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Everything posted by DudeAsInCool

  1. Kacey Musgraves teased a new album on Grammy night, and today she’s ready to announce it for real. Deeper Well, her first LP since 2021’s star-crossed, is out next month. View the full article
  2. Don Van Vliet was born to be a cult artist. Van Vliet, better known to most of us as PJ Harvey, pioneered an unhinged, experimental form of rock ‘n’ roll. He never made much commercial impact, but he inspired generations of artists. One of those artists was young Polly Jean Harvey, who grew up listening to Beefheart because her parents were fans. Apparently, Van Vliet was also inspired by PJ Harvey — or, at least, by PJ Harvey’s cat. View the full article
  3. Trio will play concert during solar eclipse to coincide with April record releaseView the full article
  4. Last year, This Is The Kit released a new album, Careful Of Your Keepers, and it was produced by Super Furry Animals’ Gruff Rhys. Today, they’re sharing a cover of Rhys’ “Sensations In The Dark,” which appears on his 2011 album Hotel Shampoo. View the full article
  5. Last month, Jlin announced a new album, Akoma, which boasts some heavy-hitting guest spots from Björk, Philip Glass, and Kronos Quartet. Its lead single was “The Precision Of Infinity” (the one that features Glass), and it landed on our best songs of the week list. Today, Jlin has shared another track from it, the dark and shapeshifting “Auset.” Check it out below. View the full article
  6. In 2023, less than a year before his death, the outlaw legend looked back on a lifetime of starting shit and burning bridgesView the full article
  7. Usher will headline this weekend’s Super Bowl halftime show, Post Malone will sing “America The Beautiful,” and Tiesto will be the game’s official in-show DJ. You’ll also probably see Taylor Swift cheering along for the Chiefs if she can figure out her flight. But those aren’t the only artists you’ll be seeing during Super Bowl LVIII. View the full article
  8. Vampire Weekend have officially announced their fifth album, which is called Only God Was Above Us and will be out on April 5. The band’s follow-up to 2019’s Father Of The Bride was “inspired and haunted by 20th century New York City,” per a press release, and recording locations include Manhattan, Los Angeles, London, and Tokyo. It was produced by Ezra Koenig and Ariel Rechtshaid, mixed by Dave Fridmann, and mastered by Emily Lazar. View the full article
  9. The singer-songwriter gave the recital a London art gallery that's showing the late art rocker's paintingsView the full article
  10. Over the past few years, IDLES have strung together a succession of fiery, theatrical performances on American late-night shows. The band probably owes a pretty good chunk of their reputation to moments like those. IDLES might come off gimmicky on record, but they can also summon serious intensity in unforgiving TV-studio environs. Last night, they added another big performance to their resume. View the full article
  11. Last year, mui zyu released her debut album Rotten Bun For An Eggless Century, which led us to name her an Artist To Watch and landed her on our annual Best New Bands list. Today, Eva Liu, the musician behind mui zyu, is releasing a new song, the languid and melancholy “everything to die for.” View the full article
  12. Crowded House have shared a new single, “Oh Hi,” their first new music since the release of their 2021 full-length Dreamers Are Waiting. Bandleader Neil Finn shared a demo of this track a couple years ago, and it’s inspired by his work with the nonprofit So They Can, which builds schools in Kenya and Tanzania. “I’m hoping the song comes across without needing to know the backstory,” Finn shared. “But it’s very much inspired by these incredible kids and their magnificence.” Listen below. View the full article
  13. Twenty years is an impossibly long time, and it’s also the blink of an eye. Twenty years is now how long it’s been since Kanye West released his debut album The College Dropout; the album’s birthday is Saturday. I can see that 2004 release date in my head like it’s playing on TV. I remember exactly which shelf of the now-shuttered record store had the CD on display, and I can remember practically sprinting to the counter to pay for it, then back to my apartment to throw it on. I’m still the person who bought that CD, and Kanye West is still the person who made it, but we are also very different people. In the case of Kanye West, most of the changes have not been good. View the full article
  14. The singer and songwriter's third studio album, Don't Forget Me, is set for release on April 12 View the full article
  15. Detroit-born baritone and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee was with the Spinners from their 1954 formation until his retirement in 2023 View the full article
  16. The song is the band's first new music since 2021View the full article
  17. "Going Home (Theme From Local Hero)” features Bruce Springsteen, David Gilmour, Slash, Ronnie Wood, Joan Jett, Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend, Sting, and the final recording by Jeff BeckView the full article
  18. "I'm dying to know what she wants to talk to me about"View the full article
  19. The British rock band will release their fifth LP, Tangk, next weekView the full article
  20. Enlarge (credit: Getty) Chromebooks and MacBooks are among the least repairable laptops around, according to an analysis that consumer advocacy group US Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) shared this week. Apple and Google have long been criticized for selling devices that are deemed harder to repair than others. Worse, PIRG believes that the two companies are failing to make laptops easier to take apart and fix. The "Failing the Fix (2024)" report released this week [PDF] is largely based on the repairability index scores required of laptops and some other electronics sold in France. However, the PIRG’s report weighs disassembly scores more than the other categories in France's index, like the availability and affordability of spare parts, “because we think this better reflects what consumers think a repairability score indicates and because the other categories can be country specific,” the report says. PIRG's scores, like France’s repair index, also factor in the availability of repair documents and product-specific criteria (the PIRG’s report also looks at phones). For laptops, that criteria includes providing updates and the ability to reset software and firmware. Read 15 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  21. Enlarge / These mounted displays near the entrance let visitors touch, but not use, a Vision Pro. (credit: Kyle Orland) For decades now, potential Apple customers have been able to wander in to any Apple Store and get some instant eyes-on and hands-on experience with most of the company's products. The Apple Vision Pro is an exception to this simple process; the "mixed-reality curious" need to book ahead for a guided, half-hour Vision Pro experience led by an Apple Store employee. As a long-time veteran of both trade show and retail virtual-reality demos, I was interested to see how Apple would sell the concept of "spatial computing" to members of the public, many of whom have minimal experience with existing VR systems. And as someone who's been following news and hands-on reports of the Vision Pro's unique features for months now, I was eager to get a brief glimpse into what all the fuss was about without plunking down at least $3,499 for a unit of my own. After going through the guided Vision Pro demo at a nearby Apple Store this week, I came away with mixed feelings about how Apple is positioning its new computer interface to the public. While the short demo contained some definite "oh, wow" moments, the device didn't come with a cohesive story pitching it as Apple's next big general-use computing platform. Read 26 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  22. Enlarge (credit: Samuel Axon) Apple is purportedly working on a foldable iPhone internally, according to "a person with direct knowledge of the situation" speaking to The Information. They're said to be clamshell-style devices that fold like Samsung's Galaxy Z Flip series rather than phones that become tablets like the Galaxy Z Fold or Google's Pixel Fold. The phones are also said to be "in early development" or "could be canceled." If they do make it to market, it likely wouldn't be until after 2025. The report has a long list of design challenges that Apple has faced in developing foldable phones: they're too thick when folded up; they're easily broken; they would cost more than non-foldable versions; the seam in the middle of the display tends to be both visible and feel-able; and the hinge on an iPad-sized device would prevent the device from sitting flat on a table (though this concern hasn't stopped Apple from introducing substantial camera bumps on many of its tablets and all of its phones). Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  23. Enlarge (credit: Jericho / Ron Amadeo) YouTube is still slowly dripping out stats about its subscriber base. After the announcement last week that YouTube Premium had hit 100 million subscribers, the company now says YouTube TV, its cable subscription plan, has 8 million subscribers. Eight million subscribers might sound paltry compared to the 100 million people on Premium, but Premium is only $12. YouTube TV is one of the most expensive streaming subscriptions at $73 a month. The cable-like prices are because this is a cable-like service: a huge bundle of 100-plus channels featuring cable TV stalwarts like CNN, ESPN, and your local NBC, CBS, and ABC channels. $73 is also the base price. Like cable TV, there are additional add-on packages for premium movie channels like HBO and Showtime, 4K packages, and other sports and language add-ons. Let's also not forget NFL Sunday Ticket, which this year became a YouTube TV exclusive, as a $350-a-year add-on to the $73-a-month service (there's also a $ 450-a-year standalone package). The subscriber numbers come from a "Letter from the YouTube CEO" blog post for 2024 from YouTube CEO Neal Mohan. With YouTube basically unable to get any bigger as the Internet's defacto video host, Mohan says the "next frontier" for YouTube is "the living room and subscriptions." Mohan wants users "watching YouTube the way we used to sit down together for traditional TV shows—on the biggest screen in the home with friends and family," and says that "viewers globally now watch more than 1 billion hours on average of YouTube content on their TVs every day." Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  24. Enlarge / A microSD card of "unknown origin" is soldered onto a USB interface board to serve as makeshift NAND storage. (credit: CBL Data recovery) When a German data recovery firm recently made a study of the failed flash storage drives it had been sent, it noticed some interesting, and bad, trends. Most of them were cheap sticks, the kind given away by companies as promotional gifts, but not all of them. What surprised CBL Data Recovery was the number of NAND chips from reputable firms, such as Samsung, Sandisk, or Hynix, found inside cheaper devices. The chips, which showed obvious reduced capacity and reliability on testing, had their manufacturers' logo either removed by abrasion or sometimes just written over with random text. Sometimes there wasn't a NAND chip at all, but a microSD card—possibly also binned during quality control—scrubbed of identifiers and fused onto a USB interface board. On "no-name" products, there is "less and less reliability," CBL wrote (in German, roughly web-translated). CBL did find branded products with similar rubbed-off chips and soldered cards but did not name any specific brands in its report. Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
  25. Enlarge / Intel's Core Ultra chips are some of the first x86 PC processors to include built-in NPUs. Software support will slowly follow. (credit: Intel) When it announced the new Copilot key for PC keyboards last month, Microsoft declared 2024 "the year of the AI PC." On one level, this is just an aspirational PR-friendly proclamation, meant to show investors that Microsoft intends to keep pushing the AI hype cycle that has put it in competition with Apple for the title of most valuable publicly traded company. But on a technical level, it is true that PCs made and sold in 2024 and beyond will generally include AI and machine-learning processing capabilities that older PCs don't. The main thing is the neural processing unit (NPU), a specialized block on recent high-end Intel and AMD CPUs that can accelerate some kinds of generative AI and machine-learning workloads more quickly (or while using less power) than the CPU or GPU could. Qualcomm's Windows PCs were some of the first to include an NPU, since the Arm processors used in most smartphones have included some kind of machine-learning acceleration for a few years now (Apple's M-series chips for Macs all have them, too, going all the way back to 2020's M1). But the Arm version of Windows is a insignificantly tiny sliver of the entire PC market; x86 PCs with Intel's Core Ultra chips, AMD's Ryzen 7040/8040-series laptop CPUs, or the Ryzen 8000G desktop CPUs will be many mainstream PC users' first exposure to this kind of hardware. Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments View the full article
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