TIME Music

Listen to Miguel’s Super-Sultry Surprise EP

Dom Perignon With Alex Dellal, Stavros Niarchos, And Vito Schnabel Celebrate "Metamorphosis" Art Basel Miami Beach
Miguel attends Dom Perignon Celebrates "Metamorphosis" Art Basel Miami Beach at Wall at W Hotel on December 4, 2014 in Miami Beach, Florida. Andrew Toth—Getty Images

Take some private time and hear the crooner's new songs

While you were sleeping, the world got a little bit sultrier thanks to a surprise three-song EP from Miguel. Somehow, it makes perfect sense that the man who loosed “Adorn” (a.k.a. the most sexed-out love jam ever) upon the world would release his new EP in the middle of the night.

The seemingly unnamed EP features three unadulterated slow-burning jams that show Miguel is still very much at the top of his game. The EP’s opener, the slick “NWA”, features L.A. rapper Kurupt letting his rhymes slither over a funky guitar track while Miguel’s voice soars underneath. “HollywoodDreams” is a steamy number built around sharp hooks, muddy guitars and yearning vocals that could easily stand in for a b-side on his full-length, Kaleidoscope Dream. The closing track “Coffee”—which Miguel teased on Instagram a few months ago—is a sultry knee-buckler. Listen to in private, just to be safe.

 

TIME Music

Some Genius Mixed the Serial Theme With Notorious B.I.G.

Fill the Serial void with this mashup

There are certain indisputable facts that are too unpleasant to think about — the whole sitting-will-kill-you thing, the rise of antibiotic resistant superbugs, the knowledge that Benedict Cumberbatch is getting married and the fact that there are no more episodes of Serial‘s first season.

The highly addictive podcast’s season finale was released yesterday and while there are other books, television shows and podcasts to enjoy while waiting for the show’s TBD second season, the end of the podcast has left a void.

Luckily some genius felt our pain and decided to help fill that gaping void by mashing up the Serial theme music with the Notorious B.I.G.’s “Somebody’s Gotta Die,” a song choice that brings to mind this Clickhole article that claims a superfan has agreed to be murdered to ensure a second season of the podcast.

It’s the Notorious B.I.G., so be aware that the lyrics are NSFW and decidedly not PC:

[H/T Digg]

TIME Music

Jennifer Lawrence’s Hunger Games Song Gets the Dance Remix No One Asked For

"The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1" Party - The 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival
Jennifer Lawrence attends the "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1" party at the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 17, 2014 in Cannes, France. Mike Marsland—WireImage

The surprise hit song takes on a new life

Jennifer Lawrence may hate “The Hanging Tree” — her song from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part One, reportedly even breaking into tears the day she had to sing on camera — but the world can’t seem to get enough of it.

Not only did the single from Mockingjay land at No. 29 on the charts in the U.K., but now the song has gotten the remix treatment. The original track was a haunting, acoustic song with lyrics penned by The Lumineers and The Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins, but the remix is a club-ready jam that might even get some radio play.

Lawrence may think she sings like “a tone-deaf Amy Winehouse”, and claimed that singing in public is one of her biggest fears, but the remixed single isn’t all that bad. Not that she should give up her day job or anything.

[H/T Vulture]
TIME Television

Here’s a First Look at Season 3 of Orphan Black

The third season of Orphan Black begins airing April 18, 2015

The first peek at Orphan Black‘s third season is here — and it looks completely tense.

A first image, which premiered on EW Wednesday, shows Tatiana Maslany as a clone (Sarah, probably) facing off against the newly-discovered male clone played by Ari Millen. The family reunion does not look particularly fun.

Show creator Graeme Manson told EW that the male clone pictured in the teaser image isn’t who viewers might expect. The clone isn’t Mark, the clean-cut man who viewers met on the cult-like farm last year, but is instead a new male clone from Project Castor named Rudy. As for this new clone breed, Manson raised more questions than he answered in the interview: “How are they different? How are they the same, these brothers? Is Mark a traitor? Is Mark undercover? Like everyone else on Orphan Black, Mark has divided loyalties.”

While Mark and his brothers may be invading the show’s third season, Manson assured fans that Sarah and her sisters will remain the focus of the story. “We want that audience to be taking that journey with Sarah, throughout the whole series,” said Manson. “She’s going to be leading her sisters and protecting her family. And that’s the drive. She’s the one that the audience roots for.”

One thing Manson did confirm, though, is that the new season will kick off more or less right where we left off in Season 2. Based on the two teaser trailers circulating, there’s no time to waste.

The show returns April 18, 2015.

TIME Viral Videos

This Impromptu Subway Singalong Will Brighten Your Day

All these commuters want is "A Little Respect"

London subway riders just want a little respect, apparently.

A new video circulating the web not only proves that Aretha Franklin, Rodney Dangerfield and Madonna were right and everyone does want a little respect, but the video also proves that everyone loves Erasure (and “The Circle of Life”) .

Almost exactly a year after Erasure’s first Christmas album came out, the band gave the world a new Christmas miracle by way of a subway rider who got in touch with his inner Vince Clark in the best way possible.

The intrepid and bold London commuter—a local singer named Neil Francis (who admitted to the BBC to having had a few drinks to “wet the whistle”)—belted out a few lines of Erasure’s “A Little Respect” on a crowded North London subway platform. Soon enough commuters up and down the platform were singing along, asking the world at large—or perhaps just the transit authority— for “a little respect” during their travels.

[H/T Death and Taxes]

 

TIME Television

Watch Jenny Slate as Marcel the Shell Sing Fleetwood Mac on Conan

"Landslide" didn't take Marcel the Shell (with Shoes On) down

Jenny Slate has many credits to her name: a brief stint on Saturday Night Live, a reoccurring role as Mona-Lisa in Parks and Recreation and a star turn in Obvious Child, but she is perhaps best known for her work as a tiny tiny shell (with shoes on).

The comedian stopped by Conan Tuesday night and used some of her couch time to talk about her creation, the beloved talking snail (?), Marcel the Shell. It turns out that Marcel isn’t just talking anymore, but covering pop songs, too. Slate showed off the shell’s skills by singing a few lines of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide,” telling Conan O’Brien, “just a little bit because I don’t want you to have to pay.” Stevie Nicks would be so touched.

Slate noted that Marcel the Shell’s voice is “so little, so little,” but as Conan points out the adorable univalve sure has some “big lungs.”

TIME Music

Watch Kendrick Lamar Debut a New Song on The Colbert Report

The rapper was the show's last-ever musical guest (sob)

Kendrick Lamar debuted a brand new song on The Colbert Report last night. The rapper needed to pull out the big guns, because he was the final musical guest ever on the late night talk show. Colbert joked about the big shoes Lamar needed to fill: “Keep in mind that Paul McCartney, R.E.M., Jack White and Nas were the opening acts.”

Lamar performed the new untitled track alongside a band that featured singer Bilal and Thundercat, who is rumored to be producing on Lamar’s highly-anticipated follow-up to good kid, m.A.A.d city, along with Dr. Dre, Pharrell Williams, Rahki and Soundwave. The new album is expected to drop sometime in 2015.

Colbert took a moment to ask his guest about his “stage name”: “Why did you decide to name yourself after Anna Kendrick and Senator Lamar Alexander?” before questioning Lamar about being an artist. “I always want to stay true to who I am,” Lamar said.

The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,The Colbert Report on Facebook,Video Archive

 

The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,The Colbert Report on Facebook,Video Archive

TIME celebrity

Watch John Krasinski and Emily Blunt Prank Jimmy Kimmel

The gift-wrapped, ornament-filled car was just the beginning

Last year, Jimmy Kimmel did what he thought was necessary to put an end to an ongoing prank feud with his neighbors John Krasinski and Emily Blunt. He not only made it snow in Los Angeles, but also he gift-wrapped their entire house from roof to lawn with Christmas carolers and an elf thrown in for fun. While one would think that would be impossible to top, this year Krasinski and Blunt struck back, and it turns out they are kind of evil geniuses.

But on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Monday night, Kimmel revealed that Blunt and Krasinski have managed to best him, and he had the video to prove it. Not only did they gift wrap his car, but they filled in with sparkly baubles that he had to remove before he could drive. That was a good prank, but it was just phase one of their dastardly Christmas scheme.

When these people feud, everyone wins.

Watch the full clip here:

Read next: Watch Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon Play Summer Camp Besties Who Can’t Stop Singing Third Eye Blind

TIME Science

This Is How Music Can Change Your Brain

music class
Getty Images

Actively learning to play an instrument can help a child's academic achievement

There’s little doubt that learning to play a musical instrument is great for developing brains.

Science has shown that when children learn to play music, their brains begin to hear and process sounds that they couldn’t otherwise hear. This helps them develop “neurophysiological distinction” between certain sounds that can aid in literacy, which can translate into improved academic results for kids.

Many parents probably read the above sentence and started mentally Google-ing child music classes in their local area. But if your kid doesn’t like learning an instrument or doesn’t actively engage in the class–opting to stare at the wall or doodle in a notebook instead of participating–he or she may not be getting all the benefits of those classes anyway.

A new study from Northwestern University revealed that in order to fully reap the cognitive benefits of a music class, kids can’t just sit there and let the sound of music wash over them. They have to be actively engaged in the music and participate in the class. “Even in a group of highly motivated students, small variations in music engagement — attendance and class participation — predicted the strength of neural processing after music training,” said Nina Kraus, director of Northwestern’s Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory, in an email to TIME. She co-authored the study with Jane Hornickel, Dana L. Strait, Jessica Slater and Elaine Thompson of Northwestern University.

Additionally, the study showed that students who played instruments in class had more improved neural processing than the children who attended the music appreciation group. “We like to say that ‘making music matters,'” said Kraus. “Because it is only through the active generation and manipulation of sound that music can rewire the brain.”

Kraus, whose research appeared today in Frontiers in Psychology, continued: “Our results support the importance of active experience and meaningful engagement with sound to stimulate changes in the brain.” Active participation and meaningful engagement translate into children being highly involved in their musical training–these are the kids who had good attendance, who paid close attention in class, “and were the most on-task during their lesson,” said Kraus.

To find these results, Kraus’s team went straight to the source, hooking up strategically placed electrode wires on the students’ heads to capture the brain’s responses.

Kraus’s team at Northwestern has teamed up with The Harmony Project, a community music program serving low-income children in Los Angeles, after Harmony’s founder approached Kraus to provide scientific evidence behind the program’s success with students.

According to The Harmony Project’s website, since 2008, 93 percent of Harmony Project seniors have gone on to college, despite a dropout rate of 50 percent or more in their neighborhoods. It’s a pretty impressive achievement and the Northwestern team designed a study to explore those striking numbers. That research, published in September in the Journal of Neuroscience, showed direct evidence that music training has a biological effect on children’s developing nervous systems.

As a follow up, the team decided to test whether the level of engagement in that music training actually matters. Turns out, it really does. Researchers found that after two years, children who not only regularly attended music classes, but also actively participated in the class, showed larger improvements in how the brain processes speech and reading scores than their less-involved peers.

“It turns out that playing a musical instrument is important,” Kraus said, differentiating her group’s findings from the now- debunked myth that just listening to certain types of music improves intelligence, the so-called “Mozart effect.” “We don’t see these kinds of biological changes in people who are just listening to music, who are not playing an instrument,” said Kraus. “I like to give the analogy that you’re not going to become physically fit just by watching sports.” It’s important to engage with the sound in order to reap the benefits and see changes in the central nervous system.

As to how to keep children interested in playing instruments, that’s up to the parents. “I think parents should follow their intuitions with respect to keeping their children engaged,” said Kraus. “Find the kind of music they love, good teachers, an instrument they’ll like. Making music should be something that children enjoy and will want to keep doing for many years!”

With that in mind, it’s not too late to trade in those Minecraft Legos, Frozen paraphernalia, XBox games, and GoldieBlox presents that you may have purchased, and swap them out for music lessons for the kids in your life.

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TIME Music

Hear Modest Mouse’s New Song ‘Lampshades on Fire’

Epic Records

Their new album, Strangers To Ourselves, is out March 3

Seven years later, Modest Mouse has finally released a new song.

The track — called “Lampshades On Fire” — sounds like classic Modest Mouse, all complex layering, staccato vocals and Johnny Marr’s jangly guitar riffs. It will certainly appeal to fans of the band’s 2000 release, The Moon and Antarctica, and will fit in nicely next to “Float On” on any college rock playlist.

The track is the lead single to Modest Mouse’s new album Strangers To Ourselves, which is due out March 3 on Epic Records. It will be the band’s first release since 2009’s B-side collection No One’s First and You’re Next EP and their first full-length album since 2007’s We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank. While fans had to wait a long time for new music, the 15 songs on this new double LP should compensate.

“Lampshades On Fire” has already made its radio debut, but if it sounds vaguely familiar, some ardent fans may have heard it before. While the song was just released, as Stereogum pointed out, the band has been performing it live for at least three years.

Strangers to Ourselves is available for pre-order via Modest Mouse’s website.

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