26% of all concert-goers and festival-goers plunged themselves into debt this summer to buy tickets, 5mag reports. Only 12% of respondents in Lendingtree survey said they’d gone into debt to attend music festivals or concerts before this summer. Gen Z members are taking the deepest plunge - 21% of Gen Z respondents admitted going into debt before this year for festival costs; this summer it was 41%.

"Vigorous, explorative and righteously angry, nothing struck quite so profound a chord with us in 2022 as this extraordinary record from Baltimore’s Infinity Knives and Brian Ennals" - Loud And Quiet argues in favor of their choice of the album of 2022. Their top 10 are:

10. They Hate Change: 'Finally, New'

9. Dry Cleaning: 'Stumpwork'

8. Katie Alice Greer: 'Barbarism'

7. Kendrick Lamar: 'Mr Morale and the Big Steppers'

6. Thank: 'Thoughtless Cruelty'

5. Caroline: 'Caroline'

4. Charlie XCX: 'Cream'

3. Kai Whiston: 'Quiet As Kept, F.O.G.'

2. Jockstrap: 'I Love You Jennifer B'

  1. Infinity Knives and Brian Ennals: 'King Cobra'

Ed Sheeran moved 3,047,696 tickets in 52 shows of his The Mathematics Tour this year, putting him at No. 1 on the Top Ticket Sales chart, according to figures reported to Billboard Boxscore. Coldplay sold the second-highest number of tickets this year - 2,260,651. However, the act with the highest-grossing tour is Bad Bunny, who made $373.5 million in the 12 months ending Oct. 31. Ed Sheeran grossed $246.3 million. For the first time ever, the top 10 touring acts, who also included Elton John, Harry Styles, the Weeknd, and the double bill of Def Leppard and Motley Crue, all grossed over $100 million.

Quietus' writers have assembled a wide list of best albums of 2022. It looks into the art, alternative, metal, classic, alt-pop and other scenes. Plenty to listen to there. The top 10 are:

  • 1: Jockstrap – 'I Love You Jennifer B'
  • 2: Diamanda Galás – 'Broken Gargoyles'
  • 3: caroline – 'caroline'
  • 4: Richard Dawson – 'The Ruby Cord'
  • 5: Decius – 'Decius Vol. I'
  • 6: Sea Power – 'Everything Was Forever'
  • 7: Kendrick Lamar – 'Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers'
  • 8: The Ephemeron Loop – 'Psychonautic Escapism'
  • 9: Emeka Ogboh – '6°30'33.372"N 3°22'.66"E'
  • 10: Oren Ambarchi – 'Shebang'

Hamish Kilgour was co-founder, with his brother David, of New Zealand guitar-rock band the Clean, who was very influential on several generations of indie rock. Hamish wrote, sang and played drums and guitar in the Clean, he also co-founded Bailter Space and the Mad Scene and released a handful of solo albums. Kilgour had been reported missing in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Nov. 27, and was found dead on Monday, the New Zealand Herald reports.

"2022 was the year of the comeback. As the music industry stumbled out of its pandemic fog, many artists finally delivered long delayed, highly anticipated, and sonically experimental albums that met some of the expectations built up for them" - Pitchfork introduces its Top 50 albums of 2022 list. The top 10 are:

10. Alex G: 'God Save the Animals'

9. Yaya Bey: 'Remember Your North Star'

8. Lucrecia Dalt: '¡Ay!'

7. Big Thief: 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You'

6. Rosalía: 'Motomami'

5. Bad Bunny: 'Un Verano Sin Ti'

4. Special Interest: 'Endure'

3. Alvvays: 'Blue Rev'

2. Sudan Archives: 'Natural Brown Prom Queen'

  1. Beyoncé: 'Renaissance'

James Howard Jackson has been sentenced to 21 years in prison for shooting and wounding Ryan Fischer, Lady Gaga's dog walker, during a dog theft, Bloomberg reports. Ryan Fischer was walking the singer's three French bulldogs in Hollywood in February 2021 when Jackson shot him in the chest. Jackson and one of four other accomplices took two of the dogs, Koji and Gustav, following the shooting. A third bulldog, Miss Asia, ran away and was later found by police. The two stolen dogs were returned unharmed two days later after Gaga offered a $500,000 reward. The person who returned the dogs, Jennifer McBride, was later charged with being an accessory to attempted murder and her case remains pending. The motive was the value of the French bulldogs, a breed that can run into the thousands of dollars, and detectives do not believe the thieves knew the dogs belonged to the musician.

Jockstrap

The Forty-Five collective of female-led journalists has selected 45 best albums of the year, which "attempt to make sense of the troubled times we live in, that capture the zeitgeist or just provide an hour of much-needed escapism". The top 10 albums are:

10. Sampa the Great: 'As Above, so Below'

9. Weyes Blood: 'And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow'

8. Taylor Swift: 'Midnights'

7. Rosalia: 'Motomami'

6. Beyonce: 'Renaissance'

5. Sudan Archives: 'Natural Brown Porm Queen'

4. Mitski: 'Laurel Hell'

3. Shygirl: 'Nymph'

2. Wet Leg: 'Wet Leg'

  1. Jockstrap: 'I Love You Jennifer B'

A great, well spirited reaction today by the Music REDEF to a ludicrous quote earlier this week about the invention of microphones. "The man generally credited with the breakthrough that put mics into widespread use was Emile Berliner, a German Jew who fled his homeland for America in 1870. Berliner’s placement of a layer of carbon particles between two contacts greatly improved the sound of recorded voices and was essential for—among other applications—making telephones work. He sold his patent, in fact, to Alexander Graham Bell. Berliner was a giant figure in the early days of the sound and music industries: He also invented the gramophone—the predecessor of modern vinyl records—and founded Deutsche Grammophon, which eventually became Polygram, which became a key part of Universal Music Group, and which survives as the world’s leading classical music brand".

Puerto Rican Bad Bunny has become Spotify’s biggest global artist for the third year in a row, after his music was streamed over 18.5 billion times on the platform, Consequence reports. Last year, Bad Bunny received over 9.1 billion streams, achieving that tally without even having released an album in 2021, which also means he managed to double his stream count on the service this year vs. 2021. Taylor Swift comes in second place on the list of Spotify's top streamed artists in 2022 and is the only female artist in the top five, while the group is rounded out by Drake, The Weekend, and BTS.

Techno artist Kyoka has had her brainwaves measured at Tokyo and Berlin’s universities and used those brainwaves to make her newest composition using Elektron hardware, Mix Mag reported. “I am very much inspired by the systems or habits of the brain. I try to make my own brain-music syntax, which is almost like my own music language, and I assign it to my music composition after I check the brainwaves and analyze them as much as possible". Kyoka explains. “This is actually the first time I have tried to understand how the audience’s emotion or chemistry in a real scientific theory-based approach, like adrenaline or dopamine, is working. And I tried to assign that to my music” she noted.

"Gig-going has become kind of… chaotic recently. Audience members heckling artists with crude comments, people playing games on their phones mid-performance for TikTok clout, fans bombarding artists with objects (yes, literal objects) – unhinged behaviour at live shows seems to have become commonplace. Expected, even. So what gives?" - Vice tries to find some answers.

A very interesting interview in GQ magazine with Lyor Cohen, Google and YouTube’s global head of music, about short-form video. "Kids are being hit with the tidal wave of choice and it's unpleasant. You cannot become an adult until you find the soundtrack of your youth. You don't know what partner to hook up with, what clothes to dress in and what crew to run with. It helps curate the direction... It’s a ‘Complicated Age’, but I think short-form video is the solution for it all... It’s going to simplify everything. Kids now want to participate. When I was a kid, it was OK for me to break of record open, put a needle on, smoke a joint and listen. Now, that doesn't work for them. Short-form video means they can be part of the zeitgeist without, 'My life is great and your life sucks'. It’s the new version of rummaging through the crates, but my competition wants them in that ‘dumb stupid mode". Cohen is a businessman, but he still nurtures the passion for music: "Being surprised and blown away by music is sticky and powerful".

New Zealand artist and scientist Jesse Austin-Stewart has created music that only be felt through the vibrations of a PlayStation Dualsense controller, not heard. To feel them, a “listener” has to plug in their controller into a computer and press play on the audio. The controller will then automatically vibrate, with the rhythm of each song forming the track. ‘Music For PlayStation’ contains five separate tracks, each with different rhythms and tempos running through the controllers. The tracks, which were written and developed with a number of deaf artists, are available on all streaming sites, and can also be downloaded on Austin-Stewart’s Bandcamp.

"It was a very big year for very big albums... a year in music we have a feeling we’ll be thinking about (and dancing to) for a long time to come" - Rolling Stone writes introducing its list of best 100 albums of 2022. Their top 10 are:

10. Wet Leg, ‘Wet Leg’

9. J-Hope, ‘Jack in the Box’

8. FKA Twigs, ‘Caprisongs’

7. King Princess, ‘Hold on Baby’

6. Pusha T, ‘It’s Almost Dry’

5. Harry Styles, ‘Harry’s House’

4. Rosalía, ‘Motomami’

3. Taylor Swift, ‘Midnights’

2. Bad Bunny, ‘Un Verano Sin Ti’

  1. Beyonce, ‘Renaissance’

"Self-effacing but ambitious" - a friend describes Trevor Beales, the folk singer from England, who played in a band, and afterward solo, but never really managed to get a break. It's about to change, perhaps - this week an album of his songs recorded between the ages of 18 and 21 in the attic bedroom he lived in as a child is coming out. 'Fireside Stories (Hebden Bridge Circa 1971-1974)' is "an album of fluid, finger-picked folk blues that recalls Bert Jansch and Michael Chapman. On the album, Beales counters clear technical rigour on the guitar with an unassuming deftness; his voice is as light and melodic as it is rich and warm. The whole thing is delivered with a palpable, Nick Drake-like intimacy". Read the sad and lovely story at the Guardian.

Little Simz and Knucks were crowned joint winners for the album of the year prize at the Mobo Awards, for their albums 'Sometimes I Might Be Introvert' and 'Alpha Place', respectively. PinkPantheress won best female act, while Central Cee won the award for best male act, as well as video of the year for his song 'Doja', Music News reports. Nigerian afrobeats superstar Burna Boy took home trophies for best international act and best African music act. Mobos seek to honour achievements in music of black origin.

Portuguese space-rockers Solar Corona released their latest new album 'Pace' last month, including the standout song 'Alpendurada'. Guardian hears "elements of metal, Krautrock and post-rock... blended into more focused, more succinct songs. For all the tight, intermeshing musicianship there’s a wildness and unpredictability there too".

“On behalf of Christine McVie’s family, it is with a heavy heart we are informing you of Christine’s death" - the statement on Facebook said, announcing the sad news of Fleetwood Mac’s singer passing. Christine McVie has died this morning in a hospital, following a short illness, NY Times reports. She was 79. The British American rock band, founded in London in 1967, sold more than 100m records worldwide, making them one of the most successful groups ever. Their best-known songs include 'Dreams', 'Go Your Own Way' and 'Everywhere'.

An interesting conversation in Wired with the "computer musician" Holly Herndon, who created an AI-powered vocal clone called Holly+ that is, at least theoretically, infinitely capable. “There’s a narrative around a lot of this stuff that it’s scary dystopian. I’m trying to present another side: This is an opportunity" - Herndon says. She recently released Holly+’s cover of Dolly Parton’s 'Jolene' (watch it below). Wired also makes a good point - It’s not creepy. It’s pop culture.

It all started promising. In July last year, a UK cross-Parliamentary committee called for a “complete reset” of music streaming following an inquiry into the economics of streaming. Some lobbyists in the UK music business suggested that artists and songwriters weren’t pocketing enough money from streaming services, and accused certain music companies of holding on to outsized profits from royalties. The final 165-page report came as a cold shower, saying that it has not “found evidence of substantial and sustained excess profits by the majors that could be competed away to benefit consumers, for example through more investment in music”. MBW reports on the outc

Music REDEF chief Jason Hirschhorn pays tribute to Charles Koppelman,  one of the music industry’s most powerful executives, who worked with Dolly Parton, Barbra Streisand, Vanilla Ice and many more. Hirschhorn remembers the summer when he and other interns worked under Koppelman: "Thanks for giving us all your time. You can see we took some of what we watched you do and remixed it into our lives and careers. All these names, all these lives... The branches made you quite a tree. Salute." A quote from Variety's Koppelman interview: When I first went into the music business, I’d look around at the record-label guys: They all had this white pallor, chain-smoked cigarettes, were nervous and jerky and always running to catch a plane somewhere. All the music publishers had great suntans, were smoking big, fat Cuban cigars and looked very relaxed. So I asked myself, which one did I want to be when I was 40?.

Music funding platform beatBread has just closed a $100 million institutional fund with asset manager Variant Investments to do so, MBW reports. Launched in November 2020, the company has made over 500 advances to artists and labels, ranging from $1,000 to as much as $2 million per artist for a limited share of revenues on catalog, and, if the artist chooses, on new unreleased music. These advances are repaid from a share of an artist’s streaming and airplay revenues, over a period of the artist’s choosing.

The founder of Stan, Denisha Kuhlor, shares her thoughts on Taylor Swift's relationship with her fans: " Streaming and social media have ushered in a new era of fandom for which long-term value is being created in real-time. As a result of how parasocial relationships are now formed and cultivated, the sky’s the limit for the depths of fandom that can be sustained over time through individual artists. If done right, artists can use these tools to effectively maintain a relationship with their fans during the different cycles in their career allowing them to unlock their patronage at the precise time that they are ready regardless of how long that time is".

Metallica have announced their new album, titled '72 Seasons', which will come out on April 14th, and will be their first in seven years, Blabbermouth reports. Its first single, 'Lux Æterna' is a light trash song with a focus on melodic vocals. Band's frontman James Hetfield explained the album’s idea - “72 seasons. The first 18 years of our lives that form our true or false selves. The concept that we were told ‘who we are’ by our parents... Much of our adult experience is reenactment or reaction to these childhood experiences. Prisoners of childhood or breaking free of those bondages we carry”. Metallica have also unveiled dates for a massive 2023-2024 world tour that will see the band play two dates (with unique sets) in each city, and feature such opening bands as Pantera, Mammoth WVH, Five Finger Death Punch, Ice Nine Kills, and Architects.

YouTuber Polyphonic released his new video, 'The Untold History of Disco' about the music side of the disco and how it had reached the mainstream. Also, he puts it into a societal context, connecting it to the hippie movement, and the fight for minority rights. The disco decade finishes with the "murder" of the disco at a rally. Not much on the video side, but a great story!

An interesting text to think about in The Face about musicians taking part in the 2022 World Cup: "Looking at the expansive musical programming around the Qatar World Cup, it seems like international acts taking these dirty cheques has become more normalised. The question for artists is whether they want to be complicit in this culture-washing, and whether or not they actually believe that reaching fans in far-flung places is a good enough excuse. When it comes to moral gymnastics, it seems a big booking fee can be quite the performance enhancer".

"I’m happy to carry this remnant of my youth with me, not just as a reminder of two of the most beautiful people who walked the earth... but also that there was a time when I was both heroic and dumb enough to get a tattoo of a badly drawn skull with my girlfriend’s name on it" - Nick Cave answers a fan's questions on his Red Hand Files blog, whether he should get a tattoo. "I guess I am wiser now, but that folly of youth will always go with me, and when I am finally in the ground, the grinning skull will continue to mock and jeer at all the lofty pretensions and vanities and cautions of these, my latter years. So, should you get a tattoo, Chris? As a sage man of a mature age I would advise against it, which is why I think you should probably get one".

Composer, pianist, and YouTuber, Nahre Sol made a great short video about conducting. It features one of the most famous conductors of our time, Alan Gilbert, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, and pianist Julio Elizalde. Good stuff.

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26% of all concert-goers and festival-goers plunged themselves into debt this summer to buy tickets, 5mag reports. Only 12% of respondents in Lendingtree survey said they’d gone into debt to attend music festivals or concerts before this summer. Gen Z members are taking the deepest plunge - 21% of Gen Z respondents admitted going into debt before this year for festival costs; this summer it was 41%.

"Vigorous, explorative and righteously angry, nothing struck quite so profound a chord with us in 2022 as this extraordinary record from Baltimore’s Infinity Knives and Brian Ennals" - Loud And Quiet argues in favor of their choice of the album of 2022. Their top 10 are:

10. They Hate Change: 'Finally, New'

9. Dry Cleaning: 'Stumpwork'

8. Katie Alice Greer: 'Barbarism'

7. Kendrick Lamar: 'Mr Morale and the Big Steppers'

6. Thank: 'Thoughtless Cruelty'

5. Caroline: 'Caroline'

4. Charlie XCX: 'Cream'

3. Kai Whiston: 'Quiet As Kept, F.O.G.'

2. Jockstrap: 'I Love You Jennifer B'

  1. Infinity Knives and Brian Ennals: 'King Cobra'

Ed Sheeran moved 3,047,696 tickets in 52 shows of his The Mathematics Tour this year, putting him at No. 1 on the Top Ticket Sales chart, according to figures reported to Billboard Boxscore. Coldplay sold the second-highest number of tickets this year - 2,260,651. However, the act with the highest-grossing tour is Bad Bunny, who made $373.5 million in the 12 months ending Oct. 31. Ed Sheeran grossed $246.3 million. For the first time ever, the top 10 touring acts, who also included Elton John, Harry Styles, the Weeknd, and the double bill of Def Leppard and Motley Crue, all grossed over $100 million.

Quietus' writers have assembled a wide list of best albums of 2022. It looks into the art, alternative, metal, classic, alt-pop and other scenes. Plenty to listen to there. The top 10 are:

  • 1: Jockstrap – 'I Love You Jennifer B'
  • 2: Diamanda Galás – 'Broken Gargoyles'
  • 3: caroline – 'caroline'
  • 4: Richard Dawson – 'The Ruby Cord'
  • 5: Decius – 'Decius Vol. I'
  • 6: Sea Power – 'Everything Was Forever'
  • 7: Kendrick Lamar – 'Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers'
  • 8: The Ephemeron Loop – 'Psychonautic Escapism'
  • 9: Emeka Ogboh – '6°30'33.372"N 3°22'.66"E'
  • 10: Oren Ambarchi – 'Shebang'

Hamish Kilgour was co-founder, with his brother David, of New Zealand guitar-rock band the Clean, who was very influential on several generations of indie rock. Hamish wrote, sang and played drums and guitar in the Clean, he also co-founded Bailter Space and the Mad Scene and released a handful of solo albums. Kilgour had been reported missing in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Nov. 27, and was found dead on Monday, the New Zealand Herald reports.

"2022 was the year of the comeback. As the music industry stumbled out of its pandemic fog, many artists finally delivered long delayed, highly anticipated, and sonically experimental albums that met some of the expectations built up for them" - Pitchfork introduces its Top 50 albums of 2022 list. The top 10 are:

10. Alex G: 'God Save the Animals'

9. Yaya Bey: 'Remember Your North Star'

8. Lucrecia Dalt: '¡Ay!'

7. Big Thief: 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You'

6. Rosalía: 'Motomami'

5. Bad Bunny: 'Un Verano Sin Ti'

4. Special Interest: 'Endure'

3. Alvvays: 'Blue Rev'

2. Sudan Archives: 'Natural Brown Prom Queen'

  1. Beyoncé: 'Renaissance'

James Howard Jackson has been sentenced to 21 years in prison for shooting and wounding Ryan Fischer, Lady Gaga's dog walker, during a dog theft, Bloomberg reports. Ryan Fischer was walking the singer's three French bulldogs in Hollywood in February 2021 when Jackson shot him in the chest. Jackson and one of four other accomplices took two of the dogs, Koji and Gustav, following the shooting. A third bulldog, Miss Asia, ran away and was later found by police. The two stolen dogs were returned unharmed two days later after Gaga offered a $500,000 reward. The person who returned the dogs, Jennifer McBride, was later charged with being an accessory to attempted murder and her case remains pending. The motive was the value of the French bulldogs, a breed that can run into the thousands of dollars, and detectives do not believe the thieves knew the dogs belonged to the musician.

Jockstrap

The Forty-Five collective of female-led journalists has selected 45 best albums of the year, which "attempt to make sense of the troubled times we live in, that capture the zeitgeist or just provide an hour of much-needed escapism". The top 10 albums are:

10. Sampa the Great: 'As Above, so Below'

9. Weyes Blood: 'And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow'

8. Taylor Swift: 'Midnights'

7. Rosalia: 'Motomami'

6. Beyonce: 'Renaissance'

5. Sudan Archives: 'Natural Brown Porm Queen'

4. Mitski: 'Laurel Hell'

3. Shygirl: 'Nymph'

2. Wet Leg: 'Wet Leg'

  1. Jockstrap: 'I Love You Jennifer B'

A great, well spirited reaction today by the Music REDEF to a ludicrous quote earlier this week about the invention of microphones. "The man generally credited with the breakthrough that put mics into widespread use was Emile Berliner, a German Jew who fled his homeland for America in 1870. Berliner’s placement of a layer of carbon particles between two contacts greatly improved the sound of recorded voices and was essential for—among other applications—making telephones work. He sold his patent, in fact, to Alexander Graham Bell. Berliner was a giant figure in the early days of the sound and music industries: He also invented the gramophone—the predecessor of modern vinyl records—and founded Deutsche Grammophon, which eventually became Polygram, which became a key part of Universal Music Group, and which survives as the world’s leading classical music brand".

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