Chvrches Cover Arctic Monkeys' "Do I Wanna Know?"

ChvrchesChvrches have been rocking a myriad of covers lately, from Whitney Houston to Bauhaus. With each one, the Scottish trio inject that signature synthpop sound and crooning vocals for a truly unique experience. Adding the Arctic Monkeys to their hit list, the band recently did an in-studio session with Triple J to cover “Do I Wanna Know,” off Arctic Monkeys’ 2013 release, AM. You can check out the cover below. (more…)

WATCH: Arcade Fire Unplugged At Triple J

arcade-fireThere’s something truly beautiful and intriguing about unplugged performances. They’re raw, real, and they offer a new look at bands we’ve already become captivated with. Performing for Triple J in Australia, Arcade Fire put together stripped down versions of “Normal Person” and “Joan Of Arc” off Reflektor, and “My Body Is A Cage” off Neon Bible. Dare I say these versions are just as good if not better than the album versions we’re accustomed to? Check it out for yourself below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.  (more…)

Spotify's Australia Launch Met With Support And Skepticism

Internet denizens from down under received a special hello yesterday. The message rang out a little differently depending on one’s country of origin. “G’day,” it began for the Aussies and “Kia Ora,” for the Kiwis. Both audiences were then encouraged to “Spotify here.”

Yes, the interactive music streaming service Spotify made its debut in Australia and New Zealand yesterday. But it wasn’t all free tunes and good news for the company. Triple J reporter Sophie McNeill addressed some of the typical complements and complaints lobbed at the service during an interview with Spotify Managing Director Kate Vale. While some have questioned the depth and presence of local Australian artists on the service, Vale was quick to point out that Spotify’s 16 million song catalog would present a wealth of options for users. Vale has also noted Spotify’s desire to make everything available globally.

However Vale had an issue addressing questions regarding royalty payments and transparency:

Sophie McNeill: “Is Spotify going to make public its finances when it comes to contracts with the labels and how much they receive per play of the songs that they own?”

Kate Vale: “I don’t think so at this stage.”

McNeill: “Why?”

Vale: “I’m not sure.”

Vale did not go into further detail regarding the issue. Vale later asserted that Spotify has been instrumental in combating music piracy in every country that it is featured in and refuted a claim that Lady Gaga had only earned $167 for a million streams of her song “Poker Face.” So while Spotify is sure to hit big with music lovers in the Southern Hemisphere there are still some questions about the service to be addressed.

You can listen to the full radio piece here.

Sound And Vision: Foster the People's Chart Challenge — Is There Life After "Pumped Up Kicks"?

Foster the People just might be the pop anomaly of 2011.

The trio of Los Angeles-based twentysomethings led by founder and namesake Mark Foster looks like a boy band (only cuter), plays instruments like rockers and produces music with beats that thump as hard as any backing up those fierce divas currently ruling every dance floor in clubland. And then there’s FTP’s breakthrough single, an insanely catchy song called “Pumped Up Kicks” about cool shoes and a youth with homicidal tendencies.

I mean, really?

Even more surprising than the song’s smash status despite its decidedly un-poppy protagonist”that troubled kid contemplating a shooting spree”is the fact that it’s created barely a ripple of controversy throughout its lengthy chart run. Did the clever lyrics fly over the heads of the country’s guardians of morality and decency in songwriting? Were we all just too lost in the beat to notice the finger on the trigger?

Or perhaps for the first time since the second British invasion of the 1980s brought such alternative pop acts as Duran Duran,
Depeche Mode and indie-pop pioneers the Smiths into and around the mainstream, both the masses and the pop-music establishment (radio and retail) are ready to support music that touches on more complex subject matters than “dance music sex romance””to quote a track on pop iconoclast supreme Prince’s 1982 album, 1999, one of the records that launched the censorship wars of the early ’80s that would hardly raise an eyebrow today.)