Just in time for Shark Week comes the strange story of Pete Wentz's shark selfie. The image above, a photoshopped image of Wentz 'taking a selfie' while being pursued by a Great White, reportedly comes from a year's old Tumblr post that was then turned into a bogus news story about a man, "James Crowlett," a 34-year-old insurance salesman from Oregon, who died attempting to take the selfie to end all selfies. Wentz even got into the silly spirit of things by tweeting out the news story with the caption, "Rest in Pete." Sadly, many were fooled by this digital sleight of hand and believed the "shark attack selfie" was, in fact, real. So in case anyone is wondering, Pete Wentz is alive. The rule of three does not apply here.
Pete Wentz Hub
Elton John and Courtney Love turn up on the new Fall Out Boy album, Fuse reports:
"This album is one that is particularly close to us," Fall Out Boy said in a statement. "We recorded it in secret from the music industry, critics, and even our fans... We made this music for ourselves and no one else at the end of the day. This is meant be played loud, with the windows down on summer nights. Four friends with our backs to each other fighting in the darkness against anything and everything that is out there. We bowed our heads, took a knee and plugged back in. From the first strings to the last shouts—this is us."Fall Out Boy frontman tweeted a shot of Elton in the studio last month.
Listen to Elton's collaboration "Save Rock and Roll", AFTER THE JUMP...
MUSIC NEWS: Sigur Rós, R.E.M., Kele, Tegan and Sara, Kylie Minogue, Little Boots, Duran Duran, Patrick Wolf, Feist, Ellie Goulding
Norman Brannon is a pop critic, musician, and author based in New York City. He presents a weekly music update here on Towleroad and writes regularly at Nervous Acid.
Follow Norman on Twitter at @nervousacid.
It's not every day that you look at the new release schedule for a given week and find out that at least four new albums being issued this week arrive courtesy of artistically venerable — and commercially successful! — artists who are, almost incidentally, openly gay. But what's really interesting is the diversity we find in those four artists: a 50-year-old iconic elder statesman from Georgia, a young man from London born to Nigerian parents, a pair of Canadian identical twins, and a thirty-something-year-old vegan from Reykjavík, Iceland, who sings predominantly in a language he made up. That they're all gay, one might argue, is the least interesting thing about them. That they're all approaching their art with honesty and a certain level of transparency, however, is more significant. It's not that we're "post-gay" — as some might prematurely suggest — but that, perhaps, there is a growing appreciation for the valuable perspective that is unique to the openly gay artist. Being out only adds to this cultural resonance, and it seemed important to point that out.
R.E.M. Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage: 1982–2011 (Warner Bros.)
WHO'S OUT: Michael Stipe
ON THE INSIDE: A career-spanning retrospective that leaves few stones unturned, the final R.E.M. collection features 40 tracks — including three new songs — and, if you're over 30 years old, it might surprise you: This band soundtracked your life more than you ever thought possible. To deny the sheer range of influence that R.E.M. has had on American rock music is impossible.
Kele The Hunter EP (Witchita)
WHO'S OUT: Kele Okereke
ON THE INSIDE: The follow up to 2010's The Boxer, Kele's latest EP without Bloc Party is more succinct and a whole lot more confident. "What Did I Do?" — the London dubstep-tinged lead single that introduces us to guest vocalist Lucy Taylor — is a good place to start, while his cover of Q Lazzarus's classic "Goodbye Horses" almost rewrites ownership of the song. Also impossible to ignore: Somebody's been hitting the gym lately.
Sigur Rós Inni (XL)
WHO'S OUT: Singer Jonsí Birgisson
ON THE INSIDE: A double-live album is, in almost all but the rarest of circumstances, a contract-filler or an ego boost. But in the case of Sigur Rós, it's an opportunity: The entire album (and full-length DVD movie) is performed as a four-piece, which brings an almost ascetic quality to the majesty of the original recordings — an equally as satisfying, but differentiated listening experience that reveals how layered these songs really are.
Tegan & Sara Get Along (Warner Bros.)
WHO'S OUT: Tegan and Sara Quin
ON THE INSIDE: After six full-length albums, Tegan and Sara's eponymous band release a full-length concert CD/DVD — including a pair of short documentary films — that span the duo's twelve-year career. It's as earnest as you'd imagine. The live set is something like an episode of VH1 Storytellers, and if you've ever been to a Tegan and Sara show, you know: There quite possibly isn't a better format to see them.
In addition to releasing Aphrodite Les Folies: Live In London on CD and DVD on November 29th — in which she covers the Eurythmics! — the indefatigable Kylie Minogue has also announced a new album on deck for 2012. The singer is currently in the studio to rework a number of her classic songs for a 25th anniversary compilation to celebrate the release of her debut single, "Locomotion."
Ellie Goulding is finally gaining traction on American radio with "Lights," but she's clearly trying to keep the songs fresh: The singer will release a new EP, Live at Amoeba, in honor of Record Store Day on November 25. The four-song set was recorded in April at San Francisco's famed Amoeba Records on Haight Street.
Courtney Love's new version of Hole eggs on Brazilian crowd to chant "Foo Fighters are gay," clearly forgets Kurt Cobain's explicit denouncement of homophobia and high-school-jock-speech. Love later claims, "I'm allowed to use the word 'fag' because I'm a gay icon," clearly forgets that no, she isn't.
A live collaboration between Feist and out Grizzly Bear vocalist Ed Droste — singing "Cicadas & Gulls" from the former's new album Metals — appeared this week, as did the first new Feist remix I've heard this year: London's Clock Opera, who many of you will recognize as That Band I've Been Raving About All Year, transformed "How Come You Never Go There?" into a vintage house cut with electro sensibilities and Salsoul horns.
Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz has been playing it low-key with his new band, Black Cards, but this week, the lyricist gets into the studio chair for a big-room remix of Rihanna's latest single "We Found Love." The result? Sounds like he's been listening to Deadmau5 and Wolfgang Gartner lately.
Bright Light Bright Light keeps hustling along until a tentative February 20th worldwide release date for his long-awaited debut album. This week, he offers up some free downloads of '90s-based mash-ups that he constructed for Another Night, his own monthly party in London: Check out TLC vs. Snap's "Rhythm is a Scrub" and Tori Amos vs. Madonna's "Professional Vogue."
UK electropop favorite Little Boots returns this week with the lead single to her forthcoming as-yet-untitled second album, and it's not your typical three-minute pop song: "Shake" is a six-minute floor-filler produced by Simian Mobile Disco's James Ford, geared more for the club than for the radio, but conceivably viable for either. If you're in the neighborhood, Little Boots comes to America for DJ appearances in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco this time next week.
SOUND & VISION:
Timo Maas — "College '84" (feat. Brian Molko)
This one, I must admit, was a grower: Timo Maas is a long-time German techno and progressive house producer who came of age in the Global Underground era of clubland, while Brian Molko has spent the last sixteen years as the androgynous, openly bisexual lead singer of Brit-glam stalwarts Placebo. The video for "College '84" is not what it seems at first, but by the end, you'll see why this collaboration is all about techno-sex.
Duran Duran — "Girl Panic!"
Jonas Akerlund is behind Duran Duran's epic nine-minute clip for "Girl Panic!" — in which all of your favorite legendary supermodels of the world assume the roles of the band and the members of the band play everything from journalists to bellboys. Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Helena Christenson, Yasmin Le Bon, and Eva Herzigova star, while everyone else takes notes.
Miguel Migs — "Everybody" (feat. Evelyn "Champagne" King)
San Francisco deep house legend Miguel Migs released his latest album, Outside the Skyline, earlier this year, and there was really no getting around it: Of all the guest collaborators on the record — including Bebel Gilberto and Meshell Ndegeocello, among others — the return of disco legend Evelyn "Champagne" King was truly something special. This week, "Everybody" gets the buoyant retro-club video it demands.
Patrick Wolf — "The Falcons"
Lupercalia, the long-awaited fifth album from Patrick Wolf, certainly deserves to find itself across any number of Best of 2011 lists, but "The Falcons" is a pretty awesome string around your finger: Directed by Japanese visual artist Noriko Okaku, Wolf's latest video embodies Lupercalia's joyful energy and airborne tenor. It's the visual equivalent of a weight being lifted.
Who knew that a Jonas brother was waiting to come out?
Protest reading of gay book "Revolutionary Voices" removed from New Jersey libraries planned for today.
Glee's Mark Salling hits the concrete with his skateboard.
Adam Rickitt and his six pack show up at G-A-Y.
...and Joe McElderry will launch his new album at G-A-Y.
Rally face-off: The National Park Service has approved a permit for a Glenn Beck/Sarah Palin rally for later this month. "The park service is processing a permit request for a counter demonstration and rally by the Rev. Al Sharpton on the same day along Independence Avenue, south of the memorial. Line said the Sharpton rally organizers list 3,000 expected attendees on their permit request."
Cher steps out with another younger boyfriend.
Protesters in Dublin march for marriage equality in Ireland.
Baseball League umpire Billy Van Raaphorst comments on the on-field, gay slur confrontation with manager Brent Bowers: “I’m here to umpire. I’m here to work. What happened in Orange County happened. We can’t unwind it. I don’t want it to be a distraction anymore. It went from zero to 100 just like that. I had no chance to put the brakes on it, no chance to stop it.”
Apparently Ashlee Simpson and Pete Wentz have decided to not participate in the Target boycott.
Nat Geo report: "It may be a shot in the dark, but freezing sperm is one of the last chances to save the hellbender, North America's biggest salamander, conservationists say."
New drug-resistant superbug discovered in Asia spread to Britain by plastic surgery patients.
Wyclef Jean really wants to be the next president of Haiti.
South Florida firefighters promote their new calendar.
A priest in the Church of England hopes to set a “visible example” by marrying his male model boyfriend.
Is the Heidi Montag/Spencer Pratt sex tape really worth $5 million?
White House AIDS Conference call ends in "chaos, acrimony".
Meet this season's gay Big Brother contestant.
Retail rage: Dude doesn't care about G20 riot — he just wants to go shopping!
David Mixner on the LGBT community's crisis: We are losing our history. "Those individuals who fought in the trenches in the period from the 1950's through the 1980's are soon to become endangered species as more and more die from natural causes...Deeply aggravating the situation was the deliberate destruction of so much of our history during the HIV/AIDS crisis in the dark years of the 1980's and early 1990's. When some of our early pioneering activists died of HIV/AIDS their families, ashamed of them for both being gay and also dying of AIDS, destroyed any document, record or letter that would shine light on their journey as a homosexual."
Do we really need another one?
Pete Wentz shows off his treasure trail.
New York legislature approves bill that would extend funeral and bereavement leave to same-sex couples: "The bill, which passed the Assembly 107-26 this month and the Senate on Monday, prohibits discrimination by employers in the state who provide such leave to other workers and would take effect 60 days after signing. Paterson has been a strong advocate of gay rights, including same-sex marriage; he will review the bill when it reaches his desk, spokesman Morgan Hook said Tuesday."
Monster whale once ruled the seas.
Chris Colfer is a hero to his epileptic sister.
Ted Olson urges Judge Walker to consider Supreme Court's recent classification of gays and lesbians as an identifiable "class" in his decision regarding Proposition 8.
Ed Westwick looks good with jet lag.
"Ex-gay" leader dies.
Iowa activists react to Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling upholding ban on same-sex marriage: "Justin Uebelhor – a spokesman for the pro-gay marriage group 'One Iowa' — agrees that the legislators who’re elected in the next several years will decide the issue. A resolution calling for a statewide vote on gay marriage must pass two separate Iowa General Assemblies in order to be placed on the ballot so voters can decide. 'I think the ruling in Wisconsin really underscores the importance of protecting a pro-equality legislature here in Iowa,' Uebelhor says. 'I think Iowans want their leaders to focus on improving our economy, bringing jobs to the state and working to improve our education.'”
The Situation celebrates his birthday.
Michelle Bachmann will. not. have. a global economy!
Hundreds gather in Chicago for LGBT police conference.
Queer Ink: India's first gay online bookstore opens. "The books are for homosexuals and anyone who is coming out, or wants to know more about these subjects. It’s about empowering and informing. Gay people want role models, to see their lives reflected in fiction. I think one would hesitate to pick up books like this in a normal retail space, which is why I did it online."
Ryan Kwanten loses his pants.
70,000 sea turtle eggs to be relocated and hatched away from oil spill: "It's never been done on such a massive scale. But doing nothing, experts say, could lead to unprecedented deaths. There are fears the turtles would be coated in oil and poisoned by crude-soaked food."
Rick Scott attacks Bill McCollum in Florida governor race: "Former hospital executive Rick Scott, a deep-pocketed and increasingly serious candidate for Governor of Florida, attacked his Republican Primary rival today for having backed former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani in 2008. Attorney General Bill McCollum "endorsed pro-abortion and pro-homosexual rights candidate Rudy Giuliani for president in 2008 and was a Giuliani campaign leader in Florida," wrote Scott consultant Keith Appell in a memo to reporters. McCollum faced attacks from the right on gay rights his 2004 Senate bid, but has more recently been criticized for retaining an anti-gay activist since accused of hiring a gay prostitute as an expert witness."