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UPDATED: Let's Place Bets on Whose Album is Dropping at the Apple Ritual

drake.jpgToday marks the ritualistic observance of the release of a new iPhone -- one of the only constants in the world, along with biopics of Steve Jobs and Zane Lowe's presence on our radios. (Thanks, Apple!) In keeping with the recent business move of surprise album releases -- which started, in earnest, with the self-titled Beyoncé album and has continued through the release of If You're Reading This, It's Too Late, and Miley Cyrus' last record -- there are wanton rumors that a "big" artist will announce the release of an album at the event. But who will it be? Let's make ridiculously speculative odds, as we wait for the announcement new insanely expensive consumer object that we will then all go out and buy.

Frank Ocean
As much as we would all love the new Frank Ocean album we were promised last month, this doesn't seem super likely? Frank Ocean is big, but he might not be big enough to the people at Apple to justify having his album be a centerpiece of their weird party. (When was the last time you think an Apple executive put on "Love Crimes?") We can dream, though.
Odds: 250:1

Kanye West
This... won't happen. Kanye doesn't really seem like the type of dude to do this kind of exclusive, hyper-corporate album release unless it was on Tidal, which isn't really doing well enough to sustain him. Also, SWISH might just never come out, since, as we all know by now, Kanye is not that interested in making new music.
Odds: 10,000:1

Also unlikely, but perhaps less so than Kanye.
Odds: 1,000:1


Okay, this one could actually happen, especially if he wears that jacket from the Apple Music launch event. Besides, the release of If You're Reading This was successful enough that a total lack of promo for a new Drake album is probably not such a big deal. Is today the day we get Views From the 6...?
Odds: 20:1

A Dad Band
A new Frank Ocean album (or even a new Drake album) would be great, but if we're being realistic, it's probably going to be, like, new Foo Fighters, or a collection of Bon Jovi outtakes from 1986, or even... dare I say... a Pearl Jam album? Just don't be too surprised if you get a really excited phone call from your dad telling you all about the exciting stuff Steely Dan is doing with this new one.
Odds: 10:1

At the intersection of "vaguely cool-sounding things" and "stuff dads unabashedly like," Pharrell stands alone. He lords over his kingdom, sending his robot underlings out to enforce the law and ensure that all of his subjects are eternally, unnaturally "Happy." He watches the boundaries of the Apple domain. He waits. He dons his battle hat.
Odds: 5:1

Bruno Mars
This would explain why Bruno Mars is playing the Super Bowl halftime show again at least...
Odds: 100:1

Update: It turns out the performance was by OneRepublic. (Do they even have a new album out? Let's hope not.) Pack it in everyone, this is the worst of all possible worlds.


Watch Kendrick Lamar Perform a To Pimp a Butterfly Medley on Colbert

Stephen Colbert's Late Show is certainly launching with a bang -- beyond the excitementleading upto his first show (with its Donald Trump jokes and surprise Jimmy Fallon appearance), last night's episode featured a full musical performance by Kendrick Lamar. The rapper and a backing band did a medley of tracks from To Pimp a Butterfly (specifically "Wesley's Theory,""Momma,""King Kunta," and "u"). The performance is really special, more evocative of the beautiful visuals Lamar has been putting out behind the album than his infamously lukewarm live shows. The presence of the studio's cathedral-like dome certainly doesn't hurt. Check it out below. [via Pitchfork]

Start Your Day With FKA twigs' Stunning Cover of Sia's "Elastic Heart"


BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge has a history of getting excellent musicians to perform covers of your favorite songs (see: Haim covering Beyoncé's "XO" or Charli XCX performing a punk-tinged rendition of Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off") and today they may have just aired the best one yet: FKA twigs covering Sia's "Elastic Heart." twigs adds a haunting delicateness to the track and watching the video of her performing live will send chills down your spine as you see her writhes and dances with a man in shadows. As is the case with many of these covers, you're left hoping that twigs and Sia think about doing a collaboration one of these days.

Janelle Monáe and CoverGirl Have a Star Wars Look

janelle cover girl.jpgToday in "exciting corporate synergy," sci-fi aficionado/afro-futurist icon Janelle Monáe has teamed up with CoverGirl, one of her sponsors, to model a collection of beauty projects marketed toward Star Wars fans. According to Yahoo Beauty, there are seven full looks that make up the collection, including one called "Resistance Pilot" that was created on Monáe. Check it out above, including some bright orange that veers from her normal clean, black-and-white palette. As much as Star Wars mania is already totally exhausting, this is still really adorable, and perfect for Monáe (even if she should really be starring in the movies herself). Is it hot in here, or is it just us? Next up: Jedi Jidenna.

In Honor Of Her NYFW Debut, We Present The Evolution Of Lauren Conrad's Style

photo by Leandro Justen/BFA

Oh, Lauren Conrad, ye of mass mall fashion royalty. From her Laguna Beach days to her Kelly Cutrone apprenticeship, LC's always been an icon of class, commercial interests and smart business acumen. So obviously it comes as no surprise that she's made it to the point where her Kohl's-exclusive line had its fashion week runway debut yesterday at NYC's Skylight Modern. And so, in celebration of a decade-plus of impeccable, spaghetti-strapped Cali girl style, we came up with a definitive timeline of all of Lauren's looks -- including all of the flared jeans, frilly sheers and fuchsia frocks.

Pre-Beach Days (2002)

Behold, Baby Lauren in all her sophomore-year brunette glory, serving up primo Lana Del Rey California beach babe vibes with that nude gloss/perfect brow combo. A fresh canvas, shall we say in all her thin chain, white tank glory.

The Laguna Beach Years (2004-2006)

Her early years were ostensibly defined by distressed denim, a staple she wore in capri, shorts and even, gasp, flare form. These were also the years where she looked plucked straight out of a Hollister catalog, complete with Harry Styles-esque headbands and awkwardly cut halter tops (bonus points when layered) that could be easily confused for swimsuits. Granted, even she's acknowledged in retrospect that her style was "head-to-toe bad."

The Hills Era (2006-2009)

Beginning with a few sunburnt Pac Sun sale rack missteps, Lauren finally begins to get her definitive fashion footing around 2007 with the addition of more adult necklines, fabrics and colors for her red carpet looks. She seems to embrace the jewel tone and begins mixing her textures -- a good look for a gracefully fading reality star looking to move into other lucrative markets. Also notable is the evolution of her more casual looks, which see her embracing a daytime uniform of simple white tee, pencil skirt, plus a coordinated sandals/purse look. Trés chic, LC.

Post-Reality (2009-2014) 

Using her final years on The Hills as a springboard for the launch of her LC By Lauren Conrad in 2009 and Paper Crown in 2011, we see a post-reality show Lauren becoming much more flowy and feminine in her frockerie. It's borderline noxiously girly -- floral prints, lacy trims and fancy table napkin looks everywhere and feels like something you might call "old-fashioned luxe." She also launches a line of accompanying duvet covers. Mad respect.

Now (2015)

In a nutshell, her style is very "conservative casual" aka what Conrad herself describes as "pretty basic." Subsequently, her show followed standard protocol, revolving around a theme of '70s Laurel Canyon vibes soundtracked by, duh, "California Dreamin." You've got to hand it to our girl from Laguna --  she is #ONBRAND. 

Watch The Cinematically Sad Video For PC Music's New Life Sim Single


Already enigmatic, Internet-dwelling production collective PC Music have just dropped a new single, and this one's from one of their more elusive members, Life Sim.

Dubbed "IDL," it's the second "official" (aka pay for with money) PC Music release, and comes with an accompanying music video by Daniel Swan that collages bits and pieces from various movies -- mostly shots of people crying/looking unbearably sad. The song itself is moody electronic, a far cry from the rest of PC Music's bubblegum-flavored catalog, save for the arpeggiated synth rise. However, it does come with a serrated, bounce-infused Thy Slaughter remix, which you can also check out below.

Talking to Spanish Artist Yapci Ramos About Her New Photo Exhibit Documenting Prostitutes Around the Globe

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 1.19.27 PM.pngYapci Ramos. [Photo by Shane LaVancher]

Artist Yapci Ramos likes to go deep -- into her subject matter that is. For her September 12th show at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery titled Perras y Putas, the Spanish photographer will be exhibiting seventeen photographs that chronicle her up close and personal experiences with prostitutes from her home town of Tenerife in the Canary Islands, where she first began shooting the "mujeres de la vida" back in 2010 along with similar images she took in the heart of the Congo, and, most recently, Aruba, where the artist discovered the stark parallels between these women of the night and the derided stray dogs (also featured) that wander the streets of the small Caribbean island with nothing but their raw survival instincts to guide them.

Yapci Ramos-PP-Rosi y Mari.jpg"Rosi y Mari," from the Mujeres de la Vida series, Tenerife, Canary Islands, 2010.

Tabacaru's modest-sized gallery on the Lower East Side, which was recently painted a deep shade of "Congo Green" to serve as a fitting backdrop for Ramos's rich, intercontinental portraits, has made a name for itself as a risk-taking space with a global perspective while simultaneously bucking art world trends, traits its namesake owner says both she and the gallery itself share with Ramos -- and rightfully so. Tabacaru, formerly a human rights attorney for the UN, was briefly arrested in the Congo in 2006 after working at the Rwanda Tribunal in Tanzania, presumably for photographing a government building without permission. This August, the young art dealer returned to Africa for an ambitious, month-long cross-cultural artist residency program in Harare, Zimbabwe, which merged three of her most promising young roster artists (Xavier Robles de Medina, Rachel Monosov, Justin Orvis Steimer) with Africa's most talented and controversial artists (Kudzanai Chiurai, Terrence Musekiwa, Admire Kamudzengerere), the creative fruits of which are on track for a group exhibition in April, 2016 at The National Gallery of Zimbabwe.

In a New York art bubble that still seems to be dominated by the work of white male artists, Ramos' exhibit featuring thought-provoking humanist portraits of disenfranchised women, and displayed in a gallery run by women, glimmers like a diamond in the rough. We caught up with the artist in Tabacaru's Upper West Side apartment, where she was crashing while her relentless (and apparently jet-lag immune) gallerist was making moves at Art International-Istanbul. Take a look at photos from the show ahead of its opening tonight and read Ramos' thoughts on her subjects, responsibility as an artist and what she hopes will happen to her photographs.

Yapci Ramos-PP-Perra 3.jpg"Perra 3" from the Perras series, Aruba, Netherlands Antilles, 2012

Have you shown in New York before?

I've shown a few pieces in NY for a pop up show with Catinca ("Conventional Codes," 2012) but this is my first solo show with her.

Do you consider yourself to be a photojournalist as much as an artist?

I am an artist first and last. I like to have a conversation with the place, the town, and the city. I normally go deep to the people I meet. So deep, I sometimes feel like I move through people, and take some of them with me. I explore personal space, and proximity. I like to show them as who they are exactly, without judgment.

What specific cities are featured in Perras y Putas?

I've shot in Mali, and Guatemala but for this show, there are just three points of view: Tenerife, a village in the Canary Islands, which are off the coast of Morocco, where I grew up. It's Spanish, but more African in a lot of ways. Also, there are women from the Congo and Aruba.

Yapci Ramos-PP-Stella.jpg"Stella," from the No Stress Bar series, Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo, 2014

When did you first become fascinated by prostitution as a subject?

In a workshop in a home or center or, how you say, a clinic for disenfranchised women -- this was 2009 and into 2010 -- I developed a personal relationship with one woman in particular during a month and a half workshop. With prostitution, it's the same idea in different places, but the people, they are always different.

Are their circumstances so different?

It is true -- most of these women go into prostitution because they have babies and no money. They're desperate. Maybe they're drug addicts, but they each have a unique story to tell. I like to think I shoot them all with dignity.

Have there ever been moments when your interactions got too personal?

Not really, but it's more like tense moments. I was alone with an older woman in her home and she had to rush me out because her son, an addict with a restraining order against him, was on his way over. That was a little scary.

Do you ever feel a responsibility to help these women?

Of course, but I'm not doing social work, I'm doing artistic work. It's extremely difficult to pull these women out of their world.

You previously mentioned that in the Congo, Western men and wealthier African men actually visit to find and essentially buy these women out of their situations.

I was in the Congo for a project and I went to one of the nicer bars and saw women preening themselves in the bathroom in order to be presentable for Western men looking to pull the girls out of "the life."

Yapci Ramos-PP-Chantalle.jpg"Chantalle," from the No Stress Bar series, Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo, 2014

How do you approach these women? Are they ever defensive?

No. They want the attention. They want someone to listen to them. In Aruba I actually paid for their time. I know how to make them comfortable. This is my personality. It's one of my talents.

What brought you to Aruba?

I was there for The First Biennale Encounter of Contemporary Art (2012), which coincided with a 3-week artist residency program. It was there I saw the similarities between how the dogs and women were treated. Men would drive up and flash their headlights at the prostitutes on the street, to let them know they're interested. So I chose to do the same with the dogs.

Where do you see these photos living?

I think when you buy these photos as artwork, you forget they're prostitutes. If you're a good collector, you're viewing it as a piece of art and as a portrait of a real human being.

Is enough effort being made to help these women?

It's part of the reality, unfortunately. I don't know if it will ever change. I want everyone who comes to this show to see these women as people. Society treats them like dogs.

What reaction are you expecting or hoping for when people visit the gallery and see this work?

I can explain the stories behind the people or why I went to their countries and cities, but I can't explain how these photos are going to make you feel, or why. I'm not going to have the last word, and even if I could, I don't want it.

Yapci Ramos: Perras y Putas opens tonight at the Catinca Tabacaru Gallery, 250 Broome St., New York City, and will run through October 11th

Watch Potty Mouth's Very 90s Video For "Cherry Picking"

Potty Mouth named themselves after a song from riot grrrl OGs Bratmobile, so it's not a big surprise they have a bit of a '90s fetish. For the video from their new single "Cherry Picking," from the EP of the same name, they go straight for the Clinton Decade Sweet Spot, playing in a bedroom adorned with some totally rad X-Files and David Lynch posters. Check it out, but don't get it twisted, as Potty Mouth are firmly focused on the future, and we should consider "Cherry Picking" an indication of where the band's head is at as they prepare the album-length follow-up to their 2013 debut Hell Bent. 

"I think with this EP, we've finally reached our desired sound. We really wanted it to be like a sampler of stuff that reflected some of our older songwriting, but also showed our development into what's to come. Since the last release, I think our process and roles have really solidified," says singer-guitarist Abby Weems. "We're a lot more intentional with our writing and sound. Thinking about it now, I'm realizing we use to show up to practice without really knowing how a song would turn out, but now we go into it with very clear ideas of structure and dynamics. It's actually crazy to think about how much things have changed!"

Proenza Schouler On Their 15 years as a couple and Their Hopes for the Brand

proenzacmyk.jpgEven before they bagged their BFA diplomas from Parsons, Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez were fashion superstars. Their entire graduation collection was ordered by Barneys, and from the time of their first runway show they were one of the hottest fashion labels in New York City. Thirteen years and many CFDA awards later, their eye for pattern, texture and cut is keener -- and more popular -- than ever.  They've signed their first perfume deal, with L'Oreal, and brought on a new CEO who's ready to make the brand "a global luxury player." We're talking a new Givenchy or Balenciaga. The boys were relaxed and nostalgic as we discussed their school days, their 15 years as a couple and their hopes for the brand. They're not only two of the most talented designers in the Naked City; they're a couple of real charmers, too.

Mickey Boardman:

Do you remember the first time you met? Should we put you in a soundproof booth and have each of you tell that story and see if they're the same?

Jack McCollough
I don't know if it would line up. [laughs]

Lazaro Hernandez:
It was right before school started, at that club Life.

I used to host a Thursday night party at Life.

That's where we met! Maybe you were there.

Maybe I made it happen.

It was a Tuesday night that we were there.

We were there randomly. He was there with some friends. I had just moved to New York, and it was before school started in September. We were hanging out with some friends and we went into this back room.



I was just smoking a joint. And he asked, "Oh... could I have some weed?"  You know, we were kids.

We both had just transferred to Parsons, him from Miami, me from San Francisco. And that was kind of the end of it. We didn't really speak again after that. Then, come sophomore year, we got put in the same section so we had every single class together.

But I had a boyfriend and he had a boyfriend too at the time.

We were just good friends.

Yeah, we started just chilling together. I had no friends here. He had no friends here.

I had friends here.

And then sophomore year we started working on projects together. That's really how we became friends and started working together.

Designing fashions.

Really butch things like that.

It feels like ages ago. It feels like a dream.


Do you know what we found recently in the basement of our office? All our Parsons projects in a box.

You could have a show at a museum. You could! Please save it.


The drawings were good. They were!

It was weird to go back and see that stuff. It was super amateurish.


Some of them were incredible to go back to and others were completely cringe-able.

What did the other students think when you started working together? Were they like, "Oh no, the gorgeous evil ones are united against us?"

[laughs] We were never really aware or cared about what the other students thought about us.

So when you worked together at school, did you ever fight?

Well, we still work together. [laughs]

Do we ever fight? Is that the question?
Well the first question should be, When did you become boyfriends?


Junior year we started dating.

How did that happen? You were drawing flat sketches together, you both leaned in for the eraser and your eyes met and...


You make it sound so extra gay!


I'm sorry. So you were Greco-Roman wrestling?


It was fun. We were just really into each other and this new thing.

Your senior year, you ended up meeting Julie Gilhart from Barneys and they bought the whole collection.


I can still remember what she was wearing: a Tom Ford for Gucci leather trench coat and the buckle was a snake head.


Was she wearing a head scarf?




She looked amazing. Then we got an email at our aol email. Proenzaschouler@aol.com was our first email that we ever had and we all shared it.


That was the first email I ever had. A group email address. I didn't even have an email before that. Now we're aging ourselves.


We got an email to come show the other Barneys girls the collection.


We brought our skinniest friend we knew, 'cause they wanted a model for the presentation. We were so intimidated and nervous. It was really intense, wasn't it?

Yeah, yeah.


So stressful.

Funny, because I never think of you two as being nervous or intimidated.

These people were like stars to us.

They were the real deal. And we never really had any plans. Zero plans. We had met [Allure creative director] Paul Cavaco once at [gay sing-along piano bar] Marie's Crisis, and so we were like, "Maybe we should call that guy in fashion we see at Marie's Crisis. Maybe he could help us out."  We had no idea who Paul was.

What did Paul sing? That's what I want to know.

Paul would just stand there with a cocktail and not talk to anyone.

So much of starting your own thing is chance, and luck...

And talent. And show tunes. So how does the design process work for you guys?

It's still just the two of us. The shows are just the two of us. That's it. We draw every single look. It's kind of the way we did it at school. It's that same process. We follow through from the beginning to the very end. We fit everything ourselves.

We never really worked for anyone else, so we use the system we used at Parsons as our point of reference.

And I guess that worked! And we work all the fucking time. I don't understand how we would do the transcontinental thing of working for another house. I just don't know time-wise how we would do it. Something would have to go. We would have to sacrifice something.

Also, not a lot of people have proven they can do two fashion labels simultaneously. I don't think anyone except for Marc [Jacobs] has done two things successfully.

And that definitely took a toll on Marc. It's fucking hard. It's borderline back-breaking. Whenever we've been asked to do it, we were like, What's the point? We enjoy our lives and we have each other.

It seems to me that there's a feeling of luxury that is a little less snobbish nowadays. What do you think of that? Do you feel like luxury has changed?

Fashion has changed: it's really democratic now. Fashion has become another facet of popular culture, like music or movies or art. If you ask kids, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" they say a designer. I think more people are interested in fashion as a thing, and by definition you have to become a little more inclusive. Now it's global.

And I think a lot more designers are more open to growing a business, whereas before it was purely an artistic endeavor.

So while we still want that integrity and purity, we're not against the commercial reality. The more we sell, the more creative we can be, the more fun we can have. We understand that to be creative, we also need to sell. So for us it's a great thing. The more we sell, the more we can play.

I think one of the sweetest Proenza moments was when you won the CFDA award and Lazaro said, "Our dreams have come true and I get to share it with the person I love," or something to that effect. I got a little teary. It warmed my cold fashion heart.

A lot of people were surprised by that. They said, "You guys are together?"

I still get that to this day. [laughs] "You and Lazaro are together?" We've been together for 15 years!

So there's only one question left: Which one is the man and which one's the woman?

So who's the top and who's the bottom? Let's just cut to the chase. [laughs]

Or maybe we should leave that one a mystery!

Introducing Sproutcore: China's Love Of Beansprout Accessories


Fuck ham crowns and snackwave sweaters, because the hot new trend sweeping China is #sproutcore aka sticking beansprouts on your head.

Yep, apparently men, women and children are all dressing up their dos with barrettes adorned with fake plants -- a phenomenom that's well documented across social media by the accompanying #sproutcore tag.
As for how this bizarre trend first cropped up (lol), there are competing theories with some believing it was inspired by a cartoon character on a show called Pleasant Goat and the Big Big Wolf, while others cite cosplay as the initial impetus. Either way, we're very into this loopy, legume-y look. Check out some more snaps below.

Beirut's Zach Condon On Their New Album, Santa Fe Hippies and Feeling Excited About Music Again

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 3.24.17 PM.pngZach Condon. [Photo by Shawn Brackbill]

For practically as long as Beirut frontman Zach Condon has been on the music scene, his name has been synonymous with travel and an aching need to know more, see more, be more. For Condon, who grew up in Santa Fe, New Mexico, getting out of his hometown was the ultimate prize. But today, sitting in his publicist's office at 4AD taking interviews in anticipation of Beirut's fourth album, No, No, No, out via 4AD tomorrow, he finally feels somewhat at peace with being "just a boy from Santa Fe," as he says. And it's this feeling of peace that also seems to have something to do with the fact that after a four-year breather, Condon and the band are back with a new album and a new energy. He shared with us his thoughts on all the changes, hardships, and growth throughout 10 years since the release of Beirut's first album, Gulag Orkestar, and how excited he is to be back doing what he loves most.

Travel seems like it has always been a huge part of your life -- when was the first time you remember that draw towards another culture and how did your interest evolve from there?

I used to work at this movie theater in Santa Fe, which was a really awesome job for someone like me who lives entirely in my own head. The Adventures of Tintin was the first time I ever realized making a connection like, "Oh shit, Indiana Jones." Before it crystallized into any realized thought, it was probably a tinge of imagination sparked by one of those things. And then it snowballed. Travel became a sense of identity for me. I should say, nowadays I find myself really trying to reel that in, because you can't base your entire personality on something like that. And it's just not healthy or normal.

Right. You can get really caught up striving to add more depth to your persona, and then you think, "well what if I'm just me right now? And what does that mean?" And that's scary.

Yes, exactly. Which is what's been happening recently and it's very much been this funny realization that in the end I just am a kid from Santa Fe, and that's pretty cool, too.

I'd say so. This album, No, No, No definitely has a lighter sound. It still has Beirut's signature melancholy moments, but there is this element of frivolity that suggests you may be taking yourself less seriously and having some fun. Tell me a bit about your mental evolution from recording The Rip Tide to now?

During The Rip Tide I was at the very end of my mental limit, of a very kind of pressed, anxiety about life. It's not like I just rolled out of that. I tried to disappear for a few years, whether on tour or traveling, and then I kind of got called back in. Musically speaking, this record was thanks to my band mates, Nick and Paul, who snapped me out of it. We started having fun with music again and returning to a sort of focus I hadn't felt in a really long time, so that was a really awesome thing to rediscover.

How did they help you out of your rut?

By saying, "Zach, if you want to write a fucking lounge song today we'll be your backing band for that, and it's funny and just enjoy it." And we just did it on such a consistent basis that we got sort of good at it again. Nick and Paul, the drummer and the bassist, know me well enough to see when I've hit a brick wall and I'm trying to outdo myself. This was them telling me to do the opposite of that.

How did you originally meet Nick and Paul?

It's actually a funny story. Well, you have to know Santa Fe to an extent to know why it's so funny and how I sit against all these things that are Santa Fean. Santa Fe calls itself the "The City Different," and what you get is a lot of the hippie generation that got lost there on an acid trip and never came back. People introduce themselves like, "Hi I'm Bob, a Sagittarius, and you?" -- a lot of drum circles, that type of shit. So, Paul was a shaggy student at the College of Santa Fe and Nick was his buddy. Paul kept approaching me after shows and said "I really like what you do, we should get together some day and jam, I play bass and my friends play drums." When someone comes up to you and says that in Santa Fe, warning lights just go off, but obviously at some point I had to play SXSW and I needed a band, so I said "OK lets do it." And the rest is history. I just didn't see that coming in a place like that.

You spent a lot of time in Turkey over the past few years. What brought you out there?

I'd been to Turkey before and really loved it but only stayed briefly. My fiancée is from Turkey, so we just started spending most of every summer there. I would do a few shows in Europe and go back to Turkey. I dug myself in like a tick for a minute, which was really nice, because I really needed it. I found a nice place where I was very present in day-to-day life.

I read you grew up listening to Doo-wop and Motown music, and you can definitely hear that influence on this album, most obviously in the beginning of "Pacheco." If you could go back in time and see any artist in that genre, who would it be?

Any concert with Smokey Robinson or any band backed by The Funk Brothers. Have you heard of The Wrecking Crew? If you listen to anything from Diana Ross to Smokey Robinson, they were always the anonymous band backing them. My big thing would definitely be Smokey, or I'd like to go even further back and hear Frankie and the Teenagers or something like that, just hear that raw and unamplified. "Pacheco" is kind of the most obvious, but it's definitely there all throughout. But man, now that I'm thinking about it, I'd really have to look through my catalogue, because that's where it gets really intense. 

It would be pretty awesome to see The Shirelles or the Ronettes.

The Ronettes would be pretty great. I actually saw Ronnie some years back, before the pool had opened in McCarren Park, and she was playing there. I thought it was the craziest thing.

You live in Williamsburg?

Yes, unfortunately.

Yeah, I'm thinking about moving, too.

Everyone is. We all want out. Anything that neighborhood used to be is no longer. I moved there about 10 years ago and I've lived around it. But there are so many layers. And then of course it's typical; people who came here 10 years before probably hated it, too.

Likely. What do you envision next for Beirut?

I never truly know, but this album really did knock down some walls for me and gave me an actual functional way of working and finishing stuff, because of the process and how it was done. I leaned on other people and not just myself. Even in the studio, I stayed away from trying to tweak with how it was recorded and let this guy Gabe Wax do it, and he was amazing.

Was that really hard for you?

I constantly felt like I was about to meddle and then I was like, "shut up and read a book or something." We would do everything live, so I had to remind myself to just continue playing the piano part, that I shouldn't be bouncing between the rooms trying to figure out how it can sound better. It was really just hands off, no worries, I already wrote the music -- there was nothing more for me to do. I feel like I've created a system that seems sustainable without destroying myself. There was also a reason the album is kind of short.

Yes. It definitely leaves you wanting more.

Yes. That's part of the reason and also I told myself I needed to stop when I did to avoid getting worn out, so that I could do this again in six months and I'm not just overwhelmed by what I created before.

Looking back in retrospect to 10 years ago recording Gulag Orkestar alone in your house, and now releasing your fourth album, achieving all this fame, and the ensuing consequences of fame -- how do you feel it about it all?

Well that's what the title is about. It's a jokingly, exasperated, "No, no, no." I was making fun of myself for constantly being tired, turning things away, and always being exhausted by my situation. The thing you have to understand about that, though, is that it's a joke. Not a "ha-ha" joke, but just me and my friends winking at each other. I may feel like I've been thrown around in the ring from time to time, whether on the road or even doing live interviews, and being construed a sort of way. You feel taken and pulled around, hence titles like "The Rip Tide." But the underlying theme is that I don't know how to do anything else and I have zero interest in doing anything else with my life.

I think the new approach is a good approach. And you'll be on tour throughout the fall?

I'll be honest, I almost felt I had let myself go with this album and that people would be sort of confused, so I'm happy to hear that. Yeah, we're going to Europe and then playing the West and East Coasts in the States. In the middle of winter, I personally would like to get back to sitting back in the studio and start playing again. 

The 10 Biggest Fashion Feuds in History

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.05.21 PM.pngCathy Horyn v. Armani, Hedi Slimane, Oscar De La Renta, Carolina Herrera

The revered critic's perch at the New York Times allowed her a scarce and dwindling privilege in the fashion world; unfettered honesty. Her reviews were pointed and refreshingly unsparing which earned her the ire of some of the biggest names and brands in the industry. She has been black listed, if temporarily, from Armani, Hedi Slimane's Saint Laurent, and Carolina Herrera to name few. And then most famously there was Oscar de la Renta who in 2012 took a full page ad in WWD to publish an open letter to her in response to Horyn calling him the 'hot dog' of American fashion.

beenewwd.jpgJohn Fairchild v. Geoffrey Beene

Perhaps one of the most protracted cold wars in New York fashion was between WWD Publisher and editor-in-chief John Fairchild and designer Geoffrey Beene. In the hermetic, pre-Instagram fashion landscape, a mention in Fairchild's broadsheet could make or break a designer's career in an afternoon and he wielded that power with mercurial relish. The story goes that after Beene took an exclusive on his new home to another magazine and once complained about the WWD journalist sent to interview him, he went mostly unmentioned in the daily for most of the 80s and 90s, joining the ranks of Fairchild ingrates called 'The Disappeared.' The editor claimed he never knew what started the chill.

tumblr_lrfjifF0Qa1qjidnuo1_1280.jpgKarl Lagerfeld v Yves Saint Laurent

The Karl v. Yves story goes so far back it's practically biblical, but began technically in 1953 when the two competed for a design prize as teenagers (Yves won). For the next five decades they were professional rivals though, one could argue, for the first half YSL led the way with his position at Dior and his era defining triumphs at his namesake label. However, Lagerfeld certainly has the spotlight, and the endurance, now as The Very Model of a Modern Major Designer at Chanel, Fendi and Chloe before. Their history together was the subject of the book The Beautiful Fall which chronicled their lives and loves (they famously competed for the affections of playboy Jacques de Bascher) and the all around haute glamour of fashions greatest frenemies.

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.16.03 PM.pngHalston v Charles James

The notoriously difficult and moody James accused the younger Halston of stealing his designs and wrote an article in Metropolis magazine in 1975, name checking the alleged thief and berating him as a copycat.  

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.18.12 PM.pngNaomi v. Tyra

The catwalk queens were pitted against each other in the '90s at a moment when there was an unwritten, and bigoted, rule that there could only be one black top model. Claims of black-balling and model on model sabotage were addressed when Campbell appeared on Tyra Banks talk show to mend fences with a healthy dose of tearful air-clearing.

tumblr_mfk4eauN5I1qaq9exo1_1280.jpgTory Burch v. Chris Burch

Call it the Kramer v. Kramer of 7th Avenue but when these exes went to court it wasn't about divorce terms but something far more high stakes; trademark infringement. In a string of lawsuits and countersuits Tory ultimately claimed her ex's new venture 'C. Wonder' was producing knock-offs of her namesake brand and the two settled in 2013 after Chris agreed to sell his significant stake in the Tory Burch brand. Since then Ms. Burch has launched a secondary sport line and joined fashion billionaires club.

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.21.25 PM.pngDonatella Versace v. Giorgio Armani

Last spring Mr. Armani, 80, was quoted in the UK's Sunday Times Magazine recounting a conversation he had with Gianni Versace that, according to him, went as such: "He was looking at the models, and he said to me, 'I dress sluts. You dress church ladies.'" However, Donatella Versace did not take so kindly to the frank re-telling and fired back in the press calling Armani's comments "rude and tasteless" and continuing "..the only word that ever came from his [Gianni's] mouth was glamour."

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.29.11 PM.pngTom Ford & Domenico De Sole v. Francois Pinault

Ford and CEO De Sole singlehandedly turned around the stagnating Gucci brand in the '90s, injecting it with Ford's signature sex appeal, bankable accessories and the ineffable fairy dust of relevance that made buyers and editors swoon. So it was doubly painful to watch it all fall apart in the new millennium when luxury group PPR, led by French tycoon Francois Pinault, pushed the two out over a dispute over creative control; Ford wanted it in total, PPR said no. The designer called the experience 'devastating' and the breathless press coverage made it all the more excruciating after the previous decades' thrilling rise.

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.30.58 PM.pngChanel v. Schiaparelli

In an era when women were barely allowed to wear pants the careers of both Coco Chanel and Elsa Schiaparelli in 30's Paris were nothing short of exceptional. Both fiercely independent and outspoken, they crossed paths and not always pleasantly in the Paris fashion scene between the wars. Allegedly, Mme. Chanel once 'accidentally' pushed Schiap (whom she referred to as 'that Italian artist who makes clothes') into a candelabra at a dinner party, setting her dress on fire.

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.37.20 PM.png

YSL v. Tom Ford

When Ford assumed the creative reigns of YSL in 1999 he was on good terms with M. Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Berge. But, after successfully taking the brand in a different direction to much acclaim, Ford revealed later in interviews he would receive nasty letters with lines like 'in thirteen minutes you destroyed 40 years of my work' from the tempermental Yves.

A Q with the Star of "who is she," the Most Delightful Vine on the Web


Sometimes a Vine so perfect appears that watching it feels like walking through a wall -- like you're witnessing the perfect alignment of atoms coming together to accomplish the seemingly impossible. "who is she" by chloe lmao, aka 16-year-old Chloe Woodard, is one of those Vines. There's not much to the clip:  tiny sunglasses, tie dye, a large ponytail, shimmying shoulders, braces, and the intro to A-ha's 1984 synthpop hit "Take On Me." But all together, it creates the kind of simple, indescribable magic that has accumulated over 60 million views. We talked to the auteur behind this Internet masterpiece on her last day of summer before going back to high school.

Can you walk me through the moments before you made this? Who filmed this?

It was actually my younger sister. We were playing outside and messing around with the water balloons outside. My friend gave me the glasses and I was just playing around with them. I was like, "Wait this would be funny" and I had her film it for me. I was like, "Did you like this?" and she was like, "Yeah, well maybe you could put music to it." And I always put "Take on Me" by a-ha to my Vines. So I was like, "Alright I guess we'll put that one." And I don't know, I guess everyone liked it!

The song really makes it! Like, the exact timing. Why do you like that song so much?
I just always liked it. I remember I saw a commercial that used the song once and my mom was like, "You should come listen to the full song. It's actually really good." And I fell in love with it and have really liked it ever since. Every time I hear it on the radio I get really excited. It's just a fun song.

How did you figure out you could do this motion with your hair?
I've always had really big hair. My hair's naturally very curly, so it naturally has that weird bounce to it. The way I moved my shoulders made it bounce like that. It's funny, I didn't really notice before I watched it that I could do that.

I initially thought you were a doll. It seems unreal.
A lot of people said they thought it was going to be a mannequin head or something. They were surprised.

Your friend gave you the sunglasses?
Yeah, my best friend who's actually my cousin. That's how we've known each other our whole lives. She had them probably from like a doll or something. She took this really funny picture of her wearing the glasses and I thought it was like the best picture ever. So next time I went over to her house she was like, "Oh here are the glasses from that picture." And I was like, "Can I have these?! I think they would be fun to make Vines with." And she was like, "Yeah, sure, go ahead!" So that's where I got the glasses from.

That's so nice of her.
I know! I thanked her so much.

Did you take multiple takes of this? Or your sister got it in one try?
That was only the second take of it. The first time the zooming was weird and she agreed. So we did it one more time and it was perfect.

I noticed you're wearing braces in this Vine, but then in your later Vines you're not. Did you get them taken off or were those prop braces?

I got my braces off 5 days after I made that Vine. I didn't know prop braces existed until after when people started asking me if I had them!

Has anyone recognized you in public from this? You really did transform yourself from normal person to this specific look!
It's really crazy how people do recognize me! I was in Chicago like the downtown area for two days and both days someone recognized me from Vine. And I think one of the days it was because of my hair. And this boy walked up to me and was like "Is this you?" and he showed me my Vine and I was like, "Yeah, it is." And I'm almost positive it was because I had my hair down and it looked flouncy from afar. It was so weird because Chicago is a big city. Like, of all the people you could recognize? I'm getting used to that, too. Because it happens a lot more now. But I appreciate it so much.

How quickly did this become such a hit?
It was pretty much overnight. I posted it on July 2nd and then by July 3rd it had over 100,000 views. Then I remember waking up on July 4th and it had over a million views already. I was so surprised.

You were like, 'wow God Bless America!'

So you're going back to school tomorrow. Do you think people are going to bring this up?
I have talked to a lot of my school friends. They probably will. Before this even happened, people would bring up my Vines to me at school because I guess they really liked them. I don't know, I think it's probably gonna be so weird. I haven't really thought much about it. I'm kind of excited to see how it turns out.

Do you think you'll keep making Vines for the foreseeable future?
Yeah, as long as I have material, I guess. My material right now is not as good as it could be. Like, I'm pretty young. I'm 16. My sense of humor hasn't come into its own. I need time to experience more and have my sense of humor mature. I think by then I could make pretty good content. Whether Vine will be around by then or not, I don't know.

Best/Worst Parents Ever Recreate Their Daughter's Smoochy Couple Selfies

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 10.18.23 AM.png
Poor Emily Mussom. Can't a lovestruck youngin' post cute couple selfies without her parents poking around? Let alone watch them recreate said photos to poke fun at her?

Granted, the snaps of her parents imitating her smoochie duckfaces with boyfriend Johnny are hilarious and it seems as if Emily's enjoyed them as well, as she's been posting the pics to Twitter. 

And you thought you were mortified by your parents.

Givenchy Takes NYC

DS_GIVENCHYFW15_WOMEN_02_CMYK.jpgGivenchy creative director Riccardo Tisci still remembers his first trip to New York City. The year was 1996, and he and model Mariacarla Boscono, a teen at the time, were "Italo-goths" who ran all over town checking out underground clubs and immersing themselves in street culture. Tisci was hooked.

Today, he'll show Givenchy's spring/summer 2016 collection right here in his home away from home -- an eyebrow-raising departure for those accustomed to the brand's high-profile Paris shows. New York, specifically Madison Avenue, is also where he's just now opening a new Givenchy boutique. All of which makes sense when you think about it: Hubert de Givenchy showed his namesake line here in 1956 and '88, and if you follow @riccardotisci17 on Instagram (or if you read our #verytisci cover story last October) you know that Tisci is no stranger to NYC nightlife. But whatever the hour, this is the place that matches the man's tireless work ethic and voracious joie de vivre.

"I love New York particularly because everything is easy and fast," he says. "I have this sense of freedom that I need. You can have everything delivered to you in 24 hours."

Here, we present a Givenchy casting story featuring the label's fall 2015 collection and its in-your-face (and we do mean "in-your-face") accessories.


Who To See This Weekend At Basilica Soundscape

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 11.23.10 AM.png
Deafheaven at Basilica Soundscape 2014 / photos by Kevin Shea Adams

How do I love Basilica Soundscape? Let me count the ways. Since its first installment in 2012, this impeccably curated multimedia festival has brought hundreds of people to Hudson, New York each fall for a weekend of food, art, film, music and magic. Lovingly produced by former Hole bassist/Renaissance woman Melissa Auf der Maur and her husband Tony Stone (who own the cathedral-esque former factory in which it takes place), it's also done in collaboration with Pitchfork Managing Editor Brandon Stosuy and Brian DeRan of Leg Up Management, so obviously the line-up kills. Some call it "the anti-festival festival" for its resistance to the culture that inspired this Onion article, but maybe it's time to reclaim that term--which, after all, originated from the Middle English word for "spiritual feast" and not "corporate mud pit into which you throw money in hope of glimpsing a Lindsay Lohan nip slip." 

Once again, this year's Soundscape presents a diverse array of lovely and intense music and challenges attendees to listen actively and find the threads between them. Here are some of the highlights; and if they sound good to you, tickets are still available

Jenny Hval 

Inventor of the term "soft dick rock," this Norwegian singer-songwriter is committed to asking playful questions about serious topics like gender, capitalism and the nature of art in her delicious purr over music that ranges from wiry "free rock" to meandering, pop-inflected jams. She recently expanded her live act to include video projections and performance artists; think of it as a fun Jazzercise class for your brain. 

Wolf Eyes 

Formed back in 1996, Detroit's post-industrial noise heroes are known for conjuring the grinding sounds of the robo-apocalypse from hacked electronics worn like traditional rock instruments. Their sick, lurching grooves should be a good follow up to those of last year's headliner Swans. This is music so dark and insane you won't be able to tell if your drugs are working until after they finish. 

Indrajit Banerjee & Gourisankar 

Basilica Soundscape always has one world music act a lot of people in attendance might not discover otherwise. That might seem token-istic, but it works with the music's spiritual aspects, calling out to other modes of transcendence at play over the weekend. And this should be especially true of the sitar and tabla concert happening this year; Banerjee trained under his uncle Pandit Kartick Kumar, a senior disciple of the one and only Ravi Shankar. 

Viet Cong 

I feel like people use "post-punk" nowadays as shorthand for "bands that sound like Joy Division," and Viet Cong do have that winning combo of gloom and bounce. But there's a lot more going on here -- like touches of psych and lo-fi scuzz, and even some nice vocal harmonies. 


These Los Angeles noise-rockers are experts at combining industrial harshness, pop melody, and good old-fashioned showmanship to create a mind-blowing live spectacle. Should provide a satisfying climax to the first night. Not recommended for those sensitive to strobes or sweaty dancing. 

The Haxan Cloak 

The solo project of multi-instrumentalist and producer Bobby Krlic, The Haxan Cloak deals in slow-building electronic compositions that make you feel like you're a character in a Swedish horror movie. Heavy bass and foreboding atmosphere masterfully evoke the monster you don't see. Should lend itself especially well to the gothic, cavernous space. 

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 11.27.24 AM.png
Triangle Trio 

"A drumming outfit comprised of Chris Corsano, Otto Hauser and Ryan Sawyer created exclusively for Basilica SoundScape." You won't see this super group anywhere else. Judging from who's involved, it will be loud and weird and very good. 


For the uninitiated, this post-rock, post-metal, post-everything band is surprisingly listenable for something so loud, brutal and prog-y...much like last year's Deafheaven. Pairs well with a discrete one-hitter. 

Perfume Genius 

Although he's been making music under the name Perfume Genius since 2008, Mike Hadreas had a real breakthrough in 2014 with his third album Too Bright, which deals with issues like abuse, illness and gay identity through delicately sung piano ballads and the odd surprise banger like lead single "Queen." Come for the heartbreaking falsetto, stay for the thoughtful lyrics. 

Bunnybrains Pop-Up 

Don't sleep on the Bunnybrains Pop-Up shop out back. In addition to selling books and displaying art, it plays host to all kinds of experimental weirdness. Of particular note: Kill Alters w/ Soft Circle, Meshell Ndegeocello/Ryan Sawyer/Elliott Krimsky Trio, and Brian Gibson of Lightning Bolt's new video game THUMPER. 

After Parties 

One less touted aspect of Basilica Soundscape are the nightly after parties at nearby watering hole The Half Moon Pub. But make no mistake, these pop off, with artists, fans, and bookers alike getting down to hot jams well into the wee hours. This year's DJs include Ephraim Asili, gay metal DJ collective Rainbow in the Dark and The Haxan Cloak himself. Don't be scared to talk to your favorite musician; he/she is probably normal and nice.

Sarah Michelle Gellar's New Lifestyle Brand is Cookie Dough That Isn't Done Baking

buffy 1.jpgCulture is fast approaching a point where we're numb to questionable decisions by celebrity lifestyle brands -- like Goop's "rapper handbags," Preserve's bumpy launch, or, well, Goop's diet failure -- so the introduction of new players into the landscape is either a breath of fresh air or totally unnecessary. Sarah Michelle Gellar has decided to get in on the fun, starting Foodstirs, a line of food and baking kits.

Obviously, full judgments can wait for a while, but Foodstirs... does not seem like the best idea. As Jezebel points out, the rationale behind the baking kits -- that Gellar didn't recognize the names of the ingredients in other cake mixes -- really doesn't hold up. And aggressively marketing as GMO-free is counterproductive and trades on unjustified fear of genetic modification. Maybe we should nip this in the bud and... put a... stake in Sarah Michelle Gellar's lifestyle brand. (Sorry.) Or maybe her lifestyle brand is just like cookie dough that isn't done baking.

Okay, okay, sorry. Seriously, though: I think the world can collectively agree that if any celebrity is going to start a lifestyle brand in this over-saturated market, it's January Jones, both because she is great and because her devotees could be called Fanuaries.

Take T.I., Young Thug, and Young Dro's "Peanut Butter Jelly" on Your Lunch Break


T.I. has had a bit of a rough year or so, what with his attempts to defend Iggy Azalea. But there's one thing that's hard to deny about Tip in the 2010s: when he works with Young Thug, it's explosive. So just hearing that T.I.'s new EP Da Nic features "Peanut Butter Jelly," a collaboration with both Thugger and Young Dro, should be exciting even before you hear the track. Listen to it above, then come back and talk about it with us, because it's good. This is a pretty fine look for you, T.I. Keep it up.

Dreamy, Disco-Drenched Photos from the Gloss Book Launch, Hosted by Marc Jacobs

Last night, the fashion crowd threw on their slinkiest lamé gowns, busted out the leisure suits and amped up their fabulosity game and headed to The Tunnel, the site of the launch of Gloss, a new book of photographs by the late fashion photographer Chris Von Wangenheim, hosted by Marc Jacobs. The invite's dress code may have sparked a mini-viral moment and guests like Solange Knowles, Amanda Lepore, Pat Cleveland, Gabrielle Union, Raury and more fashion, music, art and entertainment folks took note -- the collective pixie dust emanating off of everyone could have sent Tinker Bell soaring. (Basically, everyone looked amazing.) Take a look at dreamy photos from the night shot by Paper's Derek Anthony Welte, below.

Marc Jacobs

Roger Padilha, Solange and Mauricio Padilha

Pat Cleveland

Gabrielle Union


Susanne Bartsch


Marc Jacobs

Anna Cleveland

Wendy Williams

Harry Brant gets a smooch

June Ambrose


Candice Huffine (left)


Amanda Lepore

A Deep Dive Into An All-Male Masturbation Club

photo by F Delventhal / Flickr

Ever heard of a "jack-off club"? Well it's exactly what it sounds like aka an all-dude meet-up where you, uh, masturbate with other dudes.

Recently, Vice's Mish Way did a deep-dive into a Seattle-based group called the Rain City Jacks, who operate on an ethos of male bonding via pleasure -- and found out in the process that there was a lot more to the group than just, well, jerking off.

Founded in 2005 by Paul Rosenberg, the Rain City Jacks started as a Yahoo group in response to the marked lack of communal masturbation clubs in the Seattle area. And it's been a success ever since, with hundreds of members and a well-oiled (heh) organizational structure that includes a mentor-based introduction and coded consent wristbands (red for "don't touch my dick," green for "just touch my dick"). Not to mention a well-stocked supply area that features all sorts of lubes, wipes, linens, clean-up materials, etc.

And while there's a general misconception that jack-off clubs first started up in response to the 80s AIDS crisis, Rosenberg said this kind of playtime has been going on forever and does not definitively stem from a fear of STDs. Rather it's probably better to think of the jack-off clubs as places slowly working toward the destigmatization of masturbation as "not real sex" -- as this sort of thinking is as Rosenberg said, "the first assault we make on a child's sense of sexual identity and physical self-worth, even if it comes via a benign diversion from self-exploration and stimulation, the message is always, 'Don't do that.'"

"The energy at jack-off clubs is inevitably very focused on physical pleasure and the penis specifically," Rosenberg added. "The power of the experience lies in the exposure of what is routinely hidden and the sharing of what is almost universally private: our masturbation practice."

Read the whole piece here.