologists, kids I had grown up with, we all sort of had the same thing: easy communication. It wasn't this whole "us versus them" thing. So I noticed that. I noticed that any times I had trouble studying anything, there was really great literature on how to study, which made learning really easy for myself and my friends. In Scientology, there's no belief system or anyone who's worshipped or whatnot; it's all sort of like college of the mind. And so I grew up not having to go and pray to anyone. I grew up just sort of like, "Oh, if you're thirsty, drink water. That's a logical fucking decision, right?" And you're like, "Yeah, OK, that makes sense." And that was pretty much the basis of my reality as a child.

How old were you when you started coursework?
Probably eight, nine, ten. Just what every religion would have in terms of like, "Be good to thy neighbor," that kind of thing. And then when I was maybe 15, I was like, "Oh, this is fucking awesome." I finally was old enough to read Dianetics, which is an unbelievably not-easy book to read because it was written by somebody with a much bigger vocabulary than most of us, in 1950. It just blew my mind. I was like, "That's the reason why I have the thoughts that I have and don't want them, or why I behave in a certain way when something happens and I don't know why." Dianetics literally is the answer to that -- just like, here's what it is and here's why, and here are the examples, and see if it works for you. And then when you notice, over and over and over you're like, "Oh shit, that's exactly that same thing, that's that thing I read, that's that thing I read," that's when I took it on for myself as like, this is what I want to study more than any other philosophy.

Do you remember any specific situations where you saw it working?

It would be hard for me to explain to you, having not read that book. But you know, it's just the study of the mind and cutting it into two parts: the analytical mind and the reactive mind. One is the one that we use and think with, and the other is the one that uses us, and we do things and like, "Why the fuck am I doing that?" or "Why the fuck am I thinking this thing?" Hubbard figured a way to get rid of the reactive mind so it doesn't affect you and it doesn't fucking take over your life.

Sounds like you found your own connection with it in your teens.
Yep. Yeah, everybody does. There's tons of kids I grew up with who were raised Scientologists who now don't do Scientology but are still totally cool with it, and then there's lots of people who're like, "Oh yeah, here, check out this book, it might help your life," and then all of the sudden they're like, boom, "Oh my God, I need this, I need this fuckin' all day long, I want to know all about this." It's a religious philosophy, so when I'm sitting there, studying about something, I'm oftentimes sitting next to guys from Nation of Islam and friends who are fully Jewish and other friends who are Catholic and Reverend Alfreddie Johnson, who's a Baptist minister.

Can you be any other faith and a Scientologist at the same time?
Yeah, you can be any faith you want to be and be a Scientologist.

What are the things that you wish you could clear up -- the most annoying things that people approach you about?
Nothing really. I've never been given a hard time my entire life about my belief system or my philosophy in life. Literally never once in 38 years. If people start like asking questions in a way where I feel like they have an ulterior motive, I'm just like, "Dude, just go buy a fucking book and read it and decide for your fucking self what it means. I don't have time to have this conversation with you." If you're curious about something, I'll give you my one- or two-minute version of my opinion on it, but it's also like that's my opinion on what I read. You should read it for yourself, and decide whether you agree or disagree with it. And that's a big thing in Scientology: the shit that is there at this point has been tested over and over and over so that each thing actually works. It's like what I said earlier: "Oh my god, I'm so thirsty." "OK cool, go drink water. That's your solution." And everything basically in Scientology is like, "Here's a problem; OK cool, here's something you can study that will help you find the solution to that problem." There's nothing more to it.

You've used words like "toolbox," "technology" and "study" to describe Scientology. It's all very discipline-based...
Everything in Scientology is just based on logic. I mean, the word Scientology means the study of knowledge. So there's nothing else to it.

Except that it's also a religion, so there must be, right?
What must be?

There must be something more to it than any other scholarly pursuit?
No, not really. It's literally just that. There's books and lectures and whatnot, and then there's the stuff in Dianetics, which is the auditing, which is basically going through painful incidents in one's life and erasing them so that they don't upset you. And that's basically it. There's the two different avenues of Scientology and there's nothing else.

So then what would you say is your personal relationship to L. Ron Hubbard? 
He's a fucking guy who wrote awesome shit that I love studying. That's who he is. He was a very famous author. He basically spent his entire life studying every great religion, found everything that worked, found things that didn't work, took the stuff that worked, started like questioning it and grilling it and drilling it, going over and over until he could find the things that worked every time, guaranteed. And he was like, "Holy shit, here's a new discovery I've just made. What does everybody think about it?" Everyone goes and studies and checks it out and they're like, "Yeah, actually that does make sense and it does work." And he's like, "Cool, let me try and check into this." And he'd just like go through all these avenues and basically came up with his discoveries and wrote the book Dianetics in the 1950, which was his research into the mind. I mean, that's literally it.

But he also had theories about the origin of the world, as I understand it, and the fate of our souls and superhuman stuff that would suggest he's more of a like messiah figure.
No one in Scientology thinks he's a messiah. Everyone thinks he's the founder of a philosophy that we all agree with, basically, and he was a hell of a lot smarter than I was, 'cause I couldn't come up with this stuff. 

So does your family celebrate March 13?
My birthday?

Is that your birthday as well?
We celebrate the shit out of it. We have a massive party on March 13. 

Is it not also L. Ron Hubbard's birthday?

Is that part of your celebration every year?
No. [laughs] There's no religious holiday of LRH's birthday.

That was something I actually found on Scientology.org, that there were a handful of religious holidays including his birthday.
Yeah, the special occasions which are anniversaries of things, but then they'll basically like, on LRH's brithday, there'll be an event where they talk about the things that've happened in the past year. On the anniversary of Dianetics, they'll talk about, you know, what countries are now having places that deliver Dianetics. So there's stuff like that, where it's just sort of like updates on what's happening in the world, but nothing really more than that.

Do you feel like it's fairly democratic? Does the fact that there is coursework that people have to pay for make it less open?
No. I mean, most of the courses cost 20, 50 bucks. If you can't afford to go sit in a room and have someone who's trained in that course give you the lessons and help you study and learn it, then I don't know what to say. I mean, it's cheaper than college. You could argue how expensive college is and then the debt for the next 10 years -- and then how often do you use all of that information? I feel like I got the better end of the deal on that one.

Another thing you hear is that Scientology and psychiatry are pitted against each other...
Yes. You will not find a Scientologist who does not fucking hate psychiatrists. Because their solution for mental and spiritual problems is drugs. So let's talk about putting a Band-Aid on something that's just going to get worse and worse and worse. And the thing is, I'm sure there are tons and tons of amazing human beings who are psychologists or psychiatrists. But it's like, if you study that man is an animal and nothing more than that, and you basically have this fuckin' manual that has, what, 5,000 disorders in it, that you just bill your insurance company -- "Oh, you have PMS disorder, you have caffeine-addict disorder, you have mathematics disorder; here, take Prozac" -- what the fuck is that? Scientology handles those things, those mental problems that people have. It gets rid of them. It gets rid of them by that person doing it for themselves. That's the solution to depression, not fuckin' Prozac and whatever other pill that makes the kid then walk into a goddamn school and kill other kids.

Paul Haggis left the church on account of gay marriage.
Yeah, which is so stupid. What Paul was angry at made perfect sense, but it had nothing to do with Scientology. There was some person who worked at some small church in San Diego who wrote his name and then wrote "Church of Scientology" on Prop. 8, which is the most fucked up thing I've ever fucking heard. That guy got reamed, kicked out, I don't know what the fuck happened to him. But then Paul was just mad that, as a religion, we're not going to come out and say that we are for or against anything, which is a political matter. You'll [hear] over and over where people ask somebody in the church to give their opinion and it's like, "We have no opinion in the world of politics. We are a religion." So if you want to know about spirituality we will talk about that, but not on anyone's stance on the politics of that. I mean, dude, there's a fucking ton of gay Scientologists. There's absolutely nothing on anyone in Scientology being against Prop. 8 in terms of them picking that as their religious stance. And so Paul then took that and went crazy about it, like, "You need to as a church come out and say that you're for gay marriage!" And the church is like, "Well, we're not going to do that, because we're not getting involved in a political matter in California. It has nothing to do with us, so please just fucking drop it." And the other thing is that Paul hadn't done anything in Scientology in fucking 30 years. So Paul is that dude who did some Scientology in the '70s and would hang out with Scientologists but never actually did any Scientology -- never got any auditing, wasn't doing any courses, literally for 20 years. And that's the fucking truth of the matter.

Do you foresee a time when conversations like this will be moot and Scientology will be folded into the larger religions of the world as something that just is?
I think next week, it begins. [laughs] I mean, to me it already is. I haven't had a conversation like this about my philosophy -- I don't think ever. But I love doing it and have no problem doing it. I work, I have a family and I'm a spiritual being who likes to understand why things happen in the world and want to learn more so that I can have them not affect me adversely. So if that's weird, then, well, you can go fuck yourself.

Inside the Lipstick Industry with Fred Armisen


New York City is about to play host to a particularly eventful week. NYFW is on the horizon and All-Star Weekend, celebrating the best basketball players in the world, is coming to New York this year. Beauty guru Fred Armisen is also planning his own all-star weekend of sorts for the lipstick innovators of the world. "It's all the creators that have invented new kinds of lipsticks and we're all going to get together. It's going to be an all-star group of those people," he explains on Late Night. We're no expert, so we'll just let Fred Armisen introduce you to all the hottest lipstick tech for S/S15 ("There's a kind that sort of comes down from a disk. You can use that."), above.

Watch A$AP Rocky's Lo-Fi Video for "Lord Pretty Flacko Jodye 2"


On Tumblr, where the rapper answered a myriad of questions last night, A$AP Rocky described the music video for "Lord Pretty Flacko Jodye 2" as a "fun lo-fi video" that uses projectors to showcase "that fun energy." Well, mission accomplished. Even though Rocky is just hanging out at a party and, later, drinking a 40 in a laundromat, it sure looks like a damn good time. Watch A$AP Rocky's sequel to his 2012 jam "Pretty Flacko," above.

Learn How to Handle Jerks Who Hold Up Phones at Concerts the Marky Ramone Way!


To all the bands who've taken to asking their fans to curb their smartphone-snapping at shows: watch and learn. As usual, the answer to all problems, in rock n' roll and in life, lies in the black-clad bosom of the Ramones. And in this new clip, posted on College Humor's experimental-programming YouTube channel C2, drummer Marky Ramone solves this awkward phones-at-shows situation with a SWAT! 

Our boy Alex Scordelis, who's written PAPER cover stories on Iggy Azalea, Amy Poehler and Courtney Love, wrote and produced the clip; Jake Fogelnest directed it. We asked Scordelis about working with the legendary skinsman.

"It was a blast," Scordelis says. "He's played on so many killer records -- a lot of people don't realize that he was in the Voidoids and played drums on Blank Generation. The two musicians in the sketch, Geoff Garlock and Mike Pace, are metalheads and fans of Marky's pre-Ramones proto-metal band, Dust. He got a kick out of that."

Check out the video, above. And if you can handle unfiltered punk attitude and smooth California jams in the same sitting, watch Scordelis' ad for Don Henley Shirts.

"Dr. Phil With No Dialogue" is Brilliant and Horrifying


How loud can silence be? Judging by this voiceless Dr. Phil clip, which surfaced on Reddit earlier this week, the answer is "Motörhead." Somehow, replacing the typical Dr. Phil fights and pieties with chair-squeaks and sub-audible whimpers multiplies the show's already nerve-shearing tension. If there's any justice in the world, the fledgling No Dialogue series will someday enter the pantheon of immortal YouTube sound hacks, alongside #withoutmusic, Bad Lip Reading and Shreds.

Enjoy the silence, above.

See Baby Drake Rap in Drake's New Short Film, "Jungle"


Drake's new short film, "Jungle" is the visual equivalent of Drake feat. Drake. In his triumphant return to acting, Drake gets emotional (duh), ruminates on fame, reps the hell out of Toronto, and makes liberal use of his Canadian-Carribean accent. We also get to see a young Drake singing with his dad and rapping in old home footage. Get all your favorite Drake tropes in one place, above. 

This Portlandia Sketch May Contain the Worst Ska Pun of All Time

As someone who spent a decade playing ska and watching The Simpsons to the exclusion of just about everything else, this new Portlandia sketch really has me... skanking down memory lane. In it, Simpsons creator Matt Groening takes anarchist pain-in-the-ass Spyke to court for screening up bootleg merch -- not because of the bootlegging per se, but because, as Groening says, Bart Ska-mpson "is the worst pun ever." But Matt, haven't you heard of Skabba the Hut?

The full episode airs on IFC tonight. Till then, watch the ska-tch, above. Bonus points for the dialogue bubble on the offending shirt ("I'm a Rudeboy" in Comic Sans) and for Carrie almost breaking at 1:13.

Artist Genevieve Belleveau Explores the Softer Side of BDSM in "Sacred Sadism"

gen1.jpgGenevieve Belleveau photographed by Geena Andrews

At the mention of BDSM in this particular moment in time it's hard not to let your mind snap to Fifty Shades of Grey, even if you've never picked up the book and have no plans to see the film. Leather whips, o-ring collars, and other trappings of the act come to mind, but what about bouquets of wildflowers? Organic plant-life? Pale pink? Genevieve Belleveau's "Sacred Sadism," on NewHive, is a proposed manifesto for a different way of thinking about dominant and submissive play. The artist's methodology incorporates the aspects of BDSM with the aesthetic of New Age healing to "soften the stigma of perverse deviation" and ultimately work towards the freeing experience one can achieve when giving up control. Genevieve Belleveau explains the possibilities of BDSM's softer side, below.  

The last time we talked you moved from New York to LA and you were living in an RV for your mobile monastery project.
Now you've started this Sacred Sadism project. Take me through that transition.

Sacred Sadism came out of the monastery project, for sure. I initially thought that I was going to make Sacred Sadism my new, like, life-altering project. But I'm tired. I can't really shift gears that drastically right now. Originally, I was gonna start doing bookings and appointments and do healing sessions with people in the RV. I thought it through for a while and I've been working on a project since basically last March -- for almost a year -- and it was just the sort of thing where I was like, "I need to be gentle on myself. I've done enough masochism this year."

GCrj_of4GI2jIR9dwyPmXrSEQ2k-QI4NreH-Gwnsbuz8gvMlswqY8QLW1EENDJ0LBpwcuQ=w1359-h792.gifImage courtesy of the artist, photographed in collaboration with Sarah Sitkin.

What exactly is "Sacred Sadism"?

Well, I was doing these floral flagellation performances when I was still back in New York. I did one at the New Museum at the Ed Fornieles benefit thing, New York New York Happy Happy. I had a VIP section cordoned off for me to do these like, guru healing sessions on VIP ticket holders. And the whole thing was... really something. But, anyway, I ended up pushing flowers all over people's faces or whipping them with roses, or things like that. People really liked it and got a lot out of it. I thought it was really interesting that, in a way, the whole performance relied on the power of suggestion. You know, like a psychic or a therapist or whatever. There's a lot you can do when people really want to believe that they can be healed in that way. Similar to a lot of stuff I do working with religious tropes, belief is the most important component in many ways. So, fast forward to LA: I didn't know I was gonna end up in LA, but I just really felt called to come out here. I felt like I was being called to be around plant-life on a regular basis -- that's something I miss when I'm in New York. When I first got out to California I was living up in Altadena and it's very lush up there. It's two hours from LA via public transit and I was super poor, so I couldn't really go anywhere. I'd just kinda walk around there all day, every day, just like, touching and talking to plants, basically.


[Laughs] Yeah. That was kind of a very sad, lonely time of my life, honestly. But that's where the project started -- from feeling sad and lonely, and also feeling like these plants, flowers and trees are offering something to me, you know? It was a very real feeling of communicating with plants. It made everything okay.

_7dV0HxmI-zDGbzodxLju2XRiw3EBunREdPmiKtm99oYJgFApEhCcyI9XCG0Ha63z1UD0A=w1359-h792.gifImage courtesy of the artist, photographed in collaboration with Sarah Sitkin.

That's really beautiful. So, it was a conscious decision to use the plants instead of going with more traditional bondage equipment?

BDSM is something that I've been really interested in for a long time, but I had no real personal experience with it, except for what I see as the inherent BDSM that plays out in every romantic relationship. Whether we're aware of it or not, there's always someone who's going to dominate and someone who's going to submit. It happens in the bedroom, it happens in waking life, and I think that's how relationships sustain themselves, in a way. I've always been really interested in that, but I felt like I wanted to create an "in" to BDSM because I didn't really feel invited into that community. The leather and the gothness of it -- and the sort of darkness of it -- never appealed to me, but the psychology of it really appeals to me. And, by the same token, there's something about New Age stuff that I'm also very interested in but don't really feel quite invited into because it feels too idealistic to me. I'm I'm interested in both concepts, so I started thinking about different ways that I could join them together to make this kind of portmanteau of two ideologies that would maybe allow other people to explore those ideas without feeling like pushed out.

apprentice1.jpgApprentice Simon Seapony photographed by Geena Andrews

This definitely seems gentler. In your practice, the dominant and submissive roles -- referred to as "Master" and "Slave," respectively, in traditional BDSM -- are called the "Priest/ess" and "Apprentice." Can you explain their dynamic?

Since the beginning I never wanted to use the word "slave." I see a Priestess as being a guiding role for the healing and that, in theory, would involve sitting with the person, understanding where they're coming from, what they're seeking to heal, and knowing a little bit more about their history. It would probably be a very gentle healing for the first few sessions, and more talk therapy if anything. Then the apprentice signs this contract which basically says that for the duration of each session -- sessions could be an hour or two hours long -- they give up complete control over to the Priestess.

Does it become an erotic relationship or is it more like a guided mediation?

I think it's both. What I'm aiming to create is the circumstance that eroticism can be very much explored. It's on the table. If I were to do this session with people it wouldn't come to like genitalia contact, any auto-erogenous zones wouldn't really become a part of the therapy. And that really has more to do with my comfort level. Maybe there are people who'd want to adopt this therapy and do that, but that's just not something I'm ready and willing to do at this point. But the eroticism part is very important. There can be a visual eroticism, like ASMR eroticism; just the sound of the materials can be erotic. I think there's eroticism in touch, inherently, when you let a stranger touch you. I also think that the plant-life, itself are erotic. I think that's all built in to the practice without it being overtly, like, "I'm trying to turn you on." It's just sort of going to happen. And the sessions I've done have all been with women, actually, so... 

Oh, so you've done this with people?

I did an exploratory healing weekend as part of a healing series that my friend runs. I performed a session with three or four other women, who were the only people to come forward, which I thought was interesting. That time involved more of like, a guided meditation. It involved touch using plants and light flagellation. I was really just starting this practice and was very gentle. But with continued practice with an apprentice, I would even want to try to border the limits of violent exchange. I'm interested in how that dark expression can be healing.

TXF06sQqDbxC_a9LLyhou00Gu3N82iKObtQUQ09Xc7YDUtpFsTtdY_TdiJlxvT9oaDpFwg=w1359-h792.gifImage courtesy of the artist, photographed in collaboration with Sarah Sitkin.

Yeah, I noticed that in the imagery in your manifesto there's a bird of paradise put into a--
[Laughs] --Yeah, the bird of paradise buttplug. That's the most extreme example. A lot of the research leading up to this consisted of dating websites. I spent a lot of time on collarspace.com, which connects subs and doms, and I spent months and months and months corresponding with these people, trying to learn about the psychology of them desiring this very painful, humiliating treatment. It was really fascinating to me. Whenever I mentioned like, a cactus paddle, a lot of people were very interested in that -- the extreme pain and bleeding. But maybe they were interested more in the fantasy than in real life. I never took it any further than correspondence. 

54b59c835ccacf6688a76e51.gifImage courtesy of the artist, photographed in collaboration with Sarah Sitkin.

Did 50 Shades of Grey come to mind at all when you started this?

[Laughs] No. It didn't. I'm really happy that these things are happening at the same time, though. I do tend to think that, even with the monastery, I stay aware of what's going on in pop culture. When I did the monastery it seemed like there was a very loud roar from the world about nomadicism -- turning off the computer, about taking time to yourself. I kind of just think it's coincidental and the time is right. I'm just responding to an intuitive sense of "this is the time that people will start embracing that." You see BDSM all over fashion now. Fashion is embracing a very cute, quirky side of it.

Why do you think people are embracing BDSM so much right now?

That's a great question. I mean, one of the parallels that I draw in the proposed methodology of "Sacred Sadism" is the idea that we've already chosen to relinquish control to social media. The way that we agree to have our privacy negated. A lot of people will freak out if they change some policy: "Oh my god, they have access to my information, oh my god Google's doing this now," etc. And yet, people still do it! The majority of people are still willfully choosing to upload their lives through the ether to be a part of this thing because the desire to feel a connection to another human being is more powerful than the desire to stay alone, and stay private, and stay sequestered off. That's something out of my monastery research that I discovered too. I realized that, no, of course I don't want to live in complete isolation forever. I think the rise of BDSM has something to do with the dawn of the internet. This sense of wanting to lose control is very natural, it's an infantile instinct to have someone coddle you or tell what to do. It's comforting! It's sort of like giving yourself over to the mother that is Earth. I like to call Google the 'Gaia of Google.' I see it as a feminist force. It doesn't have to be, it could be androgynous, but I see it as feminine because we associate femininity with nurturing, holding, and caring. I see it as people being willing to give over to this feminine force in all of their daily actions, and maybe wanting to feel that experience matters in their relationships to. I'm not sure.  

10 Movies That Should Never Be Turned Into Musicals

Virtually any popular film gets turned into a Broadway musical these days--everything from Ghost to An American in Paris -- and it's gotten to the point where there need to be some limits. Well, I've created some. Here are the 10 flicks that are perfectly fine on their own terms and should never be presented with singing, dancing, and premium seating. NEVER!!!

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.10.21 PM.pngThe King's Speech
The only well known performer who's adept at both stuttering and singing is country star Mel Tillis, and with him in the lead role of King George VI, they'd have to move the whole thing from 1930s England to modern day Nashville. And that might come off a bit silly.

A dark musical is fine, but one about a man suffocating his sick old wife goes way beyond Side Show or Next To Normal and would surely scare away the tourists. Besides, people on respirators don't sing much.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.15.42 PM.pngMilk
Can you imagine setting the life of the murdered gay activist to music? Can you picture anything more preposterous or looney tunes? Oh, they just did it? Never mind.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.20.00 PM.pngThe Miracle Worker
Yes, this classic drama about Annie Sullivan's tutoring of disabled genius Helen Keller started on the stage, but that doesn't mean it should return there, with songs attached. And while it's true that Tommy was a really good musical about a deaf and blind person, that was totally the exception. Sorry, but Hello, Helen! just would not fly, and "The Wa-Wa Blues" does not make for a scintillating production number. No, really.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.20.55 PM.pngSophie's Choice
As talented as Sutton Foster is, I don't think she -- or anyone -- could pull off a toe-tapping tuner based on a woman deciding which of her two kids to give to the Nazis. Unless they use ABBA songs!

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.22.07 PM.pngDriving Miss Daisy

A musical about two people gabbing away in a car is a terrible idea -- too claustrophobic by a mile. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was about people in car, but it flew! And besides, it sucked! I just don't want to hear some old biddy crooning "You're my best friend" to Ben Vereen.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.24.07 PM.pngZero Dark Thirty
Talk about a bomb!

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.25.37 PM.pngThe Interview
For obvious reasons

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.27.43 PM.pngTootsie
Broadway has already showcased quite a few drag musicals, but this one would be a logistical nightmare because the actor playing "Tootsie" would have to keep switching between Michael and Dorothy, resulting in some serious wig burn. If they could get two identical actors to play the part...I still wouldn't go. But maybe they should make it a jazz musical called Tootsie Roll and get RuPaul to sissy that walk to Broadway.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 4.29.06 PM.pngPsycho
This would make for a truly ludicrous musical -- though Norman Bates could sing some interesting duets with himself, and the car descending into the swamp could rival the Phantom chandelier, if done properly. So let's round up Norbert Leo Butz, Carol Channing, and...Nah, bad idea. And like I said, there have already been more than enough drag musicals!

Model Toni Garrn and Friends Are Selling Their Designer Clothes and Bags for a Good Cause

(Photo by Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com)

Toni Garrn is known as one of the most gorgeous blondes in the fashion business but she's also using her position as a top model to make the world a better place. Tomorrow Garrn is hosting a closet sale where she's offering up years worth of high fashion goodies from her own closet as well as those of friends like Kasia Struss, Suki Waterhouse and Christy Turlington. The sale is in conjunction with Plan International and the proceeds will go to support women and girls' education in the West African nation of Burkina Faso, which Garrn visited last year. The sale is 1-5 pm at Spring Studios, 6 St. John's Lane in Tribeca. We spoke to Garrn about how she got involved with the organization and what we can expect to find at the sale.

How did you come together with Plan International and how was Burkina Faso chosen as the beneficiary of the sale? Have you worked with the charity before?

I was looking for an NGO that was focusing on children's needs and especially girls and which is based in Germany as well as in the US. Since I started supporting Plan International when I was 16, by sponsoring a girl in Vietnam, it was soon clear that a cooperation with Plan, which is based in my hometown Hamburg, Germany would be great. I have been trying to raise money for the Because I'm a Girl campaign since last year and I chose to support a project in Burkina Faso, West Africa, whose aim is to educate women to become teachers. I designed a jeans line last year with a label in Germany and profits went straight to the education of these women. I was able to increase the number of female teachers that received a scholarship by 30%. Still there's a big need for more teachers and we hope to raise a lot of money with this sale in order to support more girls in Africa.

Have you been to Africa? If so tell me about your trip.

Yes last year in June I went to Burkina. It was an incredible experience to talk to the girls going to school and listening to their needs and wishes for life, most of them never having seen a TV or a magazine. The most striking thing I saw and learned there was how immensely important the role of women can be in those cultures. They are the ones fighting to survive while taking care of dozens of babies. Having those women educated is the best way for a better future for third world countries. I can't wait to go back -- this year I'll most likely go to Zimbabwe, because Burkina Faso lies in the region where Ebola broke out.

Was it hard getting rid of things from your closet for the sale? Are you a big shopper? Do you have a particular shopping weakness?

I've been collecting clothes for a cause like this since I started modeling. I've had suitcases packed in my apartment in Hamburg and NYC for a long time. It feels like I'm giving half my closet away now, which is great because I love shopping so now I have more room to do so.

Can you tell me about some of your favorite things that you're selling?

I've got some really nice leather jackets, a few beautiful evening gowns. There's a [donated] silky, long beige Balenciaga evening dress that I may buy myself. We have Balmain outfits. We have a lot of leather bags that Christy Turlington gave me. Also a huge amount of very fun high heels, from Miu Miu and Guiseppe Zanotti.

Who else will be donating clothes for the sale?

I've gotten an incredible amount of donations from almost all my girlfriends including Kasia Struss, Karlie Kloss, Suki Waterhouse, Constance Jablonski, Christy Turlington and many more and still donating. Anyone is welcome to help!