Listen to Kanye West "Love Lockdown" (Vtron Remix)

Vtron turns up the electro on his glistening remix of Kanye West's "Love Lockdown." If you're a Daft Punk, Alan Braxe or Technologic fan, you'll be in for a real treat. "Love Lockdown" is of course the first single from West's new album "808s & Heartbreak" that will hit stores in November. Featuring a singing West, "Love Lockdown" is an appropriate introduction to this introspective new disc that will feature vocals only. No rapping but lots of vocoder. Check out some of the songs from the album here.

October 17, 2008 in Kanye West | Permalink | Comments (0)

Listen to New Kanye West "Love Lockdown" Remixes

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Mash up artist DJ Earworm explains on his web site that artists and recording companies are starting to encourage mash up innovations by releasing stems of popular tracks. A stem is a piece of a song that could  either be the vocals, string section, drums, guitars or any other isolated bit of a track. Together, the stems make up the final, mixed stereo recording.

"Now, with DIY remix culture exploding, we sonic manipulators are growing hungry for disassembled pop music, and the music industry is beginning to see the benefit of increased exposure through releasing stems directly to the public," Earworm explain. "[This allows] us much greater freedom than if they had simply released the instrumentals and acapellas. Now we can choose which instruments are playing."

Three new remixes hit this week that both rely on stems of Kanye West's "Love Lockdown." One is produced DJ Earworm who mashed up "Love Lockdown" with Radiohead's "Reckoner" to create a rhythmic and epic new version that will take your breath away. The second is a downbeat dance mix by Brooklyn artist Brad Walsh who added a funky new groove to the song. Also, check out Doc Rosen Rosen's dark rogue-remake. All highly recommended. (Kanye's "Love Lockdown" blinking heart pin can be purchased here.)

Listen to Kanye West vs Radiohead "Reckoner Lockdown"
Listen to Kanye West "Love Lockdown" (Brad Walsh Remix)
Listen to Kanye West "Love Lockdown" (Doc Rosen Rosen)

October 7, 2008 in Kanye West | Permalink | Comments (4)

Kanye West & N.E.R.D In Hong Kong

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While on the topic of Kanye West and Pharrell Williams, I must not forget to mention that West's Glow In The Dark Tour (with Pharrell's N.E.R.D as one of the support acts) is getting raving reviews. Click over to Pharrell's blog to get an exclusive first-hand look of the behind the scenes of the tour stop in Hong Kong earlier this month. Also see photos of other very well-known celebs who traveled to Asia to see the show.

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April 20, 2008 in Kanye West, Pharrell Williams | Permalink | Comments (0)

A Few Words About Kanye West's "Flashing Lights"

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Kanye West's video for "Flashing Lights" is one of my favorites videos of the last twelve months or so. It is a compelling piece of cinematography that puts you on the edge of your seat while you're looking for clues about what's going on and trying to figure out what the hell just happened.

L Magazine's Mike Dougherty put the video under a lens and gets a little academic to come up with some clues about what this mini flick might really be all about. After discussing some plausible notions about what might have been the thinking behind the video, Dougherty goes on to speculate how West might have intended to use this video as a way to kill off his public persona and go back to the role of the underdog.

"His mom died in November, hence all the tributes at the Grammys and in the tabloids, and it’s clear he’s been a little more vulnerable lately than he usually puts on," Dougherty writes. "Could throwing a death wish out there just be a pity play, a way to affect the underdog role again, ridiculous as that might be? After all, he started out as a producer with friends in high places but a questionable level of sheer talent. Three albums later, devout hip-hop heads still question whether he’s that good a writer."

He also claims that West's "scattered visual distractions" in his videos and album art "have rightfully taken the attention off his writing and his rapping."

I frankly think that West simply made a great and memorable video that marries his knack for a strong aesthetic with his incredible media-savvy. And even though it seems that West gets very little airtime in his video (he's merely an extra), the rapper is still the focal point of discussion with viewers asking "What happened to Kanye?" in their effort to make sense of it all.

No need to worry. Kanye West's ego is alive and kicking, making him one of those most colorful personalities in music today.

March 8, 2008 in Kanye West | Permalink | Comments (4)

Listen to Estelle "American Boy" (Feat. Kanye West)

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British singer Estelle is the newest darling of America's hip hop elite.

Her new single features rhymes by Kanye West and is entirely based on will.i.am's "Impatient" that is taken from his 2007 solo album "Songs About Girls." He is listed as an executive producer of Estelle's forthcoming album "Shine," which will be released on John Legends' Homeschool Records. Legend is, of course, good pals with Kanye West who signed him to his G.O.O.D label. And with that the story of Estelle's debut in the U.S. comes full circle.

"American Boy" is a nice progression of where will.i.am originally took it with the addition of Estelle's soulful vocal delivery.

Listen to Estelle "American Boy" (ft. Kanye West)
Listen to will.i.am "Impatient" (sample)

February 20, 2008 in Audio Streams, Kanye West | Permalink | Comments (9)