Ghost Songs Undergo Lullaby Makeover From Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star

Ghost continue to expand the members of their congregation through the mass appeal of church music and pop-laden inflections. The Swedish outfit has been turning the metal world on its head the last few years and now they’re ready to welcome their newest and tiniest fans through lullaby music!
The Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star series has been churning out lullaby renditions by some of rock and metal’s best to help headbanging parents put their children to sleep with some gentle yet familiar songs. This time it’s Ghost’s turn to get the makeover, putting a calming spin on their already delightfully pleasant music.
The eight song album includes cuts from each of Ghost’s releases, including the Roky Erikson cover from the If You Have Ghost EP. The first sleepytime tune that can be heard is “From the Pinnacle to the Pit” off the act’s latest album, Meliora, which is in the video above. The other selections for the special album are “He Is,” “Stand By Him,” “Cirice,” “Secular Haze,” “Year Zero” and “Ritual.”
Lullaby Versions of Ghost B.C. is available from Amazon and iTunes. To check out more albums from artist like Tool, Pantera, Motorhead, Scorpions and more by Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star, visit their website.
Ghost found their way into the homes of families before Halloween, appearing on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. The band performed their single “Cirice” in mesmerizing fashion which saw audience members come to the stage transfixed by the Satanic hymns. The song has been burning up the Active Rock charts for weeks, slugging it out with heavyweights artists like Bring Me the Horizon, Disturbed, Breaking Benjamin and Five Finger Death Punch.

James Hetfield Says Metallica ‘Learned a Lesson’ From Failure of ‘Through the Never’ Movie


When Metallica were readying the launch of their box office movie Through the Never, fans were intrigued, but left a bit confused by the nebulous plot. The film was a catastrophic failure that resulted in the thrash titan’s members losing millions of their own dollars. James Hetfield has now opened up at length about the film and its staggering failure to gain much attraction.

In an interview with the Metallica fan club magaze So What!, the frontman detailed how the band reacted to the film’s failure, his thoughts on the movie-going population and the frustration behind the band’s most ambitious and expensive endeavor. Speaking candidly, he said, “It’s very bittersweet, the whole movie bit. We put a lot of money, time and effort into it, and how awesome we thought it was, and how ‘wow, this is pretty unique’ we felt about it, at the end of the day, was its downfall.” Understanding the aspect that caused some heads to tilt, he went on, “It was not so much a concert film, not so much an action drama, it was somewhere in the middle; it just fell right down the crevasse. It disappeared. And it was sad to see that.”

He continued: “The way life is now in the entertainment field, especially movies, two years of work came all the way up to a Friday night. ‘Okay, the movie’s released!’ By Friday night, you know pretty much what the full picture is and how the movie is actually gonna do at the box office. But management said — and I agree with this; it makes total sense — that Hollywood is about perception. Hollywood is about rumors spreading and things like that, so if someone tweets, ‘Hey, the movie’s great,’ if that spreads, then it helps. A lot of people don’t go to movies because of reviews, I guess… I don’t understand that so much.”

The film cost over $20 million to make and brought in no outside investors. Through the Never only took in $3.4 million, resulting in the band absorbing a substantial portion of the loss. Hetfield spoke about dealing with the financial fallout, expressing, “There was a time when I was just pissed. Like, ‘What the f–k?’ That was stupid.”

With an initial desire to blame anyone else, Hetfield continued, “I wanted to just point fingers everywhere. The distributor people. ‘They didn’t say what they were gonna do.’ Or just pointing at Hollywood in general. ‘They’re a bunch of grigging shysters, man. They sold us on something that they knew was bulls–t.’ Blaming the director, the producer, the casting… And blaming the management. ‘You all f—ed up, man.’”

With a clearer head, the singer resigned, “We really took a giant risk on this. Maybe we should’ve thought a little more about it. Building that stage [a $5 million stage was designed for the performances filmed in conjunction with the movie] — there was a lot of money put into that thing. But at the end of the day, it’s on us. It’s our fault! We agreed to it, and there you go. So we’ve learned a lesson.”

Hetfield accepted defeat regarding Through the Never, but remains optimistic it will one day have its place, stating, “Things happen for a reason, and you might not see the silver lining right now, but down the line, who knows? Maybe the movie will make a mark in history somehow, or maybe we’ve basically learned: don’t do it again.”

With the movie behind them, the band has turned back to where they truly excel: in the studio. Reluctant to release too many details, Metallica have made fleeting statements about their work on the follow-up to 2008’s Death Magnetic. Guitarist Kirk Hammett said the material so far falls in line with the previous album and that he expects the new record to be out in 2016 or early 2017 at the latest.

Kacey Musgraves Makes History at the Apollo Theater: Live Review


Kacey Musgraves made an impressive declaration early on last night (Oct. 24) during the New York stop of her Rhinestone Revue tour. “Apparently I’m the only country act to headline the Apollo,” she noted. “Sold it out, too,” she added proudly. This sort of accomplishment is not out of character for Musgraves, who has managed to become one of country music’s most discussed artists even though she lacks a major hit.

Attention came thick and fast when Musgraves’ Same Trailer, Different Parkdebuted in 2013. A pair of her songs embraced political positions not usually associated with country music, attracting praise from listeners who otherwise ignore the genre. To the extent that her lyrics were lefty-friendly, her aesthetic positions were conservative: Musgraves is loyal to the country sound of 50 years ago.

Her politics helped build buzz, but they were mostly a feint: what stayed constant between Same Trailer and Pageant Material, out this year, was her songwriting. Compact melodies are a Nashville hallmark — no city offers a better argument for the continued relevance of guitar-based music — and Musgraves imbues hers with a heavy dose of nostalgia, pulling from a southern past verging on myth (or caricature). At a time when country music is rapidly modernizing, she is an outlier.

But her brand of rebellion comes sugar-coated: playing at the Apollo, Musgraves’ music was unfailingly pleasant and relentlessly innocuous. She likes golden bass, light percussion, pretty and undistorted guitars; jaunty whistles appeared in a few songs, along with joyous summer camp-appropriate interjections of “Hey!” Lyrically, her songs are piles of truisms and tautologies: “family is family,” “it is what it is,” “follow your arrow,” “damned if you do, damned if you don’t,” “Mary had a little lamb,” “love hard, live fast.” These phrases — which often appear in stories about the singer’s love/hate relationship with small towns — give the Musgraves faithful something to latch onto. During her performance, every song incited karaoke, every silence was quickly filled with whoops and hollers.

In this sea of country lullabies, a few songs stood out. Musgraves played “Mama’s Broken Heart,” which she co-wrote for Miranda Lambert; this hit single has a sharp swing and a biting drive often absent on Musgraves’ own albums. “Late to the Party,” on the other hand, was transcendently sweet. The hook incorporates a thrilling jump up the scale like the one in Keith Urban’s “Standing Right In Front of You.” It’s effective and romantic; couples in the crowd responded by slow-dancing.

Musgraves started dancing herself when she played “Blowing Smoke,” which remains one of her finest tracks: shouty, self-effacing and celebratory all at once. She broke out the moves again during a hard charging cover of Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots Are Made for Walking,” which sounded shockingly punky next to the rest of the set. The track originally appeared in 1966, which might be Musgraves’ ideal era. Even as she makes history, she pays homage to the past.

Ellie Goulding Brings ‘Delirium’ to AMEX Unstaged Show in New York: Live Review


Pop music in 2015 isn’t for wallflowers. With Justin Bieber’s “What Do U Mean?” and Major Lazer’s “Lean On” running the dance floor, Ellie Goulding struts in with her head-bobbing album Delirium. Combining electronic dance with sweetheart pop, Goulding doesn’t leave her EDM home in the dust but meshes it with her diverse influences (she’s name-dropped Bjork, Beyonce and Drake in the past) without sounding like a copycat. It also helps that she’s in a happy place too. Often gushing on-record about her beau, singer Dougie Poynter, it’s no wonder her latest offering is upbeat yet true to her musical personality. She even toldBillboard before the show, “Deliriously happy still has a dark side to it.”

There was nothing dark about her AMEX Unstaged show on Wednesday night at New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. The grand production — helmed by actress Scarlett Johansson — employed lightsaber-esque props and kaleidoscopic background images of skydivers, palm trees and Goulding’s “EG” emblem on a gigantic screen behind the six-person band. Goulding had her own special set-up, with drums and a mini-keyboard, which came in handy when she added the bass for the Halcyon track “Goodness Gracious.”

Mixing gems from the 2013 LP with newer cuts from Delirium, there were no signs of fatigue despite Goulding’s packed New York schedule filled with Tonight Showand Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show performances. A self-professed workout-aholic (she recently bared her chiseled six-pack for Shape magazine), the U.K. songbird was jumping, body rolling and head thrashing — sometimes all in one swift motion — for most the 17 tracks she performed. The exceptions of the night were her candlelight rendition of “Explosions” (an Ed Sheeran favorite) and theFifty Shades of Grey love note, “Love Me Like You Do.” With a second mini-stage set up in the middle of the crowd and the lights dimmed, Goulding flourished equally as both pop balladeer and dancing queen.

This is such a dream show for me,” said Goulding, who said some version of “thank you” after every song she performed. Despite her rock star status, she was a woman of the people, getting the most crowd participation for her closing numbers “Lights” and “On My Mind” just before delivering a fiery, confetti-filled encore with “Burn.” One look at her itinerary for the new year (her six month-long global trek begins in Germany on Jan. 21, 2016 and wraps in New York’s Madison Square Garden on June 21) could cause any seasoned hitmaker to shudder but her Unstaged set confirms Goulding’s ready.

Check out the full set list for Ellie Goulding’s AMEX Unstaged show below and relive the night with the rebroadcast here.

Something In the Way You Move
Goodness Gracious
Figure 8
Keep On Dancin’
Don’t Need Nobody
Love Me Like You Do
Don’t Panic
Anything Could Happen
I Need Your Love
On My Mind

Katy Perry Shares a Totally 90’s Family Photo (Yes, It’s Color-Coordinated) — See the Pic


Katy Perry’s worn so many different kinds of costumes that, at this point, there’s almost nothing she could wear that would shock her fans. She does her best to throw them for a loop in a new Instagram post, though, which is actually a vintage pic of her entire family (just in time for the holidays).

The younger Katy Perry has no makeup, and sports a red jumper (!) over a white buttondown (!!). Sitting with her parents (both Evangelical pastors), she’s almost unrecognizable.

See the pic for yourself below:

Taylor Swift’s NZ Film Crew Issues Statement Denying Harm of Endangered Birds on Video Shoot

Musician Taylor Swift poses for a portrait in West Hollywood, Calif. on Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2010.  Swift's new album "Speak Now" will be released on Oct. 25, 2010. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)

The singer’s local film crew ruffled some feathers.

Taylor Swift’s film crew is receiving criticism from New Zealand conservationists for potentially disrupting the native habitat of the endangered dotterel bird while filming a music video.

According to Radio NZ, the “Bad Blood” singer’s New Zealand film crew was approved to bring two vehicles on Bethells Beach on Nov. 23, but up to a dozen were used. Sandra Coney, Waitakere Ranges’ local board chair, was “disappointed” that the pop star’s crew did not follow the rules set in place and credited the reasoning to the bird’s habitat.

“There are only two breeding pairs — only four birds — that have been there about 10 years, and they usually fledge only one or two chicks a year. There are only 1,700 dotterals left in New Zealand. So it is a major concern for the board, and as a result we have a dotteral management framework which sets conditions for vehicles on the beach,” Coney said, according to Radio NZ. “For instance, they can only go on a certain part of the beach, they can only go at a certain speed and there should always be someone walking in front of the vehicles to make sure there are no dotterals in the way.”

Coney added, “There are very few filming applications turned down outright, but we do try and keep the number of vehicles to an absolute minimum, because of the wildlife risk. We really have to look after these birds.”

Cherokee Films, the local production company behind Swift’s New Zealand shoot, issued the following statement, obtained by the BBC, and defended Swift, stating that she and her team were not at fault and that no birds were harmed.

“Taylor Swift and her management team were in no way at fault and did not do anything that violated permits or ordinances. Cherokee Films has a long history of responsible film shoots across Auckland, including Bethells Beach, where we have filmed many times. Our shoots have always been with the guidance and support of the relevant local authority — most recently Screen Auckland and Parks — and landowners. Cherokee Films were filming at Bethells Beach on Monday 23rd November where a base camp was set up on private land which allowed for access to the beach. We had permission from the landowners and paid a fee for use of the land. At all times the film crew adhered to the Dotterel protocol in guidelines provided about the dotterel nesting sites, and at no time were the film crew close to that habitat. No Dotterel were harmed. Our filming occurred outside of the Dotterel breeding area (as per referenced map which indicates the area and also the breeding seasons). Once on the beach, via the restricted access zone, the film crew presence was always in the hard sand area only — as per the permit. In acknowledgement of the concern this has added to those in charge of protecting local Dotterel population Cherokee Films will make a donation to the breeding program as we support your concerns.”

Selena Gomez Talks Love Life, Justin Bieber and Whether She’d Date Zayn Malik


Selena Gomez dished on the struggles of her love life in an upcoming cover story of Instyle UK.

On the topic of dating, the 23-year-old singer told the magazine that she’s currently seeing people, but didn’t mention any specific names.

“I hate it,” Gomez said. “It’s hard and I’m weirded out by the idea that a guy has googled me before we meet, and that has happened.”

“I feel like I look 16 sometimes, which is a bummer because I would love to date older guys,” she continued.

The Instyle UK interview also touches on Gomez’s rollercoaster relationship withJustin Bieber, who she was recently spotted with in Los Angeles. The former couple had been dating on and off for three years before splitting in 2014.

“I’m just tired of talking about it,” Gomez said. “I never intended for my life to become a tabloid story.”

Justin Bieber on Selena Gomez Breakup: ‘I Don’t Know If I’m Still Over It Yet’

The singer also vaguely answered whether or not she’d ever consider dating former One Direction member Zayn Malik. “If he had asked me out on a date, I would be seen with him,” she said. “Just kidding, but not kidding.”

Gomez will appear on the cover of Instyle UK’s January 2016 issue.

Why Oli Sykes can now admit he’s happy


Bring Me The Horizon’s frontman reveals to Metal Hammer that after struggles with ADHD and substance abuse, he can finally admit he’s happy.

As covered in Metal Hammer earlier this year, Oli Sykes admitted himself to rehab due to his ketamine addiction. In the video below, he talks to us candidly about having two choices in life and being fed up of the expectations put on him. Ketamine was there to disconnect Sykes from the real world and at the time his ADHD was undiagnosed so he was “unbearable”.

However, as you can see below, Oli is in a much better place now he’s faced his demons head on: “I’m happy because I’ve accepted that I’m also sad.”


Good Charlotte Makes Charismatic Comeback at L.A. Concert: Live Review


In Nov. 2015, Good Charlotte reunited. It makes sense that pop-punk nostalgia is in full swing; nearly a decade after its renaissance, the guys and gals who grew up with the stuff are hungry for some semblance of their childhood. It’s a genre entirely associated with the stuff. You grow up emo and you grow out of it. It gives the groups who found real success in it expiration dates, it unfairly degrades them to nothing more than a phase. Good Charlotte, in their own way, has always been about breaking boundaries. They’re the first of their class to be half-boy band and half-rock and roll revivalists, and at Los Angeles’ famed Troubadour Thursday night (Nov. 19), this became crystal clear.

The night opened by a young, hunky, punk-y group by the name Waterparks from Houston, Texas. Their charm isn’t too unlike 5 Seconds of Summer two years ago — a certain boyish tenderness that’s endearing in its insecurity. They’re managed by Benji and Joel Madden, the faces of Good Charlotte, and it’s very clear why. This is a group in their infancy, with killer hooks and killer attitudes. They could go far, and it appears they might be on their way. By the time they hit the stage, no one was outside smoking or loitering with a certain cool guy disposition. Eyes were glued to their manic, panic-ed being.

When their set began, the room was filled with the sound of vintage Southern California pop-punk. It was anxiety inducing, with GC right around the corner. It wasn’t just the diehard Charlotte-heads, either. In attendance were My Chemical Romance’s Mikey Way, 5 Seconds of Summer, Jessie J, Bad Suns, and Andrew Watt. The fancy faces watching, GC launched directly into “The Anthem,” which felt weirdly truer than it has ever felt. “Another loser anthem / Sing if you’re with me,” Joel Madden cried with a weathered rasp, the kind of a man well into adulthood.  Unlike other bands feeding into the emo revival circuit, Good Charlotte doesn’t feel worn. They don’t feel dated. If anything, they feel experienced. There’s nothing adolescent about wanting to be a part of something bigger, and GC have managed to keep that desire fresh.

Good Charlotte Proteges Waterparks Premiere Dog-Filled ‘Crave’ Video

Before launching into “Boys and Girls” somewhere near the top half of the set, Joel introduced the song with “This is our hometown show.” It was the only moment that bordered on disingenuous. The boys hail from suburban Maryland, the kind of gray sky place that inspires endless hope or fruitless ambition. These gents are on the better side of history, making it in Los Angeles, the place where aging pop-punkers go to revel in their success. For Good Charlotte, it’s not about looking back, but looking forward. In whatever weird way, the world needed their return, a reminder that the stuff you loved growing up isn’t without importance.

John Feldmann, longtime producer of the band and frontman of ska punk iconsGoldfinger, joined Good Charlotte on stage for their reunion single, “Makeshift Love.” He crowdsurfed and he picked up Joel mid-bridge. Feldmann once told me how he met the GC twins, one night when his band was playing a show at D.C.’s famed 9:30 Club. Benji crowdsurfed his way to the stage, stole the microphone from Feldy’s grasp and screamed, “Good Charlotte!” After the gig he approached John, knowing his annoyance full well and said, “I have a band, we’re called Good Charlotte.” They’ve since become best friends, and it’s easy to see why. That certain unapologetic, bratty young spirit is somehow admirable; when you’re not fearful of consequence, you can take over the world. It’s something a lot of us lose in adulthood, but it’s something Good Charlotte seems to maintain, even now.

Somewhere near the end of their set, the group closed with “Little Things.” It’s funny to consider these guys — once completely obsessed with money and hot chicks — have grown into comfortable, rational, successful adults. They didn’t go the radical, alien-chasing route of Blink-182’s Tom DeLonge or continue their tradition like All Time Low. They called it quits when it felt right; they reunited when it felt right. It’ll prove them well in the coming months, if they so choose to consider it. At the end of the day, it’s just fun. Sometimes that’s all it takes.

Kendrick Lamar & J. Cole Trade Instrumentals For a Pair of ‘Black Friday’ Freestyles: Listen


Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole are getting into the holiday spirit with a pair of complementary freestyles — not only are they a gift to their fans, it seems almost like the two emcees are giving musical gifts to eachother.

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They traded instrumentals — Kendrick offering “Alright” off this year’s To Pimp A Butterfly, and Cole offering “A Tale of 2 Citiez” off 2014 Forest Hills Drive — and laid down some new verses over each track.  Both are called “Black Friday.”

Lamar and Cole have been rumored collaborators for a while, though nothing has yet been released. Cole hints at new music of some variety in his verse, saying, “But this February, bet shit gets scary when I fuck around and drop s—.”

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Listen to both new tracks below: