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Rejoice! There are Amy Poehler and Tina Fey Action Figures

Fey Dolls.jpgGood work, nerds -- toy company Bif Bang Pow! has announced a limited run of Weekend Update action figures depicting everyone's favorite comedians ready to mock the news. They are available for pre-order for $29.99, including a Weekend Update desk for your play-acting of the heady days of the Bush administration -- though they will also reportedly be sold first at Comic-Con, where they will almost certainly run out. The bigger question is -- why SNL? Why isn't this a complete set? Why aren't there Baby Mama action figures? Where are the Golden Globes action figures, complete with awards for only Amy Poehler and Tina Fey? Sometimes, the universe is a cruel place.

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11 Long-Gone Publications That Shaped '70s NYC

In my career as a writer, I've worked for a lot of publications (yes, printed matter) that eventually fell by the wayside, either because I've been around for a long, long time or because I'm some kind of horrible bad luck omen who curses the pages I grace. In any case, read this quickly before I drive this publication to extinction.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.03.33 PM.pngAFTER DARK MAGAZINE
Launched in 1968, this beautiful, glossy magazine full of luscious color spreads managed to appeal to an affluent, 30-something gay market without being expressly gay. But the sensibility certainly was. Covers through the years included Bette Midler, Barbra Streisand, Dolly Parton, and Ann-Margret. I did a cover story on teen idols, as well as interviews and ultimately a gossip column about theater and nightlife. The magazine folded in 1983 as AIDS was hitting and the closet was no longer useful.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.04.11 PM.pngCUE MAGAZINE
This was a glossy weekly listings magazine, which also included some great features about Broadway, movies, and other areas of entertainment. I did a cover story for them on the Tommy Tune show A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine and loved reaching a literate, plugged-in market with it. In 1980, Cue was folded into New York magazine, which found its listings invaluable.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.04.44 PM.pngHX MAGAZINE

Marc Berkley and Matthew Bank founded this weekly bar mag (full name Homo Xtra), and I was regularly featured in it, and once even wrote some kind of wacky, autobiographical poem for them. Berkley wanted to bring sex and fun back to the community, so the mag included celeb interviews, gogo boy pictorials, theater and restaurant reviews, bar gossip, and lots of listings. In 2009, HX was sold to its rival, Next, which then folded it.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.05.33 PM.pngPHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE
Founded in 1911 and most popular in the 1920s and '30s, this monthly glossy wasn't sleazy in the late '70s, when I started interviewing TV and movie stars and doing music reviews for them. It was all straightforward and kind of appreciative, for real fans. In 1980, the mag folded and we were moved over to Us magazine (later to become Us Weekly), where I wrote the music column for years.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.08.15 PM.pngTV DAWN TO DUSK and TV STAR PARADE
In the late 1970s, I got a job as managing editor of these two monthlies, both put out by Ideal Publishing. The first one was a gushy fan mag for lovers of daytime soap operas, and the latter was a sleazy TV/movie mag, with purposely misleading titles that made you have to buy the magazine to find out the answers. ("Cher Leaves Sonny!" turned out, many pages later, to signify that she left him to go shopping for a few hours!) As people got savvier, the whole thing was doomed and went el foldo while I worked there, but I learned a lot -- about what not to do in journalism.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.10.30 PM.pngSOHO WEEKLY NEWS
This frisky alternative weekly thrived in the 1970s, when it bristled with downtown cultural coverage and sociopolitical commentary. I interviewed everyone from Bruce Dern to Peter Ustinov for them, but I also did fashion pieces (with PAPER's own Kim Hastreiter as one of my editors) and breathless nightlife reports. I even wrote an exposé of the aforementioned fan mags, sardonically titled "I Made Farrah 'Pregnant'!"

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.13.43 PM.pngDETAILS MAGAZINE
I know it still exists, but before it was a Condé Nast men's glossy, Details was an essential guide in the 1980s to NYC fashion, nightlife, and music, edited by Annie Flanders and anchored by a witty Stephen Saban first-person column around town. I wrote quippy, two-sentence movie blurbs, as well as cover stories about Hollywood hair and Susan Tyrrell. It was magical.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.15.20 PM.pngBLUEBOY MAGAZINE
From 1983 to 2007, this was a sexy magazine (mentioned in Cyndi Lauper's song "She Bop"), but with coverage of arts and politics to balance out the lustings. It was sort of After Dark Jr., and in the 1990s, it became more porny and less cultural, to make it stand out from the pack. I did a perfectly innocent feature story for them once -- no, I swear. Also: Christopher Street magazine, which I wrote a cover story about obsessive nightcrawling for, among other features. The mag gradually became obsolete and died in 1995.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.17.32 PM.pngCIRCUS MAGAZINE
This monthly rock magazine (1966-2006) also highlighted topics like TV and comedy -- basically anything that would appeal to the young, male audience. I wrote for them in the late '70s, interviewing married comedy team Stiller and Meara, among many other celebs.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 4.18.03 PM.pngMICHAEL'S THING
Let me include one publication I didn't write for, but picked up, whenever it was convenient. A small '70s-era weekly, with guides to cabarets, theater, baths, porn theaters, and other recreations around town, Michael's Thing covered campy entertainment, but there was a heavy emphasis on sex that gave it a certain underground insouciance. It was a real kitsch rag, but very of its time.

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Grab Meme Culture's "Mr. Guwop" Gucci Mane Hat Quick

Earlier today The Fader wrote a piece on these Drake-esque caps by stylist / "meme god" Jessica Anteby and Memeculture.com with "WOES" stitched across the front -- which definitely had me wishing I had a squad willing to wear this shit out with me. After all, anything  Anteby touches is bound to be A++, especially if it's a Drake conversation-starter meant to beckon other Internet-lurkers to me. 

However, something else much more exciting caught my eye while scrolling through the Meme Culture site. Namely, a collection of items with everybody's favorite metaphor-overstretcher/prolific mystery mixtape maker Gucci Mane on them in his excellent Mr. Guwop white fur coat look, of course.

Yes, now you too can don the Brick Squad boss on your brim for $28 (well worth the cost, imho). Though if you're feeling ~unique~ the sweater and shirt combo is always another option.

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The Weeknd Survives a Horror Movie Car Wreck in "The Hills"

Buckle up, because The Weeknd has just released a new, blood-flecked horror flick for his single "The Hills."

Hot off the shortlived leak of his new Max Martins-produced lead single "I Can't Feel My Face,""The Hills" is deliberately groovy and touch melancholic from the outset. Filled with airtight, snap-back percussion and creeping basslines, it all comes together to compliment Abel Tesfaye's woozy-oozy voice, as he balladeers through what looks to be the Hollywood Hills.

My guess is that it's his take on a The Hills Have Eyes horror flick, complete with scream samples, a car crash and a family of creepy Beverly Hill-Mutants (if we're keeping with the Wes Craven plot). Perhaps the self-awareness is a new direction he's exploring -- a more reflective move away from a body (ha) of work that's mostly been defined by its unrestrained sensuality. After all, his lyrics indicate a bit of regret at the superficiality of his hedonistic M.O., singing "I only love it when you touch me, not feel me. When I'm fucked up, that's the real me." 

Watch it all unfold below.

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Pop Souk Brings the Party to the Pop-Up Market this Sunday


Paper favorite Ladyfag is bringing back her excellent, intimidatingly comprehensive Pop Souk Bazaar, which aims to bring a bit of nightlife culture and fashion to a daytime pop-up market. 

The fifth installment is set to take over all of cavernous Webster Hall this weekend (former Pop Souk's have been held outside the Standard Hotel and in smaller spaces -- so this is a major upping of square footage). But we're not surprised about the amount of space, seeing as how Ladyfag, the brains behind popular parties Shade and Holy Mountain, is one of New York nightlife's saving graces. Plus, there will be a free Kiehl's barber shop, piercing booth and tattoo parlor (staffed by a hot model giving free "Ladyfag stamp" tattoos, which will get you into all her events for life), not to mention booths selling goods from nearly 100 talented local artists. Soundtracked by the likes of Doom Dab duo AHBS and "Legendary" DJ Joey LaBeija, you'll be able to peep new stuff courtesy of future-S&M designer BCALLA, tongue-in-cheek sportwear purveyors Whatever21 and the inventive material-warpers at BOND Hardware, all while sipping a cocktail. See the full list of vendors here.

We also hear there's going to be a special Ladyfag booth selling discounted, earlybird tickets for her upcoming Shade event, Shadey-O's ("Toasted Rave Surreal"!), so make sure you do an early sweep. See you on Sunday!

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Scenes from CITTA's Fundraiser On Behalf of Relief Efforts in Nepal

Tuesday night a mix of media and fashion folks came together in support of a good cause -- relief efforts in Nepal -- at Acme. The fundraiser was in support of CITTA, an organization that promotes health, education and economic growth in developing nations, and proceeds went to support the charity's work providing assistance in the wake of the country's devastating earthquake. DJ Mad Marj was on deck and guests like model and PAPER Beautiful person Molly Bair, photographer Petra Collins and our own Mr. Mickey were mingling to the beat.

Special thanks to our friends at Svedka for providing the cocktails!

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Premiere: Chapman Releases 8 New Videos to Accompany His Debut LP, Progress Report

(Photo by Kaitlin Christy)

Alex Chapman is a man of many talents -- NYC nightlife fixture, journalist and more recently, rising rapper with a brand new "visual LP" or eight videos that accompany each song on his debut, Progress Report. While the album itself has been streaming online the past week, we're excited to be premiering the clips, directed by Tristian Reginato and Andre Bato, on PAPER. Combining editorial-style shots of Chapman along with sourced footage, the videos make you feel like you're in some club kid's dystopic daydream, all the more amplified by Jeremiah Meece's (The-Drum) psyched-out deep R&B production and Different Sleep's introspective touch on the tracks themselves. Watch all eight videos and peep our Q&A with Chapman, below.

So I guess we'll start with the obvious: what drove you to make a video for every single song on this LP? 

There's so much music that comes out on the internet, and it all comes out the same way and generally burns out pretty quick. I wanted to do something with the project that we could give it levels and depth, more than just a Soundcloud stream would. I also felt like since this was the most cohesive thing I've done musically, if I could complement it with visuals that also have a defined direction and aesthetic, it would feel like a really full, complete project, and I think that's the result we got. 

Each video has an intro with footage of you followed by a collage of spliced videos and images. How did you decide on this specific set-up for each clip? 

I was sitting with Andre Bato, who was sort of the creative director on the project, and Tristian Reginato, who created all the sampled videos, and we felt like even though the videos were really engaging on their own that I was getting lost in them. So we decided to break them up with actual footage of me sorta personifying each song in these different looks.

How did you determine which video samples to use? Why all the animated samples? 

Tristan has such a knowledge as far as sourcing footage and the overlaying is definitely his style, so I kinda just let him take the reins on the samples. We would come together and I would give feedback and tell him the type of things I saw for each song -- Ghost In A Shell, The Matrix, Blade, stuff like that -- and he would come back with that stuff plus a bunch of amazing footage I never would've thought to use and a lot I'd never seen. I really like the animated element because I think it takes you to another place mentally, and I feel like the LP feels like it's from another dimension in a lot of ways. But not everything is animated

Talk to me a little more about the spoken word intro, which I'm assuming comes courtesy of trans model/PAPER Beautiful Person Hari Nef.

Hari is such a talent all-around. I saw her in Columbia's production of The Seagull and that was the first time I really got to experience her as an actress, delivering lines. I just loved her presence and when it came time to figure out how to start the LP, I knew she would do a great job of capturing the aura. It really sets the tone for the project.

The LP has some pretty sensual and sexually-charged lyrics. What compelled you to go in that direction with your music?

This is the type of music I've always wanted to make, I think it just took me a while to fully realize it. I've been kind of soul-searching with my music up to now, but my heart has always been in writing darker stuff that explores sensuality, that explores those deeper, sexually charged feelings. And I've always loved R&B so that seemed like the perfect context within to shape the LP. The whole thing just felt right. 

You have an impressive group of collaborators helping you out. How long did it take you to wrangle everyone and was it difficult? 

I am so, so thankful to everyone who's on the project. They are all friends first so it was pretty organic, and the fact that some people are based in Chicago and some in New York is just such a representation of me as a person -- my heart is split between those two cities. It was definitely a challenge getting everything in because all these people are so busy, but everyone was really great and it was definitely worth any waiting that had to be done. 

You used to intern at Paper, is it weird coming full circle? 

I've had a few of these full circle moments and they are definitely moments I feel proud of. I loved working at Paper. Mickey gave me the opportunity to be a party reporter when I was there and I met a lot of people through doing that, plus it was so fun to be able to go to all these lavish events having just moved to NYC at the time. I feel like New York in general is a full circle experience if you're doing it right.

What's up next for you? 

I want to write songs for pop stars. Rihanna is the dream. I really wanted to use this project to show I can write full-out songs, so hopefully it will help in doing that. I definitely want to explore that side of the business over the next couple months. I'm already working on new music so I'm sure I'll have something out this summer. I just want to keep creating, keep growing, keep building. I'm never satisfied so there's always more to do.

Chapman's Progress Report LP is available for free download at mynameischapman.com.

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Preview Judy Garland Artwork from "Night of a Thousand Judys"

If there is one thing theater-lovers never get tired of it's the one and only Miss Judy Garland. This Monday a parade of theater bigwigs will hit the stage at the Merkin Concert Hall for the annual fundraiser Night of a Thousand Judys, featuring Garland's best songs and skits. Proceeds go to the Ali Forney Center, the nation's largest organization that aids homeless LGBT youth.

The bill includes Broadway veterans Michael Feinstein, Melissa Errico and Rachel York and is hosted by Justin Sayre as part of his monthly "The Meeting' series. We're particularly jazzed about the Judy artwork that will be auctioned off at the event and are previewing some of our favorite images below.

Night of a Thousand Judys. Monday, June 1st at 8 pm. The Merkin Concert Hall 129 West 67th St. Tickets are $30, $60, $100, $250. Tickets here.

Judy by  Michael Wertz.jpg

image by Michael Wertz

Judy by Maria Corte Maidagan.jpg Image by Maria Corte Maidagan Judy by Mark Summers.jpgImage by Mark Summers

Image by Daniel Nolan

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Scope a New Photo Exhibit Featuring Works by Larry Clark...In a NYC Laundromat

(photo by Larry Clark)

There's no longer a reason to fear laundry day, as Long Giang Dang laundromat at 168 Elizabeth Street (on the border of NYC's Chinatown and Soho) is hosting a special three-show photography exhibition curated by local artists Benedict Brink and Todd Jordan. 

Entitled The Spring Cleaning, the series will showcase works from 24 photographers, including Kids director Larry Clark, skateboarder-turned-artist Ed Templeton and fashion photographer Maya Handley. And while this may initially seem like a disparate array of talent, all the works are connected to ideas of youth and portraiture -- a happy accident according to Brink and Jordan. Don't forget your quarters.

The Spring Cleaning will be displayed on May 29th, June 26th and July 24th.

(photo by Larry Clark)

(photo by Benedict Brink)

(photo by Ed Templeton)

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Noted Philosopher Drake Expounds On Why He Has No New Friends

1374717718_5deb92059d0213c95bd2720af87d3b65.jpgThe tradeoffs of being Aubrey Graham, enormously successful rapper and walking meme, are myriad -- when one moves from being an actor to a rapper to a social media phenomenon to a global star, one ceases to be simply a human being, and instead must rely on the skills of a philosopher to survive and make sense of the world. Sometimes being Drake makes romantic connection difficult, forcing him to communicate primarily via voicemail. While he can provide for his family and represent his city (while providing its perspective on a global stage), he is estranged from those things by his levels of wealth and power. And, while he may occasionally be able to joyously skip through the 6 with his woes, he may not quite be able to attain on a consistent basis the level of emotionally fulfilling friendship envisioned by Aristotle in the Nicomachean Ethics. Such is the concern expressed in a new, possibly freestyled verse Drake performed in Detroit last night.

Original Video - More videos at TinyPic

Drake's "money, success, and accomplishments" prevent him from forming legitimately fulfilling bonds with other people -- it's true. (Take his relationship with an old friend, depicted in the picture above.) Still, as a philosopher of the highest caliber, Drake continues striving for friendships -- perhaps those ties of camaraderie are unimportant if they are not founded in an appreciation for who Drake -- in all his glory -- truly is, success and all. Perhaps these would have been, not only new friends, but also fake friends. In order to fully experience and have friendships, one suspects, Drake must know himself. [via Spin]

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New Book @heaven Explores the Internet's Earliest Social Network and the Incredible Story That Unfolded Within It

01-@heaven-kim-hastreiter.jpgBack in the mid-'90s, when the internet was in its infancy, there was an online community of message boards and chat rooms called the WELL (the "Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link"). Mostly run by futurists and radical techies out of Silicon Valley, the site was one of the web's earliest examples of a social network, a gathering place for people to share ideas and connect with like-minded individuals. In WELL-user and Stanford Futurist Tom Mandel's case, who, like other WELL-dwellers, envisioned the internet as a place for genuine human connection and not for commodification, the site wound up becoming a place to live out his final days surrounded by his online friends. Today, we don't think twice about telling our followers and friends what's going on in our personal lives on Social Media. People use Facebook to announce births, deaths, illnesses and other personal news. But when Mandel started the Well conference topic "Local Bug Report" one day in 1994 when he was feeling under the weather, what would unfold was unprecedented.

At first, "Local Bug Report" was a place for fellow WELL users to trade remedies and stories about how to kick the flu that was going around the country at the time. But when Mandel eventually went to see a doctor, who discovered lung cancer that was quickly spreading, the thread turned into a riveting glimpse into a man grappling with illness, dying and death.

Paper co-founder and editor-in-chief Kim Hastreiter was one of the many WELL users drawn into the narrative, hanging onto Mandel's every update. When he passed away, she printed out the entire transcript of the months-long 'Local Bug Report,' which, nearly twenty years later, has been turned into the new book @heaven, for which she writes the foreword.

It's a fascinating, heartbreaking glimpse into how we deal with what happens to us next, as well as an inspiring early account about the possibilities and tightly-knit communities that have been birthed by the internet.

Below, we talk with Kim about her experiences following Mandel on the WELL and @heaven

Do you remember the first time you went on the WELL?

It was around 1992. I had gotten a modem in my house, which was kind of a big deal for me, and in those days you used to go on the web through AOL. That's how you signed on. There were no web browsers. The web was a series of bulletin boards, sort of, and used complicated 'dos' codes to look at anything. That's how you got to the WELL.

And what was there when you signed on?

It was just a page of type.  They had groups, conferences and topics and they were moderated by different WELL users who made sure the conversation stayed on topic.  If people started fighting, they'd close down the topic. So this guy, Tom Mandel -- he just went by "Mandel" on the WELL --  had a health conference called "Local Bug Report" about the flu. I had the flu at the time and was looking at it and various people were weighing in with Mandel describing his symptoms. There was a doctor, whose screen name was "Flash," and he was telling him it was his sinuses. So Mandel went on a trip to Boston, and was feeling better and posted about feeling like he had kicked whatever it was. Then two days later, he was sick again. You could tell something was going on. He went to the doctor and the doctor said in passing that he had something on his lungs. And then people started really getting concerned. And it turned out it was cancer. 

How did the community respond?
A lot of people from the WELL heard about it and there were just so many people following and offering to help and offering to connect him with various doctors and encouraging him. But then he found out it wasn't operable. He got really angry, and would tell people to fuck off who tried to lecture him about smoking -- he had smoked. And then he got really practical, and then sort of manic and then very zen. You were watching him go through these stages of acceptance.

Did you ever comment?

No. I was just lurking, but I was checking it 4 or 5 times a day. And it went on for months. It was just this riveting thing that totally drew you in. He was really smart -- a really special guy. His posts were gripping.

And a true community is building the whole time based off of this thread. Mandel ended up getting married to one of the Well users, right?

Yeah, this woman who went by 'Nana.' She was really there in the conference and posting a million times a day. Nana, a day before he died, went to the hospital and got married to him at his bedside. I didn't understand the possibilities of the web and the bonds you could form with people until I experienced this.

The day he died, I copied the whole conversation and put it on a document and vowed to never throw it away. I felt it was historical -- I had just witnessed life and death in real time. I knew it was just this moment and it was really important to preserve that. It was a diary, it was a community, and it was the web as an example of something that brought people together. I was scared I would lose it, so I printed it out and just made tons of copies and just updated and transferred the files every time I got a new computer. I was obsessed with keeping it..
And, since the book has come out, have any WELL users been in touch?

No, none. Colin Robinson, the publisher, had to get permission from everyone to publish this. So he was in touch with them, because these people own their words. And some didn't want to participate and aren't included in the book.

Do you remember what the final post in the thread said?

It was done by someone else. It said something like, "Tom passed away this morning. Nana was at his side and music was playing. This topic is now frozen. And if you want to get in touch with Tom you can reach him at Mandel@heaven.org."

@heaven is available at orbooks.com

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Peep the All-Women Issue of ARTnews: Now With More Depressing Statistics


Back in the 1970s, ARTnews published Linda Nochlin's seminal essay "Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?" And with prominent artists like Cindy Sherman still saying that their biggest career obstacles have been male artists, it's a question we continue to ask ourselves four decades later.

Curator Maura Reilly's new ARTnews article, which forms the backbone of its upcoming all-women "Women in Art" issue, chronicles some correlating, depressing statistics about women's lack of attention in the art world:

  • Between 2007-2014, 80% of MoMA's solo exhibitors were male
  • In 2000, the Guggenheim had zero female solo exhibitions
  • In the September 2014 issue of Artforum, out of 73 ads associated with NY galleries, only 15% promoted solo shows by women.
  • Female art museum directors still earn "substantially less" than their male counterparts and tend to manage smaller museums with much less funding.
As such, "Women in Art" is all about visibility. Put together by editor Sarah Douglas and curator Maura Reilly, it features a profile of oft-derided, yet undeniably brilliant conceptual artist Yoko Ono, as well as a collection of personal essays by an assortment of female artists that give tangible heft to said statistics.

The issue is a wonderful way for women to reclaim their narrative and space in the art world. Grab a copy and let's start changing the curatorial guard.

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Odd Future Is Probably Done For -- and That's Okay

odd-future_052813.jpgShock-rap collective Odd Future doesn't really exist anymore in any form but name -- its most successful member, Frank Ocean, hasn't collaborated with anyone in the group for a while, nor have Earl Sweatshirt or leader Tyler, the Creator. But, confirming the inevitable for fans hoping for another group mixtape, Tyler seemed to indicate on Twitter last night that OF was "no more."

The seven letters would seem to be "OFWGKTA," short for "Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All." And it's a good thing that they're no more -- it's the motto of teenagers, not mature artists. (No offense intended to all Odd Future fans who are still raging teens.) Of course, Tyler claims he was just looking through old photos, and that his previous tweet didn't really mean anything definitive.

But, either way, it doesn't seem to matter for the individual careers of Odd Future's members, or at least not the ones that we're likely to care about for some time. Earl seems to be doing just fine, with one of the best rap albums of the year so far (and a great collaboration with Odd Future affiliate Vince Staples). Tyler's film projects (and music videos) are up and running, and he appears to be doing exactly the kind of work he wants to be doing. Frank Ocean has a highly-anticipated album dropping this summer. And these projects are all independent of their association with the group, whose collective buzz seems to have plateaued. If anything, an official Odd Future break-up would most hurt other members of the collective who are talented and have accumulated niche audiences (especially Hodgy Beats, Domo Genesis, and Syd tha Kid), but who have struggled to break out of the mold established by those first few OFWGKTA releases.

Their respective sounds have also diverged along with their careers, moving away from Odd Future's signature aggressive, punk-rap style. Tyler's music doesn't sound much like "Yonkers" anymore, drifting increasingly toward corny love songs that sound offensive only for the sake of keeping up appearances. Earl's tightly wound, jagged production continues in the spirit of Odd Future rage, but with less immaturity. And Frank Ocean's emotionally complex crooning has always been a little out of place. These are, for the most part, the people who will continue the Odd Future legacy and succeed as solo stars. If the others are meant to grow, they will. Fans might be sad, but don't cry because it's over, smile because this happened:

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There Isn't a Zine About Rappers and Cats Until You Help Make It

cats and biggie.jpgCombining rappers with adorable art is a tried and true way to make a good product (especially if Bun B's Rap Coloring Book has anything to say about it), but never before have art and rappers been added to one of the internet's favorite subjects: cats. Now there's a Kickstarter for a zine depicting the relationships of rappers and their cats (mostly because of how often rappers refer to their love of pussy). We'll let founder Alexander Duke explain:

In the history of western civilization no other genre of music has created such a magnitude of lyrical content about cats. From Kanye West stating "I put the pussy in the sarcophagus" on his "My Beautiful Dark Twisted" album. A reference to how he shares a love and respect for cats much like ancient Egyptians who would mummify their cats to be buried with them. To the more simplistic lyrics such as Eazy E proclaiming "I love pussy and pussy loves me." This zine is a celebration of rappers and their love of cats.

There's a ridiculously low goal, and unbelievably amazing rewards (including the zine and possible stickers) for yourself, your loved ones, and any Kanye lovers in your life. Do the right thing, donate today.


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There is Going to Be Twice as Much Serial for Your Friends to Tell You to Listen to

serial-social-logo.pngRemember when you couldn't leave the house without a well-meaning friend telling you to listen to Serial? "It's soooo good," they'd say. "You just have to listen to it. I mean, what a crazy investigation!" There was a time when everyone you knew was asking your opinion on whether a man neither of you knew had a committed you crime you only knew about because of NPR. Heady days, especially if you've already seen The Jinx.

Thankfully (or not), Serial producers Sarah Koenig and Julia Snyder have confirmed that they are hard at work on, not one, but two simultaneous seasons of the show, one that will run this fall with the other following next spring. They will either be riveting, unfolding acts of journalism or just a constant thrum of Reddit conspiracies, glowing tweets, and "OMGs" from the line at Whole Foods. They've said nothing about the subjects of the seasons, but promise they will be "very different" from the first season. Additionally, Koenig and Snyder will be going on a tour with their podcast this fall, during which they may spill more details about the upcoming seasons. Maybe they finally found Santa.

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The Coolest Person In the Room: Queen Sateen

Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 4.33.17 PM.pngQueen Sateen. (Photo via Instagram)

In our new column, "The Coolest Person In the Room," we're asking our favorite nightlife pros (hosts, DJs, door people, promoters, bar/club owners, club kids, bartenders, socialites) to tell us about who they think is the one party person whose look is always on point, whose energy is contagious, and whose scene is worth checking out -- basically, that person at the club who they've got their eye on and think we all should know. In each installment, the previous "coolest person in the room" will pass the baton and nominate someone else.

Last week we featured Ryan Burke and he's been kind enough to nominate our next 'Coolest Person in the Room,' Queen Sateen.

Tell us about Queen Sateen.

Queen Sateen is new to the New York nightlife scene and is a performer/host and personality who has her own sorta entourage of other newcomers. She occasionally hosts for Ladyfag and Susanne Bartsch and is available to be booked for performances with her husband/partner in crime "Exquisite."

Each year there are fresh faces who enter nightlife for various reasons. Some only last one season while others are more committed. Sateen is on her second summer here and is already getting pretty well-known for her gutter glam style and having a partner who is a straight drag queen. The two do matching looks and bring great energy together.

When did you two first meet?

I technically first met Sateen in a club but I actually remember first meeting her on the street in my neighborhood. She approached me, which took me by surprise because I was out of face and really sick that day. She was like "you probably don't recognize me because I usually cover my eyebrows" and I was like "I don't remember most people I meet out in general..." After that I would see her all the time at Lovegun and 11:11 with her crew.

Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 4.26.18 PM.pngQueen Sateen and Exquisite. (Photo via Instagram)

What makes Sateen stand out in the scene?

Both Sateen and Exquisite are unique as drag queens because she is a female and he is straight. I like their duo dynamic and the quirky looks they bring. It's always something fun with a lot of personality.

What's your favorite memory of her?

I asked her to be a face model for me at IMATS [International Makeup Artist Trade Show].  I was representing the brands Cozzette and Il Makiage. We had the opportunity to spend hours together in a sober environment, which gave us a chance to really bond. She's got a lot of depth and a lot of character. I think she's great and I'm excited that she's here.

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The 10 New Art Shows to See This Week

Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 4.27.09 PM.pngThe big event this week is the third edition of New Museum's IDEAS CITY Festival, running from May 28th to the 30th in downtown New York City.  This year's theme, "The invisible City," honors the 1972 book by the Italian writer Italo Calvino and "explores the future of cities with culture as a driving force."  Hundreds of cultural and community groups will fill the area surrounding the museum on the Bowery with exhibitions, workshops, performances and panels.  Some highlights: a 100-foot-long conversation table running down Rivington Street, a Mayan ball game tournament, a mini food festival by Hester Street Fair, hot-air balloon performances and a talk with architect Bjarke Ingels, whose incredible pyramid-shaped building on West 57th Street is nearing completion.  The massive list of events is HERE.


There are tons of IDEAS CITY-related events produced by other downtown organizations including Storefront for Art & Architecture, The Architectural League, The Drawing Center, Bowery Poetry Club and NYU Wagner.  On Saturday from noon to 6 p.m., you can chill in a comfy room called "Plush" by Maria Lynch and Daniel Perlin or check out the pop-up "Foamspace" by SecondMedia, both at the Storefront for Art & Architecture.

Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 12.48.04 PM.pngMmuseumm

"Mmuseumm Season 4" and its next door annex, "Mmuseumm No. 2," at 4 Cortlandt Alley, aka a freight elevator in Tribeca, open on Thursday evening at 7 p.m. They've got a full-scale re-creation of Maira Kalman's "Sara Berman's Closet,""Pharmaceutical Promo Objects" by Ryder Ripps, "The Cornflake Index" by Anne Griffiths, "Styrofoam Rocks" by Maia Ruth Lee and more.

aida-mahmudova_fountain_2015_mixed-media-on-canvas_285-x-395-cm-112-2-x-115-5-in_lores-jpg1452528596.jpgAida Mahmudova

Aida Mahmudova opens her first solo show in the US, "Passing By...," on May 28th, 6 to 8 p.m., at Leila Heller Gallery, (568 West 25th Street).  The artist lives in Baku, Azerbaijan, and uses that country's natural surroundings as a backdrop, combining them with places "remembered and imagined."  On view until July 3rd.

Hoke-ComingAttractions-XL-1.jpgLisa Hoke

Pavel Zoubok Gallery (531 West 26th Street) opens solo exhibitions by Lisa Hoke and Laurie Frick on Thursday, May 28th, 6 to 8 p.m.  Hoke's show, "Attention Shoppers," incorporates product packaging in a "telegraphic ode to indulgence;" while Frick uses assemblages of paper, wood and leather to "visualize personal data."

YC14.001-Abstinencia-sized-for-web.jpgYoan Capote

Jack Shainman Gallery  (513 West 20th Street and 524 West 24th Street) opens a show by the Cuban sculptor Yoan Capote called "Collective Unconscious" at both Chelsea spaces on May 28th, 6 to 8 p.m.  The works explore history and "the distinctive ways in which shared social experiences influences the individual."  One of the works on view, "Immanencia." is a gigantic bust of Fidel Castro made from thousands of door hinges.  Up until July 10.  Also, be sure to check out the gallery's incredible El Anatsui show up in their Kinderhook, New York, space through September.

685a53af547031a09800a353432fe5a5.jpegHeide Fasnacht

Kent Fine Art (210 Eleventh Avenue, 2nd floor) has three big installations opening this week on May 28th from 6 to 9 p.m.  The first, by Heide Fasnacht, "deals with the demise and demolition of Las Vegas' Frontier Casino" that was blown-apart in 2007.  Another work by Russian-born artist Yulia Pinkusevich uses "salvaged everyday materials" to make the viewer "see time as a construct, reminding us of the fragile, intimate relationship we hold with the Earth."  And for the third, Dannielle Tegeder constructs a site-specific wall drawing.  All are up until July 24th.

On Friday, May 29th, 6 to 8 p.m., The Eighth Floor (17 West 17th Street) hosts an artist talk with Alberto Borea and Lan Tuazon -- plus Sara Reisman from the Rubin Foundation -- on the topic: "The Construction of Social Space."  It's a part of the gallery's ongoing exhibition, "Mobility and Its Discontents." Please rsvp to the8thfloor.org/#events, as space is limited.

Bitforms Gallery (131 Allen Street) hosts an "artist talk" with Daniel Rozin on Saturday afternoon, May 30th, 4 p.m.  Rozin's new show, "Descent With Modification," is currently on view in the gallery through July 1st.

20150523_IMG_V6A0059_MSPC_TERESITA-FERNANDEZ_YM.jpgTeresita Fernandez'sFata Morgana

Summer's here, so head outside and check out the humongous work called "Fata Morgana" by Teresita Fernandez in Madison Square Park. The Brooklyn artist constructed a 500-foot-long work in six sections suspended over the parks walkways.  Also, there's a work by Urs Fischer, "Big Clay #4," outside the Seagram Building (375 Park Avenue) that's 42 feet tall and derived from a piece of clay; and an installation of giant spools of rope, "Desire Lines," by Tatiana Trouve in Central Park.

And finally, don't forget that MoMA's annual "Party in the Garden" is on Tuesday, June 2nd, with cocktails at 7 p.m. and dinner at 8.  This year's honorees are Richard Serra and Kara Walker.  Tickets, if available, are HERE.  You can also get tickets to the afterparty from 9 to midnight for $225 which includes a performance by The Weeknd -- who currently has a big hit with "Earned It" -- and a DJ set from Chromeo.

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There's a Kickstarter to Get Descartes Translated Into Bro-Speak


The popular blog Philosophy Bro is basically Cliff Notes for frat stars, consistently conveying complicated philosophical and intellectual ideas in language that is not only extremely plain and easy to understand but also funny. Now, there's a Kickstarter for the publication of Philosophy Bro's first full book, a "translation" of Descartes'Meditations on First Philosophy. The mostly-complete book is titled Descartes' Meditations, Bro, though the volume could also have been appropriately titled Brogito Ergo Sum, Meditations on First Chillosophy, or, for the more internet-addicted crowd, Meditations on Thirst Philosophy

For a taste of what to expect, check out the beginning of PB's summary of Thus Spoke Zarathustra, with Nietzsche's attendant, infamous proclamation that "God is dead."

Your humanity is conditional, and if that makes you uncomfortable, you're doing it wrong. Maybe you didn't hear, but God is dead. And good. fucking. riddance. Except, for some reason, people won't let him go and it's going to destroy humanity. Everything you've ever thought was right or wrong, you thought because someone told you. And they only told you because someone told them. But how the hell could they possibly know better than you? Who the fuck put them in charge? The Great Big Dead Guy in the sky? Fuck that. Let them waste their lives trying to please others who exist and Others who don't.

Pretty good, right? Just give him a shot. Best case scenario, you develop a lifelong love of philosophy that leads to introspective, powerful, inquisitive thoughts that allow you to shape your understanding of the world, your place in it, and guide your attempts to be a good and fulfilled human being. Worst case scenario, you'll at least know what's going on in that Monty Python sketch.

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Hudson Mohawke Talks "Maximalism" and Sonic Textures Ahead of His NYC Show Tonight

(photo by Lauren Gesswein)

Hudson Mohawke arrives 20 minutes late to our interview, a bottle of orange Fanta tucked under an arm, clear-rimmed glasses slightly askance and one very tired look spread across his face. Though who could blame him. 

The professional pseudonym of 29-year-old Glaswegian producer Ross Birchard, he's in for a long day of rehearsals ahead of a string of shows he's playing in support of his highly-anticipated sophomore album Lantern, out June 16 via Warp. After all, it's been six long years since his debut -- though the Kanye collaborator, TNGHT member and dancing cop soundtracker has obviously kept very busy with various side projects and sonic experimentations. Long overdue, we caught up with HudMo ahead of his show tonight at NYC's Irving Plaza to chit-chat about his foray into softer sounds, his history of scratch DJing and just a few of his silken-voiced collaborators. 

A lot of people describe your sound as "overwhelming?" What are your thoughts on that? Was that something you tried to stay away from or embrace on Lantern

That came from my days in turntablism and scratch DJing and stuff like that, where it is very much about being as over-the-top and overwhelming as possible. So I think as far as putting this record together it was much more about being an exercise in restraint. The first record was like 10,000 fucking sounds everywhere, whereas with the new record I've really tried to refine the sound and strip back the elements that are not completely necessary or adding anything to the actual song. That are just kind of there to fill up the space, which is what I was previously really, really into. My new approach is taking something that has a lot of elements and stripping it back to its purest form. 

In the initial press release you said something about wanting to make this album a "classic" -- something that didn't adhere to any specific genre. 

It was really more about making something I was really happy with. And even though it's taken quite a few years, the skills and new approach to putting together an album I've learned over that period has really informed what I've currently put together. 

Yesterday Pitchfork published an article about "maximalism" in electronic music, and how it's bred by the limitless information and possibilities of the internet. You're mentioned as the beginning a member of said maximalist movement. Would you agree with that?

I haven't read the article, so I don't know what is says, but it isn't something that I have an issue with. I think that when the term was first being bandied about a couple of years ago, it had very negative connotations and a lot of people were just like, "This is stupid, frivolous and whatever." But I feel like now -- even as far as my first record, which came out six years ago -- probably more people talk about that record now then they did when it came out in the first place [laughs]. But I really didn't like the term "wonky."

Oh really? You didn't dig the whole wobbly, wet-sounding "wonky/purple" thing?

People were trying to relate it to ketamine and stuff like that...and it has nothing to do with ketamine. But some journalist decided that it was like "ketamine music." No, but as far as the maximalist thing, I don't have problem with it. 

This album initially feels like it's exploring softer territories and textures -- like, the collaborators you brought in all have this sort of silky-smooth thing going on. Can you talk a little bit more about that? 

Yeah, as far as the collaborations -- I guess I'll just run through them one by one -- Irfane basically did a bunch of stuff with Ed Banger [Records] and Breakbot in Paris, and I had heard a couple of his songs...and he has this incredible, kind of weird, silky, '70s voice, and I don't hear that many vocalists around like that. It's almost like crooning, but not in a cheesy sense, and I really liked that sort of vocal tone. As far as Ruckazoid, he's a person I knew from the turntable scene because he was like a champion turntablist. He's a funny character because he's wildly better than the majority of people who are known within that kind of circle, but he just keeps his head down and does his own shit. He had also done vocals for someone from the Ed Banger guys and he was someone who I had no idea could sing. I thought he was just a turntablist guy...I didn't really knows he was making music -- singing -- and so it wasn't until we actually were in touch that I realized that he was doing all this other shit as well. And then there's Antony [Hegarty], who is someone I wanted to work with for forever, and it just so happened that around the time when we got in touch he wanted to start a new project with some more electronic styles of production, as opposed to his more kind of piano-based production that people are used to hearing. So I wanted to experiment, as far as trying to make something that wasn't just Antony singing over a beat. I wanted to try and make a proper song structure and he wanted to experiment with more electronic production, so it actually came together very nicely.

Tracks like "Kettles" and "System" have a very orchestral feel and you've got soul samples on songs like "Ryderz," all of which is different from your previous work, which was defined by a very synthesized, artificial sound. Tell me more about the samples you used.

Some of it is live-recorded, some of it is samples, but it's something that I wanted to challenge myself with. I could easily make a record of hip-hop bangers, but I wanted to do something that satisfied my creative edge, as well as make a load of bangers, as it were [laughs]. That's the other reason why we put "Chimes" out first. Obviously I wanted this song to come out, but I don't necessarily feel that it was for the full length album, so we put it out as a single beforehand...but yeah that is something I am exploring. 

Are you classically trained? 

No, no, no...just fucking around [laughs].

Lantern comes out 6/16 on Warp Records.

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Vinnie's Pizzeria Has Created a Meta Pizza


So I'm not one to usually consider fast food gimmicks "adorable" (The Chicken Corsage is a gimmick only a mother could love), but these baby 'zas used to top this meta pizza slice at Williamsburg's Vinnie's Pizzeria are just so gosh-darn, brain-breakingly adorable. 

"I'll have a slice pizza with slices of pizza please." #HotPizzaOnPizzaAction #meta #pizza #vinnies

A photo posted by Vinnies Pizzeria (@vinniesbrooklyn) on

And though Vinnie's is going the dirty route with their #HotPizzaOnPizzaAction tag, there's no way you can spoil the pure, innocent love that exists between a person and their pizza. Plus, according to Gothamist, Meta Pizza is merely just another piece cut up and placed atop the slice. Talk about primo American engineering.

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