Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors
Sounds like: If you count the bangin’ Speakerboxx, his third solo’s not as bonkers as Sir Lucious Left Foot, but still excellent, artistically forward hip-hop.
Free association: Good news: Turns out Little Dragon’s Yukimi’s all up in this piece.
For fans of: Andre 3000/Outkast, Cee Lo/Goodie Mob, Pharrell/N.E.R.D., Cadillacs/ Atlanta. (Bill Chenevert)
Sounds like: The successful songwriter’s second proper LP is a bit of a disappointment; not as joyful and creative, more breakups and bitter laments.
Free association: The best moments are when he uses reggae and rips off MJ.
For fans of: Flo Rida/Travie McCoy/ Mike Posner, Bieber and Swift, pop charts. (B.C.)
Sounds like: Another factor in the blandifying of hip-hop, the Dr. Dre protégé goes conceptual with a black Jesus on the cover, carting in guests by the dozen.
Free association: Oh, rap that’s about money, drugs and demeaning women.
For fans of: 2 Chainz, Rick Ross, Kanye, Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, guests on every track. (B.C.)
(One Little Indian)
Sounds like: The Queen of Weird’s fourth remix album is a collection of versions of Biophilia songs, done in trippy ways that are all totally solid(ly weird).
Free association: She wants you to hear these, not search the Internet for them.
For fans of: Portishead x Tricky + Aphex Twin, Goldfrapp on acid, blippy trip-hop. (B.C.)
Lucifer in Dub
Sounds like: The L.A. husband-and-wife psych noise duo turn in dubby versions of their already dub-heavy third, and the result is ultra-chill, pleasant trips.
Free association: Dub-lovers should appreciate this music tweaked by machines.
For fans of: Lee “Scratch” Perry, Zola Jesus x Young Prisms + Caribou, weed/opiates. (B.C.)
Boys Like Girls
Sounds like: These Boston dudes look as obnoxious as they sound with their third LP of—get this—a mix of emo-pop, country and Christian rock. It’s abysmal.
Free association: How anyone thinks this is awesome is beyond comprehension.
For fans of: Fall Out Boy, Taking Back Sunday, Jimmy Eat World, three-word bands. (B.C.)
Love You, Mean It
with Whitney Cummings
Wednesdays, 10:30pm, E!
Captive audience: Gossip geeks, star fuckers and catty bitches in general.
Moment of truth: Apparently, with her new talk show, stand-up comedienne and inescapable TV presence Whitney Cummings wants the folks at E! to know she’s available to take over Chelsea Handler’s spot if she ever decides to jump ship. Her show does crib from the Chelsea Lately playbook, since it’s complete with a wisecracking sidekick and a segment where she shoots the shit with fellow comics. Shockingly, Cummings is at her sharpest—and most tolerable—when she’s on this show. It seems being a bitchy, boozy talk-show host suits her well.
Emmy or phlegmmy: Emmy. (Craig D. Lindsey)
Wednesdays, 8pm, NBC
Captive audience: People who aren’t really paying attention to what’s on the TV.
Moment of truth: Earlier in the evening, you can watch Cummings on her own sitcom, which is, inexplicably, in its second season. Whitney, which has her as a Chicago gal maintaining a relationship with her beau (fellow comedian Chris D’Elia), has gotten more sympathetic in its sophomore season— especially with Cummings’ character, who has gone from being a loutish hag to just another neurotic girl who needs some love. But it’s still not funny. I swear, this show is basically 30 minutes of Cummings saying, “Please like me!”
Emmy or phlegmmy: Phlegmmy. (C.D.L.)
2 Broke Girls
Mondays, 9pm, CBS
Captive audience: People who just love dick and pussy jokes—and Kat Dennings’ boobs.
Moment of truth: Filling out this Whitney Cummings triumvirate is the most popular show she’s associated with. And she’s not even on it. Cummings and Sex and the City show-runner Michael Patrick King created this sitcom, with Kat Dennings (the sassy one) and Beth Behrs (the stuck-up one) as a couple of New York gals working at a diner while keeping their cupcake business afloat. While Dennings and Behrs are a couple of adorable comic leads, the jokes are plain ol’ lousy. This is a show where bad jokes drag queens tell during burlesque revues go to die.
Emmy or phlegmmy: Phlegmmy. (C.D.L.)
Bronze Radio Return + Wheeler Brothers
Fri., Dec. 14, World Cafe Live at The Queen
Overall vibe: The warmth of the mid-West meets the energy of the East Coast, creating a makeshift dance floor in the middle of the restaurant by the end of the night.
Most memorable moment: The Wheeler Brothers singing along from the bar during Bronze Radio Return’s set—and, halfway through the show, buying their tour bros a round of shots.
Scene stealer: The extended instrumental solos in BRR’s “Blurry Eyed Worries.” More specifically, Craig Struble’s jaw-dropping harmonica solo. Nobody in the room could ignore it. (Caroline Newton)
Calendar: December 17-24
Calendar: Dec. 10-17
PW's Holiday Guide 2014